Whatcha think of these flowers? How about the photography? Not too shabby for FREE, right?
It's true, amateurs/hobbists like us (me the florist, my brother the photographer for pictured samples above) are not especially easy to find. Because they don't advertise, you must sniff them out. Because they don't do this for money (or they do it for little money and mostly love), you must be very flexible and respectful of their art. Because they lack experience, you must do much research to make sure one with high potential is chosen.
1. Dig around Craigslist. There's about 0.2% of gold,0.7% silver, 2.6% aluminum on CL, and the rest is pure crap. If you're a good miner, with a bit of luck, you just may find something usable. Also consider putting up 'wanted' listings on CL, you never know who may be stumbling by. Hobbyists like me, browse a little for gigs when in the mood.
2. Get the scoop from those around you with common goals. Participate on boards/forums pertaining to your interest and inquire about the sources of their great finds. If a knottie's bio include DIY projects you love which you're incapable of doing yourself, ask if she's interested in doing it for you for a small fee.
3. Find out about services provided by schools in your area. Students in programs like cosmotology, photography, graphic design, hospitality management, music... all are potential wedding vendors for a fraction of the price from professionals.
4. Get referrals from the experts. Love the work of a specific vendor you can't afford? Contact them and tell them your budget, they may have apprentices or others they have worked with to refer you to.
Keys to success: Time, Patience, Flexibility