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A Letter To The Wedding Industry

Updated: Feb 20, 2023

decisive or critical, especially in the success or failure of something.

You and I hold some of the most crucial jobs in the world.

If you serve couples on the day that they recite sacred vows to each other, your job is, in a very significant way, sacred. As is the trust that is bestowed upon you by your couples.

This sacred trust is not one to be broken.

For those of us who are Photographers and Videographers, we capture memories that are gone in an instant and freeze moments in time with loved ones who won't be around forever. In my brief five years in this industry, I have been there for an ever growing list of irreplaceable moments in my couples lives. I have captured the last photos of a heartbreaking number of family members who are no longer with us, such as one bride's father who passed a month after escorting her down the aisle.

We, as an industry, are depended upon to make a day that someone has dreamed about for years, even decades, flow as smoothly as possible, while protecting them from any unnecessary stresses or worries.

Brides are already nervous.

They already have played through every possible scenario in their head where something goes wrong. And something will. It is rare, if even impossible, for nothing to go wrong on a wedding day, no matter how much time, money, and care has gone into it.

Weddings are unpredictable events.

For me and my husband, we didn't thaw the ice cream cake beforehand, and it broke our serving knife.

Everyone assumed someone else was driving us to the reception location down the street and we, the bride and groom, got left at the church without transportation and had to call my dad to come pick us up.

And the Pastor did traditional vows, when I had chosen particular ones from a book.

However, none of these things matter the next day.

As the old adage on so many websites goes "The cake will be eaten and the flowers will wilt but photos are forever."

We, as Photographers and Videographers, are the piece of the day they will, ideally, have forever. Even rings, in part or in whole, often get lost or upgraded.

When you sign on to play a part in the wedding industry, you become a part of something bigger than yourself. Your decisions now affect many people. When you cancel on a couple, whether intentional or not, you cause either intense stress during what should be a happy time, or a lack of these photo and video memories that they cannot get back, or both.

For those who aren't Photographers or Videographers, perhaps you are a DJ who left your couple scrambling at the last minute, or DIYing their music due to being unable to afford a professional after their budget had already been spent on a flake.

Perhaps you are one of the two previous Makeup artists that canceled on a single one of my brides.

When you sign on to be in the wedding industry, you sign on to an insane amount of trust.

Trust that you will arrive when and where you are scheduled, and that you will produce and deliver an agree upon product within an agree upon amount of time.

When you break this trust, it affects the entire industry.

It makes other couples leary that these negative experiences will fall upon them as well. And it makes otherwise wonderful couples approach vendor relationships with extreme caution and skepticism, even with vendors who would never dream of letting a couple down.

Weddings are a holy event. So I ask, for the love of all that is holy, please only take on weddings that you wouldn't miss for the world.

If you book a couple, whether of your own or as a second or associate, and you do not fully intend to be there and to give it everything you've got, please do not take that booking.

We all know, life happens. But if "life" is happening every weekend, please do not take any future bookings until you know that you are ready physically and mentally to take them on. And as soon as you have the slightest inclination to cancel, find support now. Hire someone to back you up NOW. Do not wait until the last possible moment.

And if you find yourself overbooking due to stressing over finances, raise your prices and don't discount, so that you can slow down and give every couple a quality, stress free experience with better turnaround time. Don't offer deals with so little profit margin that you won't have the finances or motivation to serve those clients by the time their wedding rolls around.

This industry is important and it is not for the faint of heart.


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