Why I call Wedding Photography an "Investment"

bride crying at her wedding at Landolls Mohican Castle

I am sometimes asked why I call my photography pricing an investment. This subject came up on a forum and one participant stated “I just want pictures. I’m not updating my financial portfolio”. Now that was an interesting comment and really illustrates exactly why I consider professional photographs an investment.

Definition of an "Investment"

Merriam-Webster defines “invest” as –   “to make use of for future benefits or advantages” also “to involve or engage especially emotionally”

The Oxford dictionary defines “investment” as.’ “A thing that is worth buying because it may be profitable or useful in the future.”

When you hire a professional photographer, you are doing so with the intention of documenting your wedding, your family, or your high school senior for posterity.  That’s the ultimate point of pictures, isn’t it? You are hiring a photographer to help you look your best for this documentation since, again, it is for posterity. You are making an effort, spending time and money for this. Is that not an investment? Are the pictures “to make use for future benefits”?  Are they “a thing worth buying because it may be…useful in the future”? I certainly believe so.

Secondly, an “investment” is something that, hopefully, increases in value over time. If you have a picture of your wedding or your senior year, do those images increase or decrease in value over time? If you have a photograph of a parent or grandparent, will it be more valuable or less valuable in 20-30 years? How “good” do you want these pictures to be? 

bride smelling flowers at Music Box Supper Club

Your Wedding Day is an Investment

Your wedding day is one day. The moments that are captured and the images that are created will become invaluable over time. They are an investment in memories for future generations to remember you.  Especially when the loved ones in those pictures are no longer around.  These photographs are an investment that grow more valuable over time so that certainly constitutes an investment based on the definition.

Knowing that your pictures are an investment, the next thing to ask yourself is at what level of quality do you want these pictures? Will mediocre do? That is a question that is asked when you are arranging the photo session and determining your budget.

Quality is purely subjective. You have to look at a photographers work and decide if it’s unique, and if it appeals to you, not only visually, but emotionally, as well.  Do the pictures help you experience the feelings that you had in those moments when they were captured. This is a really big factor in a lot of photographers pricing. Some photographers work is indistinguishable from the next. There is nothing wrong with this, and these photographers are, most likely, more affordable. But if you want a unique style of photography and don’t want your pictures to look like everyone else’s, that comes at a price. A truly unique photographer has a style all of their own. You can tell right away that the pictures that you are looking at belong to that specific photographer. This is a rare and valuable asset that will not be cheap, but you will have pictures unlike anyone else’s

bride getting emotional at her reception

Wedding Pricing Considerations

  You have to consider all of these things when you start planning your wedding. You ultimately have to decide that having unique, beautiful pictures is worth the sacrifice. Having an experienced photographer will take a TON of stress out of your day because an experienced photographer knows exactly what they are doing. Are they expensive? Yes, but if it is really important to have the best pictures and not have to worry about missing anything, it is worth it. And looking back, it will be totally worth it because your pictures and wedding album will awesome.