Say no to ‘selfies’ at weddings?

I recently read this article, and it really got me thinking. I have seen plenty of photographs of weddings where people taking photos on smart phones have ruined pictures at crucial moments. I’m talking brides coming down the aisle for the first time, the first kiss, the list goes on. This is heart-breaking for both the photographer and the bride and groom and is something that really can ruin the day. However, having grown up with technology I find it hard to let go of my smart devices!

As a photographer, I obviously feel very strongly about the idea that if I am photographing a wedding, I want it to be just me. Most of us have it written in our contracts that we be the only professional photographer present for that very reason! I do sometimes find family members over bearing, and I feel rude if I am always pushing in front of them, however I will do this to get the perfect shot (if they will not move if I ask).  I know this is a pet hate for photographers, some family members think they are ‘pro photographers’ and like to organise people for their own photographs. This can prove very destructive and obtrusive to the official photographer’s plan of the day. However I do feel for the mother’s of the bride and other family, it’s a special day for them too. They may want photos for themselves of their sons or daughters, and for me, not being able to take photos would be a punishment. I find it really difficult because taking photos is part of mine and many others every day routine – I would probably feel like I lost a limb if I went to an event I couldn’t photograph myself, (although it might be nice to have a night off!)

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People being in the way is not the only problem however. All the different devices, however large or small WILL get in the way an DO look ugly. A prime example in the image above, who on earth would point a selfie stick in the aisle once the procession has started? More importantly, should they be paying attention to the people coming down the aisle? I have seen similar things with people’s arms in the way, and my pet hate – Tablets. Now i’m gonna be really honest so skim past if you are easily offended! I hate tablets for taking photos, they are huge, they look silly and they are not high quality. Even phones are better for taking photos – stick to them! All of this plus the fact they are so big they are almost definitely going to get in the way of the official photographer makes me say – leave the tablet at home guys, they are so anti-social!

In fact, some people feel so strongly about this that they have ‘unplugged weddings’. This is where they request that no photos are taken by the guests and they can’t go on Facebook or another social media. This idea is received very differently by different people, some people love it and some can’t be away from their phones for more than five minutes. Personally, the more I think about it, the more I think, why not! What harm could it do?

To wrap it up, I’m not against people taking photos on their smart phones at a wedding, but I do agree it can be very disruptive. Personally, I feel that a compromise could be made, by saying no photos at the ceremony but at the reception is okay. I don’t know what is holding me back from the idea of an unplugged wedding, it may just be the way I have grown up. But check back with me in a few years when I am planning my own wedding and we will see how I feel then!

 

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