FAQ

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

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WEDDINGS

WEDDINGS

What is the cost of your wedding photography service?


I can absolutely understand wanting to find pricing information without having to ask. Truly I can. My detailed rates and packages aren't listed for public viewing on my site for a variety of reasons. First, rates and packages vary by location. Some weddings outside the Chicagoland area require farther travel, which would not be included in a local wedding rate. Destination weddings are different as well. I also create custom packages for many clients, which is something that I can absolutely do for you! If you'd like to obtain detailed rate and package information for your wedding, simply complete the Contact Us fields and I will email you all the information you need. I promise to respond ASAP, and look forward to chatting further! Local wedding rates begin at $1895 and $2695 for two photographers.




Do you work with a second photographer?


Sometimes yes, and sometimes, no. Allow me to explain. I spent more than thirty years shooting weddings as a solo photographer, and have since added several extraordinarily talented associate photographers to the studio. They are wonderful documentary photographers, and great assets to the wedding day coverage when the day requires a second vantage point. Some packages have a second photographer as well. All engagement photo sessions are all solo-photographer coverage.




Do you edit all of our photos?


Yes, I do! Every image that you receive has been hand-edited to correct any color and exposure issues.




Do we keep all of our high resolution wedding files?


I provide the selected, edited high-resolution digital files. I do retain the copyright to the images and the right to use them for promotional purposes, competition, professional review and so on. If you need, I'm glad to provide you with a written release that will allow you to make unlimited personal reproductions and copies for your friends and families.




How long will it take until we can view our photos?


Online galleries and your digital files are released within four weeks from your wedding date (sooner if time permits). Upon final approval of album designs, most albums are ready for delivery within 2-3 weeks.




Do we get the copyright of the images?


Copyright is something that I get asked about often. Many photographers include a "copyright release" in their contracts, which generally just means the same as a release to have images printed by yourself, or at any lab you choose. That's not the same as obtaining copyright. Copyright simply means that I am the creator of the images, and I "own" the copyright. Selling or obtaining "the copyright" is not possible, but you will have the ability to print and share your images as much as you'd like.




Where do you live and how far will you travel?


I live in Algonquin, Illinois - which is where my studio and office is. I've been all over the world to photograph weddings, to the Caribbean and Jamaica, to Mexico, Scotland, and throughout the entire United States. I am very, very comfortable traveling for events. Rest assured that should you commission me to cover your wedding and travel to you then you are hiring someone very experienced with travel for business. Travel is billed very simply - if airfare and hotel and rental car are needed, all you are responsible for is a direct reimbursement for the charges.

In terms of local weddings, I cover all of Chicagoland, Milwaukee, Madison, Rockford, NW Indiana and all parts in-between as part of my territory.




We want to take photos at a super cool location on our wedding day. Do you know if we need a permit?


I would love to help you with this, but the answer is that I'm not sure. If you're getting married on-site, the chances that you'll need a permit are very small. If you're leaving your venue and going somewhere else, a permit might be required. There are many places that do require you get a permit, the permit has to be obtained by the client, not the photographer. If you have a question about a location, just let me know and I will help you figue out if a permit is needed. If we try to photograph in a location that requires a permit, and we don't have one, we'll be asked to leave. I don't want that to happen to us!




Are our photos watermaked?


They are not. The high resolution files do not bear any watermarks.




How many photos will we receive?


The number of photographs taken depends on many things - the number of guests, hours of coverage, types of events, hours of dancing, and so forth. My average for an eight hour day is typically over 1000 images, but those numbers may vary depending on the day itself. If you have questions about image quantity, I'd love to hear more about your plans. This would help me provide you with a more detailed explanation and estimate.




Do we receive the RAW files?


RAW files are available for an additional fee of $250. If you want all of your RAW files you must let me know in advance of the wedding day.




Can we see all the outtakes and the images that didn't make the "final cut"?


The images delivered to you are very loosely edited, taking out only eyes-closed, flash-didn't-fire, person-walked-in-front-of-the-lens true outtakes. If there are a handful of images of you together with your mom laughing, for example, I'm going to include everything that isn't an absolute duplicate and so forth. The images not selected aren't archived and therefore aren't available.




Do you need to attend our rehersal?


Rehearsal dinner coverage is available if you'd like to add it to your package; otherwise I don't attend the rehearsals. We will talk about the timing of your day and the flow of the event, and one of the things is the ceremony. I'd love to hear about the timing of the ceremony itself, but please rest assured that not attending the rehearsal doesn't impact your coverage in any way.




What if we want to order extra prints? How does that work?


Your digital files are delivered to your home via thumb drive. I will also have all of your wedding photos available in an online gallery. You can order extra prints directly through your online gallery, and since you'll have all your digital files on a thumb drive you can also order prints at any lab you choose.




Do you offer engagement sessions?


Yes, I do! I adore engagement sessions! Please take note that most engagement sessions have to be done Monday - Thursday because of a heavy wedding schedule, but there's occasionally Friday, Saturday and Sunday availability. Sessions are photographed within the Chicagoland area. There may be an additional charge for downtown Chicago (the Loop), such as parking fees and extended time to get to a particular location. Typically, engagement sessions last one hour. If you have any questions about your engagement session, please don't hesitate to contact me.




How would you describe your style of photography?


I cover wedding in a very journalistic style but I don't think photography should be limited by a "genre." While I'm very hand-off and unobtrusive in my coverage of the day, I do believe that there is a time and place for gorgeous, casually posed images of the couple together and some photos of family groups. I also believe strongly in preserving all of the details of the wedding, from your cake to your shoes, so my work is very flush with detail images. My images of guests at the wedding reception are almost 100% journalistic capturing guests laughing, smiling, dancing, drinking and having a great time.




Do you take posed family photos?


Absolutely. I strongly believe in those family images, as they're records of your entire family at an important time in their history together. A few weeks before your wedding I'll send you a questionnaire covering the details of the day and among the other questions is a list of posed images - these are the family groupings that I traditionally photography at each wedding I cover. You'll have space to write in your own additional groupings. Please bear in mind that the hallmark of my coverage is journalistic and real-time, so a very long list of posed images will hinder my ability to cover the event in a documentary manner. However, these family groupings I photograph are quick, easy, and largely informal and I try to make them pleasant and enjoyable for everyone involved.




Can we provide you with a "shot list" or a "must take pictures"?


Other than the family groupings, I'd prefer that you didn't - and let me explain why. It's very helpful to know what important relatives and friends are coming to your day, and if any events bear special significance, but repeated requests for posed images and having me work "from a checklist" is counterproductive to the work you've seen here on my website, and will result in a very different look to your gallery of images. "Shot lists" provided by many major magazines and websites are a great idea in theory, but please understand that I generally will capture those images without prompting. Providing me with a very long list of college groupings or high school friends or extended family at the reception will result in a lesser amount of documentary coverage and more time spend rounding up guests to check the groupings off of a list. Also, providing me a list of images you've seen on Pinterest reduces my ability to capture naturally occurring moments for you, as we'd be working from a list instead of creating unique work for you.




Do you have insurance?


Yes. Absolutely. 100%. For sure. Yes, yes, yes!




What kind of equipment do you use?


I use top of the line professional Canon equipment.




Can you provide my venue with a certificate of insurance?


Of course. I do request that you let me know at least a couple of weeks in advance of your event as it does take time for our insurance company to process and provide that document. Please feel free to put your venue or your coordinator in touch with me and we can work out those details easily, each venue has different requirements and we can provide certificates to meet all their needs.




How long have you been in business? How many weddings have you photographed?


I photographed my first wedding in 1989 and have been working with my own company since 2000. I estimate I have photographed well over 1000 weddings during all of that time. I am always deeply honored when I'm commissioned to document a wedding, and I take that responsibility very seriously.




Can you hold a date for me?


I'm so sorry, but I can't hold the date or pencil you in. To be fair to everyone I can't "hold" a date without a retainer and a signed contract. I accept bookings on a first come / first served basis.




What is your payment schedule?


A booking fee / retainer of $500 is due to reserve your date. The second, and final payment of your balance is due one month before your wedding date. I'll send you an email reminder when your final payment is due. I like to make things as easy as possible for you - I know you've got a lot on your plate!




Can we pay you part of the amount due after the wedding?


I do require full payment before the event. Payments for overtime, albums, or additional products beyond your wedding day contract, however, all due post-wedding. If you have any concerns about the payment schedule, I'd love to chat with you about them.




If I need to cancel my wedding is the deposit refundable?


The retainer fee and all monies paid are non-refundable. The retainer guarantees that I'll hold the date exclusively for you and once you've signed the contract I do turn down all other events for that date.




When should we book you for our wedding?


ASAP. Since I can't "hold" dates or "pencil you in" dates are booked when...well, when they're booked. Most of my clients contract me within a year of the wedding date, sometimes as close as two months prior, sometimes a full calendar year or more in advance. It's easy to predict what will be popular weekends, but not always easy to predict when those weekends will book up.




If we're running late, will you stay later than scheduled?


Surely! I do have an overtime rate and it goes into effect only with your permission and approval that I continue coverage. I'll invoice you for those hours after you return from your honeymoon.




Do you offer discounts for off season events?


Occasionally discounts are available but are based on time of year, my travel schedule, and availability. If you have concerns about your budgetary needs, please contact me and let me know.




Do we need to feed you at the reception?


The short answer is yes. I do require a meal to be provided to each photographer working your event. Feeding us ensures I (we) stay cheerful, mobile, and that I don't faint from starvation or end up eating a stale protein bar that's been in my camera back since 2012. I prefer to be fed when you are fed, not afterwards, because when you are eating you're not at your most photogenic. And when you're done, I want to be done as well to continue coverage. We do bring our own snacks and water to weddings, but a hot meal is always a lovely treat during a long work day.




Can our family and friends take photos with their cameras?


Of course they can and it doesn't bother me in the least bit. I do request they not swarm the family photographs right away because I'd prefer all eyes facing me in your images, but I don't mind at all if they snap away from the background. I don't allow family or friends to come along for the solo images or the images of you two alone for privacy purposes and because, frankly, other people can be distracting. I welcome other cameras during dancing, cake cutting, and other events just ask politely if people could please not push me out of the way and respect my presence.




Why should we hire YOU for our wedding?


Why should I be your wedding photographer? Because I will take of you as if you were my family. I will help you craft a timeline that allows your day to be YOUR day, just how you want it. Because I will be here for you, as a resource with more than three decades of experience (and that's a lot of weddings!). Because weddings can be stressful and overwhelming, and I will be right with you the entire time - I promise. I'll be your problem-solver. I'll be your family-wrangler. I will be your advocate. I will help ensure that your day is exactly what you want, captured as beautifully as you deserve. I will be you eyes on your day, so that you can focus on the amazing gathering of everyone you love best in the world and trust that your photography is in extremely skilled hands.

If it rains, if it snows, if it gets dark early, if your venue is unexpectedly covered in scaffolding, if hair and makeup run late, if we get stuck in traffic - I've got you, and your images will still be amazing. My job is to take great pictures for you, yes, but also to help remove all the stress from your wedding day so that you can enjoy it completely!





 

SENIOR PORTRAITS

WEDDINGS

What is the cost of your wedding photography service?


I can absolutely understand wanting to find pricing information without having to ask. Truly I can. My detailed rates and packages aren't listed for public viewing on my site for a variety of reasons. First, rates and packages vary by location. Some weddings outside the Chicagoland area require farther travel, which would not be included in a local wedding rate. Destination weddings are different as well. I also create custom packages for many clients, which is something that I can absolutely do for you! If you'd like to obtain detailed rate and package information for your wedding, simply complete the Contact Us fields and I will email you all the information you need. I promise to respond ASAP, and look forward to chatting further! Local wedding rates begin at $1895 and $2695 for two photographers.




Do you work with a second photographer?


Sometimes yes, and sometimes, no. Allow me to explain. I spent more than thirty years shooting weddings as a solo photographer, and have since added several extraordinarily talented associate photographers to the studio. They are wonderful documentary photographers, and great assets to the wedding day coverage when the day requires a second vantage point. Some packages have a second photographer as well. All engagement photo sessions are all solo-photographer coverage.




Do you edit all of our photos?


Yes, I do! Every image that you receive has been hand-edited to correct any color and exposure issues.




Do we keep all of our high resolution wedding files?


I provide the selected, edited high-resolution digital files. I do retain the copyright to the images and the right to use them for promotional purposes, competition, professional review and so on. If you need, I'm glad to provide you with a written release that will allow you to make unlimited personal reproductions and copies for your friends and families.




How long will it take until we can view our photos?


Online galleries and your digital files are released within four weeks from your wedding date (sooner if time permits). Upon final approval of album designs, most albums are ready for delivery within 2-3 weeks.




Do we get the copyright of the images?


Copyright is something that I get asked about often. Many photographers include a "copyright release" in their contracts, which generally just means the same as a release to have images printed by yourself, or at any lab you choose. That's not the same as obtaining copyright. Copyright simply means that I am the creator of the images, and I "own" the copyright. Selling or obtaining "the copyright" is not possible, but you will have the ability to print and share your images as much as you'd like.




Where do you live and how far will you travel?


I live in Algonquin, Illinois - which is where my studio and office is. I've been all over the world to photograph weddings, to the Caribbean and Jamaica, to Mexico, Scotland, and throughout the entire United States. I am very, very comfortable traveling for events. Rest assured that should you commission me to cover your wedding and travel to you then you are hiring someone very experienced with travel for business. Travel is billed very simply - if airfare and hotel and rental car are needed, all you are responsible for is a direct reimbursement for the charges.

In terms of local weddings, I cover all of Chicagoland, Milwaukee, Madison, Rockford, NW Indiana and all parts in-between as part of my territory.




We want to take photos at a super cool location on our wedding day. Do you know if we need a permit?


I would love to help you with this, but the answer is that I'm not sure. If you're getting married on-site, the chances that you'll need a permit are very small. If you're leaving your venue and going somewhere else, a permit might be required. There are many places that do require you get a permit, the permit has to be obtained by the client, not the photographer. If you have a question about a location, just let me know and I will help you figue out if a permit is needed. If we try to photograph in a location that requires a permit, and we don't have one, we'll be asked to leave. I don't want that to happen to us!




Are our photos watermaked?


They are not. The high resolution files do not bear any watermarks.




How many photos will we receive?


The number of photographs taken depends on many things - the number of guests, hours of coverage, types of events, hours of dancing, and so forth. My average for an eight hour day is typically over 1000 images, but those numbers may vary depending on the day itself. If you have questions about image quantity, I'd love to hear more about your plans. This would help me provide you with a more detailed explanation and estimate.




Do we receive the RAW files?


RAW files are available for an additional fee of $250. If you want all of your RAW files you must let me know in advance of the wedding day.




Can we see all the outtakes and the images that didn't make the "final cut"?


The images delivered to you are very loosely edited, taking out only eyes-closed, flash-didn't-fire, person-walked-in-front-of-the-lens true outtakes. If there are a handful of images of you together with your mom laughing, for example, I'm going to include everything that isn't an absolute duplicate and so forth. The images not selected aren't archived and therefore aren't available.




Do you need to attend our rehersal?


Rehearsal dinner coverage is available if you'd like to add it to your package; otherwise I don't attend the rehearsals. We will talk about the timing of your day and the flow of the event, and one of the things is the ceremony. I'd love to hear about the timing of the ceremony itself, but please rest assured that not attending the rehearsal doesn't impact your coverage in any way.




What if we want to order extra prints? How does that work?


Your digital files are delivered to your home via thumb drive. I will also have all of your wedding photos available in an online gallery. You can order extra prints directly through your online gallery, and since you'll have all your digital files on a thumb drive you can also order prints at any lab you choose.




Do you offer engagement sessions?


Yes, I do! I adore engagement sessions! Please take note that most engagement sessions have to be done Monday - Thursday because of a heavy wedding schedule, but there's occasionally Friday, Saturday and Sunday availability. Sessions are photographed within the Chicagoland area. There may be an additional charge for downtown Chicago (the Loop), such as parking fees and extended time to get to a particular location. Typically, engagement sessions last one hour. If you have any questions about your engagement session, please don't hesitate to contact me.




How would you describe your style of photography?


I cover wedding in a very journalistic style but I don't think photography should be limited by a "genre." While I'm very hand-off and unobtrusive in my coverage of the day, I do believe that there is a time and place for gorgeous, casually posed images of the couple together and some photos of family groups. I also believe strongly in preserving all of the details of the wedding, from your cake to your shoes, so my work is very flush with detail images. My images of guests at the wedding reception are almost 100% journalistic capturing guests laughing, smiling, dancing, drinking and having a great time.




Do you take posed family photos?


Absolutely. I strongly believe in those family images, as they're records of your entire family at an important time in their history together. A few weeks before your wedding I'll send you a questionnaire covering the details of the day and among the other questions is a list of posed images - these are the family groupings that I traditionally photography at each wedding I cover. You'll have space to write in your own additional groupings. Please bear in mind that the hallmark of my coverage is journalistic and real-time, so a very long list of posed images will hinder my ability to cover the event in a documentary manner. However, these family groupings I photograph are quick, easy, and largely informal and I try to make them pleasant and enjoyable for everyone involved.




Can we provide you with a "shot list" or a "must take pictures"?


Other than the family groupings, I'd prefer that you didn't - and let me explain why. It's very helpful to know what important relatives and friends are coming to your day, and if any events bear special significance, but repeated requests for posed images and having me work "from a checklist" is counterproductive to the work you've seen here on my website, and will result in a very different look to your gallery of images. "Shot lists" provided by many major magazines and websites are a great idea in theory, but please understand that I generally will capture those images without prompting. Providing me with a very long list of college groupings or high school friends or extended family at the reception will result in a lesser amount of documentary coverage and more time spend rounding up guests to check the groupings off of a list. Also, providing me a list of images you've seen on Pinterest reduces my ability to capture naturally occurring moments for you, as we'd be working from a list instead of creating unique work for you.




Do you have insurance?


Yes. Absolutely. 100%. For sure. Yes, yes, yes!




What kind of equipment do you use?


I use top of the line professional Canon equipment.




Can you provide my venue with a certificate of insurance?


Of course. I do request that you let me know at least a couple of weeks in advance of your event as it does take time for our insurance company to process and provide that document. Please feel free to put your venue or your coordinator in touch with me and we can work out those details easily, each venue has different requirements and we can provide certificates to meet all their needs.




How long have you been in business? How many weddings have you photographed?


I photographed my first wedding in 1989 and have been working with my own company since 2000. I estimate I have photographed well over 1000 weddings during all of that time. I am always deeply honored when I'm commissioned to document a wedding, and I take that responsibility very seriously.




Can you hold a date for me?


I'm so sorry, but I can't hold the date or pencil you in. To be fair to everyone I can't "hold" a date without a retainer and a signed contract. I accept bookings on a first come / first served basis.




What is your payment schedule?


A booking fee / retainer of $500 is due to reserve your date. The second, and final payment of your balance is due one month before your wedding date. I'll send you an email reminder when your final payment is due. I like to make things as easy as possible for you - I know you've got a lot on your plate!




Can we pay you part of the amount due after the wedding?


I do require full payment before the event. Payments for overtime, albums, or additional products beyond your wedding day contract, however, all due post-wedding. If you have any concerns about the payment schedule, I'd love to chat with you about them.




If I need to cancel my wedding is the deposit refundable?


The retainer fee and all monies paid are non-refundable. The retainer guarantees that I'll hold the date exclusively for you and once you've signed the contract I do turn down all other events for that date.




When should we book you for our wedding?


ASAP. Since I can't "hold" dates or "pencil you in" dates are booked when...well, when they're booked. Most of my clients contract me within a year of the wedding date, sometimes as close as two months prior, sometimes a full calendar year or more in advance. It's easy to predict what will be popular weekends, but not always easy to predict when those weekends will book up.




If we're running late, will you stay later than scheduled?


Surely! I do have an overtime rate and it goes into effect only with your permission and approval that I continue coverage. I'll invoice you for those hours after you return from your honeymoon.




Do you offer discounts for off season events?


Occasionally discounts are available but are based on time of year, my travel schedule, and availability. If you have concerns about your budgetary needs, please contact me and let me know.




Do we need to feed you at the reception?


The short answer is yes. I do require a meal to be provided to each photographer working your event. Feeding us ensures I (we) stay cheerful, mobile, and that I don't faint from starvation or end up eating a stale protein bar that's been in my camera back since 2012. I prefer to be fed when you are fed, not afterwards, because when you are eating you're not at your most photogenic. And when you're done, I want to be done as well to continue coverage. We do bring our own snacks and water to weddings, but a hot meal is always a lovely treat during a long work day.




Can our family and friends take photos with their cameras?


Of course they can and it doesn't bother me in the least bit. I do request they not swarm the family photographs right away because I'd prefer all eyes facing me in your images, but I don't mind at all if they snap away from the background. I don't allow family or friends to come along for the solo images or the images of you two alone for privacy purposes and because, frankly, other people can be distracting. I welcome other cameras during dancing, cake cutting, and other events just ask politely if people could please not push me out of the way and respect my presence.




Why should we hire YOU for our wedding?


Why should I be your wedding photographer? Because I will take of you as if you were my family. I will help you craft a timeline that allows your day to be YOUR day, just how you want it. Because I will be here for you, as a resource with more than three decades of experience (and that's a lot of weddings!). Because weddings can be stressful and overwhelming, and I will be right with you the entire time - I promise. I'll be your problem-solver. I'll be your family-wrangler. I will be your advocate. I will help ensure that your day is exactly what you want, captured as beautifully as you deserve. I will be you eyes on your day, so that you can focus on the amazing gathering of everyone you love best in the world and trust that your photography is in extremely skilled hands.

If it rains, if it snows, if it gets dark early, if your venue is unexpectedly covered in scaffolding, if hair and makeup run late, if we get stuck in traffic - I've got you, and your images will still be amazing. My job is to take great pictures for you, yes, but also to help remove all the stress from your wedding day so that you can enjoy it completely!





 

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