It seems like this is a pretty big topic online.
You can find dozens of photographers in the $100s arena and many in the several $1,000s.
Why is there such a big difference?
A lot of this has to do with experience level, business savvy, market researching and quality of the end product.
But, if you want a great photographer you need to prepared to spend some money.
How can they charge over $5,000!
Lets break down what's involved in photographing a wedding: (Not including equipment and maintenance costs)
An average wedding package is for 8 hrs of coverage
Time to the reception/wedding and back home 2 hr
Time consulting with the customer and trying to book the event 2 hr
Time downloading images to computer and sorting through them 2 hrs
Time editing images 8 hrs
Time designing CD cover 1 hr
Time designing an album and re-editing 10 hrs
Time delivering the products and presenting them to client 2 hrs
Total: 35 hrs
This is a pretty conservative look at how many hours of work you put into an 8 hr event. Some photographers take a lot longer than 8 hrs for editing photos. Depending on the editing style and amount of photos that number could go as high as 20 hrs!!
This doesn't include fuel cost, cd and album printing costs, website and marketing material costs or even equipment costs.
So for a package like this one (which doesn't even include an engagement session) don't be surprised if you find some photographers charging between $2,500-$4,500.
- Albums alone can cost $300 or more to have printed!!