Q: What is your service area?
A: Mostly Southeastern Wisconsin. We work in Madison frequently. We are regularly in the Lake Geneva area. We do a lot in Fond du Lac. Milwaukee we work regularly. Occasionally we get into the Rockford area of Illinois. Occasionally we get to Oshkosh, Appleton, Green Bay.
Q: Where are you based?
Q: Do you charge a travel fee to go outside of Milwaukee?
A: We do not charge a fee for travel within the service area mentioned above.
Q: How do you dress for a wedding?
A: Professionally. No jeans. No loud colors. Similar to a nicely-dressed guest.
Q: How long have you been in this business?
A: Five years straight for wedding photography and nine years straight for wedding video.
Q: How many hours of coverage are included?
A: It is a flat fee for our service rather than hourly. Usually, we arrive at the ceremony site about an hour before the bride does. Coverage usually goes till around 9:30.
Q: What is required to secure our date?
A: A signed contract and $300 retainer fee.
Q: Is the retainer applied towards the package price?
A: Yes. For example, if your package price is $900 and your retainer fee is $300, then your remaining balance would be $600.
Q: When is the remaining balance due?
A: At the start of the wedding day, before we begin shooting. Most clients feel that paying bills is the last thing they want to be thinking of on their wedding day so they opt to pay the remaining balance prior to the wedding.
Q: How do you accept payment?
A: Checks or money orders.
Q: We know we want you for either photography OR video but we have not decided which one yet.
A: No problem. If you know you want us for one or the other, the most important thing is securing your date. You can decide later on down the road which of the two, photography or video, that you want us to do.
Q: We want to retain your services now but we do not have our church/reception venue picked out yet. Can we still secure our date?
A: Sure. It is not unusual for clients to secure their date before all the details have been ironed out.
Q: We know we want to book you. What do we do?
A: E-mail us your date and wedding location so we can see if we are already booked. You can call if you prefer. If we are available, we can e-mail you the paperwork (it is just two pages) for you to print out yourself. Alternatively, you give us your mailing address and we mail you out the paperwork. Once you have the paperwork, you just fill in your ceremony and reception locations and times and sign your name. Include a check or money order for $300 and mail it back to us.
Q: What happens after we send in the contract and $300 fee?
A: We sign the contract and mail the original back to you.
About 6 to 8 weeks before the wedding we mail out a questionnaire. Among the items will be a list of formals poses, from which the couple select which formals groupings they want and do not want.
Q: Do you have payment plans?
A: Yes. You can send in $100, $200, $300 (or however much you want) at a time and we keep track of it. This way, you do not have a large bill to pay off right before the wedding. By the time the wedding comes around, you are all paid up.
Q: We are still looking around but would like to meet you and learn more.
A: Sounds good. We do not pressure you to sign up with us at meetings. We look at meetings as a way to discuss your wedding plans to see if we would be a good fit for each other. We could meet you somewhere (such as Starbucks) convenient to you.
Q: Is an in-person meeting necessary?
A: While it is nice to have a bit of familiarity so that we all recognize each other on the big day, there are ways to get it all done without meeting. There are usually many e-mails exchanged and some phone conversations. You fill out an itinerary and questionnaire before the wedding day. It is not unusual for couples to be planning a wedding from out of town or even from a different state. In these circumstances, it is not uncommon for couples to secure their date without meeting first.
Q: Can you do both our photography AND our video?
A: No. We only do one or the other at a time.
Q: Do you travel outside your usual service area?
A: Sometimes. Let us know your date and where your wedding will be taking place and we will consider it.
Q: Will the photographers who took the pictures on your website be the actual photographers who would be at our wedding?
Q: Why two photographers instead of one?
A: Having two photographers adds a greater dimension to the coverage. The photographers mostly shoot from separate physical locations throughout the day, so that they are photographing differing scenes and subjects. If the couple want some coverage of each of them before the ceremony, one photographer can go with the bride and the other photographer can hang with the groom a bit. This way each one can see what the other was up to prior to the ceremony.
Q: Are your photographers obnoxious?
A: No. More toward the other end of the spectrum, actually. When our photographers are not handling the posed "formals" pictures, they prefer to be more low-key and try to blend into the background.
Q: How many pictures do we get?
A: The average has been 1300 and has varied from 900 to 1600.
Q: Are the pictures edited?
A: They are gone over for brightness and proper colors.
Q: What is the turnaround time on the pictures?
A: About eight to twelve weeks.
Q: We do not want an album. Are you cool with that?
A: Sure. We are just as happy to work for clients who only want the full-resolution pictures on DVD.
Q: We are not sure that we want an album. Do we have to decide on this at the time we secure you for the wedding-day coverage?
A: No. You could just look over the DVD images you receive and decide at that time whether or not you want us to make an album.
Q: I saw some poses in a magazine and also on a different website that I liked. Can I show you those pictures so we could try to do the same poses?
A: Sure. Just send us the pictures and we can make plans to do it.
Q: If we want pictures of the bride getting ready before the ceremony, does a guy or a girl shoot that?
A: A girl.
Q: Do you have a photo studio where you take portraits?
A: Our photographers specialize in event documentary photography. That is all they do. We take no studio portraits so, consequently, we have no need for a walk-in studio. Our “studio” is the location of the events we document. All a storefront studio would do for us is increase overhead significantly, which would result in much higher package pricing, with absolutely no benefit to the quality of the finished product.
Q: Tell me about online print ordering?
A: It is actually a nice convenience feature for family members who just want to get a couple pictures for themselves for framing. This way, the newlywed couple are not bothered with getting one 5x7 for one person, one 8x10 for another person. Prices for the prints are reasonable: a 5x7 is $7, an 8x10 is $9.
Q: I want "bride getting ready" pictures but I am not getting ready at the ceremony location. Can you cover this?
A: If the bride would be getting ready not too far from the ceremony location then this we could do. If the bride would be getting ready farther away from the ceremony location, then there would be an off-site coverage fee of $125. If you want "bride getting ready" coverage that will not take place at the ceremony location, let us know what you have in mind and we will get back to you with whether or not there would be an additional fee.
Q: Will the videographers who filmed your video samples be the same videographers who would be at our wedding?
Q: How many videos do we get?
A: A total of 12. This can be any combination you would like of high definition Blu-rays and standard definition DVDs. For example, you could choose to have 1 Blu-ray and 11 DVDs OR 6 Blu-rays and 6 DVDs.
Q: What video equipment do you use?
A: Digital SLR [DSLR] camera bodies shooting 1920x1080 high definition. Multiple lenses including wide angle, medium, and telephoto. Tripods. Wireless microphone systems. Various digital audio recorders that record to solid state memory and hard drive. Various microphones. Off-camera lighting for reception dancing, if needed.
Q: If we want video of the bride getting ready before the ceremony, does a guy or a girl shoot that?
A: A girl.
Q: Can we get the raw footage?
A: We do not give out raw footage. Honestly, there really are no hidden “gems” in the raw footage. The cameras generally are not running continuously, like a surveillance camera. We turn the cameras on, turn them off, turn them on, turn them off. You basically get everything we shoot. We take out test shots, shots of the floor while the camera is being carried around, shots of people yawning, shots of the camera being panned from one subject to another, shots where we are adjusting focus and adjusting exposure. When there is multi-camera coverage going on simultaneously, for example at the ceremony where one camera would be a wide-angle shot of your venue and the other camera would be a close-up of someone doing a reading, we would choose the best shot, which in most cases would be the close-up. The raw footage from the wide-angle camera would be an hour-long wide-angle shot of your venue from the far back.
Q: Do you make growing-up slide shows that can be projected at the reception?
A: Yes. We have made many of these. Usually the format is 3 songs, with 1 song being him growing up, 1 song being her growing up, and 1 song for the together pictures. About 50-75 pictures total. Extensive editing includes adjusting the colors of each picture to make them look their best, minor retouching, and setting the pictures to music. Overall presentation is much better than what most people could do themselves. Price is $350. Mail-out DVD demo available upon request.