Wedding Photography for All!
For years we have offered fine wedding photography: imaginative, honest, unrehearsed. No fake-smile photos, no "Smile please!" just well-designed, intelligent, often striking photos of friends and family having a great good time together, in celebration of a couple's commitment to each other. We'll not change any of that. Our style and goals and the quality of our photography are here to stay. But our insistence on offering just a single package has gone, along with the inflexible price-tag assigned to that package ($3,500.00), and our lavish use of traditional black and white film at every wedding.
Here, instead, is our radical new setup: Plenty of choices, generous flexibility, some reasonable prices to choose from — and still the highest quality on the block. We can now offer you all these good things — together. If you are looking for really fine wedding photography with several packages to choose from, flexibility within those packages, and lower prices, we think we have the answer: a whole series of great packages, most well under $3,500, with all the other good characteristics listed. We have a new focus, a great new level of flexibility, and exciting packages of the very highest quality -- for as little as $1,595.
To make this happen, we have had to abandon a deeply ingrained assumption: that it was our commitment to traditional black and white film, processed and printed in our own darkroom, that gave our wedding photography such a good name. We still love those special black and whites and will continue to offer them. But now we are focusing much more on the exuberant action photos we take throughout the celebration — the start, the ceremony (not so exuberant!), the reception, the dancing and the send-off. Whatever happens, no matter what crazy fun crops up, we are poised to take it. Fast. On the fly! Close-ups and crowd-shots, dramatic and compelling. That's real wedding photography; we lead the field.
The ceremony itself is mostly quiet and thoughtful. It calls for a rather different approach, and our traditional black and whites can contribute then, uniquely, beautifully to our representation of the day, although even then they are not truly essential.
So we'll continue to make traditional black and white images for whoever wants them. But we'll no longer make black and white film-based photography an essential, central part of our coverage of every wedding. It must not interfere with what we most seek: lively, meaningful photographs of people celebrating a very significant event.
Our enthusiasm for black and white wedding images is largely responsible for our lack of low-priced packages the last few years, just when they were needed, and has blinded some to the real quality of our work, which lies not in the maintenance of traditional photography, but in our unrehearsed, joyful, rule-breaking documentary photographs. We're breaking free now from a very serious misconception of our own making! The traditional images will certainly persist in our wedding photography, for they can balance and reinforce other features of our work. But they must not reduce our ability to reach a far wider group than those who can afford, with ease, our old black and white dominated package.
Black and white belongs in small, optional add-ons to our standard digital packages — and in two special packages for aficionados who definitely want and can afford lots of black and whites. (Our portraits are quite another story: the black and whites sometimes constitute the very core of a portrait. But portraits are not weddings.) Quite simply, real black and whites cost far more to make than digital images and most of you only want a very few taken at your wedding.
Reducing the number of traditional black and whitesamong our wedding photographs enables us to offer you new packages at substantially lower prices than we charged for our single basic package. And since the quality of our work is only marginally dependent on our traditional black and whites this change of emphasis will enable us to raise the quality of our work overall. We can devote more time and thought to our challenging digital photographs instead of spending many long hours producing beautiful black and whites — our "signature" images.
They are now priced appropriately, and there is a limit to the number that can be included in any standard package. In this way, the average price of our packages drops like treacle off a hot ladle. And we'll be able to give more thought and attention to the unrehearsed, natural, honest, and mainly digital photography that has in fact secured for us our unique place among wedding photographers in this area.
The foundation of our wedding photography is the quality of our camera work, which rests upon our experience, skill, interest in people, and our vigilance and enthusiasm on the day. None of that is any use without the preparations we make prior to your wedding.
Once you begin to think of us for your wedding photographers, come look carefully at us and our work. At that time you should consider choosing your Principal Photographer. You can select any one of us who is not already booked. (We will never try to change your choice once it's made.) Choose someone you'd like to have around you on the day, in whom you have confidence, and with whom you feel you can work well — and, of course, whose work you really like! Before making a final decision, you might consider having an engagement photo made. If you don't like the experience or the photos, you pay nothing; if you like the way we work and love the photos, you have probably found just the right photographers, and probably your principal photographer too, though that's for you to decide.
Click on Portfolios here or in the bar above and then once you're safely in the "Portfolios" click the Portraits thumbnail and look for the engagements. Call us at 412 241 0936 with questions about our wedding photography and to make an appointment to come see us.
Time will pass, and the preparations continue. A month or more before your wedding both of you, bride and groom, will need to meet together with your selected principal photographer for an hour or so to go through plans for the day. You'll make clear what you would like, and in particular you'll tell us about your families and wedding party, specially who you want us to photograph in the various family and wedding party photos, and how and where you imagine those will be made. If it's great weather, and then again if it's raining!
During that meeting, and in email correspondence and phone-calls as you prepare your wedding, we, too, will be trying to form a clear picture of your wedding-to-come: your expectations, the guests and family, any special or unusual photos that you or your family would like, the kinds of dancing you'll have, and so it goes on. We'll be making our own preparations for your day.
To view slideshows of several recent weddings click Portfolios and then the Weddings thumbnail.
On the day itself we'll meet you where you're dressing, or at the church, whether or not you're dressing there; whatever we agreed beforehand. If possible we'll take a few photos as you arrive. Then, as soon as you want us to, we'll come and go, taking more photographs of the bridal party and the groom and his men.
We'll be at the church at least an hour before the ceremony. If we'll be making any of the formals in the church we'll put up and test our flash lighting equipment and then take the lights down again and stow them till we need them after the ceremony. Sometimes it's easier, more appropriate, or simply necessary because of another wedding or other ceremony that follows right after your wedding, to take all the formals outside — perhaps by the church or in some park. Or perhaps at or near the reception venue. If so, we'll not test the lights but we'll still arrive an hour or so before your wedding starts to make last minute preparations and take informal photos of you, and of your guests, as they begin to arrive.
Very soon it'll be time to set up for the ceremony, with a camera on a tripod near the back of the church. For black and whites if you have asked us to take some during the ceremony; otherwise for color digitals. We'll keep taking a few photos of your guests and of both of you as you wait. Then during the ceremony we'll be extremely inconspicuous. You, your families, the clergy, everyone needs that and we respect that need.
We'll spend a brief half hour — perhaps 45 minutes if that's available, but no more than that — after the ceremony, at the altar, making traditional "posed" ("formal") photographs of your immediate families and wedding-party. They won't really be very posed or formal unless you specially ask for that! In fact, we generally make taking them a lighthearted and fun experience for everyone. The "formals" should be natural, interesting, fun photos of the people who are at the center of your day.
All our photos, even these "posed" shots, should capture the spirit of your wedding. But it's the truly unrehearsed, spontanious ones that you are likely to treasure most. Although anyone can take unrehearsed photographs they often turn out disappointing. Professionals seldom take more than a few at a wedding. Yet they are truly the very heart of wedding photography.
To take great spontaneous "candids" consistently requires great concentration. The secret lies in quietly discovering who to watch and anticipating what will happen. We work like wild life or sports photographers but stalk feeling, character and interaction between people rather than speed and agility. Seeing the great unrehearsed shots approach before they happen: making a snap decision to take or not take each as it unfolds, and when we take one, selecting just the right moment or moments, angle, and lighting to turn a decision into a terrific photograph. We expect the unexpected. Like this:
Happenings have to happen: we can never stage an authentic one, and prefer not to try, but just to watch and wait! And if they evade us, why we (and you) are out of luck for a moment. Rather that than a dull "Smile please!" We'll get a great one very soon.
All day, we'll continue to act like wildlife photographers, almost out of sight. We'll catch you having fun or reflecting quietly on the day's events without interfering with you. We will leave you alone to do what you will — and then quietly record what is significant. We're always digging beneath the surface, inspired and driven by the desire to capture this day so it will engage both of you throughout your lives together and help to keep you close.
As evening turns to night and the reception begins to wind down, your principal photographer will still be there, watching and working, waiting until after you've gone. Your departure is as much a part of your wedding as your walk up the aisle. We try to do justice to both.
Your wedding day is over. We have hundreds of images stored away in our bags. Over the next few days we'll select from them, process the selected ones and prepare your proof-book, CD or both. If you have asked for any black and whites those will be separately processed but will end up with all the others. Within about two weeks you'll be able to pick them up.
Here are the packages, starting with the four we expect will be most in demand, the "Standard" packages, each denoted by an "A" and a number between 1 and 4 (A1, A2 etc.): (A1) gives you a proof book to keep the images in, (A2)gives you a CD, (A3) both of these, and (A4) an album in addition to the CD and proof book. (The album, of course, comes later.)
Despite these differences the four Standard packages also have much in common. Two photographers attend your wedding, a Principal and an Assistant. The photos are high resolution digital and you can add up to four rolls of black and white film. If you order any of these traditional black and whites they will be hand-processed and scanned for inclusion into your CD and/or proof book. Any black and whites you order as loose photographs or for album pages will be hand-enlarged in our own darkroom. We expect to give you more than three hundred images, a week or two after the wedding. You can freely swap between these packages right up to — and even beyond — your weddsing day simply by changing the amount of your contract. And telling us! After all, there is no difference in the way the packages are shot, the differences between them involve the proof-book versus the CD, and so on. Black and white film must obviously be requested prior to your wedding day.
After the Standard Packages, come the four Small-Wedding Packages, which are available only if 85 or fewer people will be at your wedding. They are quite parallel to the Standard Packages but cost less, and are more restricted in scope. Only one photographer attends the wedding and black and white film-based images cannnot be added to the digital ones. However, a Standard Package can always be substituted for a Small-Wedding Package. Thus, even if you have a very small wedding you can have two photographers and consequently some true black and white photos.
Finally, if you want lots of traditional black and white photography and your budget will permit this, you may decide to take one of the two Deluxe "C" packages which come at the very end of this section. These are always attended by two photographers, who will shoot diigital color and will also make about 20% of the day's images on black and white film.
Standard Packages. Two Photographers.
See Add-ons Below
You can choose any of these four packages for any wedding. There are many possible add-ons. A few are listed below but many more are not even mentioned here. All the add-ons will be listed and discussed in detail when you visit with us.
- A1. The Magazine-Style Proof-book Package. Price: $1,795
Edited magazine-style proof book (color balanced, retouched and chronologically sequenced) normally containing more than 350 images.
A good choice if you just want to keep costs down as low as possible, but consider A2 or better still A3 if you think you might want to add an album later or make a scrap-book — or even just choose prints for yourself and friends. Without a CD those tasks could be difficult, but with a CD you could do much of your own printing — certainly enough to give prints to friends and choose images for enlarging.
- A2. The Medium Resolution CD Package. Price: $1,895
Medium resolution copyright released, color balanced, lightly retouched, roughly sequenced CD, which normally contains more than 350 images, can be printed at home, online, at drugstores etc., to yield prints up to 5" X 7" in size.
A good choice if you only want to make a scrapbook, printing most of the images yourself — or just to keep costs down as low as possible. Consider A3 if you think you might want to add an album later. CD and proof-book together might be very helpful.
- A3. The Proof-book and CD Package. Price: $2,195
Edited (color balanced, retouched and fully sequenced) magazine-style proof book normally containing more than 350 images keyed to a Medium Resolution copyright released, color balanced and lightly retouched CD which can be printed at home, online, at drugstores etc, and will make prints up to 5" X 7".
This package is excellent value as it stands, and can form the basis for designing your album.
- A4. The Proof-book, CD and Album Package. Price: $2,995
Everything in the previous package plus a fine leather-bound album containing twenty 8" X 8" photographs. The Best Value!!
You can also purchase A4 by making a small deposit with the final payment for A3, which must be brought up to the full price for A4 within a year.
Add-Ons and Modifications to the Standard Packages:
Up to four rolls of black and white film (12 exposures each). The good negatives will be scanned for inclusion in the CD, Proof-book and album. Maximum 4 rolls film $75.00 each.
In package A4 substitute a higher grade album, or an album with fewer/more or smaller/larger pages, modifying the price. Also we now offer a less expensive album which could reduce the price for this package. Note however that this new album cannot include our film-based black and whites. (Ask us about the album.)
A refundable "Prepayment" may be added to the final package payment (for any package) after the wedding, to cover loose photographs parent and full-size albums, etc — this will be returned on request within a year if not used. Ask us for details.
Small-Wedding Packages. One Photographer.
Not more than 85 people at the wedding.
Each Small-Wedding (B) package is priced $200 below the corresponding A package. Prices only are given here since in all respects not explicitly pointed out above (and below this list) they are structured just like the parallel A package. Instead of a Small-Wedding Package, you may always opt for a Standard Package. In that case you will have two photographers, Standard Package prices ($200 more than is shown here) and add-ons. For example, you may then add up to 4 rolls of black and white film.
- B1. The Magazine-Style Proof-book Package. Price: $1,595
- B2. The Medium Resolution CD Package. Price: $1,695
- B3. The Proof-book and CD Package. Price: $1,995
- B4. The Proof-book, CD and Album Package. Price: $2,795
The descriptions and add-ons for the Standard Packages apply to these Small-Wedding packages except that:
(1) there may be no more than 85 people at your wedding,
(2) only one photographer is assigned to the wedding,
(3) traditional black and white film cannot be used when there is only one photographer, and
(4) only about 250 images are generally made for the Small Wedding Packages.
Deluxe Black and White Packages.
Digital Color and 20% Film-based Black and White
- C1. The Proof-book and CD Package. Price $3,295.00
Edited copyright-released magazine-style proof book generally containing more than 350 images including around 20% traditional black and whites, which are scanned for inclusion. Also a Medium Resolution CD with copyright release, keyed to the proof book. The CD will make color prints up to about 5" X 7". (The scanned black and whites seldom print well on a digital printer, and we are your best resource for enlarger-prints of them.)
- C2. The Proof-book, CD, and Album Package. Price $4,095.00
Identical to the preceding package except that it includes a fine 8" X 8" leather-covered or loose-leaf album containing twenty photographs. The Add-ons for the A packages apply to these two packages. The wedding can be of any size.
Note however that the new less expensive album offered with Standard and Small Weddings cannot include true B&W photographs.
Your CD and/or Proof-book will be ready ten days to about two weeks from your wedding date. We will notify you and you will pick up your order. You may add an album and other extras including prints, at this time or later.
You can have us make additional changes and additions to any of these packages: arrange for engagement photos before the wedding and add these to the package, or add, at any time, a refundable sum to cover loose prints (big and small) of the highest quality made from our original files or negatives, add extra albums, thank-you cards made from your wedding photos and printed on watercolor paper or have us post your wedding photos on a secure website. And more: ask us for details!!
For more details of our wedding photography call us at 412 241 0936 or email us: firstname.lastname@example.org. You may wish to use the Contacts page on this site.