You may have read a recent article in which Brides magazine suggested that its readers only choose wedding photographers who shoot Canon or Nikon. The photographer who was quoted as saying that has received quite a bit of backlash, so I reached out to her for her side of the story.
Tiffani Matsuura was the photographer interviewed for this article. I had checked out her work and was sufficiently impressed to be surprised that an obviously competent photographer had made such a statement, and after some chats with a colleague, I reached out to her for her side of the story, particularly since Brides had updated their article without editorial comment, leaving the nature of the entire chain of events in question. Lastly, Matsuura has been the victim of a large amount of vitriol in recent days, and whether the criticism is unfounded or not, I know Internet-bullying can often take on a life of its own.
Brides approached Matsuura with an article proposition: providing couples a guide for choosing a photographer. In response to the question "Besides the quality and style of photographs, what else should brides be thinking about?", Matsuura proposed a series of more detailed questions, one of which was: "What type of equipment do you use?" In addition to the proposed questions, Matsuura offered hypothetical answers that a photographer might give a client in an effort to further illustrate the type of interactions a couple might expect with a potential photographer. These hypothetical answers included the controversial assertion that professionals use either Canon or Nikon cameras.
I spoke with Matsuura personally, and she was very adamant that this answer did not represent her feelings on the matter and was simply meant as a hypothetical illustrative response for the writer, one that was never supposed to be published, but was due to an apparent miscommunication. When she saw that it had been published, she immediately emailed the magazine and asked that the quote be changed to:
Your photographer should know their equipment. Canon and Nikon are the most readily used cameras, but there are many other well-known professional cameras out there. Whatever your photographer does choose, it's good to make sure that he/she is well versed in their equipment.
However, this was changed simply to:
Ideally, your photographer would use the most readily available professional camera.
In fairness, Matsuura mentioned that this was her first interview, and while giving a potentially controversial (even if hypothetical) answer may or may not have been the best decision, she does insist that that answer was, in fact, not representative of her views. She has received a large volume of harassing messages in the last few days, and given that, I felt it was only right to give her a platform to voice her side of the story. If anything, it's a good lesson for all of us to be careful in what we say, particularly in situations where we may be readily quoted.
An inquiry for more information from Brides and the writer on their side of the story was not returned.