Recently, I got booked for a beautiful and magical wedding. The location was dreamy, intimate and unique, altogether the three characteristics of a great wedding location. As the bridal party started walking down the aisle, I noticed a few people pulling out their phones… now let me take a second to voice 99% of wedding photographers’ thoughts on this subject…
“WE HATE PHONES AT WEDDINGS. ESPECIALLY IF YOU’RE JUMPING IN FRONT OF OUR SHOT TO TAKE A PICTURE WITH YOUR PHONE.”
Okay. So now I’ll continue my story.
At first I thought the use of cell phones at this wedding wouldn’t be too bad, because the wedding organizer politely told everyone to put their phones away. Well, I’d soon find out that this wasn’t the case. Shortly after the adorable flower girls walked down the aisle, I realised someone standing on the bench positioning their phone over the crowd and I thought: “My God, this cannot be happening… Are you for real?”
I quickly ran to the lady in question and told her as nicely as possible (I swear, I tried) that she can’t be doing this and that I need her to get off the bench because she’s ruining my picture.
Now I’m sure that to some of you, this doesn’t seem like a huge issue, right? You see someone ruining your picture, you just tell them to move and it’s okay, you go back to doing your job.
Well it’s kind of a big deal. When it comes to wedding photography, mental focus is key. Everything is happening so fast that if you hesitate for one moment, you could lose an important shot in the blink of an eye, literally. Luckily at this wedding, the lady got off the bench right in time, just before the bride started walking down the aisle.
As the beautiful bride makes her first steps towards me, I’m completely focused on capturing the radiant smile on her face as she begins the walk to share her entire life with her soulmate. At that exact moment a lady jumps right in front of me in the middle of the aisle to take a picture with her Samsung S5… Seriously, for real? Immediately, I rushed down the aisle and told her “Please excuse me, you can’t stand here, you’re in my way”. Luckily the bride took her time walking down the aisle so I had enough time to get back position to capture that one shot.
I understand that in this modern day and age technology has come along way, especially photography devices and technology. The last 5 years we’ve seen amazing DSLR, mirrorless and phone cameras with amazing capabilities and quality. On the other hand, having one doesn’t necessarily mean the pictures taken on them truly reflect the quality and capability of the device you’re using. Having an oven doesn’t make me a chef, having a camera doesn’t make someone a photographer.
Professional photographers get hired to document a wedding based on their experience, knowledge and personal creativity, all of which took them years to develop. They are being trusted and paid to capture emotions, moments and memories that can never be relived. We do appreciate that you want to take pictures with your phone but let’s be honest…The couple will probably never see these pictures or use them for their wedding album.
Bottom line: respect the photographer and don’t be that guest that pulls out their phone while the bride is walking down the aisle. It’s an intimate and beautiful moment that should be enjoyed by the guest (you). If they wanted you to take pictures of their ceremony I’m pretty sure they would have asked you. And if they didn’t ask you, it’s probably because they wanted you to experience this moment with them. Put your phone away for once and experience life beyond that screen. I’ll capture the moments for you.