Raven Shutley Studios Logo
Close this search box.

3 Reasons to Bring Your Own Photographer to Your Destination Elopement

Having traveled internationally as a photographer, the advice to bring your own on your elopement or engagement adventure rings even more true for me now. I learned the hard way how hard it can be to try to track down your perfect photographer match while juggling travel and all the other little details. 

Here are my top three reasons to bring your own photographer to your next travel destination!

groom twirls bride by fountain at Villa d'Este

Know what to expect of your photographer AHEAD of time 

This is huge. When you are walking into any kind of unknown situation, (in this case traveling to  a new place), it’s so important to offset those unknowns with things you can control. 

Bringing your own photographer on your elopement or on any kind of adventure means you can establish that relationship ahead of time and know exactly what you are getting. You’ll know you have someone that makes you feel at ease and comfortable, even in a new environment. You’ll also have the peace of mind of knowing your photographer is fully committed to your event and not just squeezing you in. 

You can choose to work with a photographer you already have a relationship with or someone who is local to you that you can meet with ahead of time. You’ll already know you love their style! Now you get to see them bring it to life with a new backdrop.

Many photographers, myself included, are more than willing to hop on a plane if it means we get to continue to document your relationship. All you need to do is reach out and ask!

couple sits on brick wall in courtyard of Fregene Italy villaGet the logistics out of the way

Yes, logistics are important, but who wants to be discussing payment or expectations the day you plan to marry your love?! 

Bringing your own photographer means both parties can get all of those logistics out of the way early, and feel good about them! This can include where to meet, multiple location spots, total cost, hours of photography coverage, etc. 

There can be a lot of details to pin down. The ability to tie all of these loose ends up early will take a load of stress off when it’s time to explore and celebrate your relationship!

engaged couple stands at stop of Villa d'Este overlooking the city

Clear and consistent communication is key!

Especially in regards to international travel, language barriers and time differences can have a major impact on communication with your elopement vendors. It can be hard to know whether or not you’re able to clearly express what you are looking for and hearing back in a timely manner is crucial! But past just the nuts and bolts of communicating logistics you’ll want someone that really understands your vision, and that can take some time and back-and-forth to convey. 

Bringing your own trusted photographer with you ensures that your vision truly comes to life!

couple sits talking before Fregene Italy elopementNot convinced? Let me share a story…

When I was heading to Italy to photograph Rowan & Kelsey’s wedding, I set out looking for a headshot photographer for myself while I was there. I wanted either some updated headshots or some couple photos for myself and my partner. But you know what? I was completely unable to find anyone! 

I knew what I wanted: someone with a clean, true-to-life look and who focused on honest emotions and moments instead of overly posed editorial work (which is beautiful, don’t get me wrong, but just not what I was looking for). 

Another thing that was important to me was to find an LGBTQ+-friendly photographer based near my location in Italy. As you can imagine this limited my search even more. In addition to that, I had a hard time even getting anyone to write me back, much less have a phone call to get to know each other. 

In the end, I didn’t find that photographer and missed out on a chance to get the photos that I really wanted. But it made me so grateful that I could be that photographer for my couples!

Traveling to Italy for Rowan & Kelsey’s wedding was a dream come true! Read about how it went and my 5 Tips for Planning an Italian Elopement.

Get In Touch to Plan Your Destination Elopement

Raven is an Atlanta Wedding Photographer who captures real people on their totally unique and awesome wedding day, specializing in people who feel awkward in front of the camera. She travels throughout Georgia, including Athens, North Georgia, and beyond.

Get in touch!

Pinterest graphic with title 3 Reasons to Bring Your Own Photographer to Your Destination Elopement and a photo of the couple



other posts you may like

Enchanting Atlanta Venues for Garden Weddings

Wanderlust Vows: My Destination Wedding Photography Policies & Plans