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RANT: My thoughts on the PRIEST who yelled at the Wedding Photographers

As a person who has photographed many weddings I have encountered many things. But I can say that I have not run into an officiant who has asked me to stop taking pictures.

If you have not seen the video of the priest asking the photographers to “please leave” and stop taking pictures it is below. I know many people are waiting for my thoughts on this subject so I thought I would RANT for a quick second.

There are a lot of things to take into consideration here. We don’t know if the priest spoke to the photographers before hand and asked that they not photograph during the ceremony. I have been in situations where the priest or officiant has mentioned that they would prefer no photos be taken during the ceremony. I have also been told where we could take pictures from and I am sure to listen as much as possible. Like I have said in the past, it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

We also don’t know how many photos the photographer was taking. We can hear what sounds like him snapping off a bunch of pictures in a row but thats all. With that said did he really need to snap off 10 shots of nothing? When you are shooting a wedding ceremony you have to take the sound of your shutter into account. You can turn on silent mode, you can turn off the focus beep and you can flat out shoot less images. When the kiss is going to happen people tend to start to cheer or clap so snapping off a bunch there usually is ok.

So let me take a side here, I am going to take the photographers side for the time being. I think based on what we see in the video the priest is out of line. The reason I say that is for the fact that this service is not in a church, it is outside. Outdoor weddings tend to be less focused on the religious aspect and are less formal. I could totally be on the priest side if this was in his church and the photographer was up on the alter where they were told not to go.

Look at the bride and grooms faces, they are mortified, they don’t know what to do. Do they step in and say it’s ok or do they let the priest do his thing? They are paying to have the moment captured in stills and video but this priest just stopped everything to reprimand the photographers.

Like I said up above we don’t have all the details, we only have what this video shows us. So it’s very hard to fully take one side or the other though from the video I take the photographers side.

There is a takeaway from this video though. You must be respectful of the people and location you are in. It is a good practice to make sure the bride and groom speak with the officiant before the event to ask if they have any restrictions on photography. Make sure not to motor drive or create to much noise during a ceremony. I personally turn off the focus beep even though my shutter already makes enough noise.

In the end we may not know who is in the right here. But I can certainly tell you I am glad it wasn’t me in that situation. The only way we may find out is if this couple finds their way on to the Ellen show. Don’t forget to check out the video below and let me know what you think.

The officiant was not a priest he was an Episcopalian minister.

ABC Interview