Some people out there pay excessive amounts for wedding photographers. Especially here in the Chicago area. We know of one guy that actually charges over $50,000 to shoot an 8 hour wedding. He sold the photos from the wedding at ridiculous prices to. Let’s just say a wallet sized photo was $60.00. And guess what??? The bride & groom and their family ordered tons of pictures at those bloated prices? Do you know what the photographer paid for the photo? Lets just say he made out like a bandit. Wow. So basically if that photographer shot only 2 weddings a year that would be a pretty nice income for most people.
So why did all these people pay so much money for their wedding photography? Were the photos better quality? Were they on diamond covered photo paper? Did he have a special camera? No, no and no. This “high-end” photographer actually used to work at just a regular priced photography studio. He left that studio and confident that he could get a high price for his work, began marketing himself in more affluent areas with very classy looking, artsy ads. That was it. He only needed one or two weddings a year to make a good living but what he did do was change his perceived value. Perceived value when it comes to anything is a funny thing. Was his photography so amazing? We didn’t think so. He wasn’t bad but he wasn’t any better than the art student that came in with photos he took from his cousins wedding. He definitely in my opinion was not worth 50k. He shot weddings in the same nice attire that all the other photographers shot in, he had the same photography equipment as most of them… so what it comes down to is how he marketed himself and what his perceived value was. Word of mouth among the affluent about this “high-end” photographer allowed him to do very well in his business but behind the scenes, he was laughing all the way to the bank.
So the question comes down to are expensive wedding photographers better than inexpensive photographers? Well this can’t really be answered accurately because price really doesn’t matter when it comes to the skill of the photographer; but we do know one thing, a good photographer is a good photographer. You can change his/her perceived value around with a twist of marketing and words. When we first decided to open our photography studio, we could have easily charged thousands of dollars for our wedding photography packages, printed up some fancy brochures and taken out full page ads in the most elite bridal magazines studio around. After all our work is beautiful, professional and high quality just as the expensive photographers are. The fact that our work is so amazing shouldn’t be what is surprising…after all, our photographers are not trying to be business owners. If they were, they would open up their own studios and charge whatever they like. Our photographers are true artists. They prefer to focus more on their passion of photography & shooting weddings rather than being businessmen & women. This I believe shows in their work. The only thing that should be surprising is our price. This comes back to our mission. We strongly believe that everyone should be able to afford beautiful, photographic memories. We know that not everyone out there can afford to pay thousands of dollars for wedding photography so here we are. :-)