Follow Us

Categories

Archives

Search Tags

Featured Couple: Jenny & Janine

Their Love Story…

 

“We met at a summer camp for children in Cold Spring Harbor, NY the summer of 2008,” says Jenny. “We were both camp counselors.” Jenny and Janine are long Island Natives and still live there today.
 

Their Proposal…

 

Jenny said yes in July of 2015. She says, “We spent a week at the shore in our favorite beach spot Rehobeth Beach, DE. I went to the University of Delaware for my undergraduate degree and we have a lot of memories from many fun-filled weekends at the beach. On our return trip home from vacation, we stopped at the University of Delaware to walk the campus, visit with old friends who stayed in the area, and bought some new college sweatshirts from the college bookstore just like old times. We ate lunch on Main Street and then decided to walk the large campus green. Janine got down on one knee under a huge oak tree in front of my favorite college historic dorm. I cried, and of course, I said yes! We had been together already 6 years prior. I was completely surprised!”
 

Why the Hudson Valley…?

 

Photo Credit: J.Ferrara Photography

“The Hudson Valley is near and dear to my heart,” says Jenny. “My grandparents lived in Cornwall-on- the- Hudson their entire lives. I spent many summers, holidays and special occasions at my grandparents’ house. In 2014 my grandfather passed away, their beloved home, which my grandfather built by hand, was sold, and the Hudson Valley is the one place in the world I can still feel close to him. There is something about the Hudson River and the mountains and the smell of the air of there that I feel his presence. Having our wedding at the Caldwell House Bed and Breakfast was a no-brainer. We wanted a long weekend wedding celebration with our immediate families, just 15 people. We rented every room in the entire main house for the weekend.”
 

Wedding Theme…

 

Jenny and Janine had a small wedding with a rustic, autumn theme full of simple, elegant touches
 

Most Memorable Moment…

 

Jenny says, “When I met my soon-to-be wife under the most beautifully decorated fall gazebo under the bluest clear sky. It was a picture perfect weather day.”
 

Advice for Engaged Couples…

 

Jenny says, “Don’t sweat the small stuff. The magic of the day passes so quickly so savor every moment. Everything will fall into place.” She also says to “Laugh a lot. It’s a good stress reliever.”
 

Vendors…

 

Venue: The Caldwell Bed & Breakfast, Salisbury Mills, NY

Photography: J. Ferrara Photography, Cornwall, NY

Dessert: Jones Farm, Cornwall, NY

Rehearsal Dinner: Billy Joe’s Ribworks, Newburgh, NY

Centerpieces and Bouquets: hand-made by Jenny
 

Photo Credit to all J. Ferrara Photography

 

 

Read More

Expert Advice For Finding Perfect Photo Locations

I remember when my husband and I were planning our wedding, I spent hours looking for perfect locations for photos.  I scoured Pinterest endlessly pinning wedding photos of every kind…outdoor photos, indoor photos, posed photos, and everything in between. Then my husband and I made a list of all the places we wanted to go to get photos that would give us the desired look we found in all those Pinterest photos.
 

Through no fault of our own, we had a 3-hour gap between our ceremony and reception, so we thought we had all the time in the world. In fact, one of the places we thought about going for photos was 40 minutes away from our wedding and reception.
 

 

When we finally got our list complete and felt it was good enough to show our photographer, he stood in silence for a few minutes. I’m not quite sure what he was thinking, but we could tell right away that we had no idea what we were doing and that our lack of knowledge cost us a ton of time, time we could have used doing other things.
 

Photo Credit: Sweet Alice Photography

Once our photographer had time to process our list, he broke it down and rationalized what we gave him. He gave us the best advice we ever received. Keep the list small, keep the list simple, and keep the list local. While three hours was a long time, it actually did go by very fast, which he warned us it would. We narrowed down our list from 6 locations, two three, one of which was the church.
 

Apparently, choosing too many locations is a common mistake couples make. So, we asked Erica Leman of Sweet Alice Photography, for advice on how to find perfect wedding photo locations:
 

Keep locations close

 

“It has become standard for most weddings to occur in either one or two main locations,” says Leman. “Either both ceremony and reception in one spot, or ceremony in one location, and reception in another. As much as possible, I would recommend staying in one main location for photos. Traveling between a few different places for photos, especially with families and wedding party groups, can cost precious time on a wedding day.”
 

You’ll be surprised how many photos/poses you’ll be taking at each location, and all the little nooks within a location you’ll find for your photo, so there’s no need to drive all over town to find the perfect spot.
 

RELATED: 5 WAYS TO GET BEAUTIFUL WEDDING PHOTOS ON A TIGHT BUDGET

 

Look for at least one outdoor spot

 

Photo Credit: Sweet Alice Photography

“If your ceremony and/or reception location is really not conducive to photographs,” says Leman,”I would recommend finding a great outdoor spot that:
 

1) Has enough space for the entire wedding party and family, if needed, and
 

2) Has open shade, and the ability for at least a semblance of privacy so you do not have meanderers in the background of your photos (local and state parks are great for wedding photographs, but sometimes picnickers will be around – just be aware!).”
 

Keep in mind that locations can change

 

Leman says, “One location may look amazing in summer, but it will be a totally different story in the winter! And, keep in mind that some locations change occasionally; for example, if you are counting on an open field, and a developer buys it, they may start to build on your awesome space before your wedding day (this does happen)! It’s important to take a peek at your photo location just prior to your wedding to ensure that it is as you expected it to be.”
 

Pay attention to permits

 

Leman says “If you do choose a location besides your ceremony/reception spot, make sure you don’t need permits to shoot there. If you do, make sure you request them as soon as possible to ensure that you won’t run into any snafus on your wedding day. Keep in mind that ordering a permit is often the responsibility of you as the client, rather than the photographer – take a peek at your photographer’s contract to be sure of where this responsibility lies!”
 

So, we want to know, what locations have you chosen for your wedding photos? Did that list change at all?

 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.
 

Featured Photo Credit: Sweet Alice Photography

 

Read More

How To Get Great Wedding Photos In All Kinds Of Weather

by Doug Madden, Duetimage Photography
 

 

“Don’t be angry with the rain. It simply doesn’t know how to fall upwards.” — Vladimir Nabokov
 

It’s not going to rain on your wedding day!
 

How do we know that?
 

Because that’s what the Knot and Wedding Wire and Style Me Pretty and every other blog in the universe tells us. Just look at all those real wedding photos. Not a drop of rain anywhere. All those real weddings are outdoors, under sunny blue skies, with the Santa Monica Mountains in the distance.
 

Wait a minute — Santa Monica Mountains?
 

If you’re a SoCal bride, the odds are in your favor that you’ll have sunny blue skies. But if you’re a Hudson Valley bride, there’s a very big chance that your wedding day could have less than desirable weather conditions.
 

Here are some of our tips for getting the most out of your wedding photography in rain, snow, and — yes — full sun.
 

Taking Shelter

 

Rain is a major game changer because everything you might’ve planned for the outdoors has now got to happen indoors. Your imagery will then depend a lot on your photographer’s ability to handle artificial light.
 

Quite often in the wedding photography business, you will hear photographers say things like “I prefer to shoot in natural light” or “I only work with natural light because flash looks too artificial.” In some cases, this comes out of an aesthetic value that is genuine because honestly, nothing beats “Mr. Sunshine”. But in most cases, I think this statement can be translated to mean: “I don’t know how to shoot with a flash”.
 

Light has a mind of its own. It bounces off walls, ceilings, and floors. It reflects off bright clothing or gets gobbled up by dark fabrics. With the sun as your sole light source, you always know where it is and where the shadows are. But when a flash tries to take over the job, especially indoors, there are a lot of unknowns. Your photographer’s experience will help him or her envision what that flash will do once it is fired. There’s a lot of brainpower that goes into the mathematical calculations required for a good exposure. For photographers who like working with artificial light, this is a challenge they eagerly await. For natural light photographers, however, this is a task to be avoided.
 

If you’re concerned about rain, it’s a good idea to have an honest conversation with your photographer. Ask how they feel about shooting indoors if rain forces you inside. Also, look at their portfolios. How many indoor images do they show? The number will tell you a lot. If every shot you see is taken outdoors on a sunny day, your real concern is not just rain: it is really about how well your photographer will handle all aspects of indoor photography (like your reception coverage).
 

RELATED: 7 THINGS YOU NEED TO DO IF SEVERE WEATHER THREATENS YOUR WEDDING DAY

 

snow wedding photo

Photo Credit: Duetimage Photography

Snow is Your Frenemy

 

Snow, like rain, can force you indoors when it’s really bad. But when it’s a gentle snowfall or after it has already accumulated, it can be magical.
 

First, let’s talk about the magical. Snow changes landscapes and compositions. It brightens things up with a certain glow and brings purity to your imagery.
 

Put a lot of thought into your outerwear if you’re planning a winter wedding. Furry wraps, fluffy scarves, headwear will all have a role to play in your look. Do you want to be Elsa the Ice Princess, or Lara from Doctor Zhivago? Footwear is a practical decision as well as a fashion decision. Bring along some nice winter boots for any outdoors photos then switch over to your glass slippers for the indoor portion of your event.
 

Pinterest has a motherload of ideas for props and things to do in the snow, but here, off the top of my head, are a few ideas for posed imagery:

     

    1) Make a miniature snow bride and a snowgroom as self-portraits

    2) Trace your name and wedding date in a field of snow

    3) Toss some powdery snow into the air and let it come down like confetti.

 

As for the ugly side of snow, the things you need to be concerned about are mostly financial. If a blizzard strikes on your day, you and your guests won’t likely make it to your venue. Make sure that your photographer’s retainer refundability is spelled out. In the event of snow cancellations, our studio will honor your booking for another day. Other vendors and venues have their own policies regarding snow cancellations. Wedding insurance is a VERY good idea for winter weddings, and we can’t stress that enough.
 

Sunshine: Too Much of a Good Thing

 

Photo Credit: Duetimage Photography

We all have an assumption that all’s well when the sun is shining on your wedding day. But as we all know, there can often be too much of a good thing.
 

For photographers shooting in strong sunlight, especially at midday, there is the problem of strong shadows. In such situations, photographers will try to compensate with reflectors or flashes, or seek shade in which to take pictures. But an even better way to deal with the issue is to schedule portraiture for hours when the sun is not directly overhead.
 

RELATED: 4 AWESOME BENEFITS OF DOING A FIRST LOOK

 

If you’re planning an outdoor ceremony, be careful to check which direction your audience will be seated in relation to the officiant. If your officiant will be standing with the sun directly at his or her back, your photographer (just like your guests) will be staring directly into the sun. This can create flares in your imagery which can be pesky; sometimes they look great, sometimes they can blow out an image. If you have control over your outdoor ceremony staging area, take steps to minimize a bright sun from upstaging your nuptials.
 

Finally, hot sun can cause discomfort, makeup fails, and health issues. If you’re going to be spending a lot of time outdoors, make sure you and your guests have plenty of sunscreen. Brides should consider makeup with UV protection and which stands up well to perspiration. Make sure water is readily available for everyone, and for those senior citizens on your guest list, try to make sure there are umbrellas or some other forms of shade available.
 

Embrace Mother Nature .. and Your Photographer

 

It would be wonderful if we had total control over the weather. But as we are mere mortals, that’s just a fantasy. The final and best piece of advice we can offer is to trust your photographer’s creative instincts to use undesirable weather to your advantage. If you’re comfortable with getting wet, cold, or sunburnt for great images, go for it.
 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.
 

Featured Photo Credit: Duetimage Photography

 

Read More

4 awesome benefits of doing a first look

I have to admit, I’m a bit superstitious. When I was getting married, the idea of doing a first look was a very new trend, and one my husband and I quickly dismissed. We were always told that seeing each other before your ceremony was extremely bad luck.

 

In the years that followed, and as the trend got bigger and bigger, we realized that, superstition aside, doing a first look would have been kind of cool to do. To have a private moment, just the two of us, would have been really very special.

 

As our photo summit continues, we asked Alicia King of Alicia King Photography to share some of the benefits that come with doing a first look, besides a private, romantic moment.

 

 

Doing a first look saves time

 

“Have more time to focus on pictures of the two of you,” says King. Scheduling time for photos of just the two of you saves you more time later in the day. If your reception is directly after your ceremony, you can go straight to your reception without having to be pulled away for photos. “You get to enjoy cocktail hour, as does family and wedding party if it’s all done beforehand,” says King.

 

Enjoying cocktail hour, not just for the food, is a great benefit of doing a first look. King says. “You have more time to spend with your loved ones who have traveled from near and far to see you.” Often times couples have to take time out of their dinner to greet guests, whereas doing a first look eliminates that step giving you have more time to enjoy your reception and more time to talk to those you love.

 

RELATED: HOW MUCH TIME SHOULD YOU ALLOW IN YOUR DAY FOR WEDDING PHOTOS?

 

Photo Credit: Alicia King Photography

Doing a first look reduces stress, nerves, and anxiety

 

Additionally, King says “You get to see each other up close instead of from down an aisle for the first time that day.” It really gives you a chance to look at each other and tell each other how wonderful they look. You put a lot of time and effort into choosing your perfect gown and doing a first look gives your spouse the chance to admire your gorgeousness!

 

Doing a first look does not diminish the emotion of the ceremony

 

Some might think that doing a first look might take away from the “magic” of seeing each other for the first time at the altar. “It doesn’t take away from the ceremony at all,” says King. “I’ve had multiple couples do a first look and then get extremely emotional during the ceremony itself.”

 

Seeing each other beforehand is one thing, but when you are in front of all your loved ones, with the music playing and your bridal party all in formation, it gives you a different energy and emotion altogether.

 

RELATED: 4 EXTRA BENEFITS OF HIRING A PROFESSIONAL WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

 

Doing a first look helps you get better photos

 

From a photographer’s viewpoint, doing a first look has many benefits. King says, at the basic level, your hair and makeup is freshest. While hair and makeup will last you all day, nothing beats seeing it when it’s freshly done.

 

Another benefit is timing. “If your ceremony is later in the day, you would be chasing sunlight during cocktail hour (if you do photos after your ceremony), especially for late fall and winter weddings,” says King.

 

Lastly, doing a first look gives your photographer more time to focus on other photos. “Your photographer has more time to focus on reception detail shots, & guests at cocktail hour if possible,” says King. The time that would have been spent photographing you, will now be spent taking photos of other parts of the day that might have been missed.

 

Did you do a first look? We want to know?

 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.
 

Featured Photo Credit: Alicia King Photography

 

Read More

The Forgotten Benefits of Hiring a Second Photogrpaher

Today’s blog post is written by Jeremiah Shaffer, Photographer

 

Whether you’re having 300 guests at your wedding or 98 guests, a second photographer can greatly impact your final wedding images. In the past year alone, I can think of several specific instances that my second photographer got a shot that became invaluable to the entire collection. Shots that would have never happened if I were shooting alone. It was actually after one of those instances that I decided I was shooting with a second photographer pretty much exclusively. Even for a smaller wedding where the thought of a second photographer might seem a bit overkill.
 

 

Starting right from the beginning of the day 2 photographers has it’s biggest advantage; I’m with one (generally the bride) and the 2nd is with the other (groom). Now we have photos of everyone getting ready, which might not seem like a big deal until you see your final wedding images in their entirety. Seeing your day, the progression from start to finish really completes the collection of images. And guys, getting ready pictures are a lot more than just getting dressed. Laughing at raunchy jokes together, playing cards, sipping whiskey, maybe playing a quick pickup game of basketball or whiffle ball before they head out to the ceremony. There a lot of things you’re doing before the ceremony that might seem meaningless and trivial at the time, but there’s a lot more meaning when the day is done and you’re looking back at it in its entirety. Shooting by myself, unless the couple is getting ready at the same hotel or in the same house, those memories would never be captured. Moments that would be missing from your day.
 

RELATED: 4 EXTRA BENEFITS OF HIRING A PROFESSIONAL WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

 

Now, at a wedding with a couple deciding to do a first look; 2 photographers = 2 different views and angles of the same moments of seeing each other for the first time. Getting the reaction of both the bride and the groom are nearly impossible with only one photographer. And from there as we continue on with the formal style portraits, 2 different sets of eyes taking portraits at the same time will give us more options for your final wedding photo delivery. Everyone sees a situation differently, especially 2 photographers. As much as we may have a similar shooting style, our inspirations for a situation may be coming from different places resulting in 2 completely different images from the same moment.
 

Photo Credit: Cody Tatro for Jeremiah Shaffer

A wedding that doesn’t utilize a first look will benefit even greater from 2 photographers. As the wedding begins and the bride starts walking down the aisle, I can photograph her reaction as my second photographer is capturing the groom’s reaction simultaneously. And afterward, since we didn’t do your portraits before the ceremony, we have to do them before the reception begins. During the time we’re getting portraits, my second photographer is photographing all of the reception details before guests start getting comfortable at their seats. Your place cards, centerpieces, table settings, etc… all of the little details that you’ve lost sleep over since you began planning your wedding. That way, when your reception is set to begin, we have all of those details captured so we can now concentrate on your grand entrance into your reception.
 

During your reception is another area of your day where you might not think a second photographer is necessary if you’re planning a smaller wedding. A perfect example I can think of is during the first dance. While my attention might be on the couple dancing, I may miss a moment of parents looking on, smiling at their children as they dance for the first time as a married couple. That’s an incredible moment that certainly can’t be missed, which might be if there was only one photographer on hand.

 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.
 

Featured Photo Credit: Cody Tatro for Jeremiah Shaffer

 

Read More

Who Owns The Rights to Your Wedding Photos? Hint: It’s Not You

When you book your wedding photographer, you will need to sign a contract. Part of the contract will include a clause about copyrights, and another clause will be about permission to share your photos. Both are VERY important.
 

Let’s start with sharing your photos. All photographers will have a clause asking if you would be ok with your photographer sharing your photos on social media, on their website, in their marketing materials, or with other blogs such as yours truly. For example, all the couples featured in our Featured Love Story galleries have signed that release with their photographer.
 

But it’s TOTALLY ok for you to say no, and photographers understand. I did not give permission. Not because I was trying to be mean, but because my husband and I are very private and wanted to maintain that sense of privacy.
 

In addition, that contract will discuss copyright and will spell out exactly what you have the right to do, and what you DON’T have the right to do, with your photos.
 

The post below is written by Hannah Servidio of  Hannah Nicole Photography to explain photo copywrites  and why they are so important…

 

 

Photo copyrights…No one really understands them but everyone needs them.
 

The technical definition of Copyright is the rights given to creators for their literary and artistic work. In simple terms, whoever pushes the shutter owns the image.
 

I know it sounds crazy because you’re probably thinking “But that’s ME in that photo! How can they own ME?!”
 

Well obviously we can’t own you personally, but the reason copyrights are given to photographers for their photos is that Photographers spend years perfecting their style and hours perfecting each image. That photo is their trademark AND their brand.
 

Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

When you put that Instagram filter on a wedding photo, you are actually infringing on the Copyright.
 

Don’t get me wrong I love me some Valencia filter on the ‘Gram but the reality is your photographer just spent a lot of time (which you paid them to do) perfecting every pixel of that image and putting a filter over it is offensive.
 

Besides the hurting of someone’s feelings, when you put that image up and your friends ask who did your photos, and you name your photographer in your comment, your photographer will not be happy with that. Its false advertising and not the brand that the photographer wants to be seen.
 

Other things that infringe on Copyright include scanning and printing photos. Seriously. While that should go without saying I’m just going to leave that there.
 

Printing rights are something a lot of photographers give their clients and that is different from Copyright.
 

That would be a whole other blog post but in brief ‘printing rights’ is just that. You have the right to print the photos. NOT edit them! NOT sell them! Simply just print them and hang, frame, or show them off.
 

Sometimes when you go to a drugstore to print your digital files the worker will ask to see your print release. This is to protect your photographer from having clients take the photos and print without their knowledge.
 

I know this all seems very one-sided toward the photographer but unfortunately, this is the photographers’ living.
 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.

 

Featured Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

 
Hannah Nicole Photography

Read More
Hudson Valley Wedding Photography Alicia King Photography

4 Extra Benefits Of Hiring A Professional Wedding Photographer

When you book your wedding vendors you assume you’re hiring them to do a specific job. For example, you hire a DJ to play music, you hire a videographer to take video, you hire a planner to plan and keep things running smoothly, and you hire a photographer to take photos.

 

What actually happens is that your vendors do MUCH more than what their ‘title’ tells you they should be doing. Professional and experienced wedding vendors actually become part of your inner circle and part of your family for the months leading up to your wedding and even longer. They all play peacekeeper, therapist, planner, and friend.

 

Your photographer, specifically, when you hire an experienced one, really goes far above and beyond what they ‘should’ be doing.
 
Alicia King of Alicia King Photography says when you are looking at the investment you make for photography, you need to consider your photographer will be doing these things as well:
 

 

They will help you with your wedding-day timeline

 

Hudson Valley 

<p Wedding Photography Alicia King Photography

An experienced photographer will know how long it takes for pictures. For example, they’ll know how long to take for family photos or first look photos. If you are going to different locations, they’ll know travel time and time to spend at each location. They’ll know what time to arrive at your house and what time everyone should be getting ready based on the time your ceremony starts. If you are stressing over your timeline, ask your photographer for help.

 

RELATED: WHY DOES WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY COST SO MUCH (AND WHAT DO YOU GET FOR YOUR MONEY)

 

They will suggest other vendors

 

Experienced Hudson Valley wedding photographers have been in the industry for a long time, and have been to many weddings. Having worked so many weddings, your photographer has seen a lot and gets to know the other vendors at all these weddings. If you’re stuck finding a specific vendor or would like to know more about a specific vendor, your photographer will be able to help you with suggestions based on what they’ve seen and who they know.

 

They will be your creative partner

 

Experienced wedding photographers will know how to properly and professionally handle any situation that may come up with regards to the final outcome of your photos. Just like you don’t want to give your DJ your full playlist because you need to trust them to do their job, the same goes for photographers. Give them your MUST have shot list, but then let their creative juices flow. They’ll also know, based on location, time of day or lighting, what may or may not work in terms of getting the perfect shot. They’ll also be able to handle any last minute weather-related issues such as rain or snow and come up with shot ideas perfectly suited for any weather

RELATED: HIRING A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER? 6 RED FLAGS YOU NEED TO BE AWARE OF

 

They become your personal assistant

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Photography Alicia King Photography

Your photographer is the one vendor that will be with you from morning to night. They will be attached at your hip all day, so a professional photographer will end up being your personal assistant as well. Throughout the day, they’ll be fixing your veil, maybe helping you put on your veil, helping fluff or bustle your train, fixing any stray or flyaway hairs, pinning boutonnieres, and most importantly, they’ll be making sure you have time to eat and have something to drink.

 

In addition, they’ll be the ones to coordinate key points of the day and will be the ones to wrangle your family and friends for portraits, your first look, and any other photos that require more than just the two of you

 

Lastly, an experienced photographer will ensure you stay calm, happy, and stress-free. They’ll be like your therapist for the day. They know taking pictures doesn’t come naturally for some, so they’ll be putting you at ease and making you comfortable all day.
 

Featured Photo Credit: Alicia King Photography

 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.
 

 

Read More

Why Does Wedding Photography Cost So Much (And What Do I Get For My Money)?

Today’s article is written by Doug Madden, Duetimage Photography – Hudson Valley Wedding Photographers

 

Here’s a question we get all the time:  “Why is wedding photography so expensive?”  Once, a groom actually put the question to us like this: “Why does taking some blank wedding pictures cost so blankety-blank much — my blankety-blank 9-year-old niece can press a button too!”
 

It’s a good question, but one not easily answered because of the way that the general public perceives photography. Photographers are asked to justify their prices more than any other contractor because to most people, the equipment and the skills needed to produce images are deemed to be widely available.
 

If your car breaks down, you’re not likely to ask a mechanic why his labor charges are the way they are.  Or if your sink won’t drain, you don’t ask the plumber to justify the amount he’ll charge to clear it.  The mechanic will disappear into the garage with your car and your plumber will disappear under the sink, and you’ll never know exactly what tools or knowledge they will use to get the job done.  And you won’t care either because you need your stuff operational and you can’t do it yourself.
 

 

Professional Experience

 

Since wedding photography — like other forms of art — is not exactly a need, the mind is more willing to question what it is you’ll be paying for.  If you’re in the market for an oil painting of your family, or a marble bust of yourself, you know it’s going to be expensive because these kinds of artists usually come with years of experience and special training.  Photographers though … anybody can walk into a Target and purchase a DSLR, and smartphones can take pretty good pictures too.  So in your mind you’re pretty much paying someone to press a button, otherwise, you’ll look strange carrying a selfie-stick during your first dance.
 

Not quite.  Especially not if you’re dreaming about the sort of wedding photography that you see featured on many blogs, or if you have your heart set on an heirloom album.  This work figures into the prices photographers charge and, depending on their business models, not all photographers offer the same services.
 

Types of Photographers

 

duetimage-hudson-valley-wedding-photographers

Photo Credit: Duetimage Photography

Wedding photographers generally fall into one of two categories:  Shoot-and-Burn or Full-Service.

 

Shoot-and-Burners get their name from the practice of burning their wedding coverage to a DVD and delivering just that.  Although photos are more and more delivered via download or by USB keys these days, the term still sticks. Usually, these photographers are viewed as more affordable because they charge less upfront, but couples are responsible for their own image editing and processing.
 

The Full-Service Studio Photographer is one who will handle all aspects of your photography, including curation, album and artwork production, and digital file delivery.  As the name implies, there are more services provided and generally, the cost is higher.
 

While we at Duetimage Photography are a full-service studio, we always stress that there is no “correct” business model.  Each has its pros and cons, and ultimately couples must choose the photographer with the business model that is right for them.
 

Shoot-and-Burn

 

Within the shoot-and-burn model, there are varying levels of service which will affect your pricing.
 

Some shoot-and-burners will come home from your wedding and transfer all of your photos directly to disk without even looking at them.  You’ll get everything fast, including lens caps and shots of your photographer’s shoes.  There will be no color correction or tweaking of exposure: the images are yours to sort out and manipulate as you wish, and the photographer’s job is done.
 

Other shoot-and-burners will lightly curate the coverage selecting only the best shots, and maybe even adjust for basic exposure. These photographers will charge more for the time it takes to do this.
 

Before choosing the rock bottom shoot-and-burn photographer who returns images straight out of the camera, ask yourself if you have the time and the talent to edit your own images.  If not, then spending a little more on a photographer who will provide a light edit is worth its weight in gold.
 

The Full-Service Studio

 

duetimage-hudson-valley-wedding-photographers

Photo Credit: Duetimage Photography

Photographers functioning on the full-service model will not only provide a basic proofing of your images.  They will also curate your coverage, engage in artistic editing that reflects their unique style, and produce your wedding albums, canvases, metal prints, and other forms of artwork.

 

In addition to their image capturing skills, full-service photographers are also graphic designers and digital technicians.  They understand how shapes, colors, and tones interact harmoniously on an album spread.  They also know how to process an image for optimum print output.  Full-service photographers know their labs and have good working relationships with the people there to ensure that your artwork is produced to the highest standard.
 

Post-production work can require many hours of the photographer’s time long after your wedding, which leads us to a paradox: the full-service photographer who charges more can actually earn less per hour than the shoot-and-burn photographer who provides fewer services.
 

Now you might be asking, why is this important to me as someone about to get married?  The answer is passion.  Many full-service photographers are exclusively photographers.  They live to create imagery and they fuss over every detail in ways that can sometimes be comical (it’s no surprise that the fictional photographer Felix Unger on the sitcom The Odd Couple was a fussbudget).  I once asked a colleague why he chose to shoot and burn instead of providing full-service, and his response was: “I need to preserve my sanity”.  If you’re curious about the backend value of a full-service photographer, there you have it.
 

Added Value On Your Wedding Day

 

Finally, speaking of sanity, another hidden value of your photographer is his or her ability to play psychologist on your wedding day.
 

As we’re all aware when we’re planning an event, things can and will go wrong.  With so much money being spent, there’s a lot of stress on the part of couples and their families.  All too often, stress can manifest itself in unforeseen ways.  The bride might have an argument with her mother-in-law.  The groom might be vexed over tying his bowtie.  Dad could have an argument with a vendor.  At one of our weddings, the groomsmen were involved in a fender bender at the entrance to the venue.
 

All this can show in your wedding photos if the photographer doesn’t have his finger on the pulse of the moment. A good photographer/psychologist knows how to calm things down.  Even when the bride wants to clonk her new husband over the head because he’s disappeared right before family formals, the photographer/psychologist can get everyone laughing again.
 

The photographer who knows how to make you laugh and feel comfortable is bringing a skill to the table that cannot be valued on a price sheet because it is truly priceless.  So consider your photographer’s personality along with his or her business model when choosing who gets to shoot your big day.
 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.
 

Featured Photo Credit: Duetimage Photography – Hudson Valley Wedding Photographers

 

Read More

Featured Couple: Chen and Ethan

Their Love Story…

 

“Ethan and I met through mutual friends,” says Chen Rosenberg. “My roommate of four years all through medical school was dating (and is now married to) one of Ethan’s close friends from college. We hit it off celebrating Match Day, which is a day, a few months prior to graduation from medical school, when medical students find out where they match for residency training.”

 

The Proposal…

 

Chen had a super romantic Eurpoean proposal. “Ethan and I were dating for two years when we took a trip to Paris,” she says. “We had left at night from New York and got into Paris early. I think he planned to propose later that night at dinner (he had booked a dinner cruise), but he said the ring was burning a hole in his pocket, so he proposed while we were taking a stroll along the Seine.”

 

Why the Hudson Valley…?

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Red Maple Vineyard Sarah Tew Photography

Photo Credit: Sarah Tew Photography

It was love at first sight for both Chen and Ethan. Chen says “Both of us were living in New York City at the time, and for one Valentine’s Day, we had spent a weekend away at a bed and breakfast in the Hudson Valley and fell in love with the area. We wanted to get married in New York in a natural and beautiful setting that wasn’t too hard for our family and friends to get to. We entertained the idea of looking at venues in New York City, but they were quite expensive and not exactly what we envisioned. The Hudson Valley area was the only place we wanted to look.”

 

Wedding Theme…

 

While Chen and Ethan’s wedding didn’t have a ‘formal’ theme, Chen says “…I think as wedding planning got underway, we ended up having a wedding that was natural, intimate, relaxed, and fun.”

 

Advice for Engaged Couples…

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Red Maple Vineyard Sarah Tew Photography

Photo Credit: Sarah Tew Photography

“Plan the day as a celebration of the two of you,” says Chen. “Don’t feel like you have to follow a specific set of traditions. Set your own traditions. When the married couple is at ease and having fun, the entire wedding atmosphere will reflect that. For example, I don’t like cake and thus, for dessert, we served several varieties of pie.” (You can find ways to make your day special and unique here)

 

Chen also received some really great advice. “…during the cocktail hour and the reception, don’t leave each other’s side. Greet and thank all your guests together so you can spend more time together.”

 

Most Memorable Moment…

 

Chen says her most memorable moment was “Our first dance as husband and wife.”

 

Vendors…

 

Venue:  Red Maple Vineyard

Wedding Day-of Coordinator:  Michelle Marmo (with Red Maple Vineyard)

Hair:  StylesOnB

Makeup: Makeup and Hair by Celia Aurora

Music: Bud Maltin Metropolitan Music

Officiant:  Jeddah Vailakis

Floral Design:  Floresta

Catering & PIE:  Red Maple Vineyard

Transportation:  Mahogany Ridge Transportation

 

Photo Credit to All: Sarah Tew Photography

Read More

Why You Will Never See All Your Wedding Photos

Today’s contributing author is Hannah Servidio from Hannah Nicole Photography

 

On your wedding day, your photographer will be capturing every magical moment, even moments you may not have even realized happened. You know they are probably taking hundreds and hundreds (if not thousands) of photos, so why then are you seeing much fewer photos when your proofs come back?

 

Hudson Valley wedding photography Culinary Institute of America Hannah Nicole Photography

Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

We spoke a few weeks ago about how many photos are usually taken and how many you get to choose for your album, but there are many reasons why you don’t see all the photos your photographer takes.

 

RELATED: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT WEDDING PHOTOS TAKEN AND IMAGES CHOSEN

 

Before we get into that, Servidio wants you to know one thing. “Before you think that we are holding precious memories hostage please be aware we are not,” she says.

 

Second, you need to know that photographers will rarely if ever, give you back unedited photos. Servidio says “Sometimes a photo looks absolutely awful before we edit it and who wants to see that.”

 

In fact, she has a great analogy. “Let’s say you go to a really nice restaurant and order the chicken,” she says. It comes, it’s beautiful and it tastes great but then you ask the chef if he can just give you the raw chicken. Doesn’t make sense right? That’s exactly how photographers feel when you ask the see “the other” photos from your wedding/session, and truthfully you’re not missing much.”

 

 

While Servidio understands FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) is a real concern for some couples, she says this is what you are actually missing out in the photos you don’t get back, otherwise known as “throwaway photos”. “Blinking, unflattering poses, photo repeats and my personal favorite, sneezing. Not only that but truthfully, some photographers do mess up. It’s totally normal and it happens. Whether we miss focus, the lighting is bad, or it’s just really not an interesting photo, there’s plenty of reasons we never give you a photo.”

 

Hudson Valley wedding photography Culinary Institute of America Hannah Nicole Photography

Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

So if you’re wondering why you’re only getting back a few hundred of the many hundred photos you know were taken and freaking out over that, don’t.

 

Why? Servidio says, at the end of the day, you need to know your photographer is giving you photos that not only meet their expert approval, but will also meet your approval, and are of the highest and best standards. She says “We sit down at our computers and meticulously go through your photos. Every photo is looked at closely and edited to the styling you are accustomed to.” At the end of the day, she says “The job of a photographer is to give you all of the images that tell a cohesive story. Trust your photographer.”

 

RELATED: 6 IMPORTANT THINGS YOU NEED TO TELL YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER

 

That being said, she says “If you distinctly remember taking a particular photo it doesn’t hurt to ask about it.” There’s probably a good reason why your photographer didn’t include it in your proofs, but if it’s one you really want to see, it never hurts to ask. What you have to remember is that it might not have come out well, so be prepared and know that not all photos taken are going to be absolutely perfect!

 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions. 

 
Hannah Nicole Photography

Read More
Hudson Valley Balloon Festival Barton Orchards Poughquag Engagement Photos by Jeremiah Shaffer

Featured Engagement: Stephanie & Jay

Their love story…

 

“There are usually two things to remember at the workplace,” says Stephanie, “One, don’t put anything in the refrigerator and two, never, ever, date your boss.Unfortunately, nobody ever mentioned the protocol for falling in love with him.”
 

Well, Stephanie and Jay might have followed rule number one, but rule number two was a different story. “I didn’t believe in office romance but Jay quickly became my mentor, my rock, and most importantly my best friend. Of course, we proceeded with caution seeing we were in the corporate world and all, but it’s hard to resist your boss’s charm! Not to mention, office romances are frowned upon in most places.”
 

We all know what happens when people find out. “People at work love a bit of gossip,” says Stephanie, “Because there’s not much going on in a workplace other than work and any interesting news is definitely worth talking about. We even had to go as far as signing a ‘love contract’!”
 

Stephanie says, “Forming a relationship with a coworker is the ultimate mix of business with pleasure. At times, the recipe results in a toxic mess between two Type A personalities (like ourselves). But other times, things work out. You briefly become the power couple of the company and your desk-mate might just turn out to be your soulmate. I can’t wait to sign an official love contract with him this coming October.”
 

The proposal…

 

Hudson Valley Balloon Festival Barton Orchards Poughquag Engagement Photos by Jeremiah Shaffer

Photo Credit: Jeremiah Shaffer

The Holidays are such a magical time, as we’ve seen time and time again. “Jay proposed to me on November 26th of 2016,” says Stephanie. “It was one of those cold wintery nights where all you want to do is snuggle in, so we decided to decorate our apartment and put up our Christmas tree. Jay specifically wanted to save a certain ornament for last that had a picture of us in it. He was acting very strange, might I add, so I had a feeling something was up! By the time I turned around after placing that ornament near the top of our tree, he was down on one knee. So many emotions ran through me at that moment the tears started flowing. Not to mention, I was wearing baggy sweatpants with no makeup on so he heard about that later! Our proposal was intimate and perfect because it was just us. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.”
 

What are they most excited about?…

 

Stephanie says, “I am most excited about marrying my best friend and beginning this exciting new chapter in our lives, but if I have to pick a certain moment that I am looking forward to, it would be our “First Look”. Similar to our proposal, it will be a moment that is going to just be intimate. Our venue has an unbelievable space that was designed just for this. Gilbertsville Farmhouse will also have a ‘glamping site’ set up for us and our bridal party. Rather than one day of celebrations, we will have the entire weekend with our favorite people ‘glamorously camping’.
 

Advice for engaged couples?…

 

“The biggest piece of advice I have for engaged couples is to enjoy the moment and this period in your lives,” says Stephanie. “Jay and I personally took the route of a long engagement, because we did not want the stressors of planning a wedding to get in the way of the excitement. For example, the joys of creating more Pinterest boards than any bride truly needs. At the end of the day, it is about a marriage and building a life together. We have had the luxury of time in searching for the right venue, caterer, vendors, dress, and all of the other details that can normally cause minor headaches make us happy. Stay in the present.”
 

Photo Credit to All: Jeremiah Shaffer

 

 

Read More

Hiring a Wedding Photographer? 6 Red Flags You Need To Be Aware Of

Today’s author is Kathryn Cooper of Kathryn Cooper Weddings

 

When planning your wedding, many couples spend quite a bit of time researching venues, tasting foods, and listening to bands. But given that the photos from your day (and video, for a percentage of couples) are the only real keepsake from your wedding, it’s vital that you research and find the right photographer for you two.
 

I’ve worked for years as a professional photographer, and have shot well over 100 weddings all around the country and the world. I absolutely love what I do, and when I’m not working for myself, I’m working with and for other photographers in New York and beyond. In my time working with dozens of other normal and, shall we say, quirky photographers, I’ve seen the good, the bad, the lovely, and the downright rude! I’ve seen photographers throw temper tantrums, yell at couples, and get drunk. There is a vast range of styles, personalities, prices, delivery options, and more to be on the lookout for when hiring a photographer for any event, and when it comes to your wedding, it’s more important than anything that you get it right.
 

 

Now then, here are some red flags you should be on the lookout for when hiring your photographer for the day:
 

Personality:

 

Photographers can sometimes be pushy, rude, or just plain bored and uncreative. See how open the photographer is to your ideas, and how friendly he or she seems to be on the phone. Meet in person or even on Skype if possible, and make sure your personalities match. Remember: This person will be with you all day long during one of the most important—and often most stressful—days of your lives, so it’s important to go with your gut.
 

Is the person responsive to what you want and is he/she lending promising ideas? Would the person get along well with guests? I’ve worked with photographers who have actually yelled at crowds or gotten angry at people, and quite frankly, that’s unprofessional. We’re there to provide amazing shots and experiences for you, not instigate your guests! I’ve also seen shooters bring their significant others to weddings, start fighting, and really make everyone uncomfortable.
 

Similarly, you want to make sure your photographer captures YOU. A bored photographer will shoot each wedding in the same way. You’ll get good images, but they’ll sometimes seem average. A good photographer will manage to capture you: Your smiles, your reactions, and your interactions with the people you love around you. Take a look at a full wedding gallery or recent wedding on each photography site (almost all have these) and make sure you see the kinds of images you desire. I always make sure I’m listening carefully to my clients so I can guarantee they’re having a wonderful time! It’s extremely gratifying to have grooms come up to me and say, “I was stressed out and thought the photos were going to be an awful experience, but you made it all so fun!”
 

RELATED: 3 WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PITFALLS TO AVOID

 

Equipment:

 

Hudson Valley wedding photographer Kathryn Cooper Weddings

Photo Credit: Kathryn Cooper Weddings

Even if you know nothing about photography equipment, it’s important to know a few factors. And don’t get me wrong—you definitely don’t want to question every lens and piece of equipment your photographer has. But one point that is quite important is that your photographer have TWO sets of equipment. Like all gear, things can break, stall, or just suddenly stop working at the most inopportune times. Imagine you’re about to walk down the aisle and your photographer runs up to you saying his camera is broken and he can’t capture anything. What would you do? Make sure the person you choose to work with has a backup camera or a second shooter because it’s too easy for equipment to just go on the fritz.
 

Price:

 

Make sure you know the final price before signing any contract. Many photographers add a tax on top of the packages offered or try to upsell you with prints, second shooters, or albums. If you’re interested in an engagement session and album or have a large wedding that’s great, but if you’re not, make sure you choose a photographer who isn’t pushy and can provide a package that matches what you desire. Is your photographer going to make you pay for every photo you want on top of paying for time? Know what you’re getting into before you commit.
 

Shooting Style:

 

Though many people know a bit about what they’re looking for, the majority of people don’t know just how different photography styles can be. Look thoroughly at each person’s portfolio, and make sure you know how your photographer describes him or herself. I’m a creative photojournalist, for example, but there are many types out there. Examples of photography styles include photojournalist/documentary, fine art, film, film/digital hybrid, artistic, traditional, and more. Just make sure you know if you want your day documented with lots of reaction shots, posed with a lot of lights, or something else entirely.
 

Red flags to watch out for can be seen in many portfolios, and they’re styles that are, well, never really in style. Too many tilted or skewed photos can look amateurish, and colorized photos—for example, a rose that’s red while the rest of the photo is black and white—look very amateurish. Do the photos have a lot of weird shadows (indicative of a poorly used flash)? You want your photos to look classy decades down the road, so make sure you’re not hiring an amateur, a student, or that random hobbyist your Aunt Betsy used to work with back in the ‘60s.
 

RELATED: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT WEDDING PHOTOS TAKEN AND IMAGES CHOSEN

 

Editing Style:

 

Hudson Valley wedding photographer Kathryn Cooper Weddings

Photo Credit: Kathryn Cooper Weddings

In terms of editing styles, there are so many different ones: Dark and moody, film-like, natural, light, and more. I edit minimally and with a very natural editing style, but some photographers Photoshop your face to look like a porcelain doll, so to me, that’s a red flag. If you’re looking for a high-fashion model-like wedding experience, then maybe that’s up your alley, but hey, that’s just me.
 

Almost every photographer has a unique editing style. There are even many people who edit using colorization similar to Instagram filters, so if you’re into that, great—but make sure you truly love the photographer’s final style! If you’re having a ceremony in a castle and are hiring a fine art photographer to take fancy portraits, that person will probably also edit you and your face to look quite different. Verify that you desire that, and that you’re not hiring someone who is going to make you look and feel like someone you’re not!
 

Image Delivery:

 

It’s hard to trust reviews since many review sites can be doctored these days. I also know plenty of great photographers who have almost no reviews or testimonials—there’s very little correlation! What is important, however, is that customers are happy. One thing customers often get unhappy about, however, is late delivery. I know photographers who still haven’t delivered images 9 months or a year down the road, and I’ve heard in forums of clients having photographers disappear on them. This is of course quite rare, but make sure you have a contract that states when the images will be delivered, and approximately how many images you’ll receive.
 

There’s really no excuse to wait for images for 6 or 8 months. 1-3 months is average because all of the organizing and editing from a 10-hour wedding day takes quite a long time. Still, no one wants to wait a year to see wedding photos! You might speak with a former customer first, look at the contract, or ask how long it will take to get your final images.
 

In general, having your wedding photos taken should be fun, not stressful. I don’t love having photos taken myself, so when I have clients who feel the same, I empathize and make them as comfortable as possible. I try to be upfront and myself with all my clients throughout the process. If you feel your photographer is moody, bossy, uninterested, irresponsible, or bored, your photos will likely reflect that. Choose a photographer who will capture incredible photos for you two to treasure for the rest of your lives!
 

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post. Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions. 

Read More

How Much Time Should You Allow In Your Day For Your Wedding Photos?

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post.

 

Today’s contributing author is Rose Schaller of Rose Schaller Photo

 

 

If you don’t have a planner for your wedding, your wedding photographer is your next best resource for helping you plan a wedding day timeline. Why? Because they are the only other wedding vendor that will be with you all day. They know how long photos take and based on the timing and location of your ceremony and reception, can help you work backwards to figure out how much time you need to build in for photos, when you should start to get ready, how long you need for family and styled photos and how many places you can go for photos based on the time you have.

 

For example, I had a three-hour break between my ceremony and reception. I had 5 places on my list for photos, and our photographer was educated enough to tell us that even though three hours may seem like a lot of time, it actually goes by much faster than you think. Those three hours included time for posed shots with family and our bridal party, included travel, and included time to pose everyone, which, depending on how large your bridal party is, could eat up some time. He also wanted us to make sure we were at our venue in time to enjoy cocktail hour.

 

RELATED: 6 IMPORTANT THINGS YOU NEED TO TELL YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER

 

Hudson Valley wedding photography Rose Schaller Photography

Photo Credit: Rose Schaller Photo

His insight was invaluable as he helped us narrow down our choices of locations to those closest to our venue instead of locations further away. The end result was that we weren’t rushed, we had plenty of time to take photos and a few fun ones, and made it back in time for cocktail hour.

 

Today, we’re speaking to Rose Schaller of Rose Schaller Photography to help you plan how much time you should include into your wedding day timeline for posed and styled photos. Each couple and each wedding will have a different timeline, so this is merely a starting point to give you an idea of what to expect. It’s very important that you speak to your photography to set up the perfect timeline for you.

 

Despite the fact that each wedding is different, they are similar in that they all have the same “parts” or “stages”. Schaller says “Images are captured all throughout your wedding day so time should be allowed during each part to take photos. Not all photos will be staged and posed but still, having time in your timeline for them will allow the photographer to capture those little moments that you may forget.”

 

RELATED: AVOID THESE 3 WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PITFALLS

 

So, what are these stages? Well, outside of the obvious ceremony and reception, there are three areas that are usually designated for posed and candid shots. These are:

 

Getting ready:

 

Hudson Valley wedding photography Rose Schaller Photography

Photo Credit: Rose Schaller Photo

“I would add 30 mins to your getting ready time schedule to allow your photographer time to take photos of you getting ready, as well as your bridal party getting ready and celebrating, and maybe even seeing you for the first time with your veil on and ready to walk down the aisle,” says Schaller. “Having that extra time in your getting ready section of your day allows the ability for these moments to take place.”

 

First look:

 

“The next block of time that I ask for is the First look,” Schaller says. “Again, a half hour is more than enough time and we will probably not use all that time but the longer you have, the more time the two of you will have alone prior to the wedding.”

 

Formal portraits (which can happen before or after the ceremony):

 

Hudson Valley wedding photography Rose Schaller Photography

Photo Credit: Rose Schaller Photo

Formal portraits can be broken down into four categories: Couples photos, wedding party, family, and maybe some friends. Schaller says “I usually recommend to set aside an hour to an hour and a half. If you see each other beforehand for a first look, you (couple, wedding party, family) will want to all be back in your suite 30 mins prior to your service. That is when guests start to arrive.” What if you don’t want a First Look? “If you decide not to see each other ahead of time,” says Schaller, “then the cocktail hour would be when these (formal) photos would be happening.”

 

But here’s the most important piece of advice. ALWAYS PLAN EXTRA TIME! Schaller says, “If you plan an extra 15 –20 mins throughout your day you will have plenty of time to relax and

enjoy your family and guests and that is where the true moments are captured.” She says it’s impossible to plan every second of your day because, if you do, she says “You won’t have a second to stop and enjoy your day. It will go by fast enough without every minute being planned. Free time at your wedding is a wonderful thing!”

Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.

Read More

Destination Weddings: What You Need to Know About Hiring Your Photographer

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post.
 

Today’s author is Hannah Servidio from Hannah Nicole Photography

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Photographer Hannah Nicole Photography

Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

People have a destination wedding for so many different reasons. Whether it be you love the beach, you want an intimate moment or you love the idea of (kind of) stress-free planning, for whatever reason you choose the question remains who will your vendors be? More specifically, your photographer.

 

No matter where you go in the world, there will always be a photographer, and with enough Google-searching, chances are you’ll find one. You may not love them but they come with the resort, or they fit your budget so you take them anyway. I mean, it’s just your wedding, right?
 

NO! Get that idea out of your mind. Resort photographers are not always the best option for you. While their work may be good, they may not fit your style, and you are under no obligation to use them.
 

There are so many variables and pros and cons that go into bringing a Hudson Valley photographer. Bringing a photographer from home can be beneficial for so many reasons. From personal and professional experience, here are some key things to think about:
 

RELATED: 6 IMPORTANT THINGS YOU NEED TO TELL YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER

 

A chance to build a rapport

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Photographer Hannah Nicole Photography

Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

Most photographers get to know the couple before the big day as it helps to already have a rapport with that person. You’ll feel more comfortable, and in turn, not only will the photographer make you look like a professional model in front of that lens, but you’ll also feel more natural and comfortable with them once you establish that relationship.

 

A rapport extends beyond the wedding as well. When hiring local, you now have a photographer that you’ve built a relationship with that you can use for future photo sessions such as family photos or anniversary photos. You have someone whose work you love and have officially built a long-lasting relationship with.
 

Styling

 

One word with such strong meaning. If you want a certain style, hiring local means you can be sure your photographer has the same style you like, because you have many photographers to choose from. For example, I prefer a light and airy look rather than a moodier feel. All my clients know that, and it’s what they’ll expect. Rather than going into it settling for a style you’re not a huge fan of just because it’s easier to choose the resort photographer, you can be sure that your photographer will match your style.
 

Easier communication

 

One of the best things about hiring local is you have easier access to info as needed. Want to meet up with your photographer and have a cup of coffee and go over ideas? You can because they are right around the corner!
 

Also, a somewhat uncomfortable but necessary thing to talk about is what happens IF there is a legal issue. With a local photographer, you can deal with it on U.S. soil. That being said, I hope that never happens to you; but if so, it’s good to know that person is local to you.
 

Lastly, a local photographer speaks the same language as you. While I am not saying the photographer at your destination may not speak English, there is a chance they may not speak it clearly, which could lead to miscommunication.  Your wedding day is a day you want to make sure everything goes smoothly.
 

 

Creative inspiration

 

Photographers LOVE to shoot in new locations. Seriously! It is like Christmas for us. Shooting somewhere new sparks something inside of our creative heart. While some couples may say, “I want a photographer who knows the area where we are getting married,” to that I say, I understand, but maybe the person who knows the area is bored of shooting in that area in which case gives you generic and passionless photos. As a destination photographer, I always arrive a few days earlier, and I location scout to find the most beautiful locations to shoot.
 
So now the “bad” news.

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Photographer Hannah Nicole Photography

Photo Credit: Hannah Nicole Photography

While I only have one, it’s not necessarily a con. I feel like it is more of a reality. Every photographer is different, and I CANNOT speak for all of us but rather myself and a few other destination vendors I know.

 

RELATED:  AVOID THESE 3 WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PITFALLS

 

The cost

 

It is understood that you, the couple, will cover airfare, hotel and transportation costs. (Again, just speaking for myself and a few other destination vendors I know.)
 

This is an additional cost to the photographic services you invest in, but sometimes your photographer may be willing to work within your budget just to shoot in a new area, creative crack for us photographers!
 

Sometimes the photographer will also ask you to cover meals (I am not one because I eat like a college student). So, be aware it can be an additional cost. If you are having your wedding at an all-inclusive resort, this can be the cheapest and most cost-effective option since that covers transportation and food.
 

If all of the pros outweigh the con for you, I suggest you start searching for the photographers in your area to start chatting with. It never hurts to ask if they are willing to travel. This is your wedding. It’s not some random day of the week. These are photos you will look back on for eternity and smile at, so your photographer and photography should be seen as an investment.
 

 

Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.

Read More

6 Important Things You Need to Tell Your Photographer

Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post; no compensation was received or exchanged for this blog post or the promotion of the photographer.
 

Today’s contributing writer is Alicia King from Alicia King Photography

 

When it comes to your wedding day, all your vendors are important, but perhaps one of the most important is your photographer. Now, I’m not just saying that because this is a post on photography, I’m saying it because it’s true. They are one of the most important vendors because they are one of the first vendors you need to book, they are one of the vendors you spend the most time with, they will be with you almost all day during some of the most private and emotional points of the day, they will help you create a timeline (if you don’t have a planner), and they are the ones who will create the family keepsakes you will treasure for a lifetime.
 

If you have a photographer and you haven’t been communicating with them, you need to start now. If you think that just telling them when and where to show up is enough, you are mistaken. Photographers need to know waaaaaaaaay more than you think, and to help you with this process, we’ve asked Alicia King, Owner, and Photographer at Alicia King Photography, to share with you exactly what you need to be telling your photographer to make sure they capture everything you want them to on that day, the day you don’t get to do over.
 

Details, details, details

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Photography Alicia King Photography

Photo Credit: Alicia King Photography

Since I was a DIY bride, I had so many details that I wanted photos of. I made sure our photographer knew of everything I wanted a memory of. King says “The first thing I would highly suggest telling your photographer about would be if you have any special family heirlooms you are incorporating into your day that you want to be photographed. This could include a special charm or fabric wrapped around your bouquet or a necklace that belonged to someone important. If it’s something that means something to you, let your photographer know!! That goes for other details as well. Even if a specific detail isn’t an heirloom, if it’s dear to you, and you want a photograph of it, make sure to mention it!”

 

RELATED: 3 WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY PITFALLS TO AVOID

 

Any special or unique moments of your day

 

King says “It’s also helpful to let your photographer know if you have chosen to incorporate anything special or unique into your ceremony or reception. For example, a sand mixing ceremony, the Hora, or singing happy birthday to a guest if the wedding date happens to fall on the same day.” Our wedding day was also the birthday of a special little guest who was turning 6. We wanted to do something special at the reception for him, so we purchased a big cupcake for him and had everyone sing happy birthday as the staff brought out the cupcake with six candles on it. If we hadn’t have mentioned that to our photographer (or our DJ too, for that matter), he could have possibly missed the whole thing. By telling him in advance, he knew to expect it. King also says “Some church ceremonies also include the first kiss in the middle of the service instead of at the very end so that would also be something to tell your photographer if you know ahead of time!”
 

Who your family members are

 

“You may also want to let your photographer know if there are key family members coming that you want photographs of or with,” says King. So, this may seem silly but think about it. Your photographer knows you, maybe your parents, but he doesn’t know who your cousins are, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc. You want to make sure you give him or her a list of all the important people in your family you want pictures with. They don’t have to know what they look like, because they will announce who they want to have pose for photos, but if your grandma is there and if they don’t know who your grandmother is or if you want a photo with her, that’s a photo op you will most likely regret getting.
 

 

Special spots

 

“I always like to ask my couples if there are any special spots at their venue that they would really love to take photos,” says King. “Sometimes they say no and want me to choose (which is totally fine!) but sometimes they say yes! It is always my goal to take pictures the couple really wants, so knowing what spots stick out in their mind as important helps tremendously!”
 

Venue restrictions

 

Hudson Valley Wedding Photography Alicia King Photography

Photo Credit: Alicia King Photography

You may not realize it but venues may have restrictions in terms of where and how something can be photographed. “Most times,” says King, “Churches have strict rules about what a photographer can and cannot do. It is a good idea to find out from whoever is performing the ceremony if there is anything your photographer needs to know.” For example, King says “Some churches have balconies that photographers are not permitted to use for photography. If you have asked your photographer to take a picture from the balcony, and they are not permitted to go up there, it would be better to know that ahead of time then expect it and not receive it.” As a related topic, this is a question you want to make sure you ask your venue about. Some may tell you, but if they don’t make sure you ask to be double sure.

 

RELATED: 5 WAYS TO GET BEAUTIFUL WEDDING PHOTOS ON A TIGHT BUDGET

 

Officiant restrictions

 

“It is also a good idea to ask whoever is officiating your ceremony if they personally have any restrictions,” says King. Everyone knows that your ceremony is the most important part of your day, and so, because of that, your officiant may have restrictions such as no flash photography during the ceremony.
 

In the end, your photographer needs to know almost as much as you do about your wedding day. King says “It sort of sounds funny but keeping them in the loop will make your day go as smooth as possible!”
 

Read More