When wedding planning, there are a million little things that all desire your dollars, so there is no shame in trying to save money. When inquiries come in for wedding photography, I see one phrase/question/request often: We just want coverage for the ceremony.
No details. No dancing. Just the ceremony.
I get it: The ceremony is the most important part of the day—it is effectively the reason why we come together at all. However, from the perspective of a storyteller and journalist, I can name three good reasons why only photographing your ceremony does your whole day (as well as your past, present, a future) a huge disservice.
1.) IT RECORDS YOUR DAY OUT OF CONTEXT
As I say in many of my spiels, I come at photography from the photojournalism angle—I am here to tell the story. If covering only a portion of the day, I cannot tell the full story. That’s unfair to your big day. Just having one segment doesn’t allow for the entire tale to be told, which means I am not doing my job.
2.) THE OTHER PARTS OF YOUR DAY MAY BE LOST TO TIME
Even with ceremony-only coverage, you have most likely spent money and time on your dress/suit, flowers, decorations, rings, all the things. Not photographing those elements means they won’t be documented for memory. We can pretend that they will live forever on social media on on our phones, but are those really the two places you want to trust with your memories? Sure, you could save them to a computer or the cloud, but even that isn’t foolproof. You are already making an investment in these aspects of your wedding day, so really consider investing in a professional photographer for a greater portion of your day to truly record these touches you’ve made for your day.
3.) PHOTOGRAPHY IS MUCH MORE THAN THE PHOTOS
This isn’t transactional to me—it’s not a “Here’s your money”/“Here’s your photos” situation. Like getting a manicure or having your nails done, it’s a service; to do my job the way you deserve, I need more than just the ceremony.
No vendor is going to ever question your wedding budget—that’s a promise. Never will any of us do anything to purposely make you spend more. We will all always understand that you are doing what you can with what you have. Know, however, that we have our needs, too, so we might not be able to do or offer what you are needed. The best advice? Discuss it with us and see what we can offer—be that our services or the name of another vendor who we think can help.
We just want you to have your dream day in the end, and we will do whatever it takes to make that happen.
Kayla Lee is a Minnesota-based wedding and elopement photographer. She provides services to elegant, authentic, sentimental couples who not only choose their own adventures, but also live them to the fullest!