Photography & Video
Photography is one of the most important memory-saving methods for your wedding. Whatever your budget dictates for this portion of your wedding, it mustn't be skipped. Wedding photos aren't what they used to be: a few dull snapshots of the ceremony and the grinning wedding party. The transformation in recent years is due, in part, to the peak in technological advances. Even a high-end camera wielded by a friend can bring you noteworthy photos for your walls and albums, but we recommend going with a professional—even for the simplest of weddings. Sweet, loving details can be captured forever on film: the beaming excitement of a flower girl coming down the aisle, your first kiss as a married couple, cake frosting playfully smeared on your chin, a groom straightening his tie or a broom twirling her bride. These are the photos that tell the story of your day.
When you're hiring your photographer, check out his or her Web site first to see that their style matches yours, whether it's kitschy, artistic, straight forward or just the basics. Don't assume that they'll take the shots you want. If you want a photo of you and Uncle Larry dancing or of you and your sweetheart sneaking away from the reception for a private toast to everlasting love, tell your photographer by giving them a shot list. But keep in mind that you can't dictate their every photo—leave room for their creativity and professional opinions, too. Cover yourself with a contract and by asking questions: What kind of equipment do you use, such as extra lighting? What's your back-up plan if you get sick the day of my wedding? When (not if) will I get my originals? (Some photographers want you to come to them every time you want to order prints for the rest of your life, but many don't, so find one who works with your needs.)
Consider adding video to your budget, either as a steady-handed relative or a professional. You've spent months deciding exactly how you wanted your vows to sound, what passages you'd like to be read. Why not preserve it in its original form? And the spontaneous, unplanned moments, like funny toasts from your friends or catching the ring bearer with his finger in the wedding cake, can be watched over and over again. One of the newest trends to hit wedding videography is making your story into a mini-movie. If that floats your boat, search for someone with cinematography skills, too.
Find a gay-friendly photographer or videographer in your area in Equally Wed magazine's Local Resources, a veritable, vetted marketplace of wedding vendors across the United States, including photographers and videographers.