Are you wondering what to do if your camera breaks at a wedding? Hopefully, you’ll never have to experience such a challenging predicament. However, in my 15+ years of shooting weddings, I’ve had multiple times when a lens or camera broke at a wedding, so I had to learn what to do in those circumstances. And actually, it happened to me last weekend when a bridesmaid was handing me a camera but dropped it before it got to me. It fell in the alleyway I was shooting in, and the lens busted and the camera rolled end over end, causing damage to the entire unit.
You might think I got mad. Or maybe upset. You might think I needed to stop what I was doing to assess the damage and make a game plan for the evening photo coverage. You might think I made the bridesmaid pay for the damage. Or the bride and groom. In every one of those cases, you’d be wrong.
You see, you are a professional photographer. Even if the gear was damaged maliciously, you need to remain professional. How do you to that? Let me tell you what I did, exactly.
What To Do If Your Camera Breaks at a Wedding
Step 1: Comfort whoever dropped the camera (if applicable). The last thing you want is to be the root of drama on a wedding day. Assure that person that it’s okay. They aren’t in trouble, and everything is going to be okay (even if it isn’t).
Step 2: Assure the bride and groom that everything is okay. You have backup cameras and lenses. Above all, let them know they are still going to have the most amazing wedding photographs.
Remember, you are not only there to take great images, but to deliver world-class service to your clients. Making them feel good about their investment is key.
Step 3: Grab your backup gear from your car (if you’re not carrying it on you). If you don’t have backup gear, get some before your next wedding. You don’t have to buy it… you can rent it. I obviously don’t need to teach you the importance of having backup gear for a wedding, especially if you’re a luxury wedding photographer.
Step 4: Clear your mind and immediately get back to what you were doing: capturing stunning wedding images.
Step 5: After the wedding, as soon as you can, file an insurance claim and send the camera to the manufacturer. I am a member of Canon Professional Services (and have been since 2007), so they are already finished with my repairs. I’ll have everything in time for my next wedding; otherwise, I would of course rent a camera and lens. If you don’t have insurance, you should. PPA offers it for free with their membership, so it’s a no-brainer! I’ve used my insurance twice in the past two years, saving me nearly 20 thousand dollars in gear replacement.
So now you know What To Do If Your Camera Breaks at a Wedding! Happy shooting!
Talk to you soon,