Welcome to the first installment of Wedding Photography 101, covering the basic tools, techniques and anything else that are essential to conducting yourself professionally. The aim of this guide is to supplement the photography skills that, I would hope, you already have before even considering covering someone’s wedding, even if it is just as a friend, or as is often the case, you are starting out and have offered to do one for free/cheap.
The first thing that is absolutely essential to any photographer is insurance. You absolutely need this, and no it cannot and should not wait until you are established. There are two types that you will need and both are indispensible.
Public Liability & Professional Indemnity Insurance
These tend to come packaged together and are insurances against things that may happen either outside of your control, or as a result of negligence. Public Liability protects you against someone tripping over your camera bag, or getting electrocuted after unplugging a charger, or you drop your big, expensive DSLR on someones foot and they break a bone. Chances are, in todays blame culture, they will file a claim and if you don’t have this cover, you could be paying out 10′s of thousands of pounds from your own pocket. Professional Indemnity cover protects you in instances where something goes wrong such as a memory card becomes corrupted, or maybe you lost it, or it is stolen during a burglary. Again, without this, you are looking at an expensive claim due to the nature of weddings being unrecreatable, it’s not unusual for costs to be roughly the same as the cost of an entire wedding!
Luckily we’ve never had to claim on these, but its critical that you have them. Responsible venues should be asking photographers to confirm they have this insurance – hence Wedding Photography 101 is useful for both photographers AND clients.
Photographers Equipment Insurance
This could be seen as being little bit more optional – unless you have some common sense in which case it is mandatory! As with a household policy, this policy will cover you against loss, accidental damage and theft. A wedding photographers kit bag usually contains anywhere from £1000-10,000 of camera gear – could you afford to replace it if it went walkies overnight? A huge gamble. Policies can be a pain to claim on – we were burgled 3 years ago and we had to provide a lot of supporting evidence – but they come good and replace your gear for the sum insured – just remember to keep values up to date so that you can buy a like for like replacement.
If you are having someone cover your wedding, make it your business to ask if they are insured – don’t surrender to chance!
The next Wedding Photography 101 will be ‘Read -> Comprehend -> Shoot’ covering some excellent resources to go through prior to the big day.
Filled Under : Wedding Photography 101