Technology is all around us. Every day. Seems like we can't get by without it. Everyone you know has a smart phone or an iPad nowadays. So what would you do about guests using phones, cameras and iPads at your
This recent facebook photo
posted by Thomas Stewart Photography
of Burradoo, New South Wales, Australia went viral after his very long and opinionated post regarding the misuse of technology at weddings.
Here is the original facebook rant:
Right, I've had enough. I want to talk to you all about guests using mobile phones / cameras at weddings. I want to plead with you, and I'm going to make this very simple: brides and grooms, please have a completely unplugged wedding ceremony.
Look at this photo. This groom had to lean out past the aisle just to see his bride approaching. Why? Because guests with their phones were in the aisle and in his way.
This sucks. And I'm not blaming these guests in particular; I actually take a large amount of responsibility for this occurring. In the past I should have been more specific with my clients in explaining to them why guests should be told no photos. Well, from now on, I'm going to make a pretty big deal about it.
If you're planning a wedding, please consider these points:
1. Guests with phones, iPads and cameras get right in your photographer's way. They have no idea how to stay out of our way. They often ruin many of our shots. They will make our photos worse. You're paying a photographer quite a bit of money; that means you want great photos. We cannot do our best work with people getting in our way.
2. These same guests will get in YOUR way. You will miss moments of your own wedding day because there'll be an iPad in the way. You will miss seeing your partner's face in the aisle.
3. The guests' photos are usually crap. I'm sorry, but it is true. You can't take great photos with your camera phone by leaning into the aisle of a dark church to photograph a moving subject. Hell, even lots of professionals have trouble with this.
And finally, the most important point:
4. Imagine you're in the middle of your wedding ceremony. You're elated. You decide to take a quick glance towards your guests as you're sure they're sharing these happy moments with you, possibly even shedding a tear of their own. What do you see? NO FACES AT ALL AS THEY ARE ALL HIDDEN BEHIND PHONES AND CAMERAS! I highly doubt this is the way you want to remember your wedding ceremony.
In your invites, tell everyone you're having an unplugged ceremony: no technology, please, Write it on a chalkboard which guests can see as they arrive on the day. Tell your celebrant / minister / priest to tell the guests at the start of the ceremony. HIRE A PLANE TO WRITE IT IN THE SKY!
And guests, you've been invited to this wedding to share and celebrate the love that two people feel for each other. They didn't invite you along to take photographs that they probably won't really look at anyway. They want you there with them in heart and soul, and they want to see your tear-filled eyes as you form part of their wedding ceremony. You are witnesses to their marriage, so for goodness sake, watch them with your eyes and your minds, not your phones.
So guests please, for my sake, and for sake of the two people getting married, leave your cameras at home and put your phones / iPads away."
Additional suggestions have been made by professional photographers like Corey Ann Photography of North Canton, Ohio to have an unplugged wedding. Corey Ann addresses the same issue in her blog post, Corey Talks, which met with some pretty heated controversy.
Other professional photographers like Mark Romine of Mark Romine Photography of Bloomington, IL are less fussed by the annoyances of guest photographers. Mark said "On occasion I have someone's flash go off at the same time I take a photo and ruin an otherwise great photo. But this only happens once in awhile."
But a wedding photographer still wants to make sure they can ultimately get the shots. "A bigger problem is when there are family/guests taking photos during the formals. What happens then is some eyes will be looking at me but others looking off to the side at another person holding up their camera." added Mark.
Additional and somewhat hilarious footage regarding wedding videography and unplugging your misbehaving wedding guests from Love Genre Films
was aired recently on Fox 40 in Sacramento, CA
One facebook users response to the question of unplugging her wedding "Nope, we love the photos that our friends and family gave us. We invited them to witness our event because of our love for them. If they want a photo to remember our day, because they have watched us grow for decades, it means that we are intertwined with their life and that is more powerful than a professional's "perfect shot".
So what would you do? Will you be hosting an unplugged wedding...or ceremony?
©Thomas Stewart Photography
-original facebook page/post here
©Corey Ann Photography-original blog post found here
©Love Genre Films "Don't be that guy"