Frequently Asked Questions
There are a ton of wedding photographers. What are the main differences? Yes, the market is pretty saturated with wedding photographers. Each photographer is VERY different. We all have different styles, priorities, personalities, levels of professionalism, business practices, specialties, and different levels of camera knowledge/technical “know how”. Knowing how to take a well exposed image is just half the battle. Wedding photographers often end up doing much more than taking pictures…like organizing the wedding day, defusing “bombs” (when something has gone wrong), or wrangling family members during the family pictures. You’ll end up getting up-close and personal with your wedding photographer (whether you mean to or not). So, once you know you like someone’s style and you’re confident in their ability to produce well exposed images (and you know they are available on your wedding day), ask yourself a few questions: Do you like their personality? Do you trust them? Do they make you feel comfortable (since that plays a big part in taking pictures of someone)? Do they communicate well (communication is so, so important)? These questions should help you narrow down the pool of photographers to help you find the one that’s perfect for you!
I keep seeing lots of different photography styles; What is your photography ‘style’? I strive for a very clean, crisp, and ‘real’ look when photographing and editing. My goal is to produce images that will still look great in 5, 10 or even 50 years from now (so no heavy filters or techniques that might date your images). To me, if you need a gimmick to make an image look ‘artistic’ than you probably didn’t do a very good job when you were taking the image (in the lighting and composition department). All in all, I want to make well exposed images and focus on interacting with my clients to draw out emotion and real moments from them. This allows me to produce a more authentic final image, which is the ultimate goal!
We are having a hard time deciding on what time to do our ceremony. We want the lighting to be perfect! Can you help us decide? Of course! I LOVE when clients ask this question! There are many factors that go into deciding the perfect ceremony time. Such as time of year, whether the ceremony is inside or outside, if it is outside-will it be in direct sunlight, will you be doing a “first look”, how long will the ceremony be, etc. I typically recommend having an outdoor ceremony start one hour before sunset IF you are doing a ‘first look’ and the ceremony is around 30 minutes long. Doing so allows you to start the ceremony a few minutes late (for those not-so- punctual guests) and still gives time afterward for beautiful sunset/golden hour pictures of the bride & groom. If you would like more details about setting the perfect ceremony time, please email me and we can talk pros and cons!
What if my wedding reception has bad lighting? Will the images look bad? The truth is, most reception areas have less-than- perfect lighting. But no, that does not mean you will have bad reception images. I always bring additional lighting to my weddings in case we run into a low light situation. If you are worried about your reception lighting, feel free to email me and I will explain more about the system I use and send you some examples.
How far in advance do people typically book their wedding photographer? Just as soon as you have a date set in stone, start talking to photographers! You want to be sure you are able to book the photographer that is perfect for you. The longer you wait, the more likely they will be booked. Typically, people book their photographer 8-18 months in advanced (but there is no such thing as too early, so start looking!)
Can I meet you before I decide if I want to book you for our wedding? Absolutely! I LOVE meeting to talk about wedding details, look at sample work, go over a typical wedding day timeline, and show you an album. I think you will be surprised at how much I can help with the planning part of your wedding day!
Do you have wedding packages? Yes, we have 3 pre-made packages that can be customized to fit your big day.
Do your packages include the edited digital images? Yes, all 3 packages come with (edited) digital images from your wedding day! To me, the edited images are one of the most important parts of the wedding photography experience.
Does your camera have two memory slots (for backing up files)? Yes, both of my cameras have two memory slots (each) so as I am shooting, the files are being saved on two different cards (so if for some reason one becomes corrupt, I would always have a 2nd set of your images). Think of it as insurance, its something you never intend on using but if something happen it’s nice to know you are covered. Not every camera has this capability so this is an important question to ask photographers. Every so often, I hear unfortunate stories of cards corrupting and the photographer losing all of their images. This is absolutely heart breaking to me so I take every possible action to avoid this from ever happening.
How do I book you for my wedding? In order to book us, all we need is the contract signed and the retainer (which is deducted from the total you owe for the package you choose). The retainer fee is $1000 no matter which package you choose.
Do we have to know what package we want before we book you? No, you do not. The retainer is the same for all packages and we never book anything else on the wedding day. So, you have plenty of time to decide which package is right for you!
Do you recommend that we do a ‘First Look’ on our wedding day? Yes, I do suggest doing a first look, but they are not mandatory. First looks are actually more intimate and treasured since you’re sharing that special time with just each other. They also help make the most of your hourly coverage while allowing you both (the happy couple) to enjoy more of your reception since most of the pictures are done before the ceremony. Overall, it makes the whole day run smoother! Also, here’s a recent blog post about first looks.
Do you offer wedding albums? Yes, we offer high quality, amazing, custom-designed wedding albums! They are the perfect memento of your special day! I also bring an example album to consults (contact me to setup a meeting time)!
Do you do boudoir sessions? YES!! Boudoir sessions are super fun (and a great gift for your partner). Most commonly, the final product (usually an album) is given on the wedding day as a gift! This always goes over amazingly (you should see their reaction!!). Or if that timeframe doesn’t work for you, they make a great gift for an anniversary or Valentines Day!
Do you offer an online gallery so our friends and family can see our wedding images? Yes, all of our packages come with an online gallery for friends and family to download all their favorite images.
Do you use a 2nd shooter for your weddings? Yes, for packages that include a 2nd shooter. However, in my opinion, not every wedding needs two professional photographers. Usually, one photographer who has lots of experience and is detailed oriented is plenty of coverage (especially if having one photographer means there’s room in the budget for more wedding coverage time).
Do you recommend we do an engagement session? Yes! Doing an engagement session gives us an opportunity to get to know each other a little better. It also helps you guys by making you more familiar with the picture-taking process and you will know what to expect on the wedding day. In some ways, it’s sort of like a rehearsal without the fancy attire (you will get to see which poses you like best of you and your fiancè)! Really, everything about it is a good idea!
Do you recommend that I have my hair and makeup done professionally? I love it when girls go all out for sessions but it is not mandatory. I want you to feel your best and sometimes professional hair and makeup helps boost your confidence (and it looks great in pictures). If you are having trouble finding the perfect hair and/or makeup professional, we can recommend some very talented experts!
How long after the engagement session will we receive our digital files? Editing usually takes about 2-3 weeks for engagement sessions. After that, if you have prepaid for the digital files (or if the engagement session comes in your wedding package), I will send the files immediately after they are edited.
What do you recommend we wear to the engagement session? If you are having trouble deciding on things to wear, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can send you examples of things that photograph well; or visit this post: What to wear
When do we schedule our engagement session & how many outfits do you recommend we bring? For engagement sessions, I recommend doing 2 outfits (and maybe bring a 3rd as a backup- just incase). It looks best if the outfits vary in color and/or styles! We schedule engagement sessions two hours before sunset (although this might change depending on your location choice- some locations are best at specific times of the day- and any travel time we have to factor in).
Do you offer save-the-dates or ‘thank you’ cards? Yes, we design custom double-sided cards in a variety of sizes and styles. Send us an email if you are interested in seeing examples (email@example.com).
Do you accept payments for your wedding packages? Yes, we do accept payments on wedding packages. We can come up with a payment schedule/plan that works best for you!
What forms of payment do you accept for wedding payments? We accept credit cards, checks, and cash. Although, there is a 3% charge for all credit cards (due to this, checks or cash are preferred).
What happens if we go over the contracted amount of time? No problem, we can stay longer if you decide you want us to, we would just invoice you later for the added time.
*This includes: Family Sessions, Senior Sessions, Love/Couple Sessions (not engagements), Extended Family Sessions.
How do we book you for a portrait session? Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know the type of session you are interested in booking and when you would like to have the session. After that, I will let you know if I am available or I will send you my available days. Once we have the details worked out, I will either send you an invoice you can pay online or you can choose to mail a check. The session is not booked until the session fee is paid in full.
What is a session fee? A session fee is a predetermined amount paid to the photographer for the following: appointment time reservation, one hour photoshoot, up to 2 outfits, up to 2 locations (or as many as time permits), professional directing from photographer, and photo editing for around 75 images.
What forms of payment do you accept? We accept credit cards, checks, and cash.
What do you recommend we wear for the session? If you are having trouble deciding on things to wear, please email me at email@example.com and I can send you examples of things that photograph well!
How many outfits do you recommend we bring? For Senior sessions I recommend 2 outfits (this will give us lots of variety).For sessions that involve small children, it’s usually best to stick to 1 outfit.
Is there anything extra we should bring to the session? For sessions that involve small children, it’s usually a good idea to bring a small snack in case they get hungry (like Cheerios or something similar, but be sure to avoid anything messy)—snacks may help prevent a meltdown! Also, feel free to bring a few of their toys or anything that makes noises that could help get their attention. Before you get to the session, think about what treat you may want to offer them (sucker, ice cream, new toy, etc.) after the session if they cooperate (bribery can be a last resort, but tends to work wonders.)
What happens if it rains on the day we are suppose to have our session? If it rains I will call you and discuss rescheduling our session.
How long does the session last? Typical portrait sessions last one hour.
How long do we wait until we can see the images? Most portrait sessions take 2 weeks for editing (sometimes less).
How many images can I expect in my gallery? Most portrait sessions have 50-75 edited images.
Can I purchase the digital files from my session? Yes, the digital files can be purchased.
Do you offer prints? Yes, I offer a variety of print sizes as well as canvases, mounted prints, and albums. Please email me if you are interested in ordering a print product.
How do I place my order? You can email your order to firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you photograph events other than weddings? Yes, I photograph all types of events such as birthday parties, anniversary parties, social events, and other special occasions!