If you haven’t seen the viral video of the Photographer Vs. Stepmom yet….well, check out the clip here.
Wow right! There are a lot of stories going around about the photographer and the bride being sisters and that is both their stepmom, and there was already some family issues. It happens. However. It brings up so many issues that we as photographers deal with all the time. In this post I will go over 3 tips on how to deal with pushy and rude wedding guests.
The general public does not think about photography like we do. That is one reason why they hire us. Because we are the ones that are trained and experienced. They don’t realize the literal blood, sweat and tears we have put into our businesses to get where we are. Unfortunately there will be those guests that will want to be the first to capture the important moments to post them on social media, with their cell phones, and ipads. Because we live in an instant gratification world now.
No this doesn’t mean we teach our clients what we know. We do need to talk to them about our expectations. For wedding photography, you will have a meeting with the bride and groom to be to go over the contract. An unplugged wedding is something you can and should add into the contract. It is up to you if you make this a requirement for them to hire you. It might be a turn off to a potential client, but if you explain to them the importance of an unplugged wedding, such as, guests getting in the way of the shot that you are paid to take, as well as they will want their friends and family to sit back, relax, and enjoy the day. Let the photographer that has been hired, do the job. Another thing to mention is that because “Uncle Bob” has a fancy camera and thinks he is just going to capture some extra special moments for them, there is a potential for him to get in the way and ruin your shot. That unfortunately WILL come back on you. You missed the first kiss because someone unexpectedly decided to pop up in front of you in the middle of the shot, well, they will come back and say we paid you, you should have been prepared. If its not covered in your contract, you are going to have to prepare yourself for an unhappy wedding couple. You should mention to the couple to try to remember to make the first kiss last. Some of them might take that too far and make out at the altar! Well, as long as they make it long enough to get the shot in!
2. Rude Guests
Even if you do have an unplugged wedding requirement, you will still get the occasional rude guest. They think because they are a friend or family, that they are entitled to just do what they want. So, how do you deal with this if it happens during the ceremony? Prepare for it. Map out your location before the event to find the best spot to stand. If it still happens, more specifically during the ceremony, please DO NOT shove '“Uncle Bob” out of the way like the photographer in the video. Just let it happen and continue to shoot. This is why it is important to have yourself covered in your contract that states you are not responsible for their guests actions. After the ceremony, and only when the bride and groom are not preoccupied, yes I know those moments will be few and far between, just quickly, calmly, and nicely mention that “Uncle Bob” is getting a bit excited with taking pictures, and getting in your way. Either the couple will say, let him do what he wants, or they themselves will remind him that you are paid to be there to take these photos so he can relax and have fun.
3. It Keeps Happening Or They Are Being Pushy
Unlike the photographer in the video, yes it was absolutely annoying what the step mom did, however keep in mind, the way you present yourself in front of others, reflects your business. Do not let one minute of pettiness and selfishness ruin what you have worked for. Just stay calm and walk away. Or you can step in front of them, again, being calm and not rude. Hopefully it will be a subtle hint or reminder.
At the end of the day, just keep in mind, people will not remember that you were quietly snapping away the entire day, but they will remember one slight misjudgment on your part. Be the professional you were hired to be.
Have you had to deal with an “Uncle Bob” at a wedding? Tell me in the comments and what you did to handle the situation!
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