Not A Wedding Photographer

A few months after I turned 18, I opened my Inbox to find an invitation a client inquiry, “We love your pictures… and would like you to shoot our wedding in December.”

That was the first wedding gig that found its way to my web space.The couple found my website and decided I would make a good photographer for their big day. I hadn’t worked any weddings or engagements at that point; nevertheless, they inquired about my rates, availability, and the “Save The Date” package (code for engagement photos.)

I was flattered that strangers were seeing and enjoying my work. But I told the bride- and groom-to-be the same thing I told other interested couples after them – I’m not a wedding photographer.

What I really meant to say was, I don’t want to be a wedding photographer.

Let me present this differently.

Engagement photos are like this:

And I’m like this:

I did try photographing weddings but found that I don’t enjoy it; few wedding photos actually appeal to me.

I enjoy attending weddings, but that’s very different from working weddings. Wedding pictures are soft and warm. I like my images moody and wild. My friends who are wedding photographers say that when I’m older (and nearing marriage myself), I’ll jump at every chance to be a part of these festive declarations of love and romance.

I tell them, maybe.

But maybe not.

If you are on Twitter, let’s be Twitter friends! @tracyzhangphoto


22 responses to “Not A Wedding Photographer

  1. Well maybe the role of photographer isn’t the role you want to have at a wedding.

    From this post… your desired roles would be.

    A. Happy and proud family member/friend of newly weds
    B. DJ of wedding
    C. MC!
    D. Bride
    E. Pastor?

  2. Thanks for stopping by my Magpie’s Nest … it was a nice way to find your blog (bbb)
    To thine own self be true … I think your moody and wild pics are great!
    Happy Springtime!

  3. I feel the same. Although, the money is good and these days people are more open to different styles of wedding photography so, depending on the gig, I might consider it.
    Hello by the way *waves*

  4. I know how you feel. I myself have been asked to do a wedding this summer by a relative who’s getting married. I’ve never done it before and am not sure if I’d actually want to. Poser pictures are not really my forté…what to do, what to do?

    Moody and wild ftw 😉

    • Oy, that’s tough. is this relative close to you?
      the tough thing is once you start, then other people start asking for wedding photographs too. then before you know it, you are shooting weddings every weekend!

      let me know what you decide!

      • Hey, sorry for the late reply 🙂
        Yeah, well, it’s my aunt whom I’ve been pretty close with when I was a kid at least. I actually had that “other people asking” experience this weekend, when I was shooting at a party. However that wasn’t too bad, since it’s still catching people and colors and stuff in a random wild way (: I decided to try the wedding photography anyway and am off to do some test shots next week, to see how it goes from there 🙂

    • I love taking posed shots! It always helps when there’s people in the neighborhood willing to pose in your garage! I have a fairly simple “Canon Powershot” with an “image stabilizer”, that I find to be a fairly inexpensive, but still pretty nice camera. I hope to upgrade to a “real” camera soon. I don’t know if I would do a wedding. There’s a lot of stress and you have to get it “just so” or the bride won’t be happy with it. Depending on the bride’s personality, I might do a wedding. I did a family funeral recently, and they turned out very well, so maybe some day…

      • you are exactly right! the Bride dictates the experiences a lot; and with the stress of the big day, a lot of them get pretty crazy! eeek!

  5. Hey,

    Thanks for your comment on my weblog. I like your weblog.. Will definitely come back every once in a while. (:

  6. I “worked” (or rather held heavy camera equipment and set up tripods for several hours) with a wedding photographer a few weeks ago and loved it! I was expecting the shoot to be loaded with cheese and superficial emotions but it ended up stunning in every way. The shots were highly contrasting black and whites done artistically in an almost brooding way. It all ended up beautiful and I was proud to be part… Even if I was just a 16 year old tripod girl!

    Wedding photography doesn’t have to be awful and artificial :]

    • you are definitely right! the shots are not artificial in anyway. I have done weddings and have close friends that make a living shooting weddings exclusively (their work is wonderful). I just don’t connect with those pictures the same way I do with fashion, I suppose it’s probably because I’m not anywhere close to the marrying age yet.

      I’m glad you had a good time assisting the wedding photographer though!

  7. follow your own photography path. if weddings ain’t it for you, then it’s not for you. it’s not for everyone. it’s a tough tough job. i know for sure i would be too stressed. hey, at least you tried it and realized it’s not for you now. but like you mentioned, MAYBE in the future you will find a way to take weddings that speak to you and you’ll end up enjoying it. i read an article a while ago about a photo journalist who refused to take wedding photos and actually kinda made fun of wedding photographers, but knew they made alot of money. when he got older and couldn’t travel as much, he turned to weddings and ended up loving it after he found his own wedding photo style! 🙂 good luck with everything!

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