Is Photojournalism the Right Style for Your Wedding? (Updated for 2021)

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Is Photojournalism the Right Style for Your Wedding?

You want your wedding to be memorable. That is why you hire a wedding photographer. These days, however, many couples aren’t settling for mere pictures of their wedding. They want to tell the story of their special day. For that, they hire a professional photographer who is also a wedding photojournalist.

Photojournalism brings your wedding to life. It’s storytelling with pictures. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. For more wedding ideas, check out these wedding pictures.

Wedding photojournalism records your wedding day as it unfolds. No posing or other fake photography. Historically, wedding photography has been about posing, with a few adorable candid shots thrown in. There’s been a sameness about these wedding pictures – the “gazing into each other’s eyes shot”; the “here’s the whole happy family outside of the church” shot.

Wedding photos may hold few surprises. That’s why wedding photojournalism takes a different approach to recording your wedding day.

What is a Wedding Photojournalist?


A wedding photojournalist doesn’t just snap random photos, he or she records the events of the day as they happen. When wedding photographers ask you to pose for certain shots, you remember the photographer’s instructions more than the moment. When the day is documented as it unfolds, you remember the feelings, instead.

Years from now, your wedding day will be brought to life as you experience real moments instead of poses. Everything is captured naturally as it unfolds without a “director” calling for action. You won’t just recall walking down the aisle with your father, you’ll remember your heart pounding with excitement. This can’t be recreated when the wedding photographer demands, “Okay, now stop at the top of the stairs and look lovingly at your dad.”

Your primary wedding memories should not be of your wedding photographer! Many wedding photos are more about the photographer showing off his or her style than about the couple and their wedding.

A wedding photojournalist captures moments that the bride and groom may have been unaware of!

While the bridal couple should be the focus of any wedding pictures, a lot of interesting things happen among the guests. It’s all part of the same event. A wedding photojournalist captures moments that the bride and groom may have been unaware of. What a wonderful way to create additional memories!

How else would you be aware of tipsy Aunt Flo making a move on the Best Man? It’s all part of a story, and a wedding photojournalist will be there to record it for you, even if you had no clue that it happened.

Or how about the sleepy flower girl dozing off beneath a table? This type of picture may never happen unless a wedding photojournalist noticed her, perhaps beneath a table to half-finished dishes, and told in a single picture the story of a little girl in a fancy pink dress, who’s had a long, exciting day, eaten too much cake, got bored and decided to do her own thing. It’s a story that’s as much a part of the wedding day as the pre-dinner toasts.


Standard wedding photographers require a lot of posing to catch the “right” shot. But what is the right shot? Most people aren’t accustomed to staged photography and will stand as instructed with a huge smile on their face. There’s nothing natural about it at all, and it frequently ends up looking fake and strained.

To make things worse, wedding photographers in search of the perfect picture may repeat the procedure (“Everybody line up again. Smile now!”) several times. You’ll get a good picture, but will you create a memory?

Of course, some people are simply too shy to pose for photographs. A wedding photojournalist is an expert at catching people off-guard in lovely, unexpected moments while he or she may be utterly unaware of being observed. These photos can become especially treasured because they cannot be staged.

Weddings abound with emotions. When your wedding photographer has you to look lovingly at your new spouse, the moment can be awkward and puzzling. Unless you’re a member of the Screen Actors’ Guild, you’ll find yourself wondering exactly what to do. Compare that to the photojournalist’s shot of you looking candidly at the love of your life, love bursting out of every pore.

The emotion is raw and real, not manufactured. It’s a photo that could never be staged. But caught unexpectedly and naturally, it tells the tale of your love in a real way.

When people are aware of being photographed, their look and demeanor change almost automatically (ask yourself how natural your high school photo or driver’s license picture is). They put on a “face”.


The photojournalist catches the real essence of his or her subject, and he or she snaps them at their best, when they are being their true authentic selves. That makes for more dynamic memories than posed pictures. Your wedding pictures will not look like any other wedding photos because they are truly unique and show moments that won’t ever happen again.

For example, how would a wedding photojournalist put a unique spin on the cutting of the wedding cake? He or she might omit the couple entirely and post a picture of the cake in all its glory, followed by a left-over tier and a few crumbs. It says all that needs to be said about how delicious the cake was and how happy the devourers thereof.

Hiring a wedding photojournalist instead of a wedding photographer enables you to enjoy your wedding instead of worrying about posing. The photojournalist will be there, capturing everything that is crucial and or humorous without interruptions and requests to, “Stand there and smile.”

Photojournalism gives you the best of both worlds – spontaneous and posed

There are times, of course, when you may request specific pictures, and your photojournalist can do that, as well. If your beloved aunt who hasn’t seen you in two years wants a picture with you for her bureau, you can accommodate her. This is still being you in control rather than following the photographer’s orders. And he’ll present Aunt Betty with the best possible memory of your wedding. Photojournalism gives you the best of both worlds – spontaneous and posed.


In addition to the essence of your wedding, the photojournalist will capture its humorous moments, such as your uncle gyrating by himself on the dance floor or the maid of honor’s expression as she watches. Wedding photojournalism is an unedited documentary of the goings-on during the day.

How to Find the Right Photojournalist

You can begin by choosing the pictures of experienced and qualified wedding photojournalists at that you like. Based on your selections, the site will recommend the list of wedding photojournalists in your area whose work will match your tastes.

Some of these wedding photographers are award-winning news journalists with years of experience in telling a story in a single picture while in the midst of chaos. Before making a decision, check out the photos of an entire wedding. See if you sense the stories and emotions being captured.

You should ask how much time he will spend with you on your wedding day. Will he or she be at the wedding only, or will he or she be a part of the pre-wedding action? How many weddings has the photojournalist done? What type of backup does he or she have?

Since this person will be an integral part of your wedding day, you want someone with whom you are comfortable. An easy-going personality will help everyone relax and be themselves. That’s when the best pictures happen.

A wedding photojournalist will capture your wedding day for a lifetime of memories.