Wrong and Wrong: My Take On The “Wedding Officiant Yells At Photographer” Fiasco

I’m sure you’ve all seen, or at least heard about, the youtube video of the officiant who yelled at the photographer and threatened to stop the ceremony if the photographer didn’t move.

(Here’s a link for those of you who may have missed it – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oReLN5nntKw)

Consensus seems to be “shame on you” to the officiant. After all, the bride and groom are paying the photographer to get great shots of their ceremony, right?

Well, I’m going to suggest a differing viewpoint of who was “in the wrong” in this situation.

Now I’m not condoning how the officiant handled the situation that was caught on tape. There are much better ways to get the point across than yelling and making threats during the wedding ceremony. Just take a look at the expressions on the bride and groom’s faces. It certainly looks to me like they’re wondering if the officiant is going to stop their ceremony.

But . . .

Take a close look at where the officiant was looking when he was addressing the photographer. It seems very clear that he is looking right behind him. The problem? Well, think of this from the guests’ vantage point.

They are looking at the bride and groom, with the officiant right behind them. OK, pretty normal so far. Then . . . right behind the officiant they see the photographer doing his thing. The photographer doesn’t belong there! The photographer should be inconspicuous, NOT part of the action.

The photographer should not have been standing there in the first place!

I have no idea what conversation, if any, took place between the photographer, the officiant, and the couple about the rules regarding where the photographer could and could not stand. But . . . even if no such conversation took place, the photographer should have known better!

So the photographer wants to get a shot from that angle? Why not? It would be a great photo of the couple. However, he can stand further back, OUT OF THE WAY. Some may think, well if he’s too far back, he can’t get the shot. Well, that’s what they make long-focus lenses for!

It doesn’t matter that the ceremony was held outdoors instead of in a church. During a wedding ceremony there are places where it is ok to stand, and there are places where it is not. Standing behind the officiant is one of the places that definitely fall into the latter category.

What do you think?

Hearts, Joy, Love

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Do you have a wedding dilemma or question you need answered? I’d love to help. Contact me at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

2 thoughts on “Wrong and Wrong: My Take On The “Wedding Officiant Yells At Photographer” Fiasco

  1. You're definitely right. Though the officiant handled it in a more appropriate way, that is when a photographer can make good use of his zoom feature. As an event planner, I believe it would been a good reason to have someone for the day to make sure things like that happen. Further reading the article though shows that the guest were fine. But it still led to an officiant stepping out of his Zen moment to chastise this guy and also to probable embarrassment to the photog who though he used bad judgment, was trying to do his job.

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