Answers to common questions
How to decide on a wedding photographer
Hello! This is a fundamentally very important question to ask. Things to take into consideration are:
Have you looked through the photographers online albums, or social media and seen enough of their wedding work to say, yes I will be happy with that and it is what I want.
Some people value a set budget, and have a budget in mind, others value the experience and the final work that is produced no matter the cost, and some want both. Ask yourself what is at the top of the list.
There are so many styles of work out there from all the amazing photographer artists, from simple photos in true colours with enhancements, all the way through to incredible use of natural lighting, lighting equipment and artistic work produced in post-production on amazing editing software. Again, ask yourself something like this, ''do I want true colours, boho look, moody photos, earthy tones, muted colours, high contrast photos, super styled, amazing location only photos''.
*Pinterest is a great resource to use and to find the words for the style you're envisaging and want to have from a photographer. Feel free to share your pin board with me @Jodiepopephotog https://pin.it/3oiNCl0
Will you feel comfortable with your photographer? Do they offer to chat in person, on the phone, or via video for as long as you need to answer all your questions. Do they seem to click you with? Definitely start with people's personal bio on the websites and social media, then meet them. I'm more than happy to meet in person!
Hunt down reviews on google, facebook, EasyWeddings, and any other place you can find for that photographer to see what others have felt of the experience.
Lastly, what is on offer from the photographer in the package you are looking at? Do they meet this need for you, or if you ask them will they do it for you?
How long do I actually need a photographer for?
Your photographer will definitely work with you if you've already got a timeline in mind (and a super organised type), otherwise having a meeting with your photographer (hopefully me!) is extremely important to discuss this, and I love doing the timeline! Here's what a full day will look like, so you can work out what's most important. A true full day is usually 10-12 hours (i.e 9am to 10pm)
1.5 hours, for Bride getting ready with bridesmaids. How many bridesmaids? How many ladies getting hair and makeup done. Allow 45 minutes to 1 hour per person. The bride gets ready last so her makeup and hair stays in tact the best throughout the day! The photographer can either come in for the last 1.5 hours for the bride and to capture shoes, jewellery, the dress hanging etc, or more and include champagne celebrations, snaps with your girls. Allow a minimum of 1.5 hours.
1 hour, the groom getting ready with the men. This is usually after all suits are on and the photographer captures the jackets going on, cuff buttons being put on, the lapel, pins, flowers in place and then portraits with the men and or family, plus travel there from bride getting ready.
30 minutes for the ceremony coverage. Sometimes a little longer depending on nerves, access to location, and just how late the bride is (haha)...
30 minutes for friends and family portraits at the ceremony location especially for guests who will be going home, and not attending the reception. This is the time for congratulations shots and the big group shots too!
1.5 hours for the bride and groom special location shoot, including the bridal party. Allow extra travel time here if the distance between ceremony location and reception location is more than half hour.
2.5 hours for the reception. Receptions last 3 hours on average, a photographer will be there from guest arrivals, and room and setup pictures through to the arrival of bride and groom, formalities such as cake cutting, speeches, and the first dance. Some couples want to include fun and festivities so therefore allow extra time, and definitely employ an MC or similar who will work with the photographer on the reception timeline! I've spend up to 5 hours at a Reception before filled with ritual, fun and formalities.
Now that you have a timeline guide, you can choose what's important for your photographer to cover, add up the time and get back to us!
Do we get all the raw photos as well as the edited ones?
Please view the original RAW photo files as being like the canvas on which a photographer then creates their art. It feels like a really naked experience sharing any RAW files, and every photographer is creating their own expression of art through their own work. Not all photos make it to the final cut for various reasons, and we only want you to have the best.
If a photographer were to hand over their RAWS, they could be edited in ways that aren't authentic to that photographer, and not be a true representation of their work, therefore 99% of photographers will decline any request for the RAW images, and only provide their edited files and work.
Is a wedding album worth it?
I certainly am swayed to the side of yes on this one. However, I personally love my own wedding album. It's something tangible in your hand, of many photos of your day for you to share with family and friends and to gush over.
It's more than the few top picks printed around your home, it's many of your best moments to reminisce over when you have the urge. Anniversary Days are great days to bring out that book and re-kindle those good feels as you go through all the moments that were captured. I highly recommend going an album, ahuh yep.
Is it normal to pay photographers in full before the actual wedding day?
It's definitely the norm for a photographer to expect the account to be paid in full by at least 14 days out from the wedding date. If all is going along well, and you're 95% of the way onto your big day after all the planning, budgeting, paying out money... If you've had lots of opportunity to reach out to your photographer, and you're absolutely certain they are the one, with no worries to be had then yes the account for the service is expected to be paid. xx
However, some photographers can be lenient and offer for the account to be 2/3rds paid before the wedding and will not part with the photos until the last 1/3 has been finalised. It's a service, there are products being brought and it's only fair and simple to have the account paid in full for the products you are purchasing. xx
Also, you certainly don't want to be worrying about money straight after the wedding, while you are on your honeymoon, and then coming back home to worry more about the accounts, and yet be painfully eager for your photos. xx
Why should you hire a professional photographer for your wedding?
A professional camera body is about $3,500 - $8,000 plus, then the lenses are $2k plus each... this equipment is far, far superior to a smart phone, or everyday compact flash camera all-in-one type. You are literally hiring the superior equipment, trained eye, human creative, experienced worker, who is working hard for you through your whole super important, once-of (hopefully) day!
Smart phones will never be as good as digital cameras and professional lenses. It comes down to sensor size and sensitivity. Seriously do go and take a photo in low-light, or a dimmed darkened room and you'll soon realise that trying to print out a quality photo from the said smart phone or budget camera is a disaster.
You are getting a time manager, intuitive moment captuerer, light bending extraordinaire! You are getting a fully insured professional who actually cares about your day, and is totally dedicated to YOU, for the whole time you have them! They back up your photo files, they have the skill, energy and eye to edit the photos the way you creatively desire them... there's tonnes of reasons to ditch the family member and their smart phone or compact budget camera... xx
Can you explain why wedding photography is so expensive?
Wedding photography is part of the luxury item market when you think about it. However it's an unforgettable monumentous product that has a significant place within your home! The cost of being a fulltime wedding photographer for a living, and that being your only gig is expensive, and life is expensive.
- The equipment is expensive, like $12K minimum or much more we carry around with us in camera bodies, lenses, flash, lighting; divide that by the amount of weddings one might do, over 2-3 years.
- Costs for purchasing the Adobe suit of products, subscriptions, enhancement tools and effects. All cost.
- Advertising on wedding websites, local services pages, social media, running a website, google ads; it can easily add up to $4-$8,000 a year to get noticed.
- Insurance of your work, and your equipment every month all year.
- The computer and screen/s that you edit on needs replacing every so often and is usually a very expensive graphic editing machine at $3k plus.
- There's storage of your photo files using secure hard drives and services for backups, and they need replacing every year to 2 years to be safe.
- Car expenses, insurance, fuel, wear and tear.
That's the overheads. Then there's the actual service:
@ We spend our time during the week editing all the beautiful photos, quoting, answering all questions and enquires.
@ Going on-location where your ceremony is for a 'recognisance' rehearsal.
@ We spend time to meet up with you, go out for a coffee and enjoy your company and the chat to get to know you, and you us!
@ 12 hour day of shooting time for a full day. 24-30 hours to edit a full day's worth of snaps (like 1000 of them yes), culling, correcting, fine tuning, working on the detail. That's like 36-40 hours of work split over time.
@Travel to get to your locations.
And in all this we have to make a living to sustain our lives, pay bills and match a common job, yet we do it because we love it that much more! xx
Cost of Running an affordable Wedding Photography business.
$5,000 Advertising (easyweddings, ABIA, Google Ads, Facebook, Instagram, SA Weddings and more).
$2,400 Camera Equipment over 3 years life of the equipment and to stay on-trend with technology.
$2,000 Camera lenses over 3 years life of the equipment and to stay on-trend with tech.
$500 lighting equipment, straps, cleaning gear, bag...
$2,000 Car expenses, fuel, rego, insurance.
*$44,000 Yearly wage (minimum wage) to shoot, edit through the week, advertise, manage and work the business.
$1,166 Computer over 3 years life of the computer.
$185 NAS secure network storage device % 2 years.
$200 (2 x) File backup Hard drives each year
= $60,000 a year total, divided by 26 weddings (hopefully) on a Saturday mostly, sometimes during the week; over a year but during peak times September to April (8 months). Any extra work is a blessing!
= $2,295 a full day wedding.
and I am affordable xo.