Premiere Bay Area Wedding Photography Blog by Trifon Anguelov Photography

1090 Clark Avenue, Mountain View, CA 94040 | (650) 930-0743 | http://www.trifonanguelov.com


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3 Reasons Why Photographers Don’t Give RAW Files


Bridal Flowers Photo by Trifon Anguelov Photography

Bridal Flowers Photo by Trifon Anguelov Photography

Welcome to the digital imaging age. No longer one has to buy rolls of films, load them into their camera and later wait for them to be developed before seeing the final images on prints. The digital revolution made all this obsolete. The age of instant gratification started long time ago and there is no way going back.

Nowadays clients expect to receive and see their images few days after the portrait or events sessions (for weddings few weeks). And many photographers share the digital images with their clients, enhanced and ready to print. But still, there is one questions which I hear from my clients: Can I have the RAW files from my portrait session?

Although the short answer is: NO, the fact that the clients are asking the question deserves a reasonable explanation. Portrait, Event and Wedding Photography, in which Trifon Anguelov Photography is specializing, is a service based business and a photographer cannot expect everyone to known the RAW files details.

One way I try to explain to clients is that asking for RAW files is the same thing as going to Ihop for breakfast and instead of ready to eat pancakes, the waitress brings the clients bag of flour, eggs, milk and mixing bowl and expecting them to cook their own pancakes instead of enjoying the weekend and time with their families. Not to mention that the reason they came to Ihop was because of the ready to eat delicious pancakes only Ihop can make.  

RAW files by itself and the intermediate step for photographers to capture, process and deliver the final ready to view and print images to their clients. It’s not the end product and therefore sharing them doesn’t make sense.

1. RAW files are not the final product:

They are like a granite boulder, the sculptors use to carve a beautiful statue, or a canvas, brushes and oil paint the painters use to pain their master pieces, or the ingredients master chefs use to create the delicious dishes for their restaurants. As the raw ingredients are not enough to create the flavor, taste, presentation and experience we get from restaurant to restaurant, so RAW digital images by itself don’t provide the entire experience.

As such, all the enhancements and creativity a photographer does on top of the RAW digital files, cannot be presented and provided to the clients unless these changes are captured and saved. The process of enhancing the RAW files and saving all the changes a photographer does, is possible by creating a JPEG, TIFF or PNG file and sharing it with the clients.

2. Hard to View and Share:

Most commonly used image viewer applications don’t understand and can open RAW files.

Photo sharing websites, which make sharing and viewing images very easy, also cannot handle RAW files. To see an example of shared images online, take a look at Trifon Anguelov Photography’s Portfolio.

3. RAW files are huge:

They contain lots of information which cannot be easily displayed on a computer screen. Because the RAW files very large  sharing, downloading and uploading them is a time and network bandwidth consuming process. RAW files contain information which is used for enhancing the images, but once the look and feel are finalized, the RAW files are exported into compressed and more manageable digital image formats as: JPEG, TIFF, PNG.

Think of the RAW files as video footage captured during filming the latest movie blockbuster. The same way as the raw video footage is then edited, certain scenes are selected to implement the film director’s vision, audio and video effects are added to come up with the final movie we all see in the movie theaters, the RAW digital files are being processed and enhanced by the photographers. The final results are much better version than the original RAW files.

Conclusion:

I hope this blog article explained what digital RAW files are and why photographers don’t share them with their clients. It’s not that they cannot or simply don’t like sharing them, but it has more to do with the customer experience the photographers are trying to provide to their clients. The digital images shared with the clients in JPEG format are the final product of photographer’s talent, creativity and experience. The RAW files are simply the raw material, the photographers use to craft the beautiful and stunning images their clients hired them to do.

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov Photography is a Premiere Bay Area Wedding and Events Photography business  based in Mountain View, CA 94040 and serving clients in San Francisco Bay Area. You can read more about the author and follow his work on his Bay Area Wedding Photography Site

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Photographer’s Jargon For Everyday People


polaroid camera

Old Polaroid Instant Camera

I know exactly how you feel. You just started looking for a photographer to take your family portraits or looking to hire one for your wedding.

The good news is that there is no shortage of photographers nowadays unless you live in Antarctica or on a remote island surrounded my thousands of miles of water and no other humans around.

The chances are that there are so many photographers in your area and it could be overwhelming to chose the right one. Photographers come in “all shapes and sizes”:

– Portrait photographers: who take family, baby, newborn, high school seniors, headshots photos

– Event photographers: who capture birthdays, anniversaries, parties, graduations, or any gathering where people are having fun

– Wedding photographers: who you hire to take your engagement and later wedding day photos

The bad news is that once you visited different photographers websites, started doing research online and eventually meet face to face some of these photographers, you will start hearing terms you never heard before. And frankly speaking, some might not even make much sense to you. It might feel like a secret language spoken by just few in order to keep in secrecy the photography craft or make the clients so intimidated by the jargon that they will be willing pay whatever it takes to get over the photo session as soon as possible. No questions asked. Just send us the bill.

If you fell the same or similar way and continue to read this page, I will try to explain some of the photography jargon in simple, plain English words so that you are educated and don’t feel intimidated. Like a photographer myself, working with clients in San Francisco Bay Area, I came up with the list after interacting with clients and having to explain some of the terms I thought they already knew.

So here is the current index of the terms I will be going over. You can click on each word and jump to the explanation or can scroll down and read all of them one by one.

Golden Hour
SOOC
Proof Images
Photo Retouching
Photo Enhancing
Strobes
Flash Guns
Bokeh
Lightroom and Photoshop
Soft Light and Harsh Light
Sun Flares
Backlighting
Primary and Second Shooter
MUA / HMUA
Color Balance
Digital Images
Prints
TFP
Model Release
Copyright Release
RAW Files
JPEGs
Low Resolution (low-res) Files
High Resolution (high-res) Files
Portfolio
First Look
L Lenses
Pro Body

 

Golden Hour:

Refers to the time of the day when the sun light is so pleasant to capture and the photos look very beautiful to look later, that one should pay in gold to have this time 24 hours per day. It’s the best time of the day to have photos taken and is usually one hour after sunrise and one hour before sunset. So don’t be surprise that a photographer would do their best to convince you to schedule your session during this time of the day. Trust them. This is true and not a myth.

SOOC (Straight Out Of the Camera):

What you should think when hearing this acronym, is raw diamonds just discovered by the miners. In this case, these are images the photographer captured without any enhancements or adjustments. Like a raw diamond needs to be polished and shaped to shine to its best, so the photographers process all SOOC digital images before you get to see them. If you photographer insist to give you SOOC and not processed images, ask him why.

 

Wedding Portrait at Allied Art Guild, Menlo Park, CA

Wedding Portrait at Allied Art Guild, Menlo Park, CA

 

Proof Images:

Another term related to the digital images a photographer takes. The proof images are already enhanced version of the photos the photographer took and are usually presented as small format prints (4×6″ or less). This way the client can see how they would look like before he or she decides to order large format prints or canvases. Digital proofs are obviously, the digital version of the final images a client can see before making a selection or ordering prints.

Photo Retouching:

Retouching has to do with making your skin look smoother, removing any pimples, scars, blemishes, removing litter on the ground or electric poles from your images. Anything which the photographer considers distraction or not pretty enough to be in your images. Think of it like twisting reality. I am sure you all have seen the video of over sized and not that pretty girl, looking like a top beauty model after digital retouching. If not, hit Youtube. There are tons of videos available.

Photo Enhancing:

Unlike the photo retouching which is altering the reality, photo enhancing simply is about making the images look prettier. Not all about shaving few pounds with Photoshop, or patching the bare grass spot in the photo.Enhancing has more to do with making the colors more vibrant, the whole image brighter and sharper. This of it like the way how you adjust the picture of your TV for brightness, sharpness and vivid colors. The picture and the subjects are not changed, but more the way how they look. To read more on what is the difference between photo retouching and enhancing, make sure to check this guide: Wedding Photography FAQs

Strobes:

If you think these are DJ strobe lights pulsating in high frequency, hold your breath.  These are professional grade lights powered by AC or batteries. Photographers use them to illuminate large venues, in their studios or anywhere where additional light is required. These are mounted on light stands and are like mini Suns helping the photographer to get well lid and dramatic portraits of you.

 

Wedding Deserts at Los Altos County Club, Los Altos, CA

Wedding Deserts at Los Altos County Club, Los Altos, CA

 

Flash Guns:

Don’t think of photographers as a violent bunch. This has nothing to do with firearms and guns. It is a jargon for small portable lights, photographers use to illuminate you and your surroundings when there is no natural light available. Like at night, in a dark church, before sunrise or after sunset. These are battery operated and provide enough light so you can recognize yourself in the final images.

Bokeh:

When you photographer talks about “bokeh” what he is really trying to tell you that the background of your pictures would be blurry, while you being in front of the background would be sharp in focus. It’s the effect that brings more attention to the subject and less to the distracting background. Now that you know what it is, surprise your photographer and ask him to create images of you with beautiful bokeh. 🙂

Lightroom and Photoshop:

These are just the names of the most popular digital editing software applications. Now that you know what is a RAW file and JPEG, what is retouching and enhancing, we can all put it together. Lightroom allows the RAW or JPEG (TIFF) files to be enhanced and exported as JPEG so you can see and print, while Photoshop allows to edit RAW files, retouch them and export as JPEG (or TIFF, or PNG). And this is what you might need to know about these two.

Soft Light and Harsh Light:

It’s light what makes photographs after all. With no light there will be no shadows (dark areas) and highlights (bright areas) in the photos. When photographers talk about soft light, what they mean is that there are less shadows and less highlights and the image looks less contrasty. The contrast is when you have dark shadow area next to bright highlight area. Soft light is available when there are clouds in the sky which filter the harsh sun like the transparent curtains in your room, during the time close to sunrise and sunset when the Sun is low and not straight above you.

Harsh light is when the Sun is overhead and falls straight down on anyone being photographed. This is usually the case in a bright sunny day and in the open space with no trees or buildings to cast shadows. The harsh light creates strong shadows which are not very pleasant for portraits usually and leave you with dark circles under the eyes (Sun falls down on your face and causes the shadows from your eye bras).

Sun Flares:

These are rainbow looking circles which are created when camera and lens are pointed towards the direction of the Sun. As the light enters the lens, some light is refracted and captured as flares. Most photographers are aware of the flare and can use them for additional artistic effects. The images taken with camera towards the direction of the Sun also have haze which gives the images haze and dreamy look.

 

Bride & Groom Portrait in Mountain View, CA

Bride & Groom Portrait at Rengstorff House, Shoreline Park in Mountain View, CA

 

Backlighting:

As you might have already guest this one: it has to do with placing you between the Sun and photographer’s camera in a such way that the Sun is at your back. Doesn’t sounds like we were told: The Sun should be at your face when taking pictures. What? Having the clients blinded and squinting their eyes with Sun in their face? No. This is not what photographers do. Having the Sun at your back, gives you a light rim around your hair and face (if in profile) and makes everything looking fuzzy and dreamy.

Primary and Second Shooter:

Unlike in the military, there are no ranks and hierarchy between photographers. You might hear this from wedding photographers most likely and what they are actually trying to tell you that a Primary photographer is the “Boss” and the Secondary photographer is the “Helper”. The primary is the one who you will hire and would be responsible for your images. The Second photographer would be there to capture the same scene from a different angle or position. And again, photographers have nothing to do with shooting firearms. They just like to refer to taking pictures as “shooting” and call other photographers: “shooters”. Go figure.

MUA / HMUA:

These are two acronyms which stand for Make Up Artist (MUA) and Hair and Make Up Artist (H/MUA). Nothing fancy. These are the people who would make you look pretty for your photo session so that the photographers can capture the images. Important if you like to look beautiful and pretty as a cover girl or simply to enhance your natural beauty. These skilled professionals know how to make a woman looks at her best.

Color Balance:

If your photographer mentions color balancing of your images, you should short list him immediately. This is not what the armature photographers usually do, because requires skills and time. Color balancing is making sure your skin tones would look natural without hint of orange, red, green or blue cast. When taking pictures indoors in restaurants, homes with incandescent or fluorescent lights overhead, these lights can color your skin in orange or green. It’s the photographer’s job to correct this and not make you look like a Halloween pumpkin or Walking Dead zombie.

Digital Images:

This is what nowadays all digital cameras we have shows us on the LCD screens. This is what we see on our smartphone screens after taking a selfie. Digital files which contain the moments of our lives. This is what most photographers would give you after the end of the session. Unless, you want to buy paper prints of course. More on prints below.

Prints:

These are the physical paper prints you get from a photo printing lab when you give them your digital images. Prints are what we frame and put in albums. Prints come in different sizes (4×6″, 5×7″, 8×10″ , etc) and are printed on different material (photo paper, fabric canvases, metal plates, etc).

 

Bridal Bouquet at St, Ceilia Church in San Francisco, CA

Bridal Bouquet at St, Ceilia Church in San Francisco, CA

 

TFP:

This acronym stands for: Time For Prints (or Photos). Many upcoming models looking to create their own portfolios, so they can get hired by modeling agencies would partner with known photographer and barter their time and beauty in exchange for high-resolution images. The photographer can add these images to his or her own portfolios to display the work he or she can do. So it is a win-win situation for both. As a everyday client, unless you have astounding beauty and look, it might be hard to get TFP. But it is worth the try.

Model Release:

This one is again for models, but in case you found a photographer who can do TFP session with you, he or she most likely would ask you to sign a model release form. The purpose of this form is you as a model or a client, to state that you will not have any monetary or rights claim on the final images. It’s required for a photographer to have a model release form it he or she are trying to submit these images for publications or to sell them as stock images. As no one would buy re rent a house without a clearly defined owner or multiple owners, so the companies or publishing houses would not accept images where the ownership is not clear.

Copyrights Release:

In most countries around the work, the photographer owns the copyrights of the images taken. This means that you like a client even if you purchase the digital images from your wedding, are still obligated to let the photographer know before you try to get them published, printed in magazines, etc. However, if the photographer agrees to transfer the copyrights to the images to you, you no longer have to do that. The only thing you need to do, is have the images with copyright release transferred, become a movie star and sell the images from your wedding to the highest bidder. It not, don’t bother with it.

RAW Files:

This has nothing to do with raw fish and sushi, but is a term photographers use to describe the digital files they download from the camera into their computers before they start to digital enhance the images. These files cannot be easily open with most image viewers and have to be converted to readable file formats as JPEG, TIFF, PNG, etc. As RAW files are simply the non enhanced images, asking the photographer to give you the RAW files means you will not benefit from any enhancement he or she would to on these images. It is similar to asking a jeweler to give you the raw diamond instead of ready to wear ring he made just for you. RAW files are for photographers who know how to use and enhance them. Settle down for JPEG files instead.

JPEGs:

JPEG is a file format, way to compress and make the RAW digital files readable for everyone. It a universal format and has been around for ages. You can open and view on any device with a screen, you can print them in any print lab, you can keep them and be sure they can be opened even years later.

High Resolution (high-res) Files:

High resolution digital files are referred to files which contain most of the digital pixels making your images. The size of these high-res files is close to what the digital camera is capable of capturing. Large prints can be printed from these files (example: 16×20″) if required. Most high-res files are up to 25MB of size for a single file. If you are not planning to print in large format, them most likely you don’t need them.

Low Resolution (low-res) Files

Low resolution digital files are trimmed version of the high resolution files. The size is reduced by compressing the pixels and also discarding pixels so the image size is reduced. These are still high quality images but in a smaller size. If you plan to print pictures no larger than 5×7″ you can ask for low-res images and save money on the high-res additional cost. Displaying online and sharing on Facebook doesn’t require high-res images either. Most online photo sharing sites, compress the high-resolution images anyway, so you paying for high-res images only to have them “truncated” when posted online might not be a savvy use of your hard earned money. Low resolution images are created to save space and time, when sharing online, uploading or downloading. It has nothing to do with the image quality as many people think.

Portfolio:

This is simply a collection of photographer’s best images, curated carefully for the purpose to wow the clients and demonstrate the photographer’s skills and style. In the past portfolios were composed of actual paper prints and carried around or available at photographer’s studio for the clients to touch, feel and see. As all the film cameras are thing from the past and clients rarely have to visit a studio anymore to have their portraits taken, almost every photographer has their portfolios online. Available 24×7 to everyone from everywhere. If you cannot find photographer’s portfolio on his website, you might be dealing with a Photography Scam artist. Don’t fall pray, be educated: How To Avoid Photography Scams

First Look:

This term is used for weddings and means the groom would have the opportunity to see the bride in her wedding dress before the actual ceremony. The first look is usually planned to happen for about 30-45 minutes and in a location where the couple won’t be distracted or interrupted. As the groom reacts to his bride beauty and she is excited to see him dazzled, so the photographer has great opportunity to capture the feelings and passion both have for each other. For more on first look and the wedding day, check this guide: How To Prepare For Your Wedding Day

L Lenses:

If your photographer uses Canon cameras and lenses, you might hear him brag or mention that he uses L lenses. Well, these are not L-shaped lenses but a model of Canon lenses with professional quality. These lenses usually have a red ring, have the top quality glass and glass coating. In everyday terms: L lenses are better quality and suppose to take better images. If you photographer knows how to use them. It’s about the chef and not the stove or knifes he is using.

 

Wedding Details at Cinnabar Hills Golf Course, San Jose, CA

Wedding Details at Cinnabar Hills Golf Course, San Jose, CA

 

Pro Body:

Well this one should be easy but I will explain it anyway. Not all digital cameras are created equal. Some are more affordable and designed for everyday consumer in mind. These are called consumer (amateur) bodies. Some are more advanced but still not considered full professional (pro) bodies. These are prosumer (mix of pro & consumer). And finally, there are professional (pro) camera bodies which are used by professional photographers. These are top of the line and have many advanced features as: durability, ability to super fast focus, waterproof sealing, dual memory cards, etc.

 

Conclusion:

I hope that you found this article educational and useful. I also hope that you learned some of photographer’s jargon and would feel more comfortable when discussing your portrait session or wedding with your photographer. If you think some of your friends would benefit from it, please share this article with them. Better educated consumers are better for the photography as a whole. If you have any comments, feedback or would to suggest a new term, please add them into the comments below. I would consider adding it to the list.

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov is the owner of Trifon Anguelov Photography, a Premiere Bay Area Wedding and Portrait Photographer in Mountain View, CA. He offers full range of portrait, events, engagements and wedding photography services. To learn more about him and his work, visit his website.


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Why Wedding Photographers Hide Their Prices


Wedding reception at Reimgstorff House, Shoreline Park, Mountain View, CA  A wedding budget is one thing many brides consider when starting to plan their weddings. Like a shopping for a new car or planning a vacation, most of us have a predetermined amount (budget) they are considering to spend on something. If you are one of the lucky ones, who don’t have worry about a wedding budget limitation: Well. Congratulations! This article might not be relevant for you then.

For the rest of the brides, who do have a wedding budget and are determined to fit into it, here are few thoughts on why not all wedding photographers advertise their prices. It is one of the most common complains I have heard from brides and widely discussed online, so decided to summarize my experience into this blog article.

So back to the question: Why Wedding Photographers Hide Their Prices?

Before we dive into the reasons why the prices for wedding photography might not be easy to find and understand, let’s first take a look at what a bride looking to understand how much a wedding photographer might cost, could find out on her own. There are basically three most likely outcomes:

#1: Zero Information: Some wedding photographers don’t list any prices on their websites. Nothing related to prices at all. If a bride is lucky, she might stumble upon few sentences as: “Your wedding is unique and we would like to ensure you would receive the best service possible. Contact us for further pricing information  …  etc”.

#2: Some Information But Not All: Other photographers might have listed a starting service fee and explanation of how a package can be customized to tailor the bride’s needs. Items as prints, albums, second photographer, etc can be added to the starting price as one see fit but no pricing for these items is provided. The pricing info available would look like: “Wedding packages starting at $3,500 (this will vary from photographer to photographer). Contact us for detailed pricing information … etc”.

#3: Comprehensive Pricing: The last group of wedding photographers provide detailed information not only about the service fee and the complete wedding photography package, but details on all included items or services. This would be example: second photographer, prints, photo retouching, high-resolution images, digital images, etc.

 

Bride & Groom Portrait in Mountain View, CA

Bride & Groom Portrait at Rengstorff House, Shoreline Park in Mountain View, CA

 

So now that we know what a bride can expect to find online, let’s analyze why a wedding photographer would opt for choice #1, #2 or #3 and talk about the pros and cons for each approach. Hopefully that would help you to understand some of the reasoning and answer the main question we started with: Why Wedding Photographers Hide Their Prices?

#1: No Prices or Whatsoever Pricing Information Exist:

Why you might ask?

Well, the reason is that these photographers consider themselves the most sought ones, the cream of the crop, among all wedding photographers.  Because the demand for their services is so high, they think clients would pay any price for their services and as the money are not an issue for these types of clients, why bother to list prices in the first place. Most of these photographers (well respected and established professionals indeed) have built their reputation of masters of the wedding photography business and don’t take on any client. So if they can pick and choose their clients, and would be a privilege for the client to book their services, so they can name their own price too.

Word of caution here: It also, could be that you are lured into a wedding photography scam. To learn more about protecting yourself from fraudulent wedding photographers, consider reading How To Avoid Wedding Photography Scams

Pros: Unless you are dealing with a wedding photographer who just launched its website and hasn’t posted any prices yet, you, like a bride, would already know enough about the photographer’s style, reputation and have the money to afford it. You would get an amazing wedding images to remind you of your wedding day and bragging rights of having hired a famous wedding photographer.

Cons: Not everyone can afford to hire a photographer who can name its own price. It also might get you a while to hear back from the photographer or not hear back at all. He or she is busy working with other affluent clients and even if you can afford it, you might have to book way in advance to get your date or consider getting married next year.

#2: Starting Prices Available But the Entire Wedding Photography Package is a Mystery That Needs To Be Unraveled:

This scenario is somehow better than #1 but still doesn’t answer our bride’s question: Can I afford this wedding photographer and are his/her services within my budget? To find the pricing, a bride has to email, call or leave a voice message for the photographer and hope to receive a prompt response. To make things worst, the response on “How much a such and such package would cost me?” question, might not be what she expects: an easy to understand price tag.

Why? There are many reasons, but the most common one I have heard, after speaking with brides and fellow wedding photographers, is: The wedding photographer who doesn’t provide complete pricing information but only a starting price, would first try to find out the date and name of the wedding venue.

 

Bridal Formal Portrait at Rengstorff House, Mountain View, CA

Formal Wedding Portrait at Rengstorff House, Shoreline Park, mountain View, CA

 

And you guested it right: high demand, creates shortage and therefore justifies higher prices. Not all wedding dates and venues are created equal. Some wedding dates are more popular than others because of  the weather pattern, relatives availability, religious and ethnic reasons. So are the venues. Many are simply more are expensive than others. So if many seek to book the same wedding date and the bride can afford to spend more than $20,000 on a venue, that speaks to the total amount of bride’s wedding budget.

And so these wedding photographers are simply adjusting their prices according to the demand for the wedding date and the overall wedding budget. Think of it like a floating pricing. The more budget the bride has, the more they charge. What would be the target price you might think? Well, let’s say it is between 10-15% of the wedding budget. So once these photographers figure out the total wedding budget, it’s simply a matter of calculating 15% of this amount and naming it as wedding photography package price.

Well, I can feel how some of you might have their brains exploding right now and getting their blood pressure raising. Some might be even ready to scream: This is an outrage! It feels like, me spending more than 6 hours in a car dealership, dealing with sleazy salesman who was trying to extract as much money as he could for my new car. I hate being taken advantage of. It feels like I am begging someone to answer a simple question: How much would it cost?

Well, I don’t blame you. You have the right to feel this way and most of you after not even considering option #1 and being completely outraged by option #2, now hope there is an option #3 to calm down your nerves. Well, you are in luck because option #3 does exists and might provide the answer to your question: It this wedding photographer for my budget or not?

But let’s first review the pros and cons of option #2 before we move down to option #3.

Pros: At least, you have a starting point to qualify the photographer, although as you heart might be telling you this might be a trap to get you into the door only to find out latter than the “add-on’s” quickly add up and make the overall package not affordable. You will at least get some idea about the pricing and something is better than nothing. You can continue to inquire for the rest of the information and get a chance to communicate with the photographer, therefore understanding how fast it responds to information requests, how detailed is, how it communicates: verbally or in written form, etc.

Cons: The final price might be miles apart from the listed starting price, so you might be wasting your time with this photographer. You might also have to spend an additional time and further questioning before getting to know the final price. It will for sure, delay you getting the answer to the question: Can I afford this photographer or Not? and if you are on a hurry to make a decision or don’t like to be interrogated before seeing to the price tag, you might be better off to consider option #3 instead.

So, don’t get depressed. There is a hope. So let’s jump to option #3 and see what it is all about.

 

Bride & Groom Portrait at Rengstorff House, Mountain View, CA

Bride & Groom Portrait at Rengstorff House, Shoreline Park, Mountain View, CA

 

#3: Not Only the Entire Wedding Package Price Information is Available But Also All the Services Are Listed in Great Details:

There are photographers who are listing the pricing and detailing their services on their websites.  These wedding photographers understand how valuable your time is. They themselves, feel that price and services offered should be easy to find and understand as walking into a store and reading the price label.  Or like shopping online where everything has easy to see and understand price. They believe that in today’s information age one should not have to call, text or email to get a price for a service.

These photographers also understand that answering their client’s questions before they even ask them is simply matter of great customer service. A bride visiting their website, doesn’t have to struggle into finding the information she is looking for. After all, anticipating client’s needs and providing answers before any questions arises, it is what clients want. To see an example of detailed pricing for wedding and other portrait photography sessions, take a look at Trifon Anguelov Photography Pricing

Pros: Pricing and services information is available at first sight. No need to waste time for inquiries and communication back and forth before qualifying a photographer for the wedding budget. Knowing everything about the pricing and services makes it easy to make a decision. You will not feel like taken advantage of or have post-wedding remorse when finding out other clients paid less for the same photographer and same coverage. And if the pricing is straightforward to get hold of and understand, so would be your experience dealing with the photographer.

Cons: Well, I cannot think of any. In today’s instant gratification society and information age, it does make sense to see an easy to understand price of almost anything.

Conclusion:

I hope this information was useful for brides to understand some of the reasons why some wedding photographers don’t post the prices for their packages and services. As with everything in life, there is no uniform truth, neither this does apply to all wedding photographers. Nor it is a rule you should follow 100%. Having or not having wedding services pricing available is also not a measure of wedding photographer skills or the quality of images he or she can deliver. So keep these considerations in mind and apply your own judgement when selecting a wedding photographer.

For additional information to help you plan your wedding day, make sure to read my Wedding Photography FAQ Guide.

If you found this information useful  and think your friends could benefit from it, please share it by using the multiple sharing options on the bottom. Agree, disagree, have comments or feedback? Think I am missing a point or two or three? Drop me a line in the comments section and I will consider adding it (with full credit to you, of course).

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov Photography is a Premiere Wedding and Events photography business based in Mountain View, CA 94040 and serving clients in the entire San Francisco Bay Area, CA. You can follow him on social media by checking on the social links in the top right side block.


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Tips For Choosing Wedding Photographer


Bridal Preparation at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

Bridal Preparation at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

 Ask any bride or event planner on what they consider is the most important thing when planning a wedding and the majority would mention selecting the right vendors was the most important decision they had to make. A complex and budget constrained event as a wedding requires highly skilled and experienced vendors in order to make it successful. Hiring the wrong vendor can cause the whole wedding to easily become nightmare and very stressful.

While many couples hire a wedding planner to help them with selecting and hiring the wedding vendors this might not be feasible for many other couples. As many couples decide to research, screen, interview and hire vendors on their own, they are faced with an important decision to make: Who is the appropriate vendor to hire? Who to screen and what are the questions to ask? What I should be looking for and how to determine what makes a good or bad wedding photographer?

So many questions and surprisingly there are not easy to understand guides available. I have photographed many weddings in the past and had the opportunity to meet and interview many couples and wedding planners in the past, there were six criteria which started to repeat consistently a wedding after wedding:

  • Availability
  • Cost
  • Photographer’s Personality
  • Photographer’s Experience
  • Photography Style
  • Image Quality

I hope by explaining each one of these criteria and why they are important when selecting a wedding photographer would help any bride or groom looking to make the right vendor’s choice. The criteria are ordered by importance in my view but you are free to probe and eliminate in any order you find applicable to your wedding.

Availability:

You have found online or got a solid referral to a wedding photographer you like. Great! Seems like your search is over.. Well, not exactly until you called the photographer only to find out your wedding date is actually already booked and he is not available. So before you go into deep research of anything else related to the photographer and its style, pricing, image quality, etc, ask the simple question: Are you available for my wedding date?

If yes, great. You just got closer to hiring the photographer you like. If not, you might have to consider other photographers in the area. Unless you are willing to postpone or change the date of your wedding when the photographer is available.

Cost: 

So you cleared the first hurdle of hiring a wedding photographer: Availability. Great! Now hold your breath and tread with caution. You are not there yet.

Before you all get excited about how cool and understanding the photographer is, how exactly he or she matches your personality and photography style taste, there is one important question to ask: Cost. Unless you have unlimited wedding photography budget or willing to stretch your budget or sacrifice lets say food, venue, flowers, etc in order to sign the photographer you like, you might have to make a choice.

If the cost of the wedding photographer is not something you can afford, there is no point to invest more time into pursuing this photographer. Unless you must have it and willing to make adjustments to your budget, or go over budget.

Wedding Ceremony at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

Wedding Ceremony at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

Photographer’s Personality:

Time for the third criteria on the path to hire your wedding photographer. So far you confirmed your date is not yet booked on his / her calendar and the cost is something which works for your budget. I can see you smile and understand how you might breathe easier now. So after phone conversation to clear the first two, you are finally set to meet the photographer in person and talk about your wedding.

Well, good for you. There is nothing more important than meeting and interviewing your vendors face to face. After all, you will be hiring someone who will spend at least 6 to 8 hours with you, will be around when shed tears of joy and excitement, when your father and mother see their little girl or boy take on life on their own and kiss & hug you, when your friends cheer from happiness and you party all night long. So if you are looking for someone who:

  • You can like simply like a human being and get along with
  • You have the feeling understands your needs and you can trust to capture the best moments of your life
  • You think would be liked by your parents and friends
  • You feel like belonging to your wedding

then you need to like your photographer for the person he or she it is. Do they listen and understand what are you trying to say or keep going like a broken record according to their script and trying to push the services and products they can offer? Are they fun to be around or anti-social ignorant to your needs “photography artist” who treat you like you know anything about what you need? Do you get the warm feeling that this is a person you would meet outside of your wedding and have funny and pleasant conversation with? Do you think you can trust that person to deliver on its promises or he or she gives you murky and incomplete pieces of information and vague answers.

Take your time to probe this in-depth and trust your gut feeling. If you don’t feel good about it now, the chances are that later you will not only not going to feel better about this person but you will also feel sorry for choosing it.

Photographer’s Experience:

And here we are. Availability: checked,  Cost: checked, Personality: checked. Seems things are going smooth for you after all. Lucky or simply you are so good at picking vendors. Time to check the next criteria: Experience.

Why does experience matter you might ask. Well, your wedding photographer would provide an important service on your wedding and 99% of service based activities are mastered by practicing. Like a swimmer who wakes up at 4:00 am every morning and swims for miles in order to perform at its best, or like an actor who rehearses its act over and over and performs in front of live audience night after night, the practice makes it better. There is no pill or app for wedding photography experience. Skills are learned and perfected over long period of time, so if the photographer you are considering has little or no experience with weddings at all, you might be making a big mistake.

No or inadequate experienced vendor will stumble when faces with fast paced and challenging event like a wedding, might miss important moments of your wedding, or might not know how to capture your beauty and emotions in a pleasant to look later way. So don’t underestimate the importance of previous experience. One more reason not to hire uncle Bob for your wedding.

Wedding Reception at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

Wedding Reception at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

Photography Style:

We are getting closer to narrow down to the right photographer for you. I can feel your excitement already. So what’s next? It’s something which cannot be easily explained in words as photography is a visual art: Style.

Like the latest fashion trend or designer clothing. I am sure this is natural to every bride. The feel, look and mood of each photo is either matching or not matching someone’s visual taste. Some like highly saturated colors in images, so like more mute and washed off colors. Some like the sunny and dreamy look of golden sunlight while some like more well-defined and contrasting transition between highlights and shadows. As the saying goes: The beauty is in the eye of the beholder. No right or wrong. You have to like the photography style the photographer has and can show you examples of from his or her previous work.

You will receive lots of wedding images and if you order, a wedding album with your favorite wedding moments captured forever. There is no way to change these images later. Either you pick the right photographer for its style or you will spent plenty of time after your wedding hating your wedding photos. Make the right choice!

Image Quality:

Congratulations! You have navigated successfully and feel pretty good about finding the wedding photographer you think is right for you. Before, go ahead and sign the contract, there is one more thing to consider: Image Quality.

The easiest way to see how your images might look is to visit the photographer’s portfolio and see the most recent examples of his or her work. Are the images in focus and you can see the details clearly? Are the people in the images have accurate skin color and don’t look orange like pumpkins or green like zombies? Are the images clear of distractions like partial body parts and are they aligned without tilted horizons and trees?

As this is very subjective criteria, again apply your own judgement. The chance is if you like the past photos most likely you will like the images from your wedding too. If not, try to explain your expectations. You need your wedding photographer to listen and explain how he or she can make them happen. If you feel like being convinced politely that this is not possible or doesn’t make sense, ask for explanation. After all, you will be the one looking at your wedding images over and over. You have to like them from the very first look and even years pass by.

 

Wedding First Dance at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

Wedding First Dance at Corinthian Event Center in San Jose, CA

 

Conclusion:

Selecting wedding photographer for your wedding is a time involving and step by step process. It requires time and energy to get it right. There is also not a one way to do it, neither there is a one wrong and one right way of doing it. It’s similar like a buying a new car or picking a dining place for Friday’s night. What might work for some could turn out to be completely not applicable for others.

The six steps I listed about are just few of the criteria to focus on when picking a wedding photographer. The point is that better educated and armed with knowledge brides are more likely to make the right decision that the one who decide to “roll the dice” and trust the vendors would do the right thing.

You also need to be aware of the ways not to fall prey to wedding photography scams. For more on this topic, make sure you read the two parts guide on How To Avoid Wedding Photography Scams:

I hope this article helps brides in their planning and selection of vendors. If you are looking for additional information on how to plan your wedding day, make sure to read my Wedding Photography FAQ Guide.

If you found this information useful  and think your friends could benefit from it, please share it by using the multiple sharing options on the bottom. Agree, disagree, have comments or feedback? Think I am missing a point or two or three? Drop me a line in the comments section and I will consider adding it (with full credit to you, of course).

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov Photography is a premiere wedding and events photography business  based in Mountain View, CA 94040 and serving clients in San Francisco Bay Area, CA. To review his portfolio and most recent work, visit his website.


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2014 In Review – How My First Year on Wordpress Did


Thank you to everyone who visited and shared feedback on my blog in 2014. This was the first year since I started to blog about photography and wedding photography and glad to see so much activity and interest.

You, the readers of this blog, definitely give me an inspiration and energy to keep blogging.

Thank you again for being such wonderful audience and community. See you again in 2015 (Psss! Working on few exciting topics and articles. Stay tuned! Woot!)

Here is my blog report for 2014.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,900 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.


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How to Prepare for Maternity Portrait Session – Top 10 Tips


Maternity Portrait in Trifon Anguelov Photography Studio, Mountain View, CAExpecting a new baby is an exciting moment in every woman’s life. It a time for love and passion about new unborn baby even before they have met. The feeling of growing new life although often followed by pains and aches, makes every new mother glow and shine. And what a better time and way to capture the joy and excitement than maternity portrait session.

I like a portrait photographer, love working with expecting mothers and her husband or partner to craft beautiful and artistic pregnancy portraits. I feel like each mother deserves to have these moments captured and recorded in framed prints to remind her of the day when she was so in love with her unborn baby.

It could be a daunting task however to find the right maternity portrait photographer who has the experience and skills to create these portraits. So many questions:

– When is the best time?

– What is the best place? Indoors or Outdoors? Could it be at out home?

– What to wear?

– How to prepare for the maternity portrait session?

To help expecting mothers prepare for their their pregnancy photography sessions, I have compiled the following list of 1o tips.

1. Pick the Best Time:

I recommend to schedule your session is between 31 and 36 weeks of your pregnancy. During that time, woman’s belly has a lovely round shape. The transformation of your body is both beautiful and in the same time interesting to capture on photos.  After the 36th week most women start to feel too bloated and uncomfortable during the session. Another advantage is that also gives you plenty of time to select and order your pregnancy photographs.

2. You Needs Are Unique:

It’s a good idea to discuss with your photographer any ideas about poses, look, location or props you might have in mind. Sure the maternity portrait photographer would have the experience and suggestions for you, but every client is unique. Your needs and expectations are unique. Discussing them would help the photographer to be in sync and prepare. If you have collected any maternity portrait examples, bring them to the consultation session.  There are so many great examples on the web: Pinterest or blogs. Even printed magazines or friend’s albums could be a source of inspiration. Visual examples are easy to understand and discuss.

3. Printed Portraits Are Beautiful:

If you consider to have the images from your session printed: baby book, large format prints or canvases, wallet-size photos, add to your Christmas cards is simply display them online on your Facebook page, make sure to let your photographer know in advance. It makes a difference if you going to keep these images private (in your bedroom, or share with only close family members) or display in public (in your living room or share online with all of your friends).

Also if you going to order large prints of your images, the image quality is usually higher than small wallet-size prints or for online. The photographer would be able to give you more information and show you samples of the final products, so you can make the right decision.

4. Your Body Will Be Photographed:

During pregnancy woman’s body goes through transformation and is not usual for stretch marks and birthmarks to appear. An experienced maternity photographer would know how to pose you so that these are less or not all visible. The same is true if any parts of your body have developed sensitivity during the pregnancy. Be sure to discuss this if you have anything about your body which you are not fully comfortable with. If you have any tattoos which you don’t want to show up in your final artistic images, the photographer can use your clothing or posing to hide this. The other option is to ask for retouching in post-processing to remove these completely from your final images.

5. Having Company Is Fun:

Don’t be afraid to bring your husband or older children to your session. If you plan to have them both, plan to have your children photographed first and arrange for someone to take them home after that. Having others be part of your session allows the photographer to create more family like images and it is a great time for your older children to show the love for your unborn baby. You would need the privacy and quiet time for more images with your husband or alone. More intimate maternity portraits require you to feel relaxed and undisturbed, so privacy is something to consider when planning your session.

 

Maternity Portrait in Mountain View, CA

6. Calm Down and Enjoy:

This is the most important and yet most neglected advise I can give to my clients. Sure you will be excited and would do anything in your power to look great in your images, but if you are not relaxed or uneasy, then this will show into your final photographs. So take a mental not to yourself and plan to relax before the session. Try not to schedule anything to close of too hectic before the session. Go to your favorite spa, pamper yourself with manicure and pedicure, have your hair and makeup done in a salon instead of you trying to do everything before the session. Taking a short nap is another way to feel relaxed and well rested.

Once in the studio and during the session, let the photographer take care of the details. Enjoying the moment and sinking into the excitement will make you look and feel great. This is all what the maternity portrait session is all about. You are beautiful and your maternal glow is amazing. It is great to be mother and you should enjoy every minute of it. You hired a qualified and skilled photographer. Let him take care of the photo shoot.

7. Clothing Does Matter: 

Stretching garments and clothing can leave marks on your beautiful round belly. Plan to remove any tight clothes and elastic bands from your body at least 2 hours before the start of your session to allow any marks to disappear. This includes socks, bras, snug underwear or maternity pants. Dressing in robe or lose dress will keep your skin smooth. Wearing slippers or slip on shoes would make it easy for you to take them off. Not having skin marks is especially important if you plan to have nude or semi-nude images taken. The beauty of your belly and body would be spoiled by any marks left by the clothing or undergarments and these could be easily avoided by simply planning ahead.

8. Posing Helps Create Great Photographs: 

Big part of having beautiful pregnancy portraits is the posing. Most likely your photographer would direct you and explain how you should pose, but if you have any specific pose or poses in mind, make sure to talk to him before the start of your session. This will allow the photographer to incorporate and prepare the studio background and lights.

Also discuss about what poses you are comfortable or willing to put a limit up to. Are you comfortable posing without any clothing? Are you looking for more intimate or more conservative poses? Are you looking for high key (bright and white background) images or low key (moody and black background) images instead? Are you looking for color or black and white images? More lifestyle or more artistic? These are all personal preferences and expectations which will help your photographer to pose and capture for you. So don’t assume. Talk to him and agree before the session.

9. Different Looks Are Interesting: 

Plan to bring different clothes and outfits to your session. You would spend at least one hours and you most likely wouldn’t want to appear in the same clothes on all of your images. Having different outfits in your pregnancy photos is a good idea. It will also give you a chance to catch your breath and try different styles. In general, fabrics which adhere to the body shape are best choice so your round belly can be well visible. Stretchy fabrics and clothes which you can slip into and unzip easily are the best. Another idea is to bring wraps, scarfs or fabric to wrap around your body for more artistic look.

10. Don’t Fret The Accessories: 

Finally, the accessories. Many women think this is not a good idea for maternity session, but when applied with moderation and with a good sense of taste, accessories add additional focal point and interest to your photos. And this is not just jewelry? You can bring bay shoes, ultrasound picture of your baby, banner you are your husband created, pictures, stuffed animals or simply your favorite flower. I have photographed a husband pretending to water his wife tummy with a cute little watering can, just to give you another idea. Possibilities are endless. Be creative and you would later enjoy the results.

 

Pregnancy Portrait Session at Trifon Anguelov Photography Studio in Mountain View, CA

Pregnancy Portrait Session at Trifon Anguelov Photography Studio in Mountain View, CAPregnancy Portrait Session at Trifon Anguelov  Photography, Mountain View, CA

 

Conclusion:


I hope his collection of tips on how to prepare for maternity portrait session would help expecting mothers to prepare for their sessions. This is just some of the information, so if you are interesting into additional information, be sure to check my Frequently Asked Questions for Maternity Portrait Session.

If you found this information useful  and think your friends could benefit from it, please share it by using the multiple sharing options on the bottom. Agree, disagree, have comments or feedback? Think I am missing a point or two or three? Drop me a line in the comments section and I will consider adding it (with full credit to you, of course).

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov Photography is a premiere wedding and events photography business  based in Mountain View, CA 94040 and serving clients in San Francisco Bay Area, CA. You can review his current Maternity and Pregnancy Portraits Portfolio and Book an Online Appointment for one of his services.


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How to Photograph Wedding Formals


Bride & Groom Formal Wedding Photo at Saint Cecilia Catolic Church in San Francisco, CA Ask a wedding photographer about what is the most stressful and least favorite part of the wedding day and with no doubt the answer would be: The Family Group Photos or in short The Wedding Formals. I am yet to meet a photographer who would confess that this is what they enjoy and looking forward to do on each wedding.

And yet, the wedding formals are integral part of the wedding and cannot be easily omitted. This is the time after the wedding ceremony when the bride and groom pose with their parents, bridal party (bridesmaids and groomsman), extended family, friends and relatives. The posed and camera aware photos are what many photographers have been taking over the years during each wedding and are deeply engraved into the minds of each couple planning their wedding. These are the favorite photos for bride’s and groom’s grandparents and one way way to see everyone smiling and posed as a group on a single image.

So if the wedding family group photos are so important for the couple and wedding guests, why the formals are stigmatized as least favorite? After photographing weddings for many years already and discussing the topic with fellow wedding photographers, few clear answers emerge:

  • Trying to bring more than 30 people at the same place after a 45-60 minutes wedding ceremony when everyone is getting tired and needs to hydrate or stretch around, is not an easy task. Relatives and friends tend to roam around and chit-chat despite the specific instructions to gather at the formal’s location
  • Strained family relationships make it hard to arrange people into the same photo, smiling and pretending to like each other. Many would even refuse to stand close to each other, not to mention to smile for the photos
  • Macro managing relatives shoving the wedding photographer aside and trying to dictate who should be or not be in the photos. Some go even further by insisting on a particular location and grouping that makes it impossible to get everyone posed
  • Missing family members who decided to visit the bar or check their Facebook news feeds right after the ceremony. Imagine the effort a photographer needs to put to get everyone to put down their phones and look into the camera
  • Various distractions in the area where the family formals are scheduled. Everyone needs to look into the camera, smile, not blink and smile. Multiple shots are required to capture everyone at their best look, which adds time to the  post-processing for downloading, culling and processing these images

So now that we know what the wedding formals are and why are they so hard to organize and capture, what can a wedding photographer do to make the process easier? I have compiled a list of 5 easy to follow steps for making the group photos part of the wedding easier:

1. List All Required Group Poses and Validate The List With The Bride:

First start with a list of poses to capture. It gives you a mental checklist to work with and to look for while photographing the wedding. I am not talking about carrying a piece of paper and checking off each pose you listed, but more like a set of images you must take. If you have photographed at least 20 weddings in the past you would know these by hearth now.

One mistake which many novice wedding photographers make is to sit down by themselves and come up with a list of images, both formal or creative. Even worst, they search online, pick a list and decide to replicate it without one VERY important consideration: Reviewing and discussing the list with the bride and groom. The key to success is to have the list reviewed by both sides (photographer and bride & groom) and agreed on before the wedding. Make sure what you are proposing and planning for would need bride’s expectations. She is your client and paying you lots of money for it.

Why it is important to review the list with the bride is two fold: First she is the one who will review the final images. Second is that she knows better if uncle Fred doesn’t get along with groom’s father and there is no way on Earth he will stand besides him on the group pictures. The bride can give you valuable insights into the family and relatives relationships, something which you might have to learn the hard way.

And while reviewing the list with the bride, ask her who are the important people she would like to see in the formal pictures. How, in her view, these people should be grouped? Listen, take notes and change the list according to her comments. Having the list of poses ahead of time and sending it to the bride and groom to review before the wedding is a great way to prepare. And lastly, don’t forget to take fun pictures as well. Many brides expect not only posed but also fun group pictures, so incorporate few of these as well. It makes the wedding guests smiling during these fun pictures and everyone looks relaxed.

2. Pick and Finalize The Formals Location With The Bride:

Having an agreement with the bride and groom on where the formal picture session would take place is a good start. If you have been on the venue before, propose few locations where you think the light conditions would be appropriate or the background would be interesting. If you have not been in the venue in the past and can visit it, do so. Being at the venue around the time you are planning to photograph the formals would get you more realistic idea of the light and shadows during that time of the day.

Be prepared with any additional lighting and have a lighting assistant if required. It’s a hectic time and having an extra helping hand is always a good idea. If you are the planning everything type of photographer, having a backup location is an excellent idea.

3. Have a Plan Of Attack:

So now that you have the list (what) and location (where) for the wedding formal photos, it’s time to think about the plan (how). You will have to work with large groups of wedding guests: bride, groom, parents, bridal party, relatives, friends. None of these people would know how you want them to pose and where to stand, so be prepared to give directions and pose everyone. Knowing how to get everyone in a line to avoid wide-angle curvature, how to prevent people casting shadows on each other, how to arrange by height starting from the middle is something you need do.

The easy way to approach this is to keep in mind who the main focal point of the formal pictures is: THE BRIDE AND THE GROOM!

So now that you know that, simply bring in and out important people into each pose. Here are few to start with:

  • Bride, Groom and One Side of the Parents
  • Bride, Groom and Other Side of the Parents
  • Bride, Groom and Groomsmen
  • Bride, Groom and Bridesmaids
  • Bride and Groomsmen
  • Bride and Bridesmaids
  • etc

Ask everyone to look into the camera and prepare to take at least two frames of each pose. People tend to blink and with 10 people in the pose, the chances are you would have someone with their eyes closed. Having second frame reduces this chance. When kids are in the picture, ask some of their parents or another adult to stand behind you and capture their attention. Then snap the photo.

4. Communication Is The Key to Success:

I think we covered all the preparation steps: what, where and how. Now is time to make all this happen. The execution phase.

I have found over the years that a good plan without an execution is simply a delusion. If one knows how to do something but fails to execute and complete it, then nothing else matters. Still a failure.

The key to perfectly executed plan during a wedding day is: COMMUNICATION!

It’s important during the planning to respond quickly to bride’s and groom’s questions and keep them informed during the booking and contract signing phase. It is no different on the wedding day. Everyone is running on their own schedule, lots of previously planned details will change in the last minutes. Keeping the flow of communication between you, your assistant, bride, groom and wedding coordinator is what will make or break a wedding day. Make sure you check how is everything going according to the plan and ask if there are any updates you should know.

Check with the wedding coordinator for any changes or if you have any questions. The other people who you should communicate with during the wedding: The Maid of Honor and Best Man, Mother of the Bride, Ceremony Officiant. They all have information about the wedding and checking with them from time to time, will help you to stay informed.

Remember that is not all about taking amazing pictures but also not missing any important moments and being prepared to adjust to all the changes on the wedding day.

5. Don’t Be a Hero, Enlist a Wedding Coordinator to Help You:

Having a wedding coordinator or bride’s friends help you during the formal pictures is a best way to distribute the load and reduce the stress on you: the photographer. You will have someone who will organize everyone for the group photos, while you will be able to focus on the posing and capturing the shots. Someone from the bride or groom family would know who to get for the pictures, how they look or even their names. You most likely, as a photographer, would not.

Whoever you have helping you can also queue the people in line and keep them engaged while you are working with the current group. Bottom line, having someone helping you for the group photos is invaluable.

Conclusion:

No doubt wedding photographers get stressed out during the formal pictures. Dealing with group of people and directing them to do something which they not always enjoy or would like to do at the moment is not easy.

But there is no a reason to lose temper, get angry or cynical. Being professional and maintaining composure is the key. No matter how beautiful and amazing wedding pictures a photographer would take, the bride would always remember if he or she were rude with her family or friends. The image quality would be always tarnished by a not so pleasant personality. If you feel getting upset then step away, give an excuse for needing a break, breathe deep and come back ready to endure more formal pictures.

If you found this information useful  and think your friends could benefit from it, please share it by using the multiple sharing options on the bottom. Agree, disagree, have comments or feedback? Think I am missing a point or two or three? Drop me a line in the comments section and I will consider adding it (with full credit to you, of course).

About the Author:

Trifon Anguelov Photography is a premiere wedding and events photography business  based in Mountain View, CA 94040 and serving clients in San Francisco Bay Area, CA. You can read more about the author and review his portfolio on his website. For complete list of services, visit the Wedding Packages page.