What is all day photography?
I have a photojournalist approach to wedding photography. This means that I follow the couple throughout the day and shoot fly on the wall, as an observer of the moments and events that unfold without significant influence from my side. I will capture natural moments, as well as some posed moments. My experience and feedback from bridal couples that I’ve photographed is that this gives the best and most natural images. The price includes shooting for up to 10 hours but if you need me at your wedding until after the first dance this can be done for a small additional cost. Typically a day starts from bridal preparations and runs until a couple dances in but have a look at some of the wedding pictures I have posted on the blog and you will get a better idea of what day photography means in practice.
Can we take some couple/group photos?
Yes, absolutely. My favourite way of working is to shoot photojournalist style throughout the day but to allow some time for group shots and couple shots usually after the ceremony. I want to preserve the natural unpretentious atmosphere of the photos I take. I recommend couples take their major group shots immediately after the ceremony. These include full wedding party, all the family together, bride’s family, groom’s family, all the guys and all the girls. I then suggest everyone grabs a drink and relaxes and after around 20 to 30 minutes I will take the couple away for couple shots.
Couples shots depending on the couple usually take around 30 minutes. Some couples love having their photograph taken and so can go on for longer while some don’t so it takes less time. It’s my job however to make sure everything keeps to time.
We have never worked with a photographer before. Do you have any tips?
Absolutely none of the people who I’ve worked with throughout my career have been models in any professional way. Few of the people I photograph are used to standing in front of the camera. Generally speaking, there are very few of us who are born to thrive in the “limelight”. If you are nervous and unsure it will reflect in your photos. But that’s why you hire a photographer. It is my job to get you to thrive in front of the camera and produce the best photos possible.
We're getting married abroad? Are you available?
Virtually all of my wedding photography has taken place in Scotland but I love to travel when possible. For weddings within 50 miles of Edinburgh there are no travel costs but any further then travel costs may have to be incurred. This will literally be cost price of petrol. For longer distance weddings where an overnight stay would be necessary, travel fees and additional costs will need to be clarified and confirmed in advance. Please contact me so you’ll know exactly how much you will have to pay me for your wedding that is far away.
Should we include food for you?
While it isn’t something I would demand or even ask for any food will be greatly appreciated. It’s a long day for bridal couples and their guests as well as for us photographers. We have a fair amount of photo equipment with us and we don’t want to be antisocial but we will usually sit out of the way, often in the next room so we can hear and sometimes see any opportunities for photos.
We never take photos of people eating for obvious reasons but there might be a great shot available.
We wish the photographer to only takes photos of the ceremony and some photos for a short period of time afterwards. Can you do this?
Of course, I offer wedding packages to suit different needs. Whether you need me for a short ceremony and some formals afterwards, typically a Registry Office Wedding, or you want me there all day there’s a package to suit.
How many photos do you take?
My goal is that you will be left with a rich selection of images from the day. I’m not the kind of photographer that will take photographs of a flower from eight different angles. I will chose the pictures I think are the best from your wedding and these images will be processed and provided on a memory stick or DVD. Typically for Registry Office Weddings you will receive, depending on time and the size of your wedding party, around 150-200 images. For a full day wedding with a lot of guests you would be looking at 600+.
You will receive a mixture of colour and black & white photos and they are supplied in a high-resolution jpeg format without logos or watermarks. I’m also happy to provide some images at a lower resolution for Facebook, by email, etc.
Can we use our pictures completely free?
Yes, you get free usage rights or private use. It only makes sense, they are your pictures :). That means you can share photos with family and friends, create albums or scrapbooks, send thank you cards etc. If you need some guidance and tips where you should order the pictures I can help you with this.
It’s not mandatory but I do ask if you share the photos you credit me so as to help promote my business. My only criteria is the images aren’t used for commercial contexts without my consent. I retain copyright on the photos and reserve the right to use the images for my own marketing purposes.
Where is it wise to take wedding photos?
You may want to find one special place that is well suited to fine weather and sunshine. We would look for spaces that offer great contrasts, colours and the ability to shoot in a bit of shade. If there is rain we must have a plan B. It can be indoors, in bright rooms with plenty of space and plenty of natural light enters. If you’re feeling more adventurous it could be somewhere outdoors under cover or under a large tree. I would also recommend having large transparent umbrellas on the day just in case it does rain on the day and you want to take photos outside. These are things we can work out together while planning and discussing your wedding. To save time it is advisable to decide on one or two locations around the venue for group photos and if you want to take photos away from the venue just one location for couple shots.
What do we do if it rains on the day?
In Scotland there is always a risk of bad weather. In one day you can have frost in the morning, rain at lunchtime and blazing sunshine in the afternoon. It’s very unpredictable! Make sure you have a plan if it rains or snows. Umbrellas can by stylish but the right ones should be brought the for right occasion. For example if you don’t want the umbrellas in your photos, which make great props incidentally, then bring large transparent umbrellas. If you want the umbrellas in your photos generally avoid any logos but you can make them as cute or ordinary as you want. You could even bring one giant cozy umbrella for the two of you. Bright yellow neon umbrellas are inappropriate.
What do we pay for?
Me. You pay for the whole time I’m involved with your wedding. This includes wedding correspondence, telephone calls, preparations and planning as well as editing time. For the actual shooting, the time I spend throughout the day – from morning to evening. Not to mention the time spent editing your wedding pictures and clarification of the images you will receive full edited. You pay of course for someone who is capable of doing an exceptional job capturing moments at your wedding. You pay for the security, good backup procedures and for the good care that I take of your irreplaceable photos from easily one of the most important days of your life.
Is it possible to make an appointment so we can meet you before our wedding day?
Definitely! It’s great to be able to meet before the wedding. It’s one thing chatting on the phone or via email but it’s always nice to put a name to a face in person before the big day. By meeting me you can determine if I’m the right person for your wedding.
I’ve found a good way of working is to combine an engagement shoot with a planning session. I’m more than happy to just meet for a coffee and have a chat but by combining the sessions you can see how you feel having me take your photos and then we discuss styles of photography for your wedding and go over the essential details. If you go for an engagement shoot and later decide you want to hire me as your photographer then I can promise you a good discount on the engagement shoot. I would recommend doing these shoots a good couple months before your wedding so what we went over is still fresh in your mind and you have time to receive your images for “save the date” cards, wedding invitations and the like
Will your prices change after booking?
No, definitely not. The total price is the price we agree in advance of you booking your wedding. This price includes everything. I want to make everything as easy as possible for you.
Many feel that it is difficult to estimate what the total cost of wedding photography is when photographers operate with different package prices and different prices on everything from photography to albums, thank you cards etc. One may end up with a far higher total price for wedding pictures than you had anticipated before. I want to make it as easy as possible for bridal couples to estimate total costs in advance so there will be no risk of getting negative surprises.
Are there any other things we should think about before the wedding?
My main recommendation for bridal couples is to pace their day correctly. Allow enough time between the ceremony and wedding meal for group and couples photos but also for everyone, including the photographer, to have a break. Weddings are incredibly busy days for all and the last thing you want to do is exhaust yourself and collapse on the day.
Even when taking couples photos, bring yourself a bottle of fruit or energy juice. It may have been a few hours since breakfast and if you’ve had an alcoholic drink you may run out of energy. If you ever see inside my camera bag(s) you will almost always see at least one bottle of something to drink and if it’s really hot an energy bar or two.
Also don’t be afraid to bring a blanket or two with you so you don’t make your dress or suit dirty when sitting down. We may even go for shots where you’re lying down so a blanket or appropriate cover would be great.
How well in advance is it advisable to book a photographer?
I would suggest as early as possible. Some couples have booked me over a year before their wedding but I’ve had bookings four days before a wedding where a couple were going to ask a friend to photograph their wedding and suddenly changed their minds.
I photograph weddings any day of the week but there are only so many Saturdays in the year and many of them in Scotland are wet 🙂
Booking early will also allow plenty of time to plan your wedding.
We would like to book you as a photographer for our wedding. What do we do now?
If you decide to use me as your photographer there are a few things I need from you. The first is some details for a wedding contract. I need:
- Bride and groom’s full names
- An address
- Contact phone numbers for preferably both the bride and groom
- Confirmation of time of ceremony
- Confirmation of location of ceremony
Once provided I’ll put all the details into a contract and email this to you in a PDF format. There are comprehensive terms and conditions but I’m quite relaxed on most terms so things can be changed. I also ask a retainer be paid up front which is 30% of the wedding balance. This secures your wedding. I request the final balance be paid between four and two weeks prior to the wedding.
Is there anything else you need?
I’m very relaxed about most things but there are two things I ask before weddings. The first is a wedding itinerary. This tells me where I need to be and at what time and helps me co-ordinate photos with both the wedding party and the organisers.
The other thing is a shot list. Please recognise that I have my own photographic style so if you meet me and want me to shoot in someone else’s style, if completely different, it’s not going to happen. I’m happy to see other people’s work as rough guidelines but I do have my own style. Also please make sure I have a shot list well in advance. Again this applies more for group shots but there’s no point in giving me three A4 pages of very specific shots two days before your wedding. This will only end in disaster and missed shots.
It is also extremely helpful if someone(s) in the wedding party can assist me with group shots. If you have a large wedding party and want multiple group shots it could potentially take me a very long time to organise people. If for example a groom and a bridesmaid can help organise people that will save a huge amount of time on the day.
Wedding albums? How do they work?
With the larger wedding packages I offer, the Gold, Silver and Platinum Wedding Packages, these include wedding albums. For more information about wedding albums click here.
Can you act as a witness?
Yes sure, most of the time this isn’t a problem. In the case of Registry Office Weddings where it’s just a bride and groom getting married I have been asked multiple times if I can act as a witness. That’s definitely no problem for me but I need at least a couple weeks notice to arrange for a second witness
Why hire a second shooter?
This is something I get asked about quite a lot and yes a second photographer can be supplied at cost. Having a second shooter is completely beneficial for everyone involved. Here are some reasons for hiring a second photographer.
- While the primary shooter is busy with the wedding couple, photographing groups etc the second shooter can walk around and take candid shots of people
- The second shooter will offer a completely different perspective to your wedding. Every photographer no matter their level of training shoots completely differently
- The second photographer can give the main photographer a break. For example while the main photographer is doing the couples and groups photos the second photographer can take gentle candid shots and when everyone sits down for speeches the second photographer can take over. This is beneficial.
- Perhaps the most important reason for hiring a second photographer is we can show you how to pose. My wife assists me 99% of the time and we can show you poses that without her I couldn’t do.