Infographic: The Hidden Costs of Photographing a Wedding

When you’re a photographer, it’s only a matter of time before friends and acquaintances start asking you to do them favors—favors like photographing their weddings. And it’s tempting. You’re a good friend. You like taking pictures. And it’s just a few hours of work, right? Wrong.

Before you think about working for next to nothing, make sure you’ve considered the hidden costs of photographing weddings. Italian wedding photographer Francesco Spighi created this telling infographic to illustrate what it really costs to provide your services:


The Cost of Photographing a Wedding (Via Francesco Spighi. Click to see full size.)

There’s a reason professionals charge so much for their photography services; there’s a lot going on behind the scenes. Remember to factor in the cost of your gear, software, editing time, planning time, transportation, and other hidden expenses before you agree to work for pennies or good karma.

We want to hear from you. Have you been asked to photograph a wedding for cheap or free?

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  1. Matthew Asai says:

    I agree that there are costs that you are going to bear photographing a wedding. Travel, food, lodging , batteries. But there were costs that were listed that most people who are doing the wedding as a favor are not going to bear, ie insurance, studio. There are costs that you would bear even if you didn’t do the wedding eg equipment, software. If you were going to the wedding anyway, I would do the photography as a wedding present. If I wasn’t, then I would factor all of the out of pocket expenses and charge for my labor before, during and after the wedding.

  2. Robert Knapp says:

    Tip of the iceberg.

    Web site, costs, professional services associated with web upkeep

    Advertising costs, You can’t buy it if you can’t find it.

    Image editing software

    Image calibration tools

    Studio Samples,

    Every time you turn around $1k is spent on something that needs to be repaired or tuned.

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