Wedding photography horror stories are possessed with enthralling backgrounds, a great deal of second-hand embarrassment, and a slight dash of mystery. Why are circumstances the way they are?
Why are these groomsmen and bridesmaids wilding out?!
And most importantly, why do these poor photographers have to be the ones to deal with them?
Springtime is just around the corner, which also means wedding season is quickly approaching.
If you’re a photographer, you know what that means: a full shift of trying to wrangle drunk people like wild animals for group shots all while trying to maintain your sanity and the safety of your own body and equipment.
Some photographers shared their worst wedding photography horror stories on Reddit, which we’ve then curated into a comprehensive list to help you mentally prepare.
Young wedding-goers drink more than they can swallow
People drink at weddings. It’s thus just a matter of fact that photographers will have to deal with them. And that’s where wedding photographers come in: documenting the night beautifully to fill in the gaps of what the couple and wedding party and guests don’t remember.Card
One photographer wrote:
“Had a young couple: He was 20, she was 19. All their friends were about that age, and it was everyone’s first open bar (in Canada you can drink at 19). It got messy FAST:
People puking at their tables or in garbage cans on the way to the bathroom, falling out of their seats during speeches. They even stole some golf carts and smashed them up on the course. My assistant got spit on in the bathroom. Real classy folks.
I usually always stay later than my allotted time, but this night I was out of there right at 9. The kicker was that on my way out, the groom’s fa ther gets in a huge fistfight right outside the doors with one of his family members. Blood everywhere, broken glass, people screaming.”
The absolute grossest and most savage of wedding photographer horror stories, and still, some entries on this list get even crazier.
Though it doesn’t sound like the photographer was lacking in memorable photos, these horror stories don’t sound like things they want to remember. It would make for a good parody shoot, though. Cheers to the happy couple.
The groom getting cold feet is picked up on the wedding photographer’s hot mic
Having a wedding in public means onlookers have the potential to see something not meant to be seen… or also heard.Card
Here’s how one photographer described his wedding horror story:
“Moments before the bride walked down the aisle, the groom told his best man, ‘dude, you got to get me out of here.’ Videographer heard him via groom’s mic.”
We like to believe that audio never made it into the final cut of the wedding video. Still, for the photographer to overhear that, must have had them absolutely shook. A wedding photography horror story for the ages.
From the same wedding, the photographer continued to describe a different horror story:
A wedding photography horror story of pure angerCard
“A homeless guy walked up to side of the parked trolley, asked for cigarette, a groomsman gave him a beer. Homeless guy very happy. Bride walks over, says to homeless guy, ‘why don’t you get a fucking job?'”
Who has this much anger on their wedding day? This is a wedding photography horror story then about to burst. It continues with the homeless man,
“‘I don’t care if it’s your wedding day, I’ll smack you right now.’ Bride motions with her hands, ‘Come on, do it! Let’s go!’
Bride starts walking to front of trolley. Three groomsmen stand up quick, get off trolley to confront said homeless guy, everyone pushing their chests out. Trolley driver gets off, tries to diffuse situation. Homeless guys takes swing at trolley driver.
Trolley driver clocks homeless guy in the side of the head. Groom and more groomsmen arrive from getting cases of beer, and identify themselves as cops (6 of the 8 groomsman were cops, including groom). Homeless guy excited by the challenge. Tourist has video camera pointed on everyone.”
Luckily, the situation died down without it escalating any further. The only casualty was a beer bottle that the homeless man threw against the side of the trolley, thus spraying it everywhere.
Coke, no Pepsi for the bridesmaid
At the same wedding, the photographer also wrote,
“At reception introductions are held up. Bride and a bridesmaid got into verbal fight and bridesmaid took off. Bride found out bridesmaid was doing coke before the ceremony.”
There’s not much extra to say on this one. I can just picture the photographer witnessing this and fumbling the camera for a second in pure astonishment of what they just overheard.
Still, professional that wedding photographers are, they would have kept the camera steady and kept it pushing. Like a real New Yorker. Anyways, good luck to the happy (?) couple.
Photo bombing… with more photos?
As the hired wedding photographer, it is your job to get the best shots of the night.Card
Unfortunately, not every wedding guest understands that, as one photographer shared in their wedding photography horror story:
“I had a wedding this one weekend and the guests were an absolute pain in the arse. The typical sort that got their phones out for photos and completely block my shot.
Fortunately, I was the second shooter, but it’s so utterly stupid and disrespectful, especially in small venues where it’s difficult to get around a large crowd.
So many of my shots were ruined by the overzealous moms wanting to get snaps on their iPhones, while I’m at the back trying to shoot around them.”
Fortunately, the photographer was the second shooter, and thus used the crowd to their advantage by including them in the shot to add some atmosphere.
Be kind to wedding photographers
If you’re going out for your first wedding shoot, then let these wedding photography horror stories be a lesson to you for what to look out for and prepare yourself.
You want to be a fly on the wall as a photographer. You want to be under Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak. You’re there to capture, not to do anything else.
These photographers subjected to such depravity, to such recklessness, to such hell… we cannot sympathize with them more. These are some of the most harrowing wedding photography horror stories we’ve ever seen or heard, therefore completing our list.
And we hope if you ever tie the knot, you’re cognizant of the photographers surrounding you, just trying to stay lowkey and capture some of the best gems possible.