Q. WE LIKE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY AND WOULD LIKE TO FIND OUT MORE… SO WHAT DO WE DO NOW?
A: Simply ring or text me on 07947 613070, email me or fill out the form on my Contact Me page now. Weddings do get booked early, especially Saturdays over the summer, so the sooner you contact me, the more likely I am to be free. When you contact me I will also send you my eBook ‘Capturing the Moment: Weddings & Photography‘ which is full of advice on how your wedding day might run and contains tips and ideas you might not have thought of regarding your wedding photography.
Q. WHEN AND WHERE ARE YOU AVAILABLE TO MEET TO DISCUSS OUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY?
A: I love to meet couples that are interested in booking me as their wedding photographer. I think this a great way to find out if I am suitable. I’m very flexible and understand that people have busy lives, therefore am quite happy to work around that to help make life easier for you. I don’t mind meeting early evening or at weekends if that helps. I’m based in Caerphilly, near Cardiff but am prepared to travel into Cardiff to meet you. I prefer to provisionally book a time and then confirm it near the day. This is in case any thing last-minute crops up for either of us. I have recently also started having SKYPE video calls or a simple phone call with couples to make it easier to find a mutually convenient time.
Q. DO WE BOTH NEED TO BE AT OUR FIRST MEETING?
A: No, but it helps for both of you to be there so we can all discuss what you’re looking for in your wedding photographer. During this meeting I will listen to your ideas and dreams for your day. I’ll also take you through my portfolio book to give you a better idea of what I do and how I will work with you to document your wedding beautifully and with attention to detail.
Q. CAN WE SEE IMAGES OF A COMPLETE WEDDING?
A: There is a good selection of wedding images throughout my website. My wedding slideshows feature a selection of images from each part of the day. However, if you’d still like to see a full wedding (i.e. all the images as supplied to a couple), then I can bring my laptop to our initial meeting so that you can view them.
Q. IF WE CHOOSE YOU AS OUR PHOTOGRAPHER, CAN WE MEET AGAIN IN THE RUN UP TO THE WEDDING?
A: Yes, definitely if you’d like to. Often it’s useful to meet at the wedding ceremony or reception venue. This enables us to have a walk through and for me to asses how I’m going to work on the day and where to be in order to take the best images. Meeting may be more difficult to arrange if you live outside the Cardiff and South Wales area.
Q. WHEN AND HOW IS OUR WEDDING CONFIRMED?
A: There is no pressure from me after our meeting on phone call to book me as your wedding photographer. I understand that you may be seeing other photographers and will need time to discuss your decision. There is no time limit on this as far as I’m concerned and I’ll keep the date pencilled in my diary until I hear back from you. I’ll let you know if I have another inquiry for that day in the meantime. If you decide that you want me to document your wedding day, I will prepare your paperwork. Your wedding day photography will be booked in on return of the signed contract and receipt of a 20% deposit. Easy!
Q. WHY DO WE NEED TO SIGN A CONTRACT? WHAT’S IN IT?
A: The wedding photography contract (I prefer agreement) is there to protect all parties. It covers items such as Copyright, Model Releases, Guest Photography and Final Delivery. All professional wedding photographers will require you to sign a contract; be wary if they do not.
Q. ARE YOU A COLOUR OR A BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHER?
A: I photograph all my wedding photography in RAW format. With JPEG you lose a lot of detail in the highlights and shadows, but RAW is like having a digital negative. This gives me a lot more control. I have the flexibility to choose what style would suit which photograph in the final edit. I love black and white photography. It seems much more timeless than colour and doesn’t tend to date as much. However, most couples like to see a mixture in their album so I edit in a mixture of vibrant colour images and atmospheric black and white. Often a lot of time and money has been spent choosing wedding colour schemes and finishes, and it is very important for me to record this. However, if you do have a preference, let me know beforehand and I will bear this in mind in your photography’s post-production.
Q. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHIC STYLE?
A: I work photographing unobtrusively from the sidelines, capturing un-rehearsed, natural moments that truly document events as they unfold. This is the reportage or photo journalistic style that has become popular since the rise of the digital camera. So my photographic style? Natural black and whites and bright and vibrant colour!
Q. WE’D LIKE OUR PHOTOGRAPHER TO SHOOT SOME POSED GROUP SHOTS TOO. DO YOU DO THESE?
A: Yes I do. I think these are expected by most couples. However I prefer to keep these to about ten minutes or so, so as not to disrupt the natural flow of the day – normally straight after the ceremony. It is helpful if you provide a list of required posed shots prior to your wedding and there is a section in my questionnaire for you to fill these in. I am also open to guests approaching me to take posed shots throughout the day as long as it doesn’t interrupt a key moment. One of the most important posed group shots is one of everybody. This is probably the only time ever that all of these people will come together on the same day, so I feel that this shot is definitely worth taking.
Q. WE WOULD LIKE SOME FORMAL PORTRAITS OF US? DO YOU PHOTOGRAPH THOSE?
A: Of course and the best time for these is whilst travelling between wedding venues. I often travel with the bride and groom from the ceremony to reception venue to give us the opportunity to stop off somewhere and spend twenty minutes or so taking images just of you both. I do minimal posing as I want to capture the essence of you – talking, laughing, playing – whatever!
Q. ARE YOU GENERALLY ABLE TO PHOTOGRAPH OUR WEDDING VOWS AND CEREMONY?
A: This is a very important question and the answer will always lie with your wedding official (vicar, registrar etc.). Every venue/official will have their own rules with some official’s allowing me to photograph from just one position (or not at all) whilst others are more flexible. I was recently at a wedding where on arrival the officiant made it quite clear that photography was unwelcome at any part of the ceremony. The bride and groom had not been made aware of this beforehand. Always discuss any house photography rules with your official contact and let them know how important it is for you to have a good document of your ceremony. My own preference is to be able to move discretely during the service to capture various angles and a variety of shots. As a matter of courtesy, I always try to introduce myself to your presiding official when I arrive at the venue to reassure him or her that I will remain unobtrusive. These problems seem to be more prevalent with the clergy than registrars I have found.
Q. HOW LONG DO WE HAVE YOU FOR ON THE DAY?
A: That is entirely up to you. When you contact me I will find out all about your day and provide you with a quote based on the information you give me and hours required. A full day is considered to be eight hours and my packages include this. If you find you need more photography coverage on the day, I can provide further hours – I’m very flexible with this.
Q. WE WANT TO BOOK YOU BUT ONLY NEED YOU FOR A FEW HOURS? ARE YOU FLEXIBLE WITH THIS
A: Yes! If you want less hours, for instance ceremony and early reception only, I can certainly accomodate. See my short day weddings page for more info. My wedding photography service is completely bespoke and it’s important to me that you get appropriate service. I probably won’t be available for less than six hours in the summer months due to a higher demand in the wedding season but it’s always worth checking. For off-season and mid-week weddings I will be able to work something out with you. Do get in touch as I may be able to accommodate, particularly for last minute weddings.
Q. WHAT IS YOUR USP (UNIQUE SELLING POINT)?
A: My USP is… well, me! If you like my photography and, equally important, me as a person and can see me complimenting your day, then we’re most of the way there. I try to be as flexible as I can be and will help as much as possible to give advice and help your day run smoothly. I have attended many weddings, so if you need the benefit of my experience, I am always a phone call or email away. Having said this, I actively encourage anyone to seek advice of several wedding photographers to get a balanced view.
Q. OUR WEDDING IS OUTSIDE THE CARDIFF AREA. WHICH AREAS DO YOU COVER?
A: I am Caerphilly based, so have great access to Cardiff and South Wales. I will consider any area so get in touch to discuss. Further away than Bristol will incur travel expenses. Also if I have to stay overnight in accommodation, this will be charged as an expense. All expenses and potential expenses will be made quite clear to you at the time of booking if known. If any others crop up, I will communicate these to you straight away.
Q. HAVING PAID OUR DEPOSIT, WHEN IS THE REMAINDER OF YOUR FEE DUE?
A: I would expect to have the balance settled when you have viewed the slide show and approved the images. Obviously this will be after your wedding. Some couples find this helpful and others prefer to pay the full amount upfront. It’s entirely up to you but I will not order any photo books or supply the files until the account is paid in full. Most photographers insist on the balance settling at least a month in advance – I like to be as flexible as possible as it’s the small things that help make your wedding day special (another USP)!
Q. HOW LONG AFTER THE WEDDING CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE ANY IMAGES? WILL WE GET TO SEE ALL THE IMAGES YOU TOOK?
A: Depending on my workload I will start work on your photographs as soon as possible. The contract gives me eight weeks to complete the edit but up until now have completed weddings far sooner than this, usually within a month. As soon as I finish, I will design the slide show of the best 200 or so images and send the disc for you to enjoy. I supply a silver heart shaped USB stick containing all your edited files with my full day packages. This will be provided with the photo book if applicable. For short day weddings, your images will be uploaded for you to download.
I take many photographs during a wedding day, some of which are duplicates for safety. This is so I can edit out any photos where someone has blinked or walked across frame or I deem them to be not very flattering. Obviously, I do not supply these files as they would add nothing to the overall enjoyment of your wedding photography.
Q. AND HOW LONG WILL OUR PHOTO BOOK TAKE? DO WE HAVE ANY SAY IN ITS DESIGN?
A: After editing your images, I will start on your photo book. The book is 100 pages and will contain an unlimited amount of images in a way that I think suits. Sometimes this may run over 100 pages but further pages may be bought or we can pare it back down to the 100. When I have finished, I will email you a preview for you to go through. If there are changes, you can email me back with clear instructions as to what to change. Once you have cleared the book for printing, I will dispatch it to Loxley Colour for processing. Following this, it should take less than a week to arrive. I will have Loxley despatch the book(s) directly to you to save time.
Q. WHAT PHOTOGRAPHIC EQUIPMENT DO YOU USE?
A: OK, so for the geeky part (well, it had to happen!):
I use some of the best equipment on the market today. My main camera is Nikon’s flagship camera, the D4 which I chose mainly for its ability to focus fast and capture photographs in low light situations without need for a flash or other lighting. This is great for photographers covering wedding receptions and other evening events. I also use four lenses. My newest lens is a 35mm f/1.4 prime for sharp wide shots in low light. My zoom is the Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 with vibration reduction II technology. This again helps reportage wedding photographers work in low light conditions. Then there’s my wide-angle 16-35mm to capture the true atmosphere of your day. Finally is my Nikon 50mm f/1.4 prime lens – a must for any wedding photographer as it gives great bokeh (professional term for a blurry background) and a narrow depth of field.
Although I have now relocated to Caerphilly near Cardiff, I am still taking wedding photography bookings in London and Bristol.
I cover all of South Wales including Swansea, Newport, Neath, Pontypridd, Cwmbran, Abergavenny and Penarth.
As well as all those lovely small towns & villages in-between!