gwyneth colleen photography » portland, or wedding photographer

what every photographer wants you to know…

i’ve read several posts/articles with this title from a variety of perspectives. it kind of amuses me, bc…y’know, we’re all sure we’re right!

some photographers believe that if your coverage doesn’t include the disc of images with printing rights…you’re being gypped!

some photographers think you should have 2 or 3 perspectives or moments are being missed!…others are sure they do a better job blending in and capturing all the action shooting solo.

some photographers are passionate about telling you you deserve/need/require FULL coverage…from waking up in the morning until your last guest leaves and the venue starts breaking down tables.

some photographers firmly hold the stance that if you don’t do an engagement session…the photos on your wedding day will suffer!

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i can see all of these perspectives…and i agree with all of them to a certain extent. let me elaborate.

your images: i definitely believe that you should have the option to have the images from your wedding and the license to use them for personal use. this is why you can either include the images in your package or if you choose to go a la carte, you can purchase them for a reasonable fee after the wedding. those images have value…we both know that. that is why they are not automatically included. i want you to think about whether you’d like to be responsible for archiving them yourself while creating your own prints/books or whether you’d like to collaborate with me on prints and albums. there is no wrong answer. i want you to get exactly what you want!

number of shooters: i like working alone…and i like working with other photographers. 😀 so this isn’t one of my hot-button topics. i see the value in both approaches, and i usually make a recommendation based on how many hours of coverage you want and how large your event will be. i can’t be in two places at once…but one person blends in and moves around more freely than two. again…no wrong answer!

full coverage: there is something about the pace of the day that slows down when your photographer is there for extended hours. it’s a little more relaxed, the timeline is still important, but there’s less concern about fitting things in like a tetris game. that said, i normally do offer shorter coverage, and it is has never been an issue in my experience. well-planned timelines make it possible for everything to happen when it should…and to capture the entire story of the day, from getting ready to guests tearing up the dance floor without breaking the bank.

engagement session: while i think it’s hyperbolic to say that wedding day photos will SUFFER without doing an engagement session…i do include them in all of my packages because i think it’s a great way to get to know each other…the trust and rapport built in more relaxed settings does translate to comfort on the wedding day that is often invaluable for couples who aren’t used to being photographed. plus…it’s super fun! i really like getting to hang out with clients without being worried about getting back in time for the prime rib to be served.

so…basically the point of this post is…you’re going to read a lot of different things in your search for a photographer. everyone’s got their THING that they feel really strongly about. you’ll hear persuasive arguments…and sometimes directly contradicting arguments from person to person. it might be confusing or overwhelming, but if you can take a minute and think about what you really need and what you really want…you’ll start to see the light at the end of the tunnel! and if you have a question…you should NEVER hesitate to ask it. (if you don’t feel comfortable asking someone a question…it might be a good sign that you should continue your search!) that’s what we’re here for; we do this…a LOT…and we’re happy to share our experiences and perspectives…and to make sure that things work out for you the way you want them to.

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Cindy2 March 2011 - 12:20

I’m so glad we did the engagement session together before the big day. I felt much more comfortable on the wedding day for a couple of different reasons- after seeing the engagement shots, I knew you were going to make us look fabulous…and it was also good to practice getting our picture taken…I felt prepared and confident. Plus, it was fun!

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