Don’t “Unplug” Your Wedding – Guests’ Photos Are The Best

An Australian wedding photographer has an awful lot to say about guests taking pictures with their phones at weddings, and I have a greaaaaat big yawn to direct his way. If you want to read the whole thing, here’s the Facebook post that’s gone inexplicably viral:

Right, I’ve had enough. I want to talk to you all about guests using mobile phones / cameras at weddings. I want to…

Posted by Thomas Stewart Photography on Thursday, November 5, 2015

To distill this, his argument is that weddings should be “unplugged” because, first of all, guests are ruining his shots, and second of all, NO ONE WANTS YOUR STUPID PICTURES ANYWAY, BELOVED FRIENDS AND FAMILY. Seriously! He says, “They didn’t invite you along to take photographs that they probably won’t really look at anyway.”

First of all, if this photographer is miffed because people are holding phones in the photos he took, he needs to accept that he is documenting life in 2015, and that includes copious phone usage. But really, the problem is that Thomas Stewart and his profession are basically obsolete. The man charges about $2000 USD to take pictures at high-def that the guests are probably getting anyway, possibly even at a high definition, because DSLR cameras aren’t expensive anymore. That being the case, maybe he’d be better off not scolding and lecturing the people at weddings who actually matter, because the bride and groom didn’t hire him to tell their guests how to act.

Just as an aside, my favorite pictures from my wedding were taken by my friends with their phones and cameras. Case(s) in point:

elevator selfie




selfie selfie


car selfie



(OK, fine, yes, I also used this as an opportunity to share a few wedding pictures; sue me.)

I didn’t bother hiring a photographer because I didn’t want to waste my time and money on canned photos taken by someone who only knew me as far as my bank account went. My family and friends know me better than any photographer I could hire. I wanted them there, and I wanted to know what it looked like from their perspective. It takes months if not years to plan a wedding. How professionally self-absorbed do you have to be, as a photographer, to believe that a newlywed couple wouldn’t enthusiastically just devour every single photo anyone took of them at their wedding, and would only care to look at the pictures you took?

So no, don’t unplug your wedding because some photographer wants your dollar bills and is throwing a tantrum over your wedding not going his way. It’s your wedding – every picture you get will be precious to you.

[New Zealand Herald]

[Image via the author]

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