Alright, an "associate photographer"... what the heck is that? I've been wanting to write about this for a while now and with covid-19 causing so many couples to postpone their wedding to later dates, I feel there's no better time to talk about this.
An associate photographer is a photographer who shoots a wedding in place of the lead photographer if they're unavailable. I'm sure you have lots of questions.
"What's the point of having an associate photographer when we wanted the lead photographer?" I'm sure the lead photographer would be more than stoked to capture your big day but if they're unavailable, unfortunately there's not much you can do about that. But think about why you wanted to hire the lead photographer in the first place. You love their photos, right? Well, you can get the same photos you were expecting if an associate photographer is hired! This also saves you the disappointment and trouble of finding a new photographer.
"How do I know this associate photographer is going to do the same job as the lead photographer?" Your wedding photographer wants what's best for you. They're not going to send some rando off the street to capture your big day. They're going to carefully select a skilled and experienced photographer that they've worked with before and can trust to take care of their couple just as they would. So you're going to receive the same service regardless of who shoots your wedding.
"Okay, but how do I know the pictures are going to be the same as the photos the photographer I hired takes?" As mentioned before, the lead and associate photographers have worked closely together and they will maintain the same style. But guess what? The associate photographer is only there for you on your wedding day and they will not be editing your photos. So even if you have an associate shooting your wedding, you will still get the same style photos that you were expecting to receive.
At the end of the day, the lead photographer is going to choose an associate photographer that accurately represents their company and their brand. So you're going to get the same quality product and service.
I wanted to talk about this right now because wedding photographers get booked pretty far in advance. We're three months into 2020 and most photographers are booked for the year. With all of this covid-19 chaos, SOOOO many couples are postponing their wedding to later this year and the problem of their photographer being unavailable on their new wedding date is arising far too often.
So photographers - we have a HUGE community and we all want what's best for our couples and want to give them the best day ever. If you've never hired an associate photographer before, now is the best time to do so because it'll make it SO much easier for your couples. They're already needing to replan their entire wedding, so let's minimize the stress where we can :)
Couples - I hope this sheds some light on what exactly an "associate photographer" is and makes you feel much more comfortable if your wedding photographer gives that to you as an option :)