Questions (and answers) that I’m frequently asked by prospective wedding clients
If you have any questions that aren’t addressed below then feel free to give me a call or get in touch via the contact page
Are you a full-time photographer?
Yes, this is my only job. You’ll get 100% of my time, energy and commitment so I can give you the kind of images and service that you deserve and that I’m proud of.
How would you describe your style? What is a Documentary Wedding Photographer?
My style is unobtrusive, discreet storytelling. I capture the moments of your day as they unfold naturally without interfering, moving anything or directing anyone.
I don’t engineer moments or ‘create’ scenes – you won’t find me setting up any cheesy shots or arranging groups of people into heart shapes! I like to think of myself as the opposite of the ‘traditional’ cheesy Wedding Photographer, going from table to table, taking people hostage and asking them to smile (that said, if anyone asks me to take their photograph, of course, I’m happy to).
I try to blend in with the guests as far as is possible (I often get mistaken for a guest) so I can capture your day from the inside rather than hovering on the outskirts, picking off moments from a detached perspective.
Experience has taught me to observe and anticipate moments before they happen so I’m constantly listening as well as looking to find potential moments before they unfold.
It’s really important to me to be able to tell the story of your day without my having had any influence on it – beautiful moments between you, your family and your friends, having fun and enjoying being with each other – celebrating your day.
Do you do formal group portraits?
Yes. It’s rare that my couples don’t want any group photos at all. Although I’m a documentary photographer I understand that most people would like at least a few group photos made at their wedding and I’m happy to oblige.
Most couples try to keep them to a minimum though as they can take a few minutes each (sometimes longer if we have to hunt for a missing guest!). I recommend a maximum of 8 group shots (preferably less) which usually takes about 30 minutes.
Usually my clients opt for 5 or 6 group shots.
Typically, guests don’t want to be ordered around by a bossy photographer when they’d rather be enjoying the day, so I’ll usually ask for the assistance of a Best Man or Bridesmaid, someone who knows who everyone is, to get everyone together. That way we can get through the groups quickly without interrupting the flow of your day too much and everyone can get back to enjoying themselves!
Can we have some portraits of just the two of us?
Of course, absolutely!
I usually suggest doing portraits during Golden Hour (the hour before the sun goes down) as that’s when the light is at it’s softest and most flattering. It can be something as simple as just going for a walk somewhere for 15 minutes. It’ll also give you the opportunity for a bit of breathing space during what can sometimes be quite a hectic day!
Again, I don’t want to keep you away from your guests for any longer than necessary so we don’t need to spend ages going through endless poses in lots of different locations.
If I’m not familiar with your venue I’ll make a point of checking it out beforehand so we have some suggestions as to where might be suitable for some portraits ahead of time. There is always nice light to be found somewhere.
Can you hold our wedding date for us?
Couples can book up to 2 years in advance. I often get enquiries for the same date so whoever signs our contract and pays the booking fee first for that date, gets that date.
I can’t hold dates without a signed contract and a paid booking fee unfortunately.
What happens before the wedding?
A few weeks before the wedding I’ll send you an online questionnaire to fill out confirming all the final details of the wedding – date, venue/s, times, and names of people in the wedding party as well as requesting a list of any group photos you’d like.
A week prior to the wedding I’ll give you a quick call to make sure everything’s OK and that all the details I have from the questionnaire are still correct.
How would you capture our day?
Typically, I’ll start by spending an hour or so with you, photographing you and your bridal party getting ready for you wedding day. If the groom and groomsmen are close to hand I will drop in briefly to get some pictures of them getting ready too.
I’ll usually leave you about half an hour before the ceremony is due to start to get some images of your guests and your fiance waiting (nervously) for you at the ceremony venue. This also gives me a chance to introduce myself to whoever is conducting the service to give them reassurance that I’ll be discrete and respectful during the ceremony.
After the ceremony is usually the best time to take a few formal group photos (should you want any) as everyone is in the same place, saving time getting everyone together later, which can often prove to be much more difficult once people have had a few drinks at the bar!
This is the only part of the day that ever requires any ‘planning’ for yourselves as far as the photography is concerned (I’ll contact you the week before your wedding to discuss any last minute arrangements or changes to the day and to confirm the list of group photos, if you have one).
This ensures that the group photos go as quickly and smoothly as possible so you can get on with enjoying yourselves and I can get on with capturing the natural flow of your day.
I’ll then spend the rest of your day photographing the natural ebb and flow of your day from the drinks at your reception through the speeches and wedding breakfast.
After the wedding breakfast is usually a good opportunity to do a few portraits of the two of you, away from the crowds, giving you the opportunity to catch you breath before the evening party starts!
Unlike a lot of wedding photographers, I don’t leave as soon as I’ve photographed the first dance (unless you want me to) as there are always so many great moments to photograph on and off the dance floor in the evening.
So I’ll usually stay for an hour or so after the first dance, depending on what’s happening. Generally speaking I’ll slip out with a wave to say good bye so you can get on with your enjoying the rest of your evening with your guests without me interrupting you – no grand announcement that I’m leaving required.
The above is by no means a definitive, rigid schedule of how I work – all weddings are different and you might have a completely different day planned for yourselves – but it should give you a good idea as to the approach I usually take when photographing a wedding.
I’m entirely flexible in all the areas of service I provide and am happy to fit myself to whatever you have planned.
What happens after the wedding?
It’s time to edit the photos from your wedding day!
Each image is individually and carefully edited by me (I don’t outsource my editing) and uploaded to your personal, password-protected online gallery within about 4 weeks of your wedding, depending on the time of year.
In autumn and winter months you can expect to receive them a bit quicker (2-3 weeks).
You can then view, share, download and buy prints directly from you gallery. You can download your images as many times as you like, at a variety of sizes and share them directly online.
You can also create a selection of your favourites for your wedding album from within your gallery. I can see the selection you’ve chosen and discuss the design of your album with you if you choose to have one. I can also create a mobile app of your selection for you (up to 200 images) which is free of charge.
A USB of your images is also available on request.
How do we book you?
Either call or email me to find out if I’m available for your date. If I am available we can have a chat on the phone or via Facetime/Skype (or even meet up for a cup of tea if you’re close enough).
Once we’ve had a chat, If you’re ready to book, just let me know and I’ll send you through our contract to sign.
I will also require a £250 booking deposit which is to secure your date (which is deducted from your final payment).
Final payment of the remaining balance is due 28 days prior to the wedding date.
I require both a signed contract and a paid booking deposit to save your date. A bank transfer or a cheque is fine.
You show a lot of black & white images on the website - how many will be black & white and how many will be in colour?
Some images lend themselves better to be edited in black and white and some in colour.
All of the photos I make can be converted to either colour or black and white.
All of your images are edited individually, making colour corrections, cropping and conversions to each one of them. I make the decision at this stage as to whether they should be black & white or colour images (although I’ll often know before I’ve taken the picture whether or not it’s going to be one or the other).
The mix of black and white to colour tends to be around 60 / 40. It can vary though, depending on the time of year and the location of your wedding.
There is an option for coverage that allows for black and white and colour conversions of all of your pictures, should you choose it.
Whilst I do some minor retouching to key images where necessary, I don’t do extensive Photoshop retouches to your images.
Do you do albums?
I do. I’m a great believer that as many as possible of your wedding photos really should be printed and that photographs always look and feel so much better on paper than on a screen (so much so that I decided I needed to write a blog post about it, you can read it here).
I offer a selection of beautiful, archive-quality wedding albums and photo books (ranging from £200 – £500) as well as a variety of print options. I can help you choose an album style that suits you as well as with the design of the album itself.
Prints are also available to buy directly from your online wedding gallery.
Do you offer any discounts?
I can offer a reduced rate from November to March and for weekday weddings outside of peak summer season. All of my services are flexible and can be adjusted around any requirements you might have.
If you have something specific in mind, maybe a smaller more intimate wedding or shorter coverage, give me a call so we can have a chat about how I can help – I can usually offer something to suit most people at a price to suit your budget.
Do you photograph same-sex weddings?
Yes, absolutely. I’d be delighted to photograph your wedding – just get in touch to find out if I’m available for your date!
Do you require feeding on the day?
That’d be lovely. But it’s not a prerequisite.
I can bring my own food but I will never turn down a meal as photographing a wedding can take a lot of energy! It doesn’t have to be the same as you are providing for your guests – something from the bar menu is fine for me.
I usually grab something to eat after you and your guests have sat down to eat (I don’t take photographs of you and your guests eating!) so I don’t miss any of the key moments of your day.
A good meal allows me to keep my energy up and stay alert to what’s happening around me.
Are you insured and do you have backup equipment?
Yes, I’m fully insured. I have both public liability and professional indemnity insurance.
Some wedding venues insist on it and all responsible, professional photographers should be insured.
I also use high-end professional digital cameras and have spare equipment should anything get damaged on the day, or become faulty.