You only take 10 weddings a year! What’s that about?
I have a busy studio and do a lot of commercial and portrait sessions. A wedding is a lot more than just one days work between the consultations, pre-wedding shoot, processing of these images, a location scout if I don’t know your venue, the day itself, loading up and processing all the wedding day files, preparing them for you to view and choose from, retouching those you choose, designing your album and any other bits and pieces you’d like to get, creating review webpages and checking every detail for production. I really enjoy the weddings I do but 10 is the number I find I can commit to, be super enthusiastic about, do to the standard I am happy with and balance with the rest of my business.
Whats your “style”?
I come from a fashion background and specialise in making people look their best. I love details, colour, touching moments, funny kids and beautiful light. I like to laugh and I want you to be relaxed and enjoy your day and have pictures that remind you of how you felt during the day, about each other and all the little things that made the day special. I’ll do photojournalistic type images throughout your wedding to capture the essence of the day and some directed images for a few “picture perfect” shots for you. I tend to keep the style of most shots classic and stay away from trend style shooting so that in twenty years you won’t feel the same way about your wedding album as you probably do your school yearbooks.
What wedding experience do you have?
I’ve shot tonnes of weddings for happy couples and I’ve worked for World Bride Magazine doing editorial shooting of weddings and bridal models. I’ve had weddings featured in magazines and online and covered all types of occasions from Humanistic, Catholic, Church of England, Wiccan, a Wed-Fest, a few themed weddings and a wedding at Burning Man festival in the Nevada desert. I’ve done weddings in castles, on beaches, in the civil office, in fields, forests, hotels and I’ll go to the Himalayas if you’d like. I’ve done lots of different events and love going to new places. I’ve learned a lot about all aspects of weddings and have some tips you may find useful here.
Do you work with an assistant?
From time to time I do, though I often work alone. If it’s a big wedding and I need help with carrying gear, organising people or want to use complex lighting I’ll draft in an assistant.
What equipment do you use?
I use Canon cameras with different lenses on them so I can switch between them quickly and have a back up. Current cameras are 1DS Mk III, 5D Mk III & 5D Mk II. My go-to wedding lenses are all Canon L series- 14mm, 24-70mm, 70-200mm. Hot shoe flashes- Canon 600EX RT. I also have a hot shoe mic for video, filters, wireless transmitters, video lights, reflectors and anything else that I could possibly need to get the best shots of your wedding.
What do you cover on the day?
I cover the entire day from the bride’s house to the reception and dancing. Your package can include coverage until you sit for your meal or after your first dance. It’s usually a 6 or 8 hour package. If you have a different schedule of events and plan a longer or shorter day I can put together a bespoke package for you. If you want me to stay longer than planned I can do so at an hourly rate.
Do you shoot “regular”photos?
Of course I love to do some artistic shots and the pictures on my site are my favourite images from weddings I have covered. I try and show images that give a sense of my style but there are thousands of images that are not on my website as it would be just too much to have all my shots on there. There are lots of “regular” moments shot at every wedding as well as the likes of ones where I decided it might be great if I got on a chair upside down and took a picture of all the dancing feet. There will always be the shots of the bride and bridesmaids getting ready, arriving at the church, walking down the isle, handing over from Dad to your groom, the first look, lighting the candles, saying your vows, exchanging rings . . .etc. So yes, I do take “regular” photos too. To see collections of images from single weddings, engagement shoots and a few other bits and pieces have a look here.
Will you retouch our images?
Yes. All images will have white balance, cropping, toning, dynamic range adjustments or anything else that would have been traditionally done in the dark room with film. If the bride or groom has a spot or blemish they are conscious of these will be removed as standard. If someone is wearing a very bright dress and stealing your limelight I’ll tone down the dress colour if I think it’s distracting. I retouch images to the standard I’d be happy with myself and if there’s anything else you want done you can request it. If it’s a time consuming edit it will be at additional cost, if not I’ll be happy to oblige. At your viewing/ordering session I discuss these fine detail retouches with you and take note of any requests.
What Software do you use to Process images?
I mainly use adobe lightroom and photoshop.
Do You Travel?
I love to travel. If it’s a great distance I may need a basic travel fee for accommodation, fuel, flights etc. The included engagement shoot is in the Sligo area unless otherwise agreed.
My Uncle/ friend/ sister/cat is really into photography and will be taking photos too, will that be a problem?
No and Sometimes. I will be doing my best to capture the best images I can of you on your special day, over eager guests can hold things up and get in the way for example:
Standing out into the isle as you are walking down it and blocking my shots in an attempt to get a picture to upload to Facebook before you even leave the church- It takes away from the special moments you’ll reflect on with your dad and when your husband sees you for the first time if there’s a bright green bum infront of you!
Standing beside me while I take group photos and encouraging those they know to look at their camera instead of mine- Instead of having everyone focused on my camera for your pictures to go in your album, some people will be looking at the other camera and neither of us will have a great shot.
Interrupting the shots we are doing and asking people to move, jump in, etc- We will have planned what images you want and how much time we have to create them, their input will slow down the process and mean you may not get all the shots you want. I’ll be the bad cop and tell them we are working to a plan unless you want what they are suggesting.
If I’ve been hired it’s because I have years of experience, qualifications and superior equipment, if someone is preventing me from doing the best job I can for you, I’ll ask them to stop so I can give you my all. If they are being respectful and not holding up the show then I’m happy for them to get lots of great alternative shots for you.
How do we know if you are the right photographer for us?
I tend to get many wedding clients where one of or both the bride and groom have an interest in photography, design or a creative backgrounds. It doesn’t matter to me what you do for a living; If your images are an important part of your wedding and you are willing to try a few creative images along with the reportage style than we might just be an ideal fit. I try and leave every wedding feeling like I have got a few wow images for my clients and captured the essence of their day, that we enjoyed each others company, their photo time was a pleasant relaxed experience and that I went the extra mile to make it the best day it could be for them. It’s a very personal and special day, often with nerves jangling and high expectations and it’s important that you are comfortable with your photographer because they’ll be with you all day. Unexpected things happen on important days- I’ve helped sew a wedding dress together that was in seven pieces on the morning of the wedding, re-done hair, helped rehearse speeches, drafted in a replacement veil at the last minute for one that was forgotten and fixed countless fascinators & flowers onto lapels. I’m cool in a crises and think on my feet. I’m constantly up-skilling; going to seminars, master classes, entering competitions to challenge myself, experimenting with creative shoots, reading books, blogs, lighting, posing, creating and shooting images.
I like to be organised and make a list of special locations, important people and groups I’d like to photograph for you on the day. If it doesn’t go exactly as planned, I’ll adapt to the best possible back up plan. The worst thing that’s ever happened to me at a wedding was when I fell in a swimming pool, but that was ok- It was night time, I’d got loads of great shots throughout the day and after dinner the hotel lit huge, amazing torches around the pool and bridges crossing it & a beautiful full moon was peeping out between the clouds. I couldn’t resist. It was magical and I headed out to just grab a few more extra shots with the couple. I saw a potentially spectacular shot but I couldn’t quite get into the right spot so I kicked off my shoes and stepped out onto a wide, shallow ledge in the pool. I edged closer to the perfect spot. . and someone called my name. . I turned, I lost my balance and plummeted into the deep end of the pool with all my camera gear attached. They later told me I was like the Statue of Liberty emerging since I was holding a camera high to get it out of the water as fast as possible. It was a hilarious disaster – it was hilarious and not tragic because I whipped those memory cards out of the cameras before any water got to them and I’d been backing up all my other cards all day on an external card reader. I didn’t loose any images. I was insured and (although it was a pain to deal with replacing all my damaged gear) the wedding partied on & we have laughed about it together many times since. (See what I did there!?. . It’s like that interview question where you’re asked if you’ve ever had a bad situation and how you’ve handled it. I thought you might like to know!)
I like to create artistic images and I try very hard to be the best I can be at the profession I love. I like to be prepared and I’m not afraid of hard work and mucking in. If that sounds good to you then maybe we would be just right together!
What do I need to do now?
Firstly, let’s check if your date is free. Here’s my contact info. I can answer any questions you have on the phone, via email or in person. If you’d like to see some full wedding albums you can make an appointment to come into the studio. You’ll get a contract and put a deposit down for your date and then we’ll start planning your pre-wedding shoot.