On Your Best Day
Let me tell your story
While this page may seem to contain a lot of information it will describe to you the way I capture a wedding, what you'll receive from me, as well as how much it costs. My goal is to provide a stress free service creating quality, artistic photos of this very important and special day.
Define the Style What You Want
When it comes to choosing your wedding photographer there are a number of things to consider. First and foremost is the type of photos you want to receive at the end of the process. There are three main styles of wedding photography: illustrative, traditional, and photojournalistic. In choosing your photographer, you'll need to decide what sort of images you're seeking. One isn't necessarily better than the others. It's all a matter of personal taste.
My Shooting Style
My shooting style is primarily "photojournalism" with a touch of both "traditional" and "illustrative." For most of your day I try to simply capture the events as they happen, adding little direction. We'll do a little of the "traditional" style of shooting here and there during key events, such as the cake cutting, family portraits, etcetera. When it comes time for your personal portrait session is when we break into "illustrative" mode. My goal is have a fine balance of all three without dictating how your wedding day unfolds. Que será, será.
Photojournalistic Style - No Staged Emotions
"Photojournalism" approaches the day in an unpredictable way, capturing the events as they unfold. There's very little direct intervention by the photographer. The goal is to tell the story of the day, capturing the very real emotions and interactions. Of course, due to the very nature of this method, many of the traditional "shot list" items often never happen.The appeal of this style is that you'll end up with photos of you, your family & your friends all being yourselves. They're truly snapshots of real life instead of just a series pretty pictures with no deeper meaning other than just looking nice.
Emotions as They Happen - No Staging of Love & Affection
Illustrative Style - Capturing the Beauty of the Day
"Illustrative" is when everything is designed to produce photos that are creative, well composed, and approach a "fine art" aspect. They require a good deal of planning, setting up, and direction from the photographer, and are not overly "spontaneous," though that too can be staged somewhat. It also requires finding the right setting, and hoping our timing is good.
Portraits of Love & Commitment - Beauty Lies Within the Heart
Traditional Style - Photographing the Key Momments
"Traditional" is where the photographer has a standard list of photos to be taken. These are commonalities such as the cake, flowers, venue, etc.. It's also when certain, traditional rituals are conducted, i.e., the cake cutting, first dance, or whatever is important to you. I'll photograph those rituals that you and your families cherish.
*Some "traditional" photographers even have portions of the ceremony re-enacted just to get a specific shot on their list. Just a heads up that I do not go to that extreme. It tends to consume a lot of the bridal parties time due to the photographer's constant need to manipulate the scenes. Also, the images tend to be stiff and unemotional.
Shared Moments - The Rituals that Unite Families
It's time to begin
The Big Day - Think in Stages
A typical wedding day can be broken down into four separate stages. I've laid them out in the sections below. You can tailor your specific needs for me by choosing which "stage" you want captured and you may also narrow down the specifics for some of them. As you explore the tabs, they will take you to additional pages with samples from each stage. I'll also try to explain the time frames for each section so that you'll have an easier time planning out your day. I know how important this day is to both of you, so providing a stress free experience is important to me. This site is aimed at making it easier for you to understand what I offer and aid you in planning your wedding.
It's time to begin
Photographing your day has to begin somewhere. I've begun a wedding shoot as early as the evening before the actual ceremony, all the way up until just before the ceremony began. It's entirely up to you on when I start my day. Personally, I enjoy covering the events leading up to the ceremony.
During this time there's a dynamic happening between the soon to be married couple and their family & friends. It offers a chance for some intimate photography. It also helps "set the stage" visually for the rest of the day. The bridal party additionally has chance to get to know me and become used to my presence. I also get additional insight into your personalities which makes it easier for me to capture the rest of your wedding day.
It's Not Just About Getting Dressed - The Bonds of Family & Friends
The rights that are important to you
I also enjoy documenting any special traditions or rituals you may hold dear. For instance in the Chinese wedding below the Groom is expected to answer questions posed by the Bride's Maids. They ask very specific things that he's expected to know about her tastes in music, food, etc.. When he can't answer the Groom's Men have to do push ups. They also try to find answers using their phones. One question was about an obscure folk song they had to find the lyrics for and then sing. The men also use ceremonial foil "money" to pry clues from the women. Once these hurdles are passed the Groom is then allowed to see his Bride for the first time in her wedding dress.
Getting to the church on time
If you're taking a limo, or other special conveyance, to the ceremony site I can ride along with you if you choose. Prior arrangements will need to be made of course.
This is it!
While most wedding ceremonies have similar rhythms, each one is unique. I enjoy exploring the various customs, religions, and personal bonding experiences that I encounter. I'm not going to lie, I find solace in capturing these intense moments when people join together as a new family. Wedding photography isn't just a "job" to me. It's a chance to be in the presence of openly displayed love and affection.
It is not uncommon for churches to have very strict rules on photography. I highly recommend finding out what they are. Many only allow photographers limited positions to take photos from. Flash photography during the ceremony is usually not allowed. I will always work within the confines laid out by your venue. My goal is not to be the center of attention, but to capture the day without being a part of the action.
We Gather Here Today...
Formal & Illustrative Sessions
Typically there are two portrait sessions to every wedding. The easiest, and most "traditional," is the family/wedding party session. This can be planned for either before, or after the actual ceremony, depending on your needs. It's the basic, "Hey, let's all line up, look at the camera, now say, 'Cheese!' sort of event. I don't think I've ever photographed a wedding where we didn't do a little of this. Your grandma expects it!
The other, and sometimes totally skipped type of session, is the illustrative portrait taking. This always takes place after the ceremony, and any other "traditional" portraits. It is just for the bride and groom. This is where we try to take a little time to come up with something creative, and specifically aimed at just the two of you.
Portraits to Suite Your Taste
Time to Celebrate!
After all that work that went into planning your day, it's time to reap your efforts! The reception is when you to simply celebrate the union of your two families. I've been to many, many of them over the years and I can honestly say they each have their own unique feel. I always work closely with your DJ, if you have one, so that I'll know when, and what is going to happen. All you have to do is have fun!
Naturally, my coverage of your wedding ends at some point during this portion of the day. Typically, people release me after all the "traditional" rituals are completed, such as the bouquet toss. My favorite sessions are when folks keep me up until the end of the night, when the party is in full throttle, and the dancing in full swing!
It's Time to Get Loose
And Now for the Least Fun Stuff...
All About Prices & Products
One Fee + Expenses
Since I only do so few weddings I thought I would keep my pricing simple. I will cover up to eight hours of a wedding day for $2,500. This will cover all the events of a typical wedding without you feeling rushed to complete anything. I will only book weddings that span those 8 hours or more.,Each additional hour over the eight is an addition $200/hour. The only other charges are for any expenses, such as admission fees and parking/tolls, etc. I also charge for mileage to/from my home office to/from the venues of your choice. I charge whatever the current IRS mileage rate is at the time of your wedding. I also have to charge for local & state taxes, which is currently 5.5%.
At the top of the page I mentioned "a number of things to consider" when choosing your photographer. Naturally, those are price, availability, and specifically who the photographer is as a person. By accessing the pages below, you can find out my cost, if I'm available, and also a little about who I am as a person. Experience, and insurance are also matters to consider, but by now you've seen my work, and YES, I am insured.
Once the shoot is over the real work for me begins. Processing the images takes about 6 to 12 weeks. I carefully choose the best photos of the day. I then need to convert the selected images from “digital negatives” into images you can use. This takes time, especially on a long wedding shoot where I can easily take upwards of 5000, or more, images. Simply sorting and backing up the files can take many hours of work, not to mention how long it takes just to select the best.
Once I have things uploaded you'll then receive an email from me with a link to your Gallery. As the bride & groom you get to review the photos before anyone else has a chance to see them. You can ask for simple edits, as well as for certain shots to be taken offline. As an example, when shooting schoolteachers, photos of them holding drinks are usually taken offline in order to avoid embarrassment. You will still receive all the images taken out of the online gallery. You'll need to either sign in with Facebook, or a free Smugmug account, to leave comments.
As for the edits, these include any blemishes and the like I may have missed. I can also recrop photos when possible. I do not do major photo touchups such as making people look slimmer, or making eyes look smaller (yes, I had someone ask for that once). I am not a digital plastic surgeon. I also don't edit people out of shots, change clothing colors, or the like. Generally, with weddings, the volume of photos is just too high to effectively do major editing in a reasonable timeframe.
Once you're happy with the gallery you may then send the Gallery Link to all your family and friends.
Here's a Typical Wedding Gallery
Using Social Media
Additionally, the site itself has a variety of ways for you to share your photos online. There are easy methods for sharing to just about every major social network. There are the obvious Facebook & Twitter buttons on the bottom of the gallery, but each photo has even more ways to share. When you open a photo look for the Share Icon when you mouse over the lower right corner. There you'll see options for sharing to Facebook, Twitter, and G+. The Get a Link option also opens up a tool where you can copy the codes to embed the images in your blog, or just about anywhere online. The slideshow below illustrates some of these options.
A "Best Of" Gallery on Facebook
I also offer a Facebook album of around 30 photos or so. You choose the images you want in it. There you'll be able to tag the people pictured, and a link back to your gallery is also provided.
You'll have to add me on Facebook in order to use this feature.
One Flat Fee + Expenses & Taxes
- 8 Hour Minimum
- Additonal hours can be added.
Very Comprehensive Photographic Coverage
- Photo journalistic style, covering the events of the day.
- High quality "traditional" portraits.
- Optional "illustrative" portraits in the location of your choosing.
Actual Products You Receive from Me
- Your own photo gallery with all your photos, minus any you want removed for privacy.
- Your gallery can be sent out to all your friends and relatives.
- Your images are easily shared online using built in tools that are simple to use.
- Your guests can download images directly from the site.
- A data DVD with all the high resolution print files.
- There are no visible watermarks.
- You can print/upload them anywhere for your personal use.
- I include a "permission to print" letter for hassle free printing at professional shops.
- My Optional, High-end Printing Service
- Prints may be ordered directly from your photo gallery.
- Very high quality finishes available in a variety of sizes, and mounts.
- Additional types of merchandise available, t-shirts, cups, etc..
- ALL orders are guaranteed!
- Package pricing is custom created with your participation.
- Optional Facebook Gallery with the Best Shots
- You can tag your friends and family.
- Each image has a direct link back to your web gallery if people want to see the original.
A Breakdown of My Cost
- Eight Hours = $2500
- Each Additional Hour = $200/hour
- Deposit = $500 (goes towards the balance)
- Current IRS Mileage Rate to/from My Home Office
- Any Parking/Admission Fees
- 5.5% Sales Tax on Total
To book me, I require a $500 retainer. I try to book only 2 weddings/month. For me it's not about the volume of weddings I shoot, but the quality of the weddings I shoot. I also require a signed contract, which spells out pretty much what is already written above. The remaining balance is due at the end of the wedding night.
FREE 2-Hour Engagement Portrait Session
I'm also offering a FREE two hour long, engagement portrait sessions with a signed contract. This will give us a chance to get to know one another. While we work, we'll talk about your wedding, and I can get a feel for what's going to be important to you as a couple. I'll travel to the location of your choosing on my dime, and will shoot for two hours. If you want to have a longer session we can do so for only $75/extra hour. There are no other costs to this. You'll get a small gallery online from which you can download the digital print files at no extra charge.
Check My Calendar to See if I'm Free
Please keep in mind that I try to only book two weddings/month. This is so I can offer a more personal service to my clients as well as have sufficient time to truly focus on processing their photos. If you see a month that is mostly blocked and you're truly stuck it never hurts to inquire. You never know; that one day you've picked, that I've already blocked, may just be for a "work on the house" weekend or something that I can move around.
My Calendar - Which May or May Not Always Be Up to Date
Would you like to make an inquiry about your wedding?
Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have about my wedding photography service. I'd love to tell your story. Also, if you do NOT hear back, please try to send another message. Sometimes folks mistype their email address and I can't reply.
Reviews - Click to Read
Unique as Snowflakes
No two weddings are the same. Just click on any of the images below to explore different weddings I've photographed. My goal is to chronicle your happiest day in a unique and honest way.