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How to deal with standing up for myself with a friend

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I've posted QUITE a bit about this friend(B) on here before. I have no idea if she is on these forums, but if she is, oh well!


We've had a lot of issues as of late, but the biggest thing has been my wedding pictures. I got married in August and as a wedding present she asked her dd's father(R), who is a photographer, to take our pictures for free. I was really excited about this because he is good and well hey, free pictures! It is now April and I have yet to see any of these photos. I've asked, and asked and gotten two types of responses, the first:


" R has his uploaded and converted, but it will be a while until we can get them all edited. We both work during the week and he has weddings EVERY weekend through November. That's when wedding season slows down for a bit and we can get to editing your images. He just has to keep the studios clients at the top of the list right now (mainly b/c they paid for a service and his studio keeps to a strict timeline). We haven't forgotten as it's also our wedding gift to them. Everyone will be notified as soon as it's done :)" 
This was September and she has managed to finish LOT's of other projects since then.
My mother emailed her about this just last week and even offered to give some money to get the photos just on a cd unedited. This is the story now:
"R promised he'd have these on a CD by February. I hate being the go-between person, but that's what I get for putting my faith in someone I should have known better NOT to :( February obviously didn't happen. He basically told me to "shove it" and that he didn't care about finishing anything to help me or my friends out. He is being a huge (enter your own colorful expletive here) and has no intentions of finishing what he started! So I am left to do it myself when I have time outside of my busy work schedule and mom duties. I am also moving by the end of the month, so my days have been insane. But I work on t em every few days and I am hoping to be done very soon. 
No money needed. I am not going to let Ravensong go without something she was promised, even if I have to do it all myself ;) I just hope (my sister) has some good ones too because there was a lot of friction and tension between some family members, Ravensong's dh and my R. I don't know what happened, but I won't be referring dd's dad for any weddings for any friends ever again. He has horrible people skills. :P"
This is where I need help. I know her, and this is ALL bs. I know R is not saying these things. She uses him as the excuse for anything she doesn't want to do. He was the supposed reason why she didn't come and visit me in the hospital in February. I want my wedding photos SO badly! I keep getting promised dates when I'll have them and they're not ready. Not even one or two. I simply cannot bring myself to be frank and honest with her about this. I feel silly getting this worked up about photos, but I feel like this is just indicative of our whole relationship. I have a hard time standing up for myself with people without getting overly angry and I know that if I were to bring this up with her without her getting defensive and insulting me( this has happened when I've brought up other issues). I put this under personal growth because I know there is I can learn from all of this, but HOW and WHAT? I could really use a new set of eyes/ears/whatever on this :(
post #2 of 7

Can you ask a few of your family members to contact the photographer (your friend's dh) and ask how much prints would be and when they would be available?  Put a little pressure on him directly?  Can you maybe offer a deadline of wanting to give your parents a framed picture by some (made up) date?   If he's got so many clients that he can't take care of a project he took on, over 7 months ago, then surely his information is online and he wouldn't want any bad press.  Sounds like maybe she offered his work and maybe he hadn't fully agreed, now she doesn't want to deal with it at all so she's in excuse mode.  I also take photos, and edit, and it only takes a few hours to get a good amount of very nicely edited photos.  6-7 months?  Something else is going on here with her/them.


That's awful that you've had to be asking for your gift (photos of your wedding!) for so long.

post #3 of 7

I'm sorry this happened to you. I live by the tried-and-true photographer's maxim: you get what you pay for. Or in your case, what your friend didn't pay for. greensad.gif


I agree with what the PP wrote. It doesn't take 7 months for a professional photographer to edit a client's wedding shots-- no paying client would wait that long for her wedding photos! I suspect B overpromised what she could get R to do for her. Professional wedding photographers charge in the thousands for wedding packages, so I wouldn't blame R for perhaps feeling resentful that his dd's mom signed him on to provide his services for free (I'm assuming she's not paying him for his services as a gift to you, and that she expected him to work for free). I think B overstepped her bounds. R's time and talent are not B's to give away at her discretion.


Since B dealt with R by proxy, I assume that you didn't sign a contract detailing what services R would provide you, so at this point you are probably at R's mercy. I would get in touch with R directly, explain your excitement to see the photos, and ask what needs to be done to get your CD finished. Put the ball in his court. Hopefully he will be reasonable and finish them for you; if he seems reluctant, you may want to offer to pay him for the finished product according to his going rate and just be glad you finally have your photographs.


And no more "free" photography, okay? winky.gif


ETA: Since you have trouble standing up for yourself without getting angry (which, IMO, you have every right to do when you are being jerked around the way B has jerked you around in this matter), it's in your best interest to go straight to R for those pictures. Forget B even exists in this matter. And, I would like to point out that you are not somehow being petty because you want your wedding portraits after all these months-- you deserve to have a photographic memento of that special day. Really. smile.gif

Edited by MissMaegie'sMama - 4/12/11 at 6:32pm
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thank you both for the advice! I'm thinking I will just ask R for a cd. Before the wedding, I sat down with R and signed a little contract detailing what kinds of shots I wanted him to take etc. But I didn't keep a copy of it, I didn't think I needed to. I did consider him a friend for quite a long time, until recently. I've been told so many awful things about him, through B, that I've kind of just stepped back, not really wanting to get in the middle of their issues as they are still living together. I'm fairly certain that B has also been telling him things I've said ( which I haven't) in order to create some distance. She has done this with a few other friends. I always assumed, and was told a few times before I started asking, that B would be the one doing the editing of the photos. 

Grrr, well I've learned my lesson for sure on this one! Part of the reason I was happy to have the photos as a gift as well was that B had made it seem like money for a wedding present was going to be hard to come by, and that giving a 'service' would be easier. The thing I hate the most about this situation is that I cannot seem to bring myself to be honest about my feelings with my friend for fear of backlash.

post #5 of 7

I completely understand why you would have thought photos of the wedding would have been an easier gift for her to give you. A couple with a healthy relationship probably would have been willing and able to provide that service as a gift to you without a hitch, which I think speaks volumes about B's (in)ability to communicate effectively with others. It really sucks you got caught in the middle of her "couple's drama." Also, B sounds very manipulative and passive aggressive. Frankly, if you fear her backlash, you might want to consider distancing yourself from her. I had to cut loose a friend who was highly critical and overly defensive about every. little. thing. I knew it was time to do so when I found myself dreading talking to/seeing her. What do you think you want to do?


Also: If you did sign a contract, R should still have a copy of it, and if he considers himself a professional, he should abide by it.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

I've already been distancing myself quite a bit since this isn't our only issue. I'm worried about going too far though and never getting the photos. My dh is super angry about this and questions why I'm even friends with her at all any more. I honestly can't come up with any reasons. I've tried calling her to see about sitting down sometime this week and bringing the photos up then. I think having a face to face chat about them will be easier for me, and harder for her to avoid.

post #7 of 7

I think I'd go straight to him and be honest.  Something like:


"R, I really love your work and my whole family and I are so excited to see our wedding photos.  I'm getting worried that something came up and I'd like to offer you your going rate, if that would help you be able to make time to work on my photos.  I have a few relatives that I'd like to give photos to by (some date) and am wondering if you think you could get a CD to me by then?  How much would just the raw images, whatever you have right now, cost?  I could come and pick up a CD from your mailbox if that's more convenient.  I realize things come up in life sometimes.  We're just really looking forward to having some pictures of our wedding day.  Thank very much.  Please let me know what you need us to do in order to get the CD.  Best, Raven"


Or whatever feels good to you to say.  Make it easy for him to get you what you NEED, which is the raw photo files.  And then once you have them you can hire someone to edit them on your own timeframe.  Or even learn to use a photo editing program yourself.  Adobe Lightroom is great and not hard at all to learn.  And you can't mess up your photos too easily b'c you can make copies before you attempt editing.  If you do them yourselves, you & your husband can make them look however you want as well.  Just another thought.


Wow, good luck getting them soon.  I'd be afraid to rock the boat until I had my photos in my own hard drive as well.  Sorry she's being like that.

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