Can you recommend wedding venues in NYC?
I have worked at many across the region so yes please call me and take advantage of my wedding expertise, and here is a nice collection compiled by NYC & Company NYC Wedding Venues This link is a bit dated and venues by nature are evolving so there are many more which I would be happy to share with you and like everything in New York City they can be found within all wedding budgets so please reach out to me and I will share my knowledge.
Do you offer Graphi albums?
Yes, I have samples of Graphi albums and many other choices in the studio. If there is a particular album you have found, and love let me know I can work with any company. For more information on wedding albums see my article: Creating a Modern Wedding Album.
What are photo books and how are they different from wedding albums?
Yes photo books are confusing, it is not the term I would have chosen but that is how the industry has come to define them. Photo books are albums which anyone can order through Apple's iPhoto program or a Snapfish etc... They can vary in quality considerable from one printer to another, however they are much better than they where when they first became available. When you take the step up to a wedding album the options are almost limitless in both quality and design, however it is also a big jump in price. Photo books have come a long way with more options available and I use printers that have very good quality, but you will always have some design limitations with photo books. The bottom line, many people are very happy with their photo books but many others wish to upgrade to the better quality and increased options of a true wedding album. I talk in depth on wedding albums and their difference with wedding photo books and include reviews of wedding album sites in this article: wedding photo book reviews.
Can I print from the files?
Yes, I supply two copies of high-resolution color and exposure corrected jpegs of all wedding pictures I take, one full size and another optimized for your social media uses, there is no need to purchase anything additional with me. I will also keep the files in archival storage in my studio.
I see that there is a set amount of proofs in each package, are those the only images I will receive?
No that is only the number that is contractually printed. I will shoot many more images that you will receive on a disc, see the next question.
How many wedding pictures will you take?
I am asked this question often, I believe engaged couples are comparing photographers and believe they are receiving a better deal when they are told you will receive many 1000's! Quality is king here not quantity. Here is a great quote from one of my past Brides to sum this up, "Robert also shoots generously, yet methodically and deliberately - he does not shoot 5000 images to come up with 50 good ones. (Which is what our ceremony guy did- and handed to us unedited- ugh and unprofessional) Robert will hand you 100% gorgeous results. You will want to print them all!
Do I have to pay extra for the image files?
Absolutely not! You own the images not me, unlike many other photographers who force you into ordering expensive prints only through them. The only rights I retain are to use the images for self promotion.
Are the proofs watermarked?
No, my proofs are the same quality as the prints that get framed.
Why are you more expensive then other Photographers I have met?
A previous Bride of mine summed it up best:
“Some people might argue budget is a deal breaker, so why even waste time considering a photographer that appears to be out of budget? Because cost is something that can usually be negotiated. Quality cannot.”
My rates are very competitive if you add up what you receive from me versus other photographers. Beware of many other photographers who charge a low up front price but then force you to buy expensive prints and albums. I spend a lot of time before and after the wedding making sure the images are of the highest quality. Many other photographers shoot jpeg and rely on their lab to fix the images – much poorer quality and potentially missed shots. Also, there are no extra charges with myself the price you see is the bottom line, I will even help you find a great lab to print my great files from.
Why is wedding photography so freakin' expensive?
This is the question I see most from brides on wedding forums. "Wedding photography seems like easy money - work for one day and rake in the cash, right?' But most full-time wedding photographers I know carry over $15,000 worth of wedding gear to your wedding and often work 60-hour weeks. (Remember those edited images from the question above? It takes several full days just to edit those.) Add insurance, taxes, software, advertising, albums, repair, shipping, and studio expenses, and many photographers end up making less than minimum wage for the first few years of their career.
How long until my proofs are ready?
My studio averages having proofs ready in three weeks, much shorter than most other wedding photographers.
Can you upload to a website for viewing and ordering?
Yes, and I edit and organize the images first so that it makes the experience much easier, sharing to all social media and individuals is a built in feature. Setting up a hashtag for your wedding and sending it out on the invites is a great way to crowd source all wedding pictures.
What is the payment schedule?
It depends on the package, but typically it is a 25% deposit, 50% additional before the wedding and the balance when you pick up your proofs.
If we hire your studio, will you be the one who shoots our wedding?
Yes, I shoot all the weddings personally, I do not hire other photographers unless they are a second shooter.
Do you use infrared film?
The answer use to be yes, I have extended experience with this film and personally love the glowing; dreamy effect it creates. Unfortunately Kodak stopped manufacturing this film, however now I have a dedicated modified camera that shoots only infrared - a similar result, sometimes better. There are printed samples of this effect in my studio and a few in the galleries of the website. So now it is called infrared capture.
Do you charge a travel fee?
Within 25 miles of the studio there is no charge, beyond that there is a $50 per hour fee. I subsidize all destination wedding photography travel, and weddings in the Riviera Maya of Mexico my travel is free!
What do people normally do?
While every wedding shares certain qualities they are all unique, particularly in a diverse area like NYC. My advice is to do what you want to - it is your day. I will advice you on the advantages to one way or the other, but I am here to help you create what you have imagined. I have been to hundreds of weddings and can help you figure out what is traditional, trendy, or does not work well also. If you have a wedding planner we all work together to help you to achieve your dream.
When should we take the formal pictures?
This is a personal decision that is effected by one’s own wishes, the venue and flow of your day. On a practical basis everyone is fresh and still clean before the ceremony, however, you may not wish to see the groom. For a more in depth discussion please read my How to Get Great Wedding Pictures article.
Should I give you a list of photos to take?
I have seen many crazy photo lists that go on for pages, listing items such as “Bride and Groom” and “cake cutting.” I will capture everything that happens, so there is no need to list each item. However, if there is an image that you have seen and love please show it to me, perhaps we can recreate something similar and at least I will know the style of images you like. I do like to have a list of formal pictures, for I find that it helps to make the formal session run smoother and faster which helps to make the pictures there best. You could also make a second list, what I call the “informal formals.” These are shots that you want, but they do not have to be during the formal session. Maybe a picture of your Aunt and Uncle or your college friends. I will make sure that I capture a good image of them sometime through out the day in a less formal atmosphere. For a more in depth discussion please read my How to Get Great Wedding Pictures article.
What style of Photographer would you say you were?
I really am a “balanced” photographer for I am not limited to one style or technique. However, I coined a phrase called “artistic reportage” this is how I would approach a wedding if you had no preference. It is a balance of wedding journalism and artistry. The always desire and try to bring that energy and decisive moment approach to even the formal shots in your wedding.
What do we need to do?
You do not have to do anything; your wedding is a story unfolding that I will be telling with my images. I will arrive and proceed to capture the tales as they happen. Now there are some things that can be helpful. Make a list as described above, and along with that a liaison or two can be very helpful, for I will not know anyone on the list besides yourself. Place myself on the invitation list, for it is good to have a copy in my file for use in the album later and it has all the maps, times, and other information. When speaking with your caterer insist that I am served in the same room and at the same time as yourself. Caterers often try to treat me as a second-class citizen, feeding me what is leftover at the very end of the meal and in a back room. I need to be in sync with you, that way I will not miss anything. Also read the articles How to Get Great Wedding Pictures and Last Minute Wedding Advice.
How do I get to your office?
With the ever rising real estate pricing and my work becoming more internationaI I decided to close my high priced meeting space in NYC. I can meet you in Manhattan at a gallery I work with or I can also meet you at a coffee shop or wine bar near you of your choice, I have a set of materials that I bring with me.
I found one photographer whose images look soft and pastel, one whose images look clean, and one whose images look like they were shot on old film. What's the deal?
Every photographer has a different artistic sensibility and method of editing their images using computer software (the high-tech version of a darkroom) this is called "Post-Processing." Most photographers do some basic lighting and color adjustments, but you can also use editing software to create a unique look. Three popular styles right now are:
It doesn't matter which style you go with, as long as you love it!
Should we do a "wedding first look"? And, um, what the hell is a "first look"?
The first look is a chance for wedding Brides and Grooms to see each other privately before the ceremony. Two-thirds of my clients currently opt to do a first look. It's a great chance to get the wedding jitters out and spend a few minutes alone together. I find that first look photos tend to be some of my favorites. It's a real moment with real emotions. But there are no right of wrongs here, it is all about what you want.
Are you a member of the wedding photojournalist association?
The WPJA is good but I find them to be not balanced enough, they frown on retouching and people looking in the camera. I believe wedding photography should be more balanced between portraits and photojournalism, for you want more than just a document of the day you want a story to be told.