Perceived Wedding Photography Problems & Solutions
Q. IS WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY ANYTHING TO BE WORRIED ABOUT?
A: Surprisingly I get asked this question a lot. The answer is no, not at all.
Your wedding is probably the first time you’ve had cause to hire a photographer. A good photographer should be relaxed, professional and have the ability to put you at ease.
I like to give advice and be on hand before, during and after the day to help answer any queries and reassure the couple wherever needed.
Q. WE’RE GETTING MARRIED BUT DON’T LIKE HAVING OUR PHOTO TAKEN. IS THIS A PROBLEM?
A: Absolutely not… I hear this from couples all the time, often from couples who are having a small wedding ceremony.
Many of my weddings are informal and low-key with only a few family and friends and they are some of the loveliest events.
If you feel comfortable with your chosen photographer then half the battle is won. They should work in a relaxed and friendly manner and be happy to work around you and your needs. Your photographer should offer help, advice and reassurance to help put you at ease.
Having a stranger turn up to photograph the most intimate and special day of your lives can seem a little odd, but once, you’re there with your families, you’ll soon forget about this.
So many times brides’ tell me that they almost forgot I was there and were amazed by the amount of moments I ended up capturing.
Q. WE REALLY DON’T PHOTOGRAPH WELL. DOES THE FACT THAT WE’RE NOT PHOTOGENIC MATTER?
A: This is another common worry for couples.
Your photographer will shoot a lot during the day and this will give them options in the edit. They will capture many natural moments of you and you will be pleasantly surprised by how good they look (hopefully!!!).
During any posed shots, it’s my job to get the best from you in as unobtrusive a way as possible, resulting in portraits that you’ll be proud to show off to your family and friends.
Q: THERE ARE MANY WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS OUT THERE. HOW DO WE FIND AND BOOK THE ONE THAT’S RIGHT FOR US?
Research, research, research…
Google wedding photographers that have worked in your chosen venue or in your town. Look at their style and how they work with poor light.
Does it resonate with you?
Can you see yourselves in their images?
Read their reviews and note what other couples have valued about their service.
Make a short-list and contact them. See how quickly and professionally they respond. Then arrange a phone call or meeting to discuss your options.
Please read my: ‘Ultimate Guide to Choosing and Using Your Wedding Photographer‘ (link below) which is full of advice on how your wedding day might run and contains tips and ideas you might not have thought of regarding the wedding photography booking process.
Read More in My>> Guide to Booking Your Wedding Photographer
Making Contact With & Meeting Your Potential Wedding Photographer
Q. WE LIKE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY AND WOULD LIKE TO FIND OUT MORE… SO WHAT DO WE DO NOW?
Wedding photographers do get booked early, especially Saturdays over the summer, so the sooner you contact me, the more likely I am to be free.
Q. OUR WEDDING IS OUTSIDE THE CAERPHILLY/SOUTH WALES AREA. WHICH AREAS DO YOU COVER?
A: I live in Caerphilly and have great access to weddings based in Cardiff & South Wales and Bristol.
I love to cover London (at least 50% of my weddings are located there) and the south-east too but I will consider any area so get in touch to discuss.
Q. WHEN AND WHERE ARE YOU AVAILABLE TO MEET TO DISCUSS BOOKING YOU AS OUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER?
A: Meeting couples prior to booking is a great way to find out if we are a good match as well as an opportunity to give you plenty of wedding related tips and advice.
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, but can travel into Cardiff to meet if that suits you better. I am also frequently in London and Bristol so do ask about meeting there.
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. This suits couples who live further away.
Q. DO WE BOTH NEED TO BE AT OUR FIRST WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY 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. Generally the bride has most input, but obviously the Groom’s opinion is important too.
During this meeting I will listen to your ideas and vision for your day. I’ll also take you through my wedding portfolio book to give you a good 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’s a good selection of wedding images throughout my website. My website features numerous images from multiple weddings so do have a good look round.
I don’t think there’s much value in seeing a complete wedding as each one is different and personal to the couple they are of.
However, if you’d still like to see a full wedding photography collection (i.e. all the images as supplied to a couple), then I can bring my laptop to our meeting so that you can view them.
Q. IF WE CHOOSE YOU AS OUR WEDDING 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 would enable 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.
The Wedding Photography Booking Process
Q. WHEN SHOULD WE BOOK OUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER?
A: As soon as you have your wedding date and find a photographer that you are happy with. The best photographers are booked sometimes years in advance, so the sooner that you book with them, the better to avoid disappointment.
However, the shortest notice wedding that I have photographed gave me 2 days notice. If you’re having an off-season wedding or mid-week wedding, it shouldn’t be too much trouble to find someone at late notice. Read my ‘Guide on Last-Minute Weddings‘.
Q. WHEN AND HOW IS OUR WEDDING BOOKING CONFIRMED?
A: There is no pressure from me after our meeting or phone call to book me as your wedding photographer. I understand that you may be seeing other wedding photographers and will need time to discuss your decision. I don’t put a 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. Booking your wedding day photography is confirmed on return of the signed contract and receipt of a 20% deposit. Easy!
Q. WHY DO WE NEED TO SIGN A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY CONTRACT?
A: The photography contract (I prefer the word ‘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. 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 or approved the images as applicable.
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 edited files until the account is settled.
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!
Q. WE WANT TO BOOK YOU BUT ONLY NEED YOU FOR A COUPLE OF HOURS. ARE YOU FLEXIBLE WITH THIS?
A: Yes! If you want less hours, for instance ceremony and early reception only, I can certainly accommodate.
As well as providing full-day wedding photographer packages, I can cater for short day weddings.
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.
Read More>> Short Day Wedding Photography
On Your Wedding Day
Q. HOW MANY PHOTOS DO YOU TAKE & SUPPLY OF THE DAY?
A. 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 sub-standard (even pro-photographers take some duds!).
Obviously, I do not supply these files as they would add nothing to the overall enjoyment of your wedding photography.
As a rule of thumb, a rough estimate is that I supply around 100 photos for every hour that I’m present. This can be more or less depending on what you have going on.
Q. ARE YOU GENERALLY ABLE TO PHOTOGRAPH OUR WEDDING VOWS AND CEREMONY?
A: The short answer is YES!! It’s the key part of the day and it’s very important to have it documented.
But do check with the venue and/or registrars about their photography policy.
Read More in My>> Guide to Wedding Ceremony Photography
Q. WE’D LIKE OUR PHOTOGRAPHER TO SHOOT SOME POSED GROUP SHOTS TOO. DO YOU DO THESE?
A: Yes I do. I think most couples expect these – even if only to please the in-laws!
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.
Read More in My>> Guide to Posed Wedding Photography
Q. WE WOULD LIKE SOME FORMAL PORTRAITS OF US? DO YOU PHOTOGRAPH THOSE?
A: Of course and the best time for these is either at the ceremony venue or 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.
Most locations provide a wealth of opportunity for pleasing backdrops to your ‘posed’ photographs.
I do minimal posing as I want to capture the essence of you – talking, laughing, playing, dancing, kissing – whatever!
Read More in My>> Guide to Travel Between Wedding Venues
After Your Day: Photo Editing & Presentation
Q. HOW LONG AFTER THE WEDDING CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE OUR EDITED IMAGES?
A: Depending on my workload I will start work on your photographs as soon as possible. I usually complete wedding edits within three weeks but often within a week.
In the busy summer months this may be slightly longer but you will be kept up to date with progress.
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 if you’ve ordered one.
The book is 100 pages and will contain an unlimited amount of images arranged 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 upload it to Loxley Colour for processing.
Following this, it should take less than a week to arrive. I will have Loxley dispatch the book(s) directly to your address to save time.
My Photographic Service & Style
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. ARE YOU A COLOUR OR A BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHER?
A: 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.
I think that some scenes look better in colour, whilst for others colour is a distraction so suit black and white better.
But if you do have a preference, let me know beforehand and I will bear this in mind in your photography’s post-production. Look at my Gallery for examples of my style.
Q. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHIC STYLE?
A: The photograph above is a great example of my documentary style.
I work photographing unobtrusively from the sidelines, capturing unrehearsed, natural moments that truly document events as they unfold. This is the reportage or photojournalistic 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!
Have a good look through my site to see if my photographic style resonates with you…
Then get in touch…
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 photographic equipment on the market today: very important for a wedding photographer! My main camera is a Nikon top model, 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 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.