Couple Paid $800 to Photographer But Mom’s iPhone Photos were Better than Official Pictures

With weddings being one of the most important moments in a person’s life, it is understandable why couples would want to ensure they have the best one to fit their budget – and great photos to last a lifetime!

So, it is understandable that couples often willingly pay a lot of money to photographers to ensure their best moments are put on print. After all, years after the guests forget about the wedding, the couple can look back at those moments with the pictures from their album.

Photo credit: Hayley Kelble / Insider

Hayley and Nick Kelble went viral in 2017 when a hippo named Fiona photobombed their engagement photo at Cincinnati Zoo, but they went viral again for their wedding photos in 2019 – but for sad reasons.

Photo credit: Hayley Kelble / Insider

The couple paid $800 to a photographer, but the official wedding photos came out blurry, grainy, and underexposed.

Photo credit: Hayley Kelble / Insider

While planning for the wedding, Hayley asked her friends of Facebook for recommendations. Someone tagged the photographer who posted on her profile that she studied photography at Kent State; her Instagram page also had great photos. So, Hayley messaged her; they agreed on the price of $800.

Photo credit: Hayley Kelble / Insider

The photographer didn’t even have a contract. That should have been a red flag, but Hayley did not think much about it until after the wedding when she received the pictures. According to Hayley, the photographer didn’t even suggest angles for them to do, but simply snapped the pictures.

Then, she only stayed for around 20 minutes of the reception and left, cashing in the check soon afterwards. But when Hayley received the pictures, she was disheartened to see that most of it were dark and overexposed. She recalled that the photographer hadn’t used flash during the wedding.

Many of the photos were also blurry so that even if they can edit the darkness, the photos still came out bad.

Photo credit: Hayley Kelble / Insider

It was a good thing her mother took some photos on her iPhone – and these actually looked so much clearer and better than the ones from the photographer! The couple had to hire another photographer so they can recreate the wedding moments. They ended up using the iPhone photos from Hayley’s mom.

How to Avoid Hiring a Bad Photographer

  • Ask for recommendations from people who actually hired the photographer. You should also check the photographer’s social media pages and website.
  • Set up a meeting and make sure to draw a contract.
  • Do a trial or engagement shot. This is important so you already have an idea how the photographer works and the quality of the pictures.

Do your research and spend more than you think you should, because that’s all you’re going to have of memories of that day. It doesn’t matter how much you spent on the actual day, you’re not going to have memories of it if you don’t spend good money to hire someone to take those pictures,” suggests wedding and event planner Amy Shey Jacobs of Chandelier Events.