Got camera, will hire: Pro wedding photogs facing competition from amateurs


Professional photographers are seeing their jobs being threatened by an unlikely source: digital cameras. It may seem ironic, but because cameras have become so easy to use and prices have fallen, amateur photographers are now able to attain employment in an industry that used to require professional training, according to The New York Times. Focusing on the wedding photography sector, The Times reports that amateurs – the unemployed and underemployed, in particular – are booking gigs shooting weddings, thanks to access to equipment that were once unattainable due to costs and the technical know-how required.

One such amateur photographer The Times spoke to is Chad Redling, who was already working part-time as a wedding photographer. But since being laid off from his job as a computer programmer, he is now considering going into the wedding photography profession full-time. Michelle Naca, a publisher of a wedding website and guide in upstate New York, told The Times, “The technology has gotten awesome, and they’re easy to use, so a lot of people are picking up a camera these days and thinking, ‘I can do this.’”

Amateurs are undercutting the pros by $1,000; unlike wedding photography veterans, these newly minted shooters don’t have overheads like studio space rentals and additional equipment, according to the story.

Another reason why amateur photographers are being hired – besides the lower fees – is because quality has taken a backseat. Brides and grooms are now more willing to accept photos that are “good enough.” Veteran photographers, who also make extra money by producing wedding albums, are finding that people no longer want those products, just a disc of photos. Some photographers have to lower their prices to compete. But they also argue that wedding photography staples like portraitures can only be done well by a professional.

While the pros are feeling the pinch from amateurs, some have found ways to compete successfully. One veteran wedding photographer, Daryn Backal, told the Times he moved his business to Florida for the longer wedding season and cut out overhead like studio space. Although he had to lower his fees, he was able to recoup some of his losses by making changes to his business operations.

And, while hiring an amateur photographer to lower wedding costs might seem appealing during planning, New York Magazine recently published some wedding statistics that found 21 percent of brides wished they had spent more on wedding photography. Sometimes you still need the pros to do things right.

(Image via Andrei Contiu / Shutterstock)


Olympus teaser shares glimpse of OM-D camera that’s good for more than sports

Is Olympus about to release a new mirrorless camera geared toward sports photographers? The latest teaser offers a glimpse of an upcoming OM-D camera set to launch on January 24, and by the looks of the teasers, it's capable for landscapes…

From DIY to AAA, here's how to take a passport photo in 6 different ways

If you're applying for a passport or renewing one, you need to submit a photo in your official application. There are strict guidelines, but fortunately, it's something you can do at home. Here's how to take a passport photo.

The best mirrorless cameras pack all the power of a DSLR, minus the bulk

Mirrorless cameras offer a lot of photography firepower, inside a compact body. Explore the best mirrorless cameras, from the pro-level to the beginner-friendly shooters, in this guide.
Emerging Tech

Wish you could fly? You totally can with these top-of-the-line drones

In just the past few years, drones have transformed from a geeky hobbyist affair to a full-on cultural phenomenon. Here's a no-nonsense rundown of the best drones you can buy right now, no matter what kind of flying you plan to do.

Going somewhere? Capture more than your phone can with the best travel cams

Hitting the road or doing some globetrotting this year? Bring along the right camera to capture those once-in-a-lifetime vacation memories. Here's a list of some of our current favorites.

From 4K powerhouses to tiny action cams, here are the best video cameras

Although not as popular as they once were, dedicated video cameras still have their benefits. From travel vlogging to home movies to recording your kid's little league game, here are the best video cameras you can buy right now.

Authentic, holistic, retro photography is in: Here are 2019’s predicted trends

What types of imagery are we most drawn to? According to recent stock photography data from Adobe, StoryBlocks, and Shutterstock, authentic, holistic, and humanitarian content will be in high demand in 2019.

Starting your very own vlog? Here are the best cameras to buy

Any camera that shoots video can be used to vlog, but a few models stand out from the crowd thanks to superior image quality, ergonomics, and usability. When it comes to putting your life on YouTube, here are the best cameras for the job.

This A.I.-powered camera follows the action to produce epic selfie videos

Want to capture more epic action selfies? The Obsbot Tail is a camera-gimbal combo that uses artificial intelligence to follow the action. Using a handful of different modes, the camera works to keep the action in the frame.

Sony crams its best camera tech into the new $900 A6400

Love Sony's autofocus, but can't stomach the full-frame price? The Sony A6400 mirrorless camera uses some of the same autofocus technology and the processor of the A9 in a compact, more affordable crop-sensor camera.

These point-and-shoot cameras make your smartphone pics look like cave paintings

If your smartphone camera just isn't giving you the results you're looking for, maybe it's time to step up your game. The latest and greatest point-and-shoot cameras offer large sensors, tough bodies, and long lenses -- something no phone…

GoPro bumps resolution on Fusion 360 cam to 5.6K with new firmware

Currently available in public beta, Fusion firmware version 2.0 offers a new 5.8K mode that results in 5.6K output when the 360 camera's two hemispheres are stitched together. It also adds support for 24 fps video and RAW time-lapse…

With 5-stop optical stabilization, Fujifilm GF 100-200mm is ready for adventure

Fujifilm revealed a new lens designed to deliver on the GFX system's promise of adventure-ready medium-format photography. The GF 100-200mm F5.6 R is a weather resistant, relatively lightweight, 2x telephoto with impressive stabilization.

Nikon A1000, B600 pack big zooms into compact, budget-friendly cameras

The new Nikon Coolpix A1000 packs in a 35x zoom lens, 4K video, and an optical viewfinder, while Nikon's B600 brings a 60x zoom lens to the table. The cameras are modest updates to Nikon's budget-friendly zoom models.