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  Reply # 850861 8-Jul-2013 14:14
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Reading back over this thread, there really are 2 or 3 parallel discussions going on.

a) Ownership wise, much has got to do with what agreement you enter in to. Really it's up to you, in that if you don't like some aspect of their business model, then discuss it, and if you can't agree, and it's that big a stumbling issue for you, then don't proceed. Receiving full res electronic files of edited photographs as part of the deal should mean you're able to back them up and share/print as you see fit.

b) As mentioned by others earlier, you only get one shot at a wedding day photograph. It's then over to the individual on how much that risk is worth to them. Much of what makes a pro a pro is down to experience, gear and backup gear and processes. The risk of missing/not capturing a scene sufficiently well should be less with a pro.

c) Amateurs and Professionals are generally not the same. Throwing some disposable cameras about will generally return a bunch of blurry shtty photos. If you're ok with that then fine. If not, you might want to dedicate the role of capturing photos to someone specific.

d) Photos get the main play on the day, and videographers tend to piggy back off this ie use the photographers composition ideas for the video. I personally think a short summary/highlights video is pretty darn powerful and can share more about what actually happens on the day than some staged still photos. I think their gear can need to be just as expensive/complete, and the post processing just as involved. So I personally think their input is undervalued and I think the end result can be cooler to share on facebook etc than photos, in this digital day and age. You can tell I'm video biased, as it's really all the same visual development work, only now with movement and audio in addition. I think it deserves more money than it's currently getting.

e) Much of what you are paying for is beyond getting just the base files. As Timmmay alludes to, it's almost a disservice to get raw unedited files as the 'magic' can happen in post production. All you're getting with the original files is the nicely composed image, that's potentially very flat to minimise highlight and dark area blowouts.


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  Reply # 850881 8-Jul-2013 14:41
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Jaxson:  I personally think a short summary/highlights video is pretty darn powerful and can share more about what actually happens on the day than some staged still photos. I think their gear can need to be just as expensive/complete, and the post processing just as involved. So I personally think their input is undervalued and I think the end result can be cooler to share on facebook etc than photos, in this digital day and age. You can tell I'm video biased, as it's really all the same visual development work, only now with movement and audio in addition. I think it deserves more money than it's currently getting. 


We used an award-winning photographer for our wedding in March. We didn't get one photo we can print. it was a disaster. On the other hand, we had a team of two videographers who are not experienced in filming weddings but who work professionally in film and documentaries. One followed me from just after breakfast, one was filming Nic from the start of his day. For each of us to be able to see the other getting ready, talking about things, heading off to the chapel, getting married, is fantastic. 
We captured our DAY, not just the wedding. 

The video guys are busy now trying to extract a few frames for photos but these are still not the same as good quality, hi-res photographs. We want to have at least one of the two of us together so are busy researching photographers now and will get back into our wedding finery for a photo. 

We decided to have a video just because a friend is a movie producer and offered to do this for us at no charge. Having seen the result, I heartily recommend video to anyone wanting to capture that special day. 

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  Reply # 850901 8-Jul-2013 15:08
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Jaxson: 

e) Much of what you are paying for is beyond getting just the base files. As Timmmay alludes to, it's almost a disservice to get raw unedited files as the 'magic' can happen in post production. All you're getting with the original files is the nicely composed image, that's potentially very flat to minimise highlight and dark area blowouts.



That sort of thing should be made clear by the photographer at the time of contract, as post processing images is an additional service. But if the price includes a photo book, then they would have priced at least some of that into the price. Maybe the ones that aren't in the book would be the raw ones. Also post production work on digital photos can also be used to 'fix' previously poorly taken images. In the old days prior to digital photography and photoshop, photographers generally had just one chance to get the photo right, and any other tricks were then done in the darkroom, and were more limited that what can be done today. 

When my brother had his wedding, I was also taking some photos using a pro-sumer camera, and the ironic thing is, that my photos were the main ones that were sent to people, as my photos were available to everyone, and they were more realistic of the event. The photographers ones focused on more closed in shots of guests  faces, hands, etc, and were more artistic. They were happy with the results, but the only copy they have of them are in a photo book, and a few indivual photos which they purchased off the photographer separately. I think the photobook is reasonably low resultion, compared to a proper photo album, so I would recommend a photo album instead

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  Reply # 850947 8-Jul-2013 15:48
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mattwnz:

That sort of thing should be made clear by the photographer at the time of contract, as post processing images is an additional service.



IMO Professionals are justified in not wanting unprocessed images to be released in their name. 
If you want something else then honestly I think the customer needs to discuss this and be aware of what they are actually purchasing/agreeing to.  As before, if you don't like it, go somewhere else.  Complaining afterwards just seems silly, unless of course what was delivered didn't match what was arranged.

That said, if it were me, I'd be going out of my way to explain this to the client, assessing their needs and explaining what I've seen work successfully in the past.  All to ensure a happy customer at the end of the day.  Then again, managing expectations is 90% of my day job.

Perhaps there is a need for session photographers to capture photos and then hand over the files.  That's typically how a number 2 photographer works on the day.  He/She rocks up, takes some shots and then hands over the memory cards, goes home and gets paid.  The main photographer than has the task of sorting through the available files and processing to achieve a consistent style across all the shots.



mattwnz:

The photographers ones focused on more closed in shots of guests faces, hands, etc, and were more artistic.


Likewise, this shouldn't be a surprise you find out at the end of the process.  More and more I think the customer should be driving this.  Yes you'd hope the photographer would lead the way, but it's a bit like getting your hair cut to some degree.  You can take in examples of other styles you've seen that you like, to make clear what your expectations are.  You can do an awful lot in advance to help the process, all without having any practical clue about hairdressing or photography.  Then you just hope they're up to the task, as you only get one shot at both.



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  Reply # 857520 16-Jul-2013 17:18
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xpd: We paid $300 (and fed/watered him) for our wedding photographer - he was a professional photographer, just didnt do weddings as mainstream .... he was with us from 9am - 9pm, took photos of everyone there, burnt the images to DVDs at the end of the night and said he'd hold onto a copy for a year and use some of the pics as samples if we were ok with that (which we were) and that was it.

He didnt touch the images at all as he knew I'm in IT and happy to do touch ups etc myself with P/shop . No mention of copyrights etc.

Weve taken our kids to that photography lot that run out of the Warehouse in Albany (name eludes me), and we only take the basic pack which is a single image - "no copying/scanning/altering etc allowed" - whatever. Theyre our kids, we've paid for the image, do what we want with it thanks.


Food and drink is pretty much always supplied for photographers. Culling and processing is a service, and a skilled one if you want it done well, and takes someone experienced around two days to cull, do raw processing, and a little retouching - that's not including things like head swaps in photoshop. No way do I want to see the 3000 photos my photographer takes, I want to see the best 500 odd that show the day, the people, and the emotions.

But so long as you're happy, and you got good photos, great. Many people who pay that little regret it, and some people who pay a lot without doing good research regret it too.




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  Reply # 858087 17-Jul-2013 15:05
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For our wedding, we used an award-winning photographer before he was award-winning (but definitely excellent). We paid a lot for the package (about 5.5k) but we also got a lot for our money - 8+ hours of photography, a custom slideshow played to the guests after dinner, an A1 dual-panel canvas print of our choice, all the photos provided in high-res JPG format (about 5GB worth), plus a competition-grade Queensberry style album. We didn't get prints from him, but armed with the CDs we got physical prints of about 500 photos (9c/print at DSE), which we were able to distribute to friends and family. We had full rights to reproduce and edit as we liked, but the photographer also retained rights to use our photos for promotion of his business and in competitions. Was it worth $5.5k? Every cent. The album doesn't get pulled out every day, but probably once or twice a year, and it is a real work of art. The canvas prints have been joined by another canvas print (triple-panel), which he printed for promotional purposes, and then gave to us for free when he moved his studios. The panels adorn our walls, and are a real feature in the room. The quantity of shots is staggering, and he even had an assistant photographer taking detail shots of the venue and setup while he was doing the main photography. He knew we would find uses for these details, and it's been great having a personalised set of "stock" photography to use. We also got the custom slideshow as a DVD video, which is great because...

...we "saved" on videographer costs by buying a digital video camera (I'd been planning on buying one for a while), and getting a mate to video the event for us. The idea is that I would edit it up myself afterwards. 5 years later, the tapes languish in a drawer somewhere, and we don't have a useable wedding video. The camera is now also more or less obsolete. If I could do it again, I'd have gone with a professional videographer the way I went with a professional photographer, rather than trying to save on costs. As others have said - you only (usually) get one wedding, so you won't get the chance to do the photos or videos again.

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  Reply # 858255 17-Jul-2013 18:47
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Lizard1977: 
...we "saved" on videographer costs by buying a digital video camera (I'd been planning on buying one for a while), and getting a mate to video the event for us. The idea is that I would edit it up myself afterwards. 5 years later, the tapes languish in a drawer somewhere, and we don't have a useable wedding video. The camera is now also more or less obsolete.


LOL, I presented my wife a summary video, having finally edited the raw footage into a 3 1/2 minute 'music video' highlights clip, for our 10 year anniversary!

With a bit (like a damn long time!) you can do something pretty cool with the footage, assuming your mate pointed the camera in the general direction of your key moments of the day.

What format is your video tape/s in Lizard1977?

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  Reply # 858433 18-Jul-2013 09:09
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The tapes are MiniDV. I've played around with a few different editing packages, but my stumbling block probably isn't software - it's finding the time to go through the footage and pick out the best parts. Also, I have some vague ideas in my mind of what I would like to do (i.e. splicing still shots into the video, to "highlight" key moments), but don't really have the technical nous to do so... It's one of those things that I'll get around to eventually.

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