Photography Today: This is Not Your Parents’ Wedding

Making the all important choice between professional photographers is hard enough. Add to it the different perspectives of your fellow decision makers complete with generational biases, and you could find yourself going a little bit mad.  Let me save your sanity  by offering you insight into the following contrasts between photography today and in the past.

Albums are Different

Look at your parents' albums. In the past, prints were adhered to each page. In the digital age, images are printed on the page itself. The paper weight of most professional albums is superb with excellent inks to ensure the pictures look optimal in print. Some photographers can provide books that lay flat with no page curl, which also allow for more creative album designs. Fundamentally, albums still serve the same purpose. They are memories of your day to be passed from generation to generation.


Time Spent is Different

Engagement sessions and bridal sessions are more common today than they were in the past. They allow you to spend time getting to know your photographer. Wedding days are typically much longer than they were in the past, as well. You will be spending a lot of time together, so choosing a pro who has a personality that complements your own is more important than ever.

Image Delivery Has Changed  

Even today’s images have “Digital Negatives” or files in RAW or JPG format. In the past, photographers rarely released  the negatives and instead delivered prints only. Today, your photographer may provide prints, files or both. Some will include personal reprint rights, and others will require that you order printed products through them. If you receive the files, they are typically “finished:” edited and color corrected. Always make a copy of any files you receive, either on another hard drive, a DVD or in print.


Styles and Types of Shots Have Changed

Today’s images are more playful and dramatic than ever before. Family formals are still taken, but you may otherwise find a generational gap between the style choices of parents versus you as a couple. Know that the one thing that will still be present in today’s photos that was also there years ago is genuine emotion and the beauty of the day that signifies the start of your new life together.


Weddings and Receptions are Different

Not only has photography changed, but weddings have as well. Many couples are using unconventional venues or rejecting traditions like the bouquet toss and garter replacement. Many couples choose to see each other before the ceremony and celebrate a “first look.” Some of these changes may cause your parents to reach for the smelling salts, but expose them to these new traditions gently, letting them know that you are counting on their support on your big day.

Have sympathy for your parents. Weddings are emotional events and they have probably been planning yours since you were born. Knowing the difference between weddings today and those of the past will make the changes easier for you and your family.

James Linkowitz is the owner of James Linkowitz Photography, a Richmond based wedding photography company. Please visit us at to learn more.  


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