Sharing Photos with Wedding Vendors

Should or shouldn’t you share the wedding photos with the other wedding vendors? This is definitely a hot button topic that pops up every few months or so in the wedding photography groups. There are both sides to every story but honestly find this question really interesting because the answer, at least for me, has always been YES!

Of course I will share the photos with the vendors who were involved with the wedding I photographed because why wouldn’t I? It’s there work too, right? Let me explain why I share the images and how I deal with image usage. You can also watch my latest IGTV video to hear me talk about this topic too!

How to Share Your Images

Once my wedding has be delivered to my clients, I will do a few things afterwards. I will either submit their wedding for publication (online or print) and reach out to the vendors to let them know they can now view the images and pick out their favorites. I give them limited access to the gallery so they can only view the images and choose their favorites to use on their website and social media. Once they are done with their selections, I’ll download the files, rename, resize, and send them to the vendor via Dropbox.

Allowing each vendor to pick their favorites has proven for me to the best and easiest way to handle requests for photos. This way, they can see the full gallery, pick out all the photos that they like and I still have full control of what images are shared online. Sometimes I will omit images that I know the couple doesn’t want released on social media, especially ones with children photographed. I’m always keeping my couples privacy in the back of mind.

I usually wait till have I have a few requests in my inbox and set aside some time to process each request. It can take anywhere from 10 -30 minutes per request so I need to do it when I have some available time in my calendar. If it’s my busy season, or I’m slammed with editing work, I will let the vendors know that their request will take some time as my priority is always my couples. No one has ever complained!

Photo and Usage for Vendors

In my initial email to the vendor, I let them know that if they want to use the images, they need to credit them properly. If they can agree to that, I’m more than willing to give them to them for usage. Just about everyone agrees, which is great, and I also send a very detailed Usage Agreement with the final photos.

I clearly state how the photos can and cannot be used. How they cannot be altered or edited in any manner. How they cannot submit the photos without my permission and if they want to use them for Advertisements, they need to get my written permission to do so. I also state that since the images are given to the vendors complimentary, if they do not follow these rules, they could receive an invoice for improper photo usage.

I do this so they know what the rules are and how to ensure that we have a good standing relationship. I want to give them the photos and I want them to use them everywhere BUT I want to make sure I am given proper photo credit where credit is due.

Also, I should mention that I would never CHARGE a vendor for images. I own the photographs but they wouldn’t have happened without the other vendors decor, design, flowers, vision, and artistry. They want to showcase their work too so why not make that happen as easy as possible for everyone?

Create Great Vendor Relationships and Networks

Do you know that the number ONE thing I hear all the time from every single new planner or vendor I work with is? It’s that that NEVER get any of the photos of their work - EVER!! How is that even possible? <scratches head>

By simply sharing images with the wedding planner, florists, caterers, venues, officiants, and every other vendor at the wedding, you are creating a great vendor relationships. They are going to be SO HAPPY you contacted them and shared your photos of their work, they are going to love working with you. And you know what happens from there? They show of your work on Instagram, or their website, or their blog and more couples see your photography. More potential clients SEE YOUR WORK!! Isn’t that worth everything to you? Well, it is to me! The vendor becomes your walking talking billboard for anyone who needs a photographer. You are the one they love working with because you share the images and you take great photos too!

I always say this but being nice in this industry is going to get you a lot further than being over protective about your photos and NOT sharing. Yeah, I said that! They will remember you if you don’t share, were rude, and terrible to work with. Do you think they are going to recommend you every again?

By sharing your photos, you are creating a network of vendors who want to work with you, who will support you, and hopefully recommend you in the future.

What Is Your Return On Investment?

I get it. It takes TIME to email the vendors, get their favorites, and send them the final images. I understand that maybe you didn’t get a referral from each and every vendor but hey, that’s how it goes, right? If you have a system in place and guidelines for vendors to adhere by when using your images, I (personally) think you are really going to be putting yourself at a HUGE advantage as a wedding photographer.

For me, the ROI (return on investment) takes time. It’s the long game that you have to play. Creating and cultivating lasting vendor relationships is so important. At least, they are in my opinion if you want to be doing this for a long time!

What If the Vendor Doesn’t Credit Me?

If you’ve given vendors your specific guidelines and they didn’t tag you on Instagram, Facebook, etc… feel free to nudge them with a quick DM. Just say “hey, can you tag me?” and most vendors will add the tag quickly and say they are sorry for leaving it out of the post. If they don’t respond, or continue to fail to give you the proper credit, feel free to email them about the issue. Last resort is to send an invoice for photo usage. I have YET to do this but hey, it’s in my usage clause so I could if I needed too.

If a vendor continues to leave off your photo credit, well, you know for next time that maybe you won’t be so eager to share with them before having a talk about your past experience with them. Speak up for yourself and make it known that it’s 100% NOT ok to do this! You deserve the credit because the photo are yours and they wouldn’t have them without you. It’s a two-way street!

And what if you didn’t like working with a particular vendor all together? Well, that’s at your digression if you want to share the images or not. You have to do what’s best for you!

Make it a WIN/WIN

Personally, I want my work to be shared everywhere with everyone, and I want to receive the proper credit when it is shared. I’ve had numerous people reach out to me over the years because they kept seeing my photography pop up for a few of their favorite wedding vendors so they wanted to work with me too. In my opinion, it’s a win/win!


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Podcast Interview with Lauren Fair Photography

Our latest podcast interview just went LIVE on our channel and I’m so excited to be chatting with Lauren Fair of Lauren Fair Photography about how to Break into the luxury wedding market for wedding photographers. Lauren & Tim Fair have been named on of the 100 most inspiring and influential people in the wedding industry and one of the 75 best wedding photographers in the WORLD by BRIDES in 2018. Lauren is the sweetest person and is sharing some really valuable and tangible advice for wedding photographers looking to break into the luxury wedding market.

You can listen to Tea with Jainé on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and all other major podcasting platforms. We’d love for you to leave us a review to help other listeners find out about us. Want to support Tea with Jainé? You can make a monthly contribution by using the Support this Podcast button in our profile. Thank you so much for all of your kind support!! xo

Lauren Fair Photography

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How to Handle a Client Who Wants Their Photos Off Social Media

I was recently asked by a member of our Tea with Jainé Facebook Group how to respond to a potential couples request to keep their wedding images offline and off social media. This is such a great question that I wanted to answer because this question comes up rather frequently.

So, how to do you handle a clients request to keeping their wedding photos offline and off social media prior to hiring you to photograph their wedding? Well, I have a few helpful tips to help you navigate their request.

No. 1 - Ask Why? I find it’s best to be direct and ask them exactly why they want to keep their photos offline. Do they not want their names mentioned? Do they work in a field that requires them to be completely off social media (therapists for example)? Are they a super celebrity couple that intends on selling the images to a magazine? Are they worried about their privacy? Are children involved? Asking them exactly WHY they want their photos offline will help you come up with a solution that makes you both happy.

No. 2 - Explain Why You Need to Show Your Work Online and on Social Media. So this might come off a bit dumb but they probably saw your work on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, maybe an advertisement, or vendor listing, and of course mostly from your website, riggghhtttt? Well, you need to be able to showcase your photography work across all your social media outlets to book THE NEXT CLIENT. It’s how it works! If you aren’t able to show your work online, how are you going to show that 1 - you are a working photographer 2 - have shot in a specific venue 3 - have the style that your clients are looking for? You have to explain to your potential couple that in order for you to maintain your business and continue to be in business year after year, you need to be able to share and publish your work appropriately.

No. 3 - Compromise - Once you’ve found out their why, and explained why you need to share your work, now you can come up with a compromise that makes you both side happy. Here are a few scenarios that I have worked out in the past with some of my own clients.

1 - I can share their wedding on my website, blog, and social media but I cannot use their names only initials (I NEVER use last names, only first names only - just FYI) so that they aren’t searchable on google.

2 - I can only share images that have been pre-approved by my couple. I will send my favorite images for review via PDF and the client has up to 5 business days to get back to me with any objections or omissions. I then, can submit a substitution for any image they want to remove. If I do NOT hear back from the client within the 5 business days, I will assume that there are no objections and I can share as I like.

3 - If any images were to be using in advertisements or sold for stock photography, I am to get written permission from the clients. (I do this out of courtesy even thought I own the copyrights to my images because I want my couples to trust me and know that respect their privacy.)

No. 4 - Charge For It - If the couple is adamant about NOT having any images what so ever online and does not want to compromise, and still wants to use your services and you want to work them, you have to charge them to keep the photos offline. Why? For the potential loss of income because you cannot use the images online to showcase your work, get new clients, share with vendors or the venue to get referrals, etc…. This is definitely a drastic measure but some couples are willing to pay a big price to keeping their photos offline.

If they are unwilling to negotiate, unwilling to pay your privacy fee (my friend calls it her Black Label Option) then it might be time to part ways and wish everyone the best. Hey, you can’t be everybody’s cup of tea so don’t try to be (a little Kacey Musgrave’s lyric in there for ya!!) Do what is right for you and your business!

No. 5 - The Final Step - Once you have explained how the images may or may not be used (I personally do not share images from every event I photograph) and worked out any image usage issues, or added a fee to their wedding collection, next you have to add this in writing into your contract and have everyone sign to move forward. Transparency is BEST and keeping your client top of mind is very important to gaining and keeping their trust and hopefully, a lot of referrals.

So what about you? What are your thoughts on this topic? I would LOVE for you to leave a comment below and let me know if you were ever in this type of situation and how did you handle it! xo


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How to be an AWESOME Second Photographer

Do you want to know how to be an AWESOME second photographer at your next wedding? Want to know how to build your network of referrals and transition into being a GREAT wedding photographer? Well, this weeks new podcast of Tea with Jainé is especially for you! I chat with my good friend Asher Gardner of Asher Gardner Photography about ALL THE THINGS related to second shooting at a wedding and how to be awesome at it - SERIOUSLY!! Tons of tips, great advice, and mistakes to avoid on your own journey! Enjoy and happy listening!!

You can listen to Tea with Jainé on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and all other major podcasting platforms. We’d love for you to leave us a review to help other listeners find out about us. Want to support Tea with Jainé? You can make a monthly contribution by using the Support this Podcast button in our profile. It’s like you’re buying me a new cup of tea each month - Thank You!!

Asher Gardner Photography

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Wedding Photographer Detail Styling Kit Accessories - Updated!!

Over the course of the past wedding season, I streamlined my gear (finally!!), bought some new shoes, and cleaned up my styling kit! In doing so, I fell in love with a few new items that I couldn’t wait to share with you! I’ve listed my new faves below and even a few less expensive alternatives to help you update your styling kit too. I hope you find it helpful - enjoy!!

Wedding Photographer Detail Styling Kit Accessories

Styling Surfaces

Locust Collection’s rollable, double sided linen and/or velvet styling surfaces have quickly replaced my Heirloom Bindery styling boards. I absolutely LOVE how portable they are and how I can carry them easily from the Brides getting location, to the ceremony, and finally to the wedding venue without having to worry about it taking up too much space, getting ruined, and bumping into people. It comes in a clear, round, pvc tube canister that fits snugly in my existing camera bag.

However, my only issue was that since they are double sided (yay, two color choices!!) I was constantly worried about the floor side getting dirty. I didn’t have a protective sheet to carry with me and honestly, I didn’t want too! Well, they thought of a solution and released a vinyl protector cover to keep your surfaces clean while styling - GENIUS!! Seriously, it’s so worth the investment and I hope Kate comes out with new colors each season.

Clear Travel Organizer

This is definitely one of my biggest pet-peeves for several years now because I could never SEE all of my styling items in one place. My ring boxes, ribbons, vintage stamps, and all my extras were stored in a few different bags so if I didn’t have that bag with me, I wouldn’t end up using the items. UGH! So one day I woke up and headed over to the Container Store and browsed all of the aisles till I found my perfect box!! Their Clear Large Infinite Divider box is my savior - literally! I can fit ALL of my ring boxes, silk and velvet ribbons, tiny plates, floral frogs, dental wax, small clear acrylic blocks, cute scissors and vintage stamps. Once it was all organized, I could FINALLY see all my styling props in ONE place - YAY!! Oh, and it’s 100% portable so I can just carry it with me from room to room and it keeps me from over buying and purchasing duplicates which I discovered after I took everything out (Oops!!) - a bonus I didn’t even think about till afterwards. Here is another option here with three sections.

Ring Boxes

I purchased two new velvet ring boxes from Voeu Du Cour and they are so so lovely! I like the octagon shape and pretty velvet colors (I have a pink and blue). They run sales every few months so I would sign up for their mailing and follow them on Instagram to stay in the know!

Large Acrylic Styling Blocks

So, I was really hoping I wasn’t going to like this styling block set from Heirloom Bindery, but I do :( I really really do but gosh, they are expensive AF but you can totally score a less expensive set right here and here - I researched it for you! The reason I like them is because the styling blocks are bigger and the invitations can lay flat on them without needed a second block for balance. I bought them when I had some money in my paypal account and they were on sale, SOOOOO it wasn’t too bad on my wallet but pick up the replicas, it’s the exact same thing - promise!!

Vintage Inspired Gold Scissors

These vintage inspired Florentine gold scissors from Studio Carta are so so pretty! They are the perfect bit of gold in your wedding detail flat lay AND they come in handy when you actually need to cut ribbon or stray strings off of your brides dress (#truestory) so I’m happy to have them in my new travel organizer at the ready. I also have these stork scissors which are just as adorable and great for styling!

Small Gold Styling Dishes

Ok, I’ll admit it. Late at night I will search Anthropologie website to see what is new and (more likely!) what is on sale. I love browsing their home section because they have a great team of buyers and you can find some gems in there. When I found these gold trinket dishes from Anthro, I put them in my cart and immediately checked out - BOOM!! I think they are so cute and perfect for styling!! I will be using this dish often and I can always just photoshop out the New York latitude information in post production.

A Behind The Scenes Look at me Styling on a Wedding day!

Ok, so here’s a photo of me in all my styling glory on an actual wedding day from this past season - messy hair and ALL!! Once you get past that, you’ll see that I have my new travel organizer by my side, my iphone layed out with my pre-styled wedding invitation layout that I’ve done a few days prior to the wedding to save me time on the actual wedding day (awesome tip!!), and my Contax 645 film camera ready to take the photo. It’s always exciting when it comes together!!

So what’s in your kit? I would love to hear your comments and finds in the comments below!! xo - Jainé

Behind the Scenes Photo of Styling a Wedding Invitation

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Weddings For Real Podcast - 5 Tips for Wedding Submissions

OMG! I’m SOOOOOOO excited to share that I’m featured on one of my FAVORITE podcasts Weddings For Real with Megan Gillikin from A Southern Soiree. I chat with Megan about my 5 tips how to submit your wedding photography to be published online or in print. Megan is a wedding planner in North Carolina and started her podcast Weddings For Real earlier this year. It was a blast and we laughed a lot!!

If you don’t subscribe, you should! I’ve picked up so many great tips from so many of her podcasts already. Tyler J. McCall and Allen Berg are my favorites so far! Also, Mikkel Paige was also a guest and that’s how I was introduced to Megan. Small world, right?? I’m SO honored and thrilled to be included in her stellar line up of guests. Thank you so much for having me!

You can listen on major platforms including Apple Podcasts, Google Music and Spotify. I hope you enjoy and can’t wait to hear your thoughts and comments. Please leave me a note below after you’ve listened to the show!! xo

Weddings For Real Podcast Interview

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Podcast Interview with Rebecca Shenkman of Pink Bowtie Events

The latest podcast episode of Tea with Jainé just went LIVE on our channel. I’m chatting with luxury wedding planner Rebecca Shenkman of Pink Bowtie Events. We chat about she helps her clients find the perfect vendors, including wedding photographers, for their wedding day. I cannot wait for you to listen! xo

You can listen to Tea with Jainé on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and all other major podcasting platforms. We’d love for you to leave us a review to help other listeners find out about us. Want to support Tea with Jainé? You can make a monthly contribution by using the Support this Podcast button in our profile. It’s like you’re buying me a new cup of tea each month - Thank You!!

InstagramStories-Rebecca.jpg

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What to do if a Client Cancels Their Wedding

What do you do when your client cancels their wedding OR you have to cancel on them? Well, it’s not a fun topic to talk about but as a business owner, you should be familiar with your options just in case it happens to you. Over the course of my wedding photography career, both scenarios have happened to me so I thought I would tell you how I handled each of them. It’s never easy, or comfortable but being prepared is always half the battle.

My BEST advice is to have the RIGHT wording in your contract!

I am NOT a lawyer but I have been told that the type of wording you use in your contract can determine how you can protect yourself from these type of unfortunate events. Let me explain:

First and foremost, you collect a RETAINER for your services, not a deposit. The client is RETAINING your services for their wedding. A deposit is defined as “a sum payable as a first installment on the purchase of something or as a pledge for a contract, the balance being payable later” but a retainer is defined as “a fee paid in advance to someone, especially an attorney, in order to secure or keep their services when required”. Does that make sense? They are retaining your services vs. putting a deposit down.

You need to protect yourself so you do not have to return any money collected for retaining your services. If you do not have associate photographers, you are not accepting other jobs for their wedding date and if they were to cancel on you, you are losing the reaming balance due AND other sales in the future.

I’ve heard other wedding photographers say “but I feel bad, and I should return the money”. Well, to that, I would say “I feel bad for them as well but feeling bad, doesn’t pay your bills and when you can’t pay your bills, who’s going to feel bad for you?”. Unless you have a second source of income, spouse, or trust fund to support you, you need to think like a business and stick to your contract. #toughlove

Again, be sure to check with your attorney and modify your contract to use the correct verbiage that will hold up in a court of law, if necessary.


What To Do When Your Client Cancels On You

Unfortunately, if a couple decides that they aren’t ready to get married and cancels (or postpones) their wedding, it stinks for everyone involved including us, the wedding vendors. Once the couple notifies you about the cancellation, they might ask you for a refund or partial refund from their retainer. This is where your contract comes into play and you need to stand firm to protect your business.

As difficult as it is to get the news that your couple is breaking up, it’s just a difficult to realize that you have lost the potential earnings from their wedding and all future sales. In most cases, you have turned down several other inquires for the same date and depending if the couple notifies you early enough, you might not be able to rebook date at all thus creating a loss in your business for the year. Keeping the retainer, although it stinks for the couple, it’s in your contract to ensure your time and services thus far are accounted for.

One of my couples did have to cancel their wedding due to travel issues in and out of the united states and even though they knew about my retainer policy, they did ask for their money back. I kept my retainer and said that if they could reschedule their wedding within one calendar year, I would be happy to move their retainer to the new date and honor my current pricing.

For my business, I require a 50% retainer fee at the time of booking. I am a small business and photograph a limited number of weddings per year, so if I have a couple cancel, it’s a big deal for me and my bottom line.

What To Do When You Have To Cancel On Your Couple

Ugh! This was NOT fun for me. I do not like to be the bearer of bad news and I definitely want my couples to depend on me but sometimes things happen and you have to let a few people down.

The only time I had to cancel on a couple was because I was expecting a baby. As a women entrepreneur, this is just one of those times when your family (and body) comes first. Their wedding date was too close to my due date and I just physically couldn’t risk the possibly of going into labor 2+ hours from my hospital. It was my first baby and I was very nervous as to what to expect.

I called the couple and told them the good and bad news. They didn’t take it very well but I assured them I would help them find the best replacement photographer I could, as we were several months away from their wedding. They met my replacement recommendation but in the end, they found someone else and we parted ways. I returned their full retainer and “gifted” them their engagement session for the inconvenience. It was the best I could do and I don’t regret that decision at all as my daughter came a week early!!

Again, having a good contract is going to save you in this type or similar scenarios. My contract clearly states that if I were to cancel, all monies would be refunded, I would help find a suitable replacement photographer, and that is exactly what I did. Personally, I do not see this happening again for all my potential couples, but like most things, you can’t really plan when you are going to start your family so you just have to roll with the changes when they occur ;)

If you are cancelling a wedding for other reasons, such as you no longer want to photograph their wedding because the client has become difficult or no longer a good fit, a family member is getting married on the same day, or really anything else that involves disappointing a couple, you’ll have to decide what is important to you and how are you going to handle the situation positively.

Have you ever had to deal with this type of situation in your business? What did you do and why? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below! Be sure to say hello and I hope this was helpful information!


Stay in the know! Subscribe to our newsletter, podcast, join our facebook group and be sure to follow brklynivew on Instagram for the latest Tea with Jainé IG TV episode.

Want more tea? Contact Jainé about her one-on-one mentoring sessions for wedding photographers!

Interested in collaborating? Please fill out our contact page and say hello!