Wedding Photographer Wanted Ad Makes Us Lose a Little Faith in Humanity


It’s time like these that hashtags like #facepalm were invented for. Thanks to a reader, we recently stumbled across a “Wedding Photographer Wanted” ad on Craigslist that we sincerely hope is fake. Then again, given previous experience, it’s probably not.

The ad is based out of Philadelphia, and the writer would like someone to take “high quality professional images,” of her wedding. So far so good, but then you read on: “but I don’t want to pay for a professional. They charge way too much and are not worth it.”

From there the poster continues by describing exactly the type of person they’re looking for, and why this person should be willing to do this for a total of $100:

I think I am very attractive and will be wearing a wedding dress so this would be great for your portfolio. I want someone who has a really, really good camera. You also must be experienced with working with people, especially drunk people. I want someone who knows how crazy a wedding day can be (even small ones) and who can keep his or her cool no matter what happens.


The Wanted ad ends with this proverbial cherry-on-top statement, “Also it’s important that you actually show up for my wedding day.” We’re sure her inbox is just bursting with offers…

We could spend time here explaining why exactly professional wedding photographers are worth it and why they certainly don’t charge too much, but that’s a topic we’ve covered in-depth before here.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen a snippy request that encourages photographers to work for free because it would be “great for their portfolio,” and truth be told, there are times when working for free is acceptable. We’re just fairly certain this isn’t one of them.

Image credit: Ad – Macro’ed by bjmccray

Thanks for sending in the tip, Todd!

  • Magali

    This is just… I don’t know.

  • William Wolffe

    Pretty sure it was posted by a photographer just for fun. The picture itself is a joke. Craigslist is full of them. A lot of times is just pure trolling.

  • Keren

    A teacher of mine offered my the buffet once for my time… I didn’t take it.

  • Bob Dunkin

    I would have taken that! …but would have taken no photos! :)

  • NegativeSpace

    The sad thing is they probably will get replies from people offering to do the job.

  • Peter Acker

    Yeah I’m pretty sure that’s written by someone who’s a fan of The Onion and is probably a photographer who just got tired of all the lemons and decided to make a lemon drop.

  • Dario Toledo

    I could accept the work. At the condition that I’ll be able to put the photos on stock sites and that I can stress both the groom and the bride at my whim, like they were models I paid for. Not too pretentious for being for free, is it?

  • Kevin Wilson

    Working for ones portfolio clearly has not worked on this bride to be as she cant have seen anyone good enough,made ma laugh though.
    Just imagine asking for a caterer to do a similar offer,cheese sandwich anyone ?

  • Mako

    “I want someone who has a really, really good camera.” … damn … they have cameras that automatically do EVERYTHING including knowing where to be placed and when to take the picture?!

  • Mike

    Oh relax, people. The ad clearly states “I want to have high quality professional images created of my wedding”. That is all, no request was made for prints or for actually receiving the photos.
    Take the “job”, get a 100$ for actually showing up, get drunk, take some photos with your really, really good camera, go home.

  • Mike

    If you only have a really good camera, you get 50$.

  • RegularGuy55

    Here’s hoping she tries the same strategy with the caterer and the baker.

  • Tzctplus -

    Oh please. You don’t like it? Move on. This is a free world and people can ask, that doesn’t necessarily mean they will get, and if they do, good for them for reading the market right.

  • David Liang

    Not as sad as they’ll be when they receive their photos. No offense to the photogrpher who probably did their best and are still learning, but at that price point you get what you pay for.

  • Neil AUTY

    It may seem sad that someone may consider this request to some, but not every married couple has a pro level budget. I try to fill this gap myself by offering a very basic package to those of limited means. I generally have a pick at the buffet, but to the happy couple, I am a camera that is thinking only about pics and not the partying itself.

  • O

    Craigslist is a sewer, don’t look for jobs there.

  • juh445

    throw in a blow**b and i do it bit*h….

  • SpaceMan

    And odds are that the photos by beginner/amateur would be good enough for her so I don’t see a problem here

  • Marcus Sudjojo

    This happen very much here, in my country. Photographers here are rendered as basically anyone who own a good camera, and have the time (not very much the ability) to use them. Basically, ‘why’d you charge so much for your service? Anybody who owns decent gears can take good pictures. I’d do them, if only I have the time….’

    Photography works are severely underpaid here.

  • Renato Murakami

    It’s that sort of thing: You reap what you sow.
    Pay a hundred bucks for wedding photography, you’ll get 100 bucks worth of wedding photography, if any.
    If that’s ok for the couple, then fine. They don’t want to make shure they have a proper wedding album, that’s all. Win the lottery kinda thing.
    At the risk of having no photograph worth showing to anyone else, taken by a single photographer which could or could not know what he/she’s doing, with obviously no back up team because 100 bucks isn’t enough for it.
    Probably a single camera, from a single person, without any lighting equipment.
    Digital copies perhaps untreated, taking a long time to be delivered, without rights for complaints afterwards.
    And if the worst happens, it’s quite possible the images end up lost.
    They apparently know the risks too, when saying “it’s important that you actually show up”. Because they could just receive offers from people who will end up skipping on the day – not uncommon on Craigslist.
    But you know, not everyone can pay towards thousands of dollars for it. As long as they know what they are getting into, it’s their own problem.
    This goes into: well, we don’t really need photos from the wedding, but if someone does it, it would be nice – quality doesn’t matter. If they end up with one pic like the one in the add, should be enough, and I guess they put it there as example.
    I only see a problem with ads like these if they come complaining of results afterwards. You are paying for less than amateur service. Expect it.

  • Rob S

    I would take the job.

    1 – she would have to sign a model release that gave me absolute ownership over all her images.

    2 – After the wedding I would offer her heavily watermakred pictures.

    3 – I would then over her and her family unwatermarked images….for about $5000.

    You got your pictures TAKEN cheep. Doesnt mean I will give them to you cheep.

  • NiagaraTim

    wouldve taken the 100 bucks brought my nikon d4 and just wacked off a bunch of pics get drunk chase the single girls around and emailed the pics back to them cuz ad didnt say anything about printing them ;-)

  • oldpnk

    why are all the kids wearing pajamas?

  • Rabi Abonour

    The issue is not the price, but the self-righteousness of the demands. This wasn’t “We can only afford $100, and we want whatever we can get for that,” it was “We want a professionally-shot wedding but will only pay $100 because that’s what we think wedding photographers deserve.”

  • pgb0517

    Yep, the ad is just satire. Maybe the poster wants a chance to just see who replies.

  • Justin Haugen


  • David Turner

    I’d shoot it for $100. I’d do an amazing job. Then, after the wedding, I’d charge her $3,000 to process the images. Once processing is completed I’d charge her $1,100 to deliver the images. Then my fee would be complete. Easy.

  • Brian

    The ad has already been removed! What a bummer!

  • Claw

    C’mon, really?? She’s not “reading the market right”. She’s complaining that quality work is too expensive. She’s cheap and on top of it all trying to sell her looks to get free stuff, like I said, cheap. She’s gonna get what she ‘pays for’. If you have a budget, as most people do, address that but don’t insult professionals and expect to get something out of it.

  • Dover

    She’ll end up with a hotdog and a twinky.

  • Matt Bresler

    join smugmug. disable downloading. charge $50 for each 4×6, $100 for a 5×7, and up for larger sizes.

  • Vin Weathermon

    She married a twinky.

  • Dj

    really I proved to my friend that I could print a nice 8 x 10 from smugmug with screen cap and photoshop, she was pissed I could …and anyone else could too…watermark the whole center is the only way to ruin that chicks crappy day, then rejoice…

  • brett

    Simple – contact her and say you will take the job, then don’t turn up. Teach that entitlement seeking biatch a lesson

  • gareth gay

    if you take the job on, you must do your job, no matter for how much for.

  • Arlene Adams

    It’s a bitchy request no doubt, but it does highlight the issues people are having with money (and intelligence). For as stupid as it sounds, these services have priced themselves out of the range of average people, and in a way it’s sad and scary to think that a simple thing like a wedding photographer has become too much of an expense for the average person. It says a lot about the socitey we live in, and the state of its citizens.

  • Igor Ken

    the kid in the front row is actually throwing up :D it’s a casual wedding

  • lollo

    yai! im in with my nex FF!!

  • Tim

    Move it on a notch. Welcome to the real world: this is what people want. The expectations ($100, etc) are unfortunate and unrealistic, but not really anything to do with the photography so much as a feature of business/client relationships.

    IOW, if you will set up a system of providing for clients to make a living out of photography as a business, expect some negotiation back&forth as a fact of life and don’t get angsty about it.

  • jrconner

    I hope her finance reads the ad so he knows what kind of woman he’s planning to marry

  • Rob

    Wedding photography is not a “simple thing”, it’s an optional extra which at the higher end involved significant investment in equipment and processing time. Hiring excellent photographers has always been out of reach for those on a budget but photography has always been available in a more mediocre form for those that want it but have limited funds. Hire a novice, get Uncle Bob to shoot it, or pay for the privilege of working with someone who has the right equipment, knowledge, experience and good taste to do your day justice. You don’t have the right to hire whoever you want for a pittance. It’s not sad and scary that quality products and services cost more than inferior equivalents, it’s sad and scary that you think you’re entitled to the best of everything just because it’s your special day and you’re a special snowflake, and after all photography is “simple”!!

    So yeah, boo hoo, you can’t afford to hire Jerry Ghionis on your magical day because your total wedding budget is $5K? You won’t be wearing a Vera Wang dress either, and Beyonce won’t be live on stage. Quit living your life according to the expectations of others and remember what the hell a wedding is at its core – a celebration of love.

  • Jack

    At least this person offer $100. I’ve seen one ad once for a photographer who would be paid nothing but could eat and drink freely at the reception. O yes, the photographer also had to provide a detailed portfolio upon application ….

  • Tzctplus -

    Oh please, professionals won’t feel insulted, even if this is for real.

    Any professional that feels insulted by such adds needs to grow a thicker skin and have a hard look at himself: inly an insecure person could possibly feel insulted by such a request.

    And again, if we want freedom to work and charge as we see fit for our work people should equally feel free to offer whatever they want to pay.

    I am sure many “professionals” around here would jump at the opportunity to work for free if the conditions were interesting and overall meant something positive (not necessarily money) for their personal or professional development.

    But of course the readers of this blog tend to be quite precious and snobbish about what they do for a living: loosen up people, the ride is going to be even bumpier, many of you will not have a viable profession taking photographs in a few years.

    That is what is called progress: to bring to the public at large what would otherwise have been the artificial preserve of so called professionals.

  • Tzctplus -

    Well, it is up to them to say whatever they want.

    Don’t apply. Issue closed.

  • Tzctplus -

    Go for it then. Oh no, we are all trolling about this.

  • ted

    I would accept her offer and not show up at the last minute. :d

  • Tzctplus -

    She is not claiming entitlement: she is offering an out of place stupid opinion and then making a commercial offer (serious or otherwise).

    Don’t like it, don;t take it. Simple really.

  • Tzctplus -

    Taking the add at face value, a stunner that knows nothing about photography. Many men would queue :-)

  • Thomas Casey

    That ad has been removed.

  • Gothamite

    Hey you get what you pay for, if she wants to spend $100 expect someone to show up with some throw away cameras [if they still are sold even] and rock those.