Here are a bunch of Frequently Asked Questions about my services as a wedding photographer below which may help you find an answer you’re looking for. I don’t mind talking on the phone either, so if you’ve got a question you’d like answered don’t hesitate to call me at 757.368.7800 (during normal business hours on the East coast M-F would be best for me!)
1. What kind of cameras do you use?
A: I carry 2 Nikon D700 (full frame), 1 Nikon D610 (which shoots also shoots video) and 1 Nikon D300S (which also shoots video), to each event I shoot. Each camera has a specific primary lens for a specific purpose (and they’re all professional quality Nikon lenses) I also carry 4 Nikon speed lights, 5 different continuous light sources, and 2 studio strobes to each wedding I shoot. Lets not forget all the stands, light modifiers and various geeky photographer doo dads I carry as well. It all fits in my Volkswagon Jetta Turbo (which is used for flagrant disregard of traffic laws to get me places way faster than you and in position for your arrival). My associates carry similar equipment to mine that I have setup to my specifications.
2. What size are the files I get on my full resolution custom Flash Drive?
A: 24 Megapixels full frame on the D610, 12 Megapixels on the D700s and D300s. They are the same size they came out of the camera. You will be able to make prints up to 20×30 without a problem and I’ve never seen a client print one that big yet. (but you could actually go to 40×60 quite easily with what you’ll get (that’s 5 feet across)
3. Do brides really trash their expensive wedding dresses during your trash the dress sessions?
A: NO! I use “stunt” dresses which are obtained from sources around town that are expendable. Most trash the dress shoots are done as bridal or engagement shoots well before wedding dates and have never (so far) been done with the ACTUAL wedding dress. Now, please calm your parents down and ask them to trust me, I’ve been doing this long enough to know better. 🙂
4. Do you charge for travel?
A: Yes, of course. $1 per mile outside 60 miles one way. If your wedding takes me out of the area to a distance of 90 miles one way or more and the coverage ends past 9PM I will require reimbursement for a hotel room plus mileage. I don’t drive with anyone’s wedding pictures in my car late at night while I’m completely exhausted.
5. Do you need to be fed at the wedding?
A: If you don’t want me to fall down and stop like a marathon runner that’s out of gas during your wedding I highly recommend it. All I ask is that you let me know if you ARE NOT going to be providing dinner for me and my associate(s) beforehand so that I can make provisions for bringing our own dinner with us. We eat on the run and keep shooting if you provide a meal for us. We eat in the parking lot and don’t shoot if we bring our own dinner with us.
6. How many pictures will I get?
A: That depends on the length of coverage, the size of the wedding party, the number of guests, the venue, the décor, the weather, if you and your new husband dance a lot, if you have a band or a DJ, if there’s lots of activity or no activity at all, long or short ceremony, access during preparations, lots or no flowers, and a BUNCH of other factors. On most 8 hour packages I deliver over 1000 images for examples sake. The more there is to shoot, the more pictures you’ll get. Most people are overwhelmed with the number of images they get. I am delighted to provide you with the names of some other brides who can tell you about their experience with me and the quality and quantity of the photos they received.
7. How do you dress at events?
A: Our dress is usually a hip business casual look that allows us to blend in with the guests at your wedding without ruining really expensive clothes week in and week out (because I spend a lot of time on the ground, on chairs, on ledges, climbing trees, leaning out car windows, jumping around the dance floor, etc). If your wedding is black tie please let me know in advance so I can rent a tux to ruin. ? (I own a couple tuxes, but I don’t want to ruin them!)
8. What’s your payment policy?
A: I require 1/2 of your balance to sign the contract and reserve your date. The balance is due no later than 1 week before the wedding date. Everything can be done online including the payments. I do setup zero interest payment plans where you can pay monthly if you like till your balance is paid. For destination weddings, I require 1/2 of your balance to sign the contract and reserve your date. I make my own travel arrangements and invoice you for them. Everything must be paid in full before I get on a plane. Just like local weddings, everything can be done online if necessary including contract signing. I have mechanisms in place for all that stuff. No problemo!
9. What happens if you get sick or injured on my wedding date?
A: It’s never happened. But, if it did happen I’m well prepared. I network with many local photographers that could cover in the event of my inability to cover an event due to illness or injury. My associates are also capable of shooting a wedding alone. If this were the case, you would be justly compensated for my absence, but your wedding would be professionally documented nonetheless.
10. How long does it take to get my album after my wedding?
A: Around 1 month after you pick out the pictures for your album, it will be in your hands unless it’s a peak time of year or around holidays where the manufacturers are swamped.
11. How long does it take to see my wedding photos?
A: No longer than 4-6 weeks. Usually much less than that. This year at my busiest time the longest it took to get proofs online was 23 days. The fastest I was able to get a full wedding online was 4 days this year.
12. Do you have liability insurance?
A: ABSOLUTELY! I carry a 1 million dollar business liability policy and other supplemental insurance. I have never had to file a claim though (but I still carry the policies). My company is a licensed Virginia Corporation, I also have a Virginia Beach Business License. I am a member of the Professional Photography Association of America (PPA), I am also a member of Wedding And Portrait Photographers International (WPPI). If your venue wants proof of insurance from me, please give me 30 days notice so that I can have my carrier send the documentation directly to the venue on my behalf. (which is the official way to have it done)
13. Do you and your associate split up at the event to cover different things?
A: Yes we do. I have it down to a science and the women that work for me know exactly what to do without me telling them. We have tons of hand signals like Indians! (except ours are a lot more spastic looking and animated!)
14. Can I give you a list of photos that I want taken?
A: Of course you can. I definitely want to know about important must have shots. Don’t make the list too long though because long lists greatly hamper creativity.
15. Are you going to have a beer, glass of wine, drink with us at the wedding?
A: Thank you kindly for the offer, but my associates and I NEVER drink on the job. I am a certified wedding cake taster though and will be happy to offer my revue and critique on request! (especially if there is chocolate involved)
16. Can I split up some of my package time for rehearsal dinner coverage?
A: Yes of course, but it’s a 2 hour minimum so make sure your package is large enough to allow ample time on the wedding day for me to start 2 hours before the ceremony till you leave the reception. This is also dependent on my availability the day before your wedding (because I routinely shoot 2 or 3 weddings in one weekend, but rarely / never more than 1 on the same day).
If I haven’t answered your question here, please send me an email! firstname.lastname@example.org