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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk
Thread started 24 Oct 2017 (Tuesday) 22:40
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I have a digital camera...therefore I am a wedding photographer.

 
Point-n-shoot-n
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Tampa, Florida
Oct 24, 2017 22:40 |  #1

I have a family member who thinks this is a true statement. She hasn't spent any time learning anything about photography but is taking money from people to shoot weddings...mostly family and friends but some from strangers. Hopefully she isn't charging much. I have tried, with no luck, to try to talk to her about her choices.
Case in point....last wedding I attended (family member) she was hired to shoot the event. Normally I do the family weddings but I was supposed to be out of town, so they hired her to do it. It turns out that I made it back into town and was able to attend after all. I brought my gear along as I had suspected that she was biting off more than she could swallow and had the opportunity to witness first hand. I jokingly asked her what aperture she was shooting at and was flabbergasted when she said "I don't know"! She had a tiny 2 battery flash on top of her entry level Nikon camera with one kit lens. The flash actually had the original "heavy duty" batteries in it that died shortly after the ceremony started. She had no spare batteries and had to borrow some from me. She shot everything with the camera set on "full automatic". I looked at what she had shot near the end of the ceremony and all were from slightly to majorly underexposed. Snapshots at best. She has no photoshop or editing skills either....
My wife must agree with her as she tells me to stay out of her business or I will cause hard feelings with the family. I am just trying to keep her from getting sued by disgruntled clients for failing to produce quality professional images. I try to explain basic photography camera skills with her and she gives me that "deer in the headlight" look.....then loses interest and walks away.
Am I wrong to try to explain to her that she needs more knowledge than just how to turn the camera on to be a wedding photographer? My wife seems to think so........Please chime in with your comments and/or experiences.


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Wilt
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Post has been edited 28 days ago by Wilt.
Oct 24, 2017 23:05 |  #2

Put it to her this way, to point out the seriousness of screwing up!...

"Weddings bring together relatives and friends, often from far away places, and they might never ever come together like that again. You may have heard about re-staging a wedding day when the photographer screws up, but that might not be possible to again fly grandma Smith across the country for the restaging. So imaging YOU are the bride, and the inexperienced photographer that you hired has messed up, and you have no photos, and it is YOUR grandmother who is 2000 miles away, and imagine how YOU would feel about the photographer!"


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drmaxx
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Joined Jul 2010
Post has been last edited 28 days ago by drmaxx. 3 edits done in total.
Oct 25, 2017 02:16 |  #3

Point-n-shoot-n wrote in post #18480276 (external link)
Am I wrong to try to explain to her that she needs more knowledge than just how to turn the camera on to be a wedding photographer? My wife seems to think so........Please chime in with your comments and/or experiences.

You are not wrong - but your wife is right (P.S. They always are ....:-)). She (your family member - not your wife) obviously shows very poor judgment. Look at any professional wedding photographers output and compare that with what you can do. If it doesn't match you might be in need of training. I don't think she realizes the difference. Therefore: Why do you think that anything you say will sway her opinion of her skills? Most likely she'll compare your honest criticism with the praise from friends and family of her pictures and decide that you are a jealous know-it-all.


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DaviSto
... sorry. I got carried away!
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Joined Nov 2016
Abuja Nigeria
Post has been edited 28 days ago by DaviSto.
Oct 25, 2017 04:32 |  #4

Sometimes you just have to let people learn life's lessons the hard way. This might be one of those times.


Comment and (constructive) criticism always welcome.

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Sibil
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Joined Jan 2009
SoCal
Oct 25, 2017 05:57 |  #5

I am simply blown away by this. Oh my....




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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
That's my line!
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The Uwharrie Mts, NC
Oct 25, 2017 06:10 |  #6

it's pretty amazing how many people feel they can take a pic and charge money for it, even just portrait photography.

The way I look at it is that if the customer looks through an individual's portfolio and is okay with their results, oh well. It is very simple for people to look around the internet and be exposed to differences in quality and style, if the customer (or even the photographer) cannot see those differences, there is nothing anyone can do about it.


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texkam
"Just let me be a stupid photographer."
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By The Lake in Big D
Oct 25, 2017 08:11 |  #7

Yes, you're wrong. Not the time or place, and no one asked for your input. Walk away, let it go.




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DaviSto
... sorry. I got carried away!
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Joined Nov 2016
Abuja Nigeria
Oct 25, 2017 08:18 |  #8

texkam wrote in post #18480526 (external link)
Yes, you're wrong. Not the time or place, and no one asked for your input. Walk away, let it go.

I think this dead right. Otherwise, you might find you're the one whose learning a lesson the hard way.


Comment and (constructive) criticism always welcome.

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joedlh
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Post has been last edited 28 days ago by joedlh. 2 edits done in total.
Oct 25, 2017 08:19 |  #9

In this day and age, you are indisputably right. Nevertheless you will be perceived as mansplaining. Say it once and walk away. The rest is up to her to learn from experience, likely when those first dissatisfied clients manifest themselves.

I'm curious about your motivation for asking her "jokingly" what aperture she was using. It's not a question that I would ask another photographer. Were you trying to put her on the spot? It's has the ring of being patronizing and intimidating.

Your description neglects to mention anything about her artistic skills. Maybe she lacks technical expertise but has an artist's eye or an ability to capture the moment that impresses people.


Joe
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Editing ok

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gjl711
They have pills for that now you know.
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Deep in the heart of Texas
Oct 25, 2017 08:44 |  #10

Point-n-shoot-n wrote in post #18480276 (external link)
.... My wife must agree with her as she tells me to stay out of her business or I will cause hard feelings with the family. I am just trying to keep her from getting sued by disgruntled clients for failing to produce quality professional images. I try to explain basic photography camera skills with her and she gives me that "deer in the headlight" look.....then loses interest and walks away....

-I'm totally with your wife on this one. Who made you the wedding photographer police? Let her explore and give it a try. If she comes to you for advise, give the best you can and who knows, she might just grow and succeed.


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panicatnabisco
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san francisco, CA
Oct 25, 2017 09:03 |  #11

texkam wrote in post #18480526 (external link)
Yes, you're wrong. Not the time or place, and no one asked for your input. Walk away, let it go.

Agree. Don't tell others how to do their job, no matter how bad it is. At this point, everyone sees you as the one being condescending to her.


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peeaanuut
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Oct 25, 2017 09:26 |  #12

in the pure business sense I see it like this. If she has done weddings before then the new clients are responsible to find out if she can do the job. They hired he so they must be accepting of her level of work. Do you want clients like that? I dont. There is a place for nearly all levels of photographers in the market. Some people are willing to pay for what are seen as mediocre photos and some are not. Maybe its all the client could afford. There are a lot of things at play here. Its not your responsibility to elevate her level and really all it serves is to puff your chest up a bit that you know more than her. Let her be. She will be flushed out of the market and if not then she will be taking clients that wouldnt have hired you anyways.


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airbutchie - Joe was definitely right about adding contrast...
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OhLook
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Oct 25, 2017 11:37 |  #13

Point-n, almost every reply takes your wife's side and implies that you're being arrogant or at least that your relatives will perceive you that way. I have a lot of sympathy for your plight because I want everything I read to be written in good English, but people have sometimes taken offense when I pointed out mistakes. (Why would they want to do it wrong?) This situation creates a conflict between caring about quality and caring about getting along with people. Your wife may not understand how you feel about high standards of work. She's being practical in trying to avoid alienating the family.


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Alveric
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Canada
Post has been edited 28 days ago by Alveric.
Oct 25, 2017 12:17 |  #14

Yes, your wife is actually on your side, not hers. She's trying to avoid YOU aggravation. Even when we mean well, we can sometimes get too frustrated by people doing things all wrong, and then we become too eager, even overzealous, in trying to help them, to the point that we might cross a boundary that shouldn't be crossed.

Add to that the fact that quite a number of people out there don't take kindly to being coached, and take every piece of advice as negative critique and/or personal aggression and you have a ticking time bomb.

There's no blinder person that the one who doesn't want to see. Time for you to stop throwing your pearls and walk away.


'The success of the second-rate is deplorable in itself; but it is more deplorable in that it very often obscures the genuine masterpiece. If the crowd runs after the false, it must neglect the true.' —Arthur Machen
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Colorblinded
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Oct 25, 2017 12:24 |  #15

Sounds like you'll just have to let her fail and fall flat on her face.

Hopefully nobody else will hire her without seeing her portfolio (such as it is) and knowledge of what she brings to the table.

Just make sure you don't say "I told ya so" when it all blows up in her face.


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