Wedding Photographers: Is drinking on the job acceptable?

February 13, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

© Photographer Liam Gillan-4266© Photographer Liam Gillan-4266

As a Wedding Photographer, Is it accepted to drink on the job? 

 

This short blog is inspired from "Fstoppers.com"

Being a Wedding & Event photographer is a fantastic job, but I find that you're very often in a situation where every body seems so have a drink in their hand, am I wrong?

When shooting an event, I personally prefer when guests have had a few to drink, because this releases tension and then the most natural, and hilarious imagery comes too life! It always seems as the night is just underway, people become very camera shy, but with the Cocktail mix of (Friends + Family + Alcohol) can blend you some brilliant shots!

Moving onto Wedding Photography.

Throughout the whole day, you do find that alcohol seems to appear at every stage of the day, for example: Champagne with the Bride & Brides Maids. A beer with the Groom, and definitely with the best man, and groomsmen. After the ceremony, a complimentary Bucks-Fizz or prosecco. Then a drink with your Wedding Breakfast. When you share a toast with the speeches, and very often after the First Dance as the Night entertainment begins, and you share a few bevies with your Guests of an evening. 

Throughout my years of shooting Weddings & Events, I've noticed that having a sociable drink really isn't that bad, with an exception. You need to keep a few situations in mind, Will I be able to travel home? Will a sociable drink take me over the limit?
 You need to take focus on how you're representing yourself, Are you able to deliver the same quality of imagery whilst having a drink? Could one of your clients guests be a possible future booking? and If so will you be in the correct frame of mind to respond to any questions in a professional manor?

© Photographer Liam Gillan-4163© Photographer Liam Gillan-4163

Some of you will be thinking, I work a 9-5, Monday to Friday Office job and obviously drinking is unacceptable, so why should a Professional Photographer be allowed to drink? and despite that being an acceptable question, I think my answer would be,  We have completely different jobs, with completely different circumstances, and quite Frankly, we Photographers can sometimes start shooting the Bridal Preparations at 9am, and keep working through to early hours in the morning the following day. 

The view of drinking alcohol can be frowned upon, and could possibly be something to discuss with your clients at the consultation?

Personally I don't think it would be a question I would ask, as it sounds like you're contemplating getting hammered on their special day.

 The best way is waiting to be offered a drink, preferably by the Bride or Groom, or even their parents, if you're feeling willing to. My only advice would be, only order a Single drink, don't ask for a double of any spirit, and don't order a few Jägermeisters or sambucas, even if the Groomsmen say its ok to join in. 

You want to leave a impression of professionalism on not only your Clients & guests, but with the Vendor you're working at. It only takes one "recommendation" to get you another job, but in the blink of an eye, the opportunity to lose you a few jobs.

Remember also, despite all of the hard work we put in as Professionals, we do get paid very well for our services. So it's important your main focus is delivering High quality imagery, and superb service.

This is a very controversial topic, and I know many will either Agree or disagree with my thoughts, but I'm very interested in your opinion. 

If you're a Bride or Groom to be, or a Professional Photographer, Leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts.
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Thank you.


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