Some time earlier this year, we revised our contract to state that the bride and groom are responsible for making sure that the photographers can do their job at their selected ceremony location. This weekend highlighted why we ask our clients to do this.
We just got back from a wedding in Jackson, MS, that we did for some close friends. It was held in a Methodist church, and we have not taken pictures in one before. Im not sure if this is a policy of the entire organization, just this church, or just the wedding director at that particular church, but we were not permitted to be on the floor of the sanctuary (the entire main auditorium where the ceremony took place), nor was flash photography allowed. Thankfully, we were able to use a balcony to take some distance shots, and Summer was able to sit with the guests and take a few shots from the audience. None of us, including the bride and groom, were aware of this policy until time for the rehearsal.
Some churches do not allow flash photography. This is pretty common in Catholic and Lutheren services. Many will not allow the photographers to be on the stage, which is only important if you are looking for some pictures that face towards the audience, not from. This was a new experience, being told we could not even be on the floor of the sanctuary.
It is always best to check early to see what is permissible, and to make sure that what is allowed agrees with what you want to get out of your ceremony and your pictures.