Why Is Wedding Photography So Expensive? And answers to other questions.

Recently, the ladies over at Good Ol’ Fashioned Party interviewed me, and featured my answers on their blog. I thought it would be fun to share my answers again here.

jane and ryan-5

How would you best describe your shooting style?

I would say my photos are real, candid and fun. Many of my clients tell me they don’t want “cheesy” photos, and I think my photos reflect that. I strive to portray real relationships and showcase love in a real way!
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A question that frequently gets asked as we work with couples planning their special day is, why is photography so expensive? How would you answer that?

There is so much more that goes into wedding photography than just the average of 8-10 hours I spend with brides and grooms on their wedding day! I usually spend a minimum of 50-60 hours on each wedding I photograph, which includes meetings and communications, travel times, uploading photos, many hours of editing, and then pulling it all together in a finished product.

In addition, there are a lot of costs that I have to bear as a small business owner. Nearly a third of my income goes towards taxes (yuck!) and beyond that, I pay for my own health insurance and liability insurance. In addition, I have to pay for computers, transportation, software, website fees, studio space, postage, packaging materials, membership fees and ongoing education, advertising, permits, as well as purchase and maintenance of camera gear, etc. It all adds up!
amber and jesse-18

Can you talk a little bit about a few of your favorite events that you have worked?

I often get to work with couples and families on some of the happiest, most celebratory days of their lives. Capturing weddings and new births are such a joy! However, some of the most impactful photography I have done is for families dealing with sickness and saying goodbye. One of my favorite sessions was with a wonderful family a couple of years ago. The woman who hired me knew her father was close to death from liver cancer. She wanted to capture his smile and memories with the family all together one last time. All the photos were black and white, as his skin was so yellow with illness. I can still picture the look on his face as he watched with joy as his grandchildren played down in the yard. He died two weeks after the photos were taken and I am so happy to have been able to give this gift to such a special family.
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I know that you are fairly new to Colorado, how would you say shooting here differs from shooting in Washington DC?

There is a lot more sun here in general, so I’ve had to learn on how to work with that! There are so many dramatic and different places to photograph here – it has been fun to explore!

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What other kind of photos do you enjoy doing?

I love to travel, and to take photos while I’m off traveling. My walls at home are covered with pictures from my adventures! I’m currently planning a trip for Turkey once wedding season calms down a bit and can’t wait!
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 Where do you get your inspiration as you are setting up a shot?

I usually look to see where the light is best and work creatively in that space. Light is so important for making beautiful photographs, and being aware of how to make it work best is what will make inspiring photographs!

red shoes photography


What are a few of the planning steps that couples should prepare before their special day?

As far as photography goes, working with the photographer to set up a timeline for capturing the best times of day for light is so important. It is also good to think about the light situation when choosing a place for getting ready and for other locations during the day. Allowing enough time for portraits while not inconveniencing the guests is also important. I always talk to my clients about the possibility of doing a “first look” prior to the ceremony so that most of the photos are taken beforehand and the couple can enjoy all of the party!

Katie and Kyle Married-24