It's the middle of your wedding, you've just finished your dinner and it's time to hit the dance floor.  Only problem is, your photographer and videographer just sat down to eat.

This is a common issue which almost every photographer or videographer encounters all the time.  We of course, along with most professional vendors will obviously hurray over to where the action is to resume doing their job.  However, the chances of employing an disgruntled (and hungry) vendor you're trusting your wedding photos/wedding video too is quite high.  And it can effect their work.  Most venues feel it's improper to feed vendors early in the evening, feeling that guests who witness this will frown upon it.  But remember it's your wedding, and you want to make sure those important people you hired to be there that day are fed early enough and ready to start working again when you need them.  Emphasize to your venue that you wish for your vendors to be fed when you are.  They will be re-energized and ready to go when the party is just getting started.

Views: 215

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

It has been my experience that the best time for vendors to eat is when everyone else eats. After all, this is the time with the least activity, and your vendors would then be on-hand for the major events of the evening (cake cutting, dancing, bouquet/garter toss, dancing, etc). It is only fair to provide a meal to the vendors that will be on hand for more than five hours (i.e. photographer, videographer,coordinator, etc). By no means are you required to serve your vendors the same meal that is served to guests...most venues even offer vendor meals at a deeply discounted rate. But it is absolutely imperative that vendors are alotted a break/meal time. Yes, they are there to work for you, but just as with any job there are scheduled breaks. You will receive the best service by a happy vendor and without your vendors, your dream wedding would not be possible!
I agree with Platinum Touch Events & the above statement in the opening line. Most times the potographer/videographer/wedding coordinator has been with you & your bridal party all day long (perhaps since noon). Just like you, by the time dinner starts, they will be hungry as well and most likely would not have had an opportunity to take a break or "catch a bite in between". I believe that having your vendors invited to share in the meal the same as your guests is the best way to handle this situation but if space simply does not permit the vendors in the same room, then aim for somewhere very close by. Let me explain why:

1) Guests do not really like to have their photos taken while they are eating. In fact, I feel it is impolite. So give the photos/videos a rest for a bit. They can take photos of guests before the meal starts & be the last ones to sit down to eat - which most times happens.

2) If possible, having your photographer/videographer in the same room as the guests, ensures they can capture any impromtu moments that may otherwise be missed if they are having a meal in another room.

3) Offering your vendors a different meal from the guests at the same table will make both the guests & the vendors feel awkward. If guests are having filet mignon & the vendors - pasta? Think that there won't be some strange looks or comments?

4) Feeding your vendors is simply a nice offering as a host and will ensure you have a "happier" vendor than if they did not get a meal or a break to eat.

5) For wedding coordinators it is nice to have them seated at a table close to the bridal party so that they can handle any "pop-up" situations or requests. That way you ensure they are in the room.

6) Plus should there be a concern with the meal (food quality/quantity/temperature), your wedding coordinator can provide "back up" assistance when voicing your complaint during a post-meeting with the Event/Catering manager - provided they ate the same meal as you. Having the coordinator in the post-meeting will offer value as they know you may not be booking with them again in the near future (or ever) BUT your wedding coordinator will most likely be using their services again with another client! :)

As a professional photographer, I do have to say the best time to feed photographers (and videographers and DJs/bands) is when everyone else is eating. I cannot stress enough that this should occur at the beginning of food service so we don't miss anything that is going on. If you have the option, feed your vendors a good meal and by no means does it have to be the beef tenderloin you are serving your guests. As a vegetarian, I much prefer a salad and a plate of pasta to help me get through the next few hours. I've often heard that the other meals, while delicious are so heavy they slow people down.

Generally people don't want their pictures taken while stuffing them mouths with food, so plan the food service accordingly. Work with your video/photo to get special photos taken at the right time and share your timeline so we can make suggestions as needed.
I agree with Glen. I'm a videographer and I like to eat right when everyone is sitting down. Nobody wants to be filmed with food in their mouth. Usually the bride and groom have eaten and are doing some socializing when everyone else is eating.
If it's not in your contract (we have it in ours) you might not have a meal available.

Things to think about.
I usually have the vendors seated at one table. With permission from the bride, after the head table and reserved parent tables are fed, I ask to have the vendors next. We need to be ready to go the same time the bride and groom are for the next event of the evening. Being the coordinator, I ask to sit next to the gift table both to watch it and I can keep an eye on the entire room for anything that might arise. If the bride needs anything, she knows where to find me. With the vendors meals they can be the same as the guests or something similiar. Most of the time, I have been fed the same as the guests.
I am also a photographer and agree wholeheartedly with feeding us at the same time as everyone else. A brief respite whilst everyone is starting to eat (and drink) is the quiet time when there are not many photo opportunities to be had. As Julie Hall stated it is a good idea to feed us in good order, we do eat quickly and can be ready to capture those "moments" of spontaneity which usually arrive when everyone is nicely fed and have relaxed sufficiently; normally somewhere between dessert and coffee ;-)
To the people who dont think that vendors should be fed, shame on you. As a wedding photographer I am responsible for working with a client upwards to an entire day, and if you dont feel as if I am entitled to a meal when yet I am responsible for capturing their most important memories, you have some issues!

Besides, most catering companies have a vendor price for meals for vendors which is less than half the cost than normal plates cost. This should not be a problem for a bride and groom to consider doing, as obviously everyone needs to eat, and it would not be right for you to bring your own food into a facility that doesnt allow outside food most times.

So to answer your question, from a wedding photographers view, the best time for me to eat is when everyone else eats. This is obvious why, and thats because I will not be taking photos of people while they are eating, that would just be rude. Nobody even really likes someone watching them eat, never mind taking their photo while they are eating.

I hope this helps.

Phillip Brunelle
Massachusetts Wedding Photographer
MA Wedding Photographers


© 2023   Created by Christine Dyer.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service