Weddings! Do I sound like a broken record? I do…I do…I do!

Since our official beginnings more than two years ago, I have written several blogs suggesting, strongly advising, and downright pleading (for the love of your life’s history in portraiture) that you consider investing in a professional photographer for your wedding!

This week’s blog is no different! Now is the time to begin booking your photographer for the upcoming spring, summer and fall wedding season! I know it is cold and gray outside, but it will soon be warm and green and, by that time, we will be booked!

The easy way, here, would be to suggest you, or someone you know who is looking to tie the knot, to visit our website and book Abanathy Photography, LLC as your, or their, wedding photographer! Then we are booked, a beautiful wedding is captured in timeless portraiture, and everyone is happy, the sun is shining, and birds are singing! The link to check out with this easy way is www.abanathyphotography.com/weddings. Copy it! Paste it! Share it! Like it! Pinterest it! Tweet it! Whatever gets the word where it needs to be! That is what we implore you to do!

Now on to the not so easy part of this wedding booking season: Convincing many in the land of a jillion smartphones why the art of the professional wedding photographer is still very much distinct, irreplaceable…and worth every penny!

This blog might seem a little repetitive, it might seem a little rehashed and it might even contain links to previous blogs saying similar things. In fact I can pretty much guarantee the latter! However, let’s face it: If the blogs did not capture your gaze the first time, it might have been because you were not yet planning a wedding or didn’t know of anyone who was. And, while these things change over the years, other things do not…and that includes the need for a professional photographer to capture your big day!

The economy is touted to be improving, gas prices are down (for now), and weddings, for many, are one of those once-in-a-lifetime expenses you can easily justify in your bottom line. However, there are many who still do not want to loosen the purse strings for one of the most essential and lasting components of the day. And that makes me apprehensive, as I hear more and more people telling me, in hindsight, how they wish they had simply bit the bullet and hired a professional photographer rather than cutting corners.

In the past, I have discussed why you should not rely on family members to take your portraits (Why Pay? Uncle Bill Has a Camera! and Reserve Uncle Bill a Seat! Bring in a Professional). I have also given tips on why, OH WHY!, it is NOT a good idea to rely on the cheap, trendy seduction of smartphones to capture your wedding (Smartphone weddings?…Time for a reality check! and Wedding planning underway? Take 3 tips from a professional photographer!) If you are currently in the planning phases of your wedding, I cannot stress enough how you should read and re-read these blogs! There is a fair amount of 20/20 hindsight foretold in each one which you do not want to make a reality for yourself in 2015 or ever!

Like many events in our lives, anything that requires as much planning and energy as a wedding can become such a focused goal that we temporarily, and unintentionally, set it up as a life pinnacle to which there is no afterward. However, unlike a movie that freezes the bouquet toss, fades to black and rolls credits, life goes on after a wedding. The cake will be gone, the flowers will be wilted, the arch heads back to the rental store, the DJ’s speakers go silent, the fluorescent lights come on, the people will disperse back to their lives and the honeymoon will end. But one wedding investment will endure, will capture that day, and will never let it go! You guessed it: The wedding portraits! In fact, outside of the total experience and the many delights marriage brings, the portraits are one of the few things you will get to physically keep from that day.

From that perspective, it seems like a no-brainer to keep the professional photographer in the mix. However, there is a hitch many run into while running down the wedding checklist: The cost! No matter what the economy is doing, with the photographer’s price tag now dangling alongside those of the caterer, the event center, the music, the decorations, the gratuity, the invitations, the rings, the dress, the tux, etc., you might be quick to make a rash decisions on how to reduce the bill. And, in the era of the smartphone where the art of photography has become cheapened and erroneously masked as something anyone can do, I am not so naive as to deny one of the most tempting corners to cut!

I won’t lie. Wedding photographers are not cheap and many might even argue they are still underpaid for all they do. I could launch into a justification for their price tag (in fact I already have once: The cost of professional photography…It’s a lot more than just pressing of buttons!), however, in the end, it does not matter why they are costly, in as much as what you are getting for your money.

Essentially, you are getting a very talented and educated eye, behind a serious piece of photographic equipment, ready to give his/her all to capture your wedding! Afterward, you are getting someone who knows how to pick out and touch up every aspect of your portraits to make sure they live up to their potential and hold true to your personal memories from the day. Lastly, while smartphones can glitch out, get lost, be smashed, or be unintentionally washed, the professional photographer is also tasked with archiving your images for as long as is humanly possible to assure long-term availability. Personally, this means hard drives and backup hard drives making sure your portraits remain reasonably safe for years to come. After all, when an artist makes art, they tend to want to keep it around for a while!

Now, of course, when all is said and done, I might not be able to convince you that a professional wedding photographer is the best way to go and, as they say, the proof is in the pudding. However, in the event that cost cutting does prevail and you would like a cure for the hindsight blues, we have developed the “I do…Again!” package. This allows you to don your wedding attire once again and have an amazing portrait shoot to capture the memories the way you intended the first time. True it will not replicate your big day (unless you really want to make a serious investment), but it will create wonderful portraits and peace of mind while creating an amazing, unique, rekindling experience for you and your spouse! We can even add professional hair and makeup to this one and guarantee the stress level will be a lot lower than on your actual wedding day!

Well, there it is, all the food for thought necessary to book your wedding photographer  for 2015-16 with just a dash of a remedy for hindsight decisions of 2014! Pass it along, share it with friends, and take it to heart! You can even share your story below in the comments section if you like! In any case, we look forward to meeting with you and photographing your beautiful wedding in 2015!

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