Weddings 101: Are wedding photographers, filmmakers worth the cost? - 1

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When planning a wedding, budgeting for photography and videography can quickly raise eyebrows.
Certainly, many couples make time for wedding photography. Some couples might tap a friend or family member to shoot photos for free or a discount. There’s nothing wrong with hiring a photo booth, or putting a disposable camera on every dinner table. Sometimes those make for the best candids.
But when it comes to professional photography or wedding filmmaking, it’s easy to feel wary of high costs, multiple photographers hovering over your vows, or video shooters trying to turn your wedding into a Wes Anderson set.
But in this episode of Weddings 101, we spoke to two high-end wedding visual professionals based in Upstate New York, who shared why it’s worth including professional wedding photography and videos in your budget.
Wedding photographer/educator Kerri Lynne Cole said hiring your shooter is one of the most important decisions of wedding planning, because your photos will help you remember this important day, and they become keepsakes for your family for years to come.
“Finding a wedding photographer is like finding a friend,” said Cole. “This person is beside you the entirety of the wedding day, for 10-12 hours. You want someone who will calm you down, and help you relax.”
She also says it’s worth spending money on an experienced photographer, who can handle shooting in dark places (say, in a church), in rainy weather, or any other tricky visual situations.
“Instagram makes it look like wedding photography is this ideal environment…with this bright, airy, gorgeous natural lighting all the time," Cole said. "That actually is not so. You need someone that is skilled and can solve problems.”
Kerri Lynne Photography services range from $3,900 to $5,300. Her base package includes engagement photos, so the couple can build a relationship with Cole as their photographer, “and to help them get comfortable in front of [the] camera before the day.”
Wedding photography
Wedding filmmaker Gabrielle Fordham works for Live Oak Films, a company which shoots wedding videos across Upstate New York and Virginia.
“Something video captures that photography can’t are really the words that people say to you," said Fordham. "You’re sharing vows with each other which is the foundation on which your marriage will stand. Being able to capture that and watch it back is so valuable and beautiful.”
When shopping for a wedding videographer, she recommends really getting to know the person or people you’re hiring, so they don’t feel like “strangers" following you around all day.
“The mistake would be hiring the wrong person,” she said. “You want someone who’s going to be able to chat with your mom and have a good time. It’s worth spending a bit of extra money to hire someone you trust.”
Packages with Live Oak Films range from $4,000 to $6,000, and can include a day or an entire weekend of shooting.
Next time on Weddings 101: Cakes
For our next episode (Feb. 26), we’ll talk to local wedding cake experts to learn everything you need to know when shopping for a baker and preparing for your cake tasting. Just like in any marriage, we’re in this together. Happy wedding planning.
Find new “Weddings 101” videos every Wednesday on Katrina Tulloch shoots videos for and The Post-Standard. Contact her: Email | Twitter | Facebook
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