Frequently Asked Questions

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WHEN DO I BOOK MY  WEDDING ON YOUR CALENDAR?

As soon as possible, would be my recommendation! 

Do you love my team and I to be there to capture your wedding, event and/or session? Then, you have to know, I do book incredibly FAST. I am a Florida success story with my inclusive + affordable pricing; plus my years of experience in the this field.

I advertise and market the business heavily for the coverage of the entire State of Florida - all regions for weddings since I include all travel expenses on the wedding day already within price. No additional fees at all. This makes my team popular not only in South Florida, but also in the Florida Keys, Central Florida, West Florida, + North Florida regions.

All our bookings are First-come, first-serve policy. Due to our easy 2-step Online booking process, even couple who do not speak to me on the phone or email me can book any available date/timeframe from the comfort of their computer.

Weddings + Events are strictly one (1) wedding/event per date. No exceptions. I want to be YOUR photographer - I want to capture it for you, and I can only be in one (1) place at any given time. If you want me to photograph your amazing wedding/event, please reserve early + in advance, to guarantee, I can capture it for you and provide you the exceptional SMP service.

 

HOW DO I BOOK YOU?

For easy reference, you can find the Agreement to complete + sign @ the bottom of the first (1st) Introductory Email we sent you after you inquired, and also on the same page as our Pricing + Investment Guide link we sent you in the first (1st) Introductory Email. Easy, online 2-step process for any client, anywhere!

 

WHAT ARE YOUR PRICES?

I have many pricing options available through different Signature Collections for both Wedding Days and Portrait sessions.

Contact us HERE for the pricing guide we’ll email you with a ton of information about our company.

 

DO I HAVE TO CHOSE A wedding COLLECTION NOW WHEN I BOOK? … I’M still UNDECIDED

Nope, when you book our services, you reserve all the pricing for the Event/Wedding . You can chose the collection up to U before the wedding. We make booking super-easy! Alot of couples book us right away to guarantee our services, while they might still be planning their Big Day details. Relax, and plan away your gorgeous event… We’ll touch base with you one (1) month prior to the wedding to get all the amazing details, ask which Collection you would like, + also to draft you a detailed & organized wedding day timeline.

 

what is your shooting style?

We like to consider our approach and style of photography as “editorial photojournalism”.

The term “photojournalism” has become quite a buzz word in the wedding industry, however true definition translates to “news photography”, as it is not art-directed or styled in anyway. In today’s world of Pinterest-worthy inspiration, it’s easy to see that true photojournalism just isn’t realistic in terms of the wedding day or even a portrait session. For us personally, we have certainly adapted the foundations of this technique so we can be as unobtrusive as possible while shooting, allowing us to photograph in a more fluid way, capturing authentic and candid moments.  There are exceptions of course, like during portraits or family formals which requires us to be a bit more directive. And with our distinct commercial and design influences, we aren’t just shooting to document the day, we are also shooting in a way that we know will lend itself better to the design of your final products and wedding album.

As creative, storytelling photographers, we aim to artfully record and present the authentic story of your day… allowing you to truly experience the magic of your wedding day. We do that by unobtrusively capturing candid moments as they happen, without directing or intervening. This inconspicuous approach helps us capture the natural magic of your day, revealing the true essence and character of yourselves, your guests and your experience. When the time is right, we will also take a more active role in offering direction, making you shine brighter than ever by posing you in flattering, natural ways that don’t look or feel posed and contrived. We’re constantly dreaming up unique and creative perspectives, often going to extraordinary lengths in pursuit of an unbelievable shot. We’ll climb trees, wade barefoot across glacier-fed rivers, even shoot from within the deluge of a freezing water fountain. The end results are timeless images that speak for themselves. Bold, bright, unique and (most importantly) REAL. Instead of posing a couple we prefer to give them little, simple verbal prompts. As a photographers we've been trained to shoot both outdoors and indoors and will either use natural light or create my own if needed. The beauty of natural light is the speed in which you can shoot. Using natural light is a talent that often goes unrecognized since it's not often taught in schools that are based indoors. But as wedding photographers with over 600+ weddings and nearly double the amount of portrait sessions we have had lots of experience shooting outdoors and love using natural light whenever we can. While we prefer a naturally lit environment we am also ready to produce stunning images no matter what Mother Nature decides to hand us on your day.  We especially love using light to create beautiful images at sunset or capturing a signature photo of the couple as they do their grand exit through a tunnel of sparklers, even in the rain.

 

WHAT DOES YOUR EDITING STYLE? 

As a photojournalistic photography company, we keep the images, as captured, true to the beauty of that moment alone. We only apply our 'Signature Look' to each image, and that will reflect our 'Look' on your own day and unique moments. Every single portrait & wedding is different: all sorts of different elements, attire, props, persons, light, weather conditions, environmental limitations, availability of things/persons, locations, etc. Every single one of those things plays a role in the look of the image overall. We keep our editing to: Signature Look plus any cropping (if needed), straightening (if needed), exposure balance, temp balance, clarity, noise reduction, etc within Adobe Lightroom. We do not photoshop persons\bodies or alter the image captured beyond our Signature Look unless to add a simple overlay to enhance the image with sunlight, weather climates, sparklers, confetti, rose petal tosses, bubbles, etc - typically used in Grand Exits and/or Portraiture for the betterment of the image visually for full effect. 

As you can see just from looking through our site, all of our images are edited with the same kind of polish and finish. Sometimes, images can vary slightly in their color tones or brightness and this is mainly because every wedding/portrait is different and lighting or environmental conditions can vary depending on the time of day or season. However, our overall level of consistency is the result of our professional expertise and many years of perfecting our editing style.

 

What is a Lifestyle Newborn Session?

The thought of traveling with a newborn can be daunting for some new parents. Lifestyle newborn sessions are conducted in the comfort of the clients home. Having your photo session take place in your home provides a level of intimacy and a personal touch to your Lifestyle images that might be missing from a studio session. Imagine having images of baby in her own nursery or snuggling with Mama in their favorite chair. Daddy holding the baby in his arms with his fingers around those cute little toes. Documenting beloved books, toys, and that surely wonderful wardrobe some babies acquire before they are even here?! Capturing precious little details in that gorgeous nursery you long waited to have your adorable bundle come to.

These small details make your newborn’s photos even more special for years to come!

 

WHAT IS A ‘FRESH 48’ SESSION?

A Fresh 48 session is a special session for those new families who want the first few hours of their newborn’s life captured without having the entire labour or birth journey documented. This session is held with the first 24 to 48 hours of your baby’s life; and these sessions are perfect for remembering those very first moments forever. Shots of your little’s first yawns, cute baby feet, tiny little fingers, belly button will be documented. Also included are hugs documented from immediate family members and loved ones. All of those amazing family meetings.

Your baby will be changing so fast - hour to hour, day to day. Capture those first milestones: herbal bath, breastfeeding, meeting siblings or family members, dad’s first diaper change, baby birthday party, meeting the grandparents, going home from the hospital, or simply just gazing at each other in awe. This session captures the moments like these that will soon be lost in the fog of your “baby-moon”. These are the photos your friends and family will be begging for and your parents will want blown up on the wall.

A Fresh 48 session can take place at your hospital, birthing center, or at your home birth location. It is styled in lifestyle photography similar to my birth photography - unposed, natural, and a mix of gorgeous timeline black & white images with soft color images, as well.

This type of session will be the photographer coming to capture your sweet baby’s new moments in a fresh, intimate, and natural way.

 

What is Birth Story Photography?

Birth photography provides a documentary story of your birth from the beginning of labor until the moment you hold your sweet baby in your arms. Session includes digital files and my guaranteed on call time from 38 weeks gestation until 1 week after your due date to ensure we can capture your tiny bundle of joy arriving - This means, YES! My calendar does have to be open and fully reserved for ONLY you for an entire 3 weeks (no weddings, no portraits, no sessions, no events - nothing but you + your baby).

This is both an investment on both our parts, as our gear bag will be packed and our vehicles ready to get the call that you are in active labour with your baby. We serve only the Palm Beach and Broward Counties to ensure we can arrive with plenty of time to capture the majority of your birth and delivery journey documented while you focus on your baby and you.

Throughout the final weeks of your pregnancy, we will stay in close contact. Once you reach 38 weeks, I am on call & available 24/7 until baby arrives. That means, feel free to text me those amazing updates from your doctor visits and keep me posted on your journey to meet your meet your baby as the days pass by. During labor, your only job is to focus on baby, be completely in the moment, and let me work my magic!

There are few moments in our lives as powerful as the birth of our children. Birth photography is about anticipation, new life, and the love that comes with it. It provided a documentary story of your support during labor, those precious first moments with your baby, and all the small details that tell the story of bringing your baby into this world. Hiring a birth photographer allows you and your partner to completely experience the birth of your baby, knowing your memories are being professionally captured by someone who has both experience in attending births, as well as professional knowledge of their camera equipment. My ultimate goal is to capture those intimate moments of your birth without interfering with your personal birth space.

About 1 week after baby’s arrival, you will receive a link to view your private image online gallery. And yes, you’ll probably need a tissue handy! Along with your gallery, you will also have immediate access to download to your computer, print your photos, & share your images, as you wish.

 

DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR MY WEDDING DAY?

YES!!! Of course I do. Check out this page here below for all the information to help plan a beautiful wedding day and also how to plan for your wedding timeline:

 

DO YOU OFFER PHOTO BOOTH SERVICES FOR MY EVENT?

Yes, we do! Click the link HERE for more information. We can only reserve one event to use the PhotoBooth per day.

 

Can we see a full wedding gallery from start to finish?

Of course! We pride ourselves on being able to produce awesome beautiful pictures of your wedding day from beginning to end. From the getting ready, til the end of the night, we focus of consistency of quality. We would love to share what a full wedding looks like with you. This is usually apart of our consultation process at your meeting with us. We will go over not only full digital galleries from individual weddings with you in person and discuss all your wedding details.

 

CAN WE CHAT ON THE PHONE?

Of course!!! Anytime. We’ll schedule a time for me to call you via Phone. I’m here to help in the process of planning your dream wedding day.

 

SOMETHING IS INCLUDED FOR FREE… CAN I ADD SOMETHING ELSE OR GET SOMETHING ELSE?

We have our Collections include certain items, and sometimes they will have something complimentary in them for you to enjoy absolutely for free, on us.

These free, complimentary items are for you to use, if you want to - you do not have to use them, but we would love the opportunity for you have the option to enjoy them, if you can.

 

We get pretty nervous in front of the camera… what will our session be like?

You should expect to have FUN! LOTS OF FUNNNNN!!!!

Almost ALL of my clients tell me they’re awkward in photos, but luckily thats my specialty!

I love to make people feel comfortable and laugh, and I will do almost anything to make that happen, so relax, enjoy and go with it! Often, I’m taking photos documentary-style while you’re hanging out, talking, laughing and being yourself. If anything looks weird, or I want you to change up what you’re doing, I’ll let you know. My goal is to make sure you have fun on the session AND that you look at your photos later and think, “WOW, I look amazing!” because you ARE amazing!

 

Do you offer any discounts on weekday weddings, Sunday weddings, or weddings during the off-season?

This question is a new one trending because some venues do offer this with their catering services. Alot of hotels + resorts want to book their ballrooms all week to make the most profit.

Photography is different. We offer the SAME level of expertise, quality, and experience to all weddings alike. We do not offer discounts on weekday weddings and off-season weddings because regardless of the day, you will be receiving the best of the best service and product. As you may know, wedding season is almost year round here in sunny Florida with its gorgeous beaches that bring in the tourism all year around - there is no off-season. Because of that, we are shooting throughout the year both events and also portrait sessions. We also cannot offer discounts since the costs associated with the wedding remain the same (second shooter rates, primary photographer rate of pay, editing team rate of pay, etc.).

We do promise you that our rates are beyond fair and affordable for the quality you will receive. We always want to make sure the quality, beautiful photography is available to most. We do include taxes already and all travel in the ENTIRE state of Florida in our pricing for you as a set standard.

 

Do you shoot Quinceaneras, Debutants, Bah Mitzvahs, or Corporate Events?

Yes. These are all considered ‘formal event photography.’

We have chosen to focus and excel at Wedding and Event photography, and we would love to cover your celebration and event.

 

What if our ceremony is in a different language?

Our photographers and team members speak many different languages, including Spanish and others.

Olga, our Master Photographer & Owner is Cuban-American, born in the United States and speaks fluent in both Spanish and English, with no accent at all.

However, we have also covered many weddings in which we do not speak the primary language of the ceremony. We approach these weddings with research, understanding the traditions and culture of the wedding. We also have talk-through meetings with our couples before the wedding to ensure we are aware of the major moments. Lastly, we always ensure that we stay alert, leaning on the instincts that we have developed for capturing the emotion and the stories at any given moment.

So while different languages can present challenges, in the end, artistry, creativity, and storytelling are all universal concepts that our team will portray in your photography.

 

DESTINATION TRAVEL RATES

I have been traveling around the US and throughout the world for the last 6 years to shoot weddings & events. Setting up the airplane travel, hotel, rental car etc can be time consuming, expensive and difficult. So I've come up with a way that makes things easy for clients to understand and doesn't cost them the time to set everything up. 

I have divided the US into four areas. Each one has a cost. I use that money to cover my plane, hotel and rental car. If it is more than that I will cover the cost out of my own pocket. If you are unsure which area your event would fall into please email me. 

 

DO I RECEIVE HIGH RESOLUTION IMAGES to keep?

Yes!! All of our clients receive DIGITAL DOWNLOAD to your computer of the edited high-resolution images we provide you. 

A lot of photography companies say they give the disc of images, but that can be very deceiving as some companies only give a 4×6 resolution w/ watermark all over them in the center of the image (low-resolution, that when enlarged to 8x10 will be blurry/pixelated). So, if you ever want an 8×10 print or canvas print, you have to spend hundreds of dollars with that company for the rest of your life for Printing or Enlarging Services. We’ve even heard some studios making photos into squares & only providing photographs with a watermark on them. That way prints and frames can ONLY be ordered by that company and nowhere else. SMP believes in not taking part in these practices... we prefer to give the completed high-resolution photographs and a finished product to our clients, plus the Online Gallery, which makes sharing with guests super easy!

 

DO YOU BRING BACK-UP CAMERAS & GEAR WITH YOU TO AN EVENT?

You can never be too careful with your photos! We even bring the back-up gear necessary for portrait sessions, as well. We can never be too careful. Instead of asking the photographer how many megapixels their DSLR camera has, ask them if they actually have backup equipment equal to the equipment they are actively using. What happens if the camera over-heats, falls & breaks, or just simply doesn't want to snap a photograph?!?!  It’s really important on the day of the wedding for the photography crew to have at least two camera bodies each on them just in case. That's why all our photographers will arrive to your session and event with ample lens, at least three (3) DSLR camera bodies per every one (1) photographer, and extra SD cards, Ext Flash-heads, etc. We come fully prepared so you can relax and enjoy those moments we will be capturing.

 

WHAT GEAR DO WE BRING TO WEDDINGS?

This is a list compiled of the Gear that is standard for us to have on a typical Wedding Day. And yes, some of this gear is purely for BACK-UP purposes, we want to be 100% prepared to always provide continuous + uninterrupted coverage of your gorgeous day. 

CANON EOS R MIRRORLESS CAMERA BODIES - FULL-FRAME  (2 OF THESE)

CANON 5D MARK III CAMERA BODIES - FULL-FRAME  (2 OF THESE)

BATTERY GRIPS ON EACH CAMERA BODY (ALLOWS CAMERAS TO FEED OFF 2 BATTERIES @ SAME TIME)

CANON 200MM F/2.0 L PRIME LENS

CANON 70-200MM F/2.8 L IS USM TELEPHOTO LENS

CANON EF 100MM F/2.8L IS USM MACRO LENS (FOR DETAIL SHOTS)

CANON EF 24MM F/1.4 L USM II WIDE ANGLE LENS

CANON RF 28-70 F/2.0 L USM WIDE ZOOM LENS WITH CONTROL RING FOR RF SYSTEM

SIGMA ART 135 MM F/1.4 DG HSM ART LENS

SIGMA ART 85MM F/1.4 DG HSM ART LENS

SIGMA ART 50MM F/1.4 DG HSM ART LENS

SIGMA ART 35MM F/1.4 DG HSM ART LENS

SIGMA ART 24-105MM F/4.0 WIDE ZOOM LENS

SIGMA ART 24-70MM F/2.8 WIDE ZOOM LENS

SIGMA ART 14MM F/1.8 WIDE-ANGLE LENS

HOYA MACRO FILTERS

EXPO DISC FOR LIGHT METERING THROUGHOUT DAY

CANON WIRELESS SHUTTER TRIGGERS

GODOX AD200 STORBE FLASH UNITS (6 OF THESE)

GODOX ON-CAMERA FLASH UNITS (4 OF THESE)

GODOX TRANSCEIVERS (4 OF THESE)

LIGHTSTANDS FOR OCF - UP TO 15 FT TALL EACH (8 OF THESE)

MONO POD FOR DSLR CAMERA MOUNT (2 OF THESE)

TONS OF “AA” BATTERIES FOR ALL OCF EXTERNAL UNITS + MANY LIT. ION BATTERIES FOR GODOX UNITS

TONS OF CANON CAMERA BODY BATTERIES - FULLY CHARGED

8GB, 16GB, AND 32GB LEXAR PROFESSIONAL 300/MBS MEMORY CARDS (EACH PHOTOGRAPHER CARRIES A MIN. OF 25 CARDS AT ANY GIVEN TIME FOR PROPER CAPTURE JUST IN CASE)

HOLDFAST GEAR DUFFLE - HIGH-QUALITY LEATHER GOODS FOR PRO PHOTOGRAPHERS

PEAK DESIGN CAMERA STRAPS

PEAK DESIGN 5 L SLING DUFFLE


... AND VARIOUS OTHER ACCESSORIES AND CORDS PACKED INTO MULTIPLE POCKETS. 

 

DO YOU BRING YOUR OWN LIGHTING GEAR & STANDS?

Yes! Of course we do! While we are natural light photographers, we do use top-of-the-line Canon External Flash heads mounted on our cameras, and we combine that equipment with soft boxes and light stands. It all depends on our session or event, but our photographers take the time to prepare for your session and event in the best ways possible. We know we can't depend simply on Mother Earth and her Sunlight, or on a hotel room to light a beautiful Bride properly as she's preparing for her BIG DAY.

 

How many photos will I get?

No cap on the amount of photos I give.

We provide the greater majority of all the photographs taken, as long as they meet our artistic expectations. And we do automatically provide more vs less - our one rule: To provide you all the photographs that come our fantastic and even good. We do pride ourselves in allowing you to have many photographs to keep and remember your beautiful day by.

Color or Black & White? I deliver all photos in BOTH.

You will get all the photos in our unique and timeless color-toning as well as in my artistic black and white. 

MINI SESSIONS: We do cull, apply our Signature Look to each image, and upload the images to an online gallery for you. If the Mini Session advertised 5 to 10 images, you will receive 5 to 10 images in Color, and also those same ones in Black + White, as well. SMP will cull (selection/elimination of images process) ourselves, and provide you the best 5 to 10 images from the mini-session. Please remember, a Mini-Session is NOT a regular session. It’s not as long and will not provide as many images. It is a short session of 10 to 20 minutes in length and typically only 5 to 10 images only are provided for the highly discounted promotion price.

 

PINTEREST  VS ART

Use Pinterest to GUIDE you in finding the right photographer: Collect images you like, look at the overall STYLE of the photographs you have pinned, and then find yourself a photographer that displays that type of work. Hire that photographer. Now, rest. At this point, you have hired a photographer you trust and adore. You shouldn't try to have a photographer you have hired attempt to photograph like another photographer. Pinterest can discourage the creative process overall. As photographers, the images we create are like one-of-a-kind art. There are so many aspects that go into composing a photograph, most importantly the lighting, environment and the subjects. Sometimes, the most amazing photographs happen by chance and can’t be re-created. Unpredictability is one of the things we find most inspiring and exciting about photography. We love when we are able to blow our couples away, and give them images that are better than anything they could have ever dreamed up or expected. We are able to create these images when we are given time, complete trust and artistic freedom. It may appear simple, but there are a lot of things that make up a good photograph. As photographers, we see photos in a very unique way. We notice the lighting, coloring, the location, time of day, the body forms, the props, the clothing, the natural elements (wind, sun flare, fog), the posing, the height of the couple, ect. We know from experience that ALL of these aspects are what create the mood & feel of that particular photo. When our focus is on re-creating, we aren’t able to truly create. Knowing how important all of the elements are that go into a photograph are what make us feel discouraged when presented with a Pinterest board of inspiration. We jump into problem solving mode…how are we going to create that wind swept beach photo in a hotel garden setting? How are we going to shoot that epic bridal portrait in a messy and chaotic bridal suite? How are we going to serve our clients, but still do our best work? Re-creating someone else’s photo takes a lot of time to stage correctly - Actually, it takes up more time, much more time to recreate poses from a list then to shoot the way the photographer intends to. Best piece of advice we can offer - Let us be inspired by simply bringing yourselves to the present moment. 

 

My venue is dark and barely any light... will you be able to photograph it? 

As professional wedding photographers, we can assure you that we have shot in all types of environments as it regards to lighting. From super dark churches, getting ready rooms with no beautiful natural light anywhere, and reception halls, to extremely bright sun at high noon. We bring all the equipment, lenses, and lighting to be able to document in any environment. 

OCF stands for off-camera flash. It is a technique and system of lighting that produces artificial light when there is no natural, gorgeous, beautiful light in a space we need to capture. While, it does seem attractive on a cell phone to document a darkly lit reception with uplighting, as professionals, we do need to use OCF to be able to properly document and capture the decor pieces of a wedding day if no natural, soft light is provided in the space.

We are experienced at OCF techniques - Off Camera Flash which is what a professional photographer needs to have for any wedding and formal event.

SMP-LIGHT-2.jpg
 

Have you shot at my venue before?

We have shot at hundreds of venues across the entire state of Florida, so there is a good chance that we have already been there for an engagement, wedding, or both! However, if we have not, we will get to the venue very early on the day of and be sure to perform a thorough walk-through to scout out the best photography locations. We also do extensive online research prior to your big day!

 

IS THIS COMPANY LICENSED & INSURED?

Yes, SMP is a licensed State of Florida professional photography company with licensed photographer(s), professionally educated editor(s), and assistant(s).

SMP is also fully insured for the highest general liabilities that even the largest of Five-Star Venues require. If your venue requires a Certificate of Insurance, please have them email us directly - usually they want this form to be as close as possible to the date of the event. 

 

WHEN DO I GET MY PHOTOS ? 

Thank you to our amazing and dedicated editing team (a group of individuals who sole job is to edit images on time consistent with our style by simply applying our 'Signature Look' - we  do not photoshop) are lighting quick. 

All photographs captured by our team are edited through the editing team we have on staff. 

WEDDINGS & EVENTS  //  3-12 weeks on average. Usually less than 8 weeks.

PORTRAITS  //  5 days to 14 days on average. Usually less than 1.5 weeks.

 

ALBUMS, CANVAS, & PRINTS... DO YOU OFFER THEM?

Absolutely!! Each Online Gallery that my clients receive is set-up with a direct printing service feature.  AND - Remember, you (the client) receives the PERSONAL PRINT RELEASE for personal printing of your gorgeous images.

 

DO YOU BRING BACK-UP CAMERAS & GEAR WITH YOU TO AN EVENT?

You can never be too careful with your photos! We even bring the back-up gear necessary for portrait sessions, as well. We can never be too careful. Instead of asking the photographer how many megapixels their DSLR camera has, ask them if they actually have backup equipment equal to the equipment they are actively using. What happens if the camera over-heats, falls & breaks, or just simply doesn't want to snap a photograph?!?!  It’s really important on the day of the wedding for the photography crew to have at least two camera bodies each on them just in case. That's why all our photographers will arrive to your session and event with ample lens, at least three (3) DSLR camera bodies per every one photographer, and extra SD cards, Ext Flash-heads, etc. We come fully prepared so you can relax and enjoy those moments we will be capturing.

 

HOW WILL YOU KNOW MY WEDDING TIMELINE & DETAILS?

Once you become a SMP Bride, we will send you a questionnaire two (2) months before your wedding date for you to fill out with all your fun details! Once we receive this back we can finalize your photography timeline for our teams' movements on the big day. Once you book us, we are always here along the way and love to be apart of your planning process prior to the final timeline being put into place. We will always want to provide our Brides and Grooms their own personalized photography timeline. It allows everyone to know how the photography will be captured. 

 

HOW LONG DO MOST TYPICAL WEDDING ELEMENTS TAKE?

It is crucial that you create a timeline for your wedding day, something your wedding planner can assist you with organizing. There should be an estimated start and end time for hair, makeup, reception setup, etc. Within that timeline should include all your photo sessions such as the first look, bridal party photos, and couple’s session. Not sure how much photo time you’ll need for each section of the day?

Groom Getting Ready \\ 40-45 Minutes Minimum

Bride Getting Ready \\ 1.5 Hour Minimum

Ceremony Setup, Metering, + Decor Shots before Guests arrive - ***Photography*** \\ 30 Minutes Minimum

Ceremony Coverage \\ 30 Minutes to 1.5 Hours - depending on traditions

First Look + Couples \\ 45 Minutes Minimum (15 mins for First Look, 30 minutes for Bride/Groom Formals)

Family Formals \\ 20-30 Minutes (depending on groups)

Bridal Party Formals \\ 15-25 Minutes (depending on amount)

Bride + Groom Formals \\ 30+ Minutes

Bride + Groom Room Viewing & Details \\ 10 Minutes

Reception Formalities \\ 60 Minutes minimum

Bride + Groom Sunset Shots \\ 20 minutes

Reception Dancing + Candids \\ 60 Minutes minimum

The Grand Exit @ Reception End \\ photography will need to stay covering the entire reception.

DETAIL SHOTS (USUALLY @ BRIDAL PREP)

Ideal Time Allotment – 30 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning
Ideal Location – Bridal Suite or Hotel Suite

Advice – Having at least 30 minutes for details ensures that we have plenty of time to get that perfect photo of the dress, rings, shoes, bouquets, and the other details of the day.

There are times when a hotel room is too crowded or simply unappealing; we have to take the dress all the way down to the lobby or even outside. This can take some time, but as you can see from the results, it’s well worth the additional work.

GROOM PREP + BRIDE PREP

Ideal Time Allotment – 60 minutes for Groom + 120 minutes for the Bride.
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Early Afternoon
Ideal Location – Bridal Suite, Resort Spa, or Hotel Suite

Advice – Having an plenty of preparation is ideal for our style. During this time, we are getting close ups of the makeup and hair being applied as well as the candid moments and the bridesmaids and groomsmen get ready for the day. Keep in mind that these are some of the most emotional and fun times of the day, so you don’t want to cut it short.

While it doesn’t take guys an hour to get dressed, there are still tons of great moments during this time between the groom and his family and friends, and also the bride celebrating this exciting time of her life with her closest gals while getting ready.

INDIVIDUAL PORTRAITS OF THE BRIDE + GROOM

Ideal Time Allotment – 30 minutes each.
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Early Afternoon
Ideal Location – Bridal Suite, Hotel Suite, Venue Lobby, or Venue Garden

Advice – Right after prep is the best time for individual portraits of the bride and groom (separately). Besides makeup and hair being completely fresh, the day hasn’t gotten hectic yet so we can take our time and get those perfect portraits.

Also, keep in mind that the window lighting in most hotel rooms creates a unique look that can’t be duplicated in any environment throughout the rest of the day.

FIRST LOOK OF THE BRIDE + GROOM PLUS COUPLE’S FORMALS

Ideal Time Allotment – 45-60 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Early Afternoon
Ideal Location – Venue Garden, Empty Venue Hallway (shaded areas with natural light)

Advice – The first look should be around 45-60 minutes. During this time, the bride and groom enjoy seeing each other for the first time on the wedding day. While the actual first look might only be 5-10 minutes, the rest of the time is spent on a few basic portraits of the bride and groom.

FIRST LOOK OF THE BRIDE + GROOM PLUS COUPLE’S FORMALS

Ideal Time Allotment – 45-60 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Early Afternoon
Ideal Location – Venue Garden, Empty Venue Hallway (shaded areas with natural light)

Advice – The first look should be around 45-60 minutes. During this time, the bride and groom enjoy seeing each other for the first time on the wedding day. While the actual first look might only be 5-10 minutes, the rest of the time is spent on a few basic portraits of the bride and groom.

WEDDING PARTY FORMALS

Ideal Time Allotment – 30 minutes to 1 hour
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Afternoon
Ideal Location -Venue Lobby, Venue Garden, Beach, Park, Off-site Location

Advice – Wedding Party Photos should be around 30 minutes to 1 hour. During this time, we get a variety of shots in a variety of poses. We start off with the basic, classic photos focused on great expressions and lighting.

Then we move into a set of fun and creative shots. Finally, we know how much your wedding party means to you, so we are sure to get pictures with you and each one of your bridesmaids or groomsmen individually.

WEDDING PARTY FORMALS

Ideal Time Allotment – 30-45 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Afternoon
Ideal Location -Venue Lobby, Venue Garden, Beach, Park, Off-site Location

Advice – Immediate Family Photos should take another 45 minutes. It’s important to have additional images with your parents, grandparents, and siblings beyond the basic formal (mentioned in the section below).

Plan on 3 minutes per group on average.  For example, if you have 10 groups, schedule in a 30 minute time slot.

We all know how much weddings mean to the immediate family, and we want to make sure we’re capturing enough pictures with them.

Some couples have decided that they want a picture with all guests while others have decided that they only want pictures with select VIPs to save time. We recommend something in between.

We also recommend being very organized, with a list of groups and helpers from each side of the family to help round people up.

CEREMONY DETAILS AND VENUE

Ideal Time Allotment – 30 minutes

Ideal Location – Ceremony Site
Ideal Time of the Day – Morning or Afternoon
Advice – Please allow 30 minutes for the photographer to take pictures of the ceremony site, completely set up with no guests or vendors in the area.

Before you have the guests seated,  it’s important that we are there to capture the complete set up of your ceremony site so we can capture the scene at its best.

COUPLE’S ROMANTIC SUNSET ON THE WEDDING DAY

Ideal Time Allotment – 30 minutes at the time the sun sets (after glow beauty of the skies)
Ideal Time of the Day – Late Afternoon (Sunset)
Ideal Location – Venue Garden, Beach, Hotel Lobby, Park

Advice – Couple session should be around 30 minutes and should take place ideally 10 minutes to sunset time and continue for 20 minutes after the sun sets. The is the best time in terms of lighting for ROMANTIC shots.

It also allows us to capture the awesome scenic shots with colorful skies. If your wedding is in downtown or in an area with tall buildings, it’s not as important for us to have this specific time frame (although it still helps). We’ll probably need to move start time of this romantic session up to 30 minutes before sunset due to the tall buildings.

However, if you booked your venue because of the spectacular view of the ocean or the gorgeous vines in the winery, it’s essential to follow this advice in your timeline.

RECEPTION DETAIL AND VENUE

Ideal Time Allotment – 30 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – Early Evening
Ideal Location – Reception Site

Advice – Please allow 30 minutes for the second shooter to take pictures of the reception room, completely set up with no guests or vendors in the area.

Similar to the ceremony details, this is the only opportunity we have to capture the beauty of the reception room prior to guest arrival.

THE ‘FIRST LOOK’ OF THE RECEPTION BY THE COUPLE (ALONE)

Ideal Time Allotment – 10-15 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – At the end of Cocktail Hour before doors open for guests
Ideal Location – Reception Site

Advice – This is when the reception space is revealed to the couple for the first time. It’s a great opportunity to capture a genuine reaction - please have photographer ready for this shot, as well as a moment alone with the dance floor to practice your first dance, which also makes a great photo!

RECEPTION COUPLE’S SESSION: THE SNEAK-OUT NIGHT SHOTS

Ideal Time Allotment – 20-30 minutes
Ideal Time of the Day – Dusk to Night Time
Ideal Location – Areas with interesting lights, large balconies, fountains, staircases, city scapes, and mirrors

Advice – During the reception, please plan on sneaking out for a couple of night shots. We only need 20-30 minutes, as we understand the importance of being a good host. However, this time is important if you appreciate the night photography that we deliver. The ideal time for this is right after you grab a bite to eat or during the open floor dancing after you’ve danced a few songs and would like a break.  Another suggestion would be to get these shots at the very end of the night once all the guests have departed - but usually that late, you’ve danced a ton a hair and make-up would need a retouch. We recommend sneaking out after your DJ plays the 2nd “dance” song… while everyone keeps partying.

ADDITIONAL WEDDING DAY DETAILS

Table Shots – Table shots are when you go around visiting tables. There are two options for photography during this time. (1) You can take formal pictures with each of these tables or (2) we can simply focus on photojournalism, capturing the smiles and hugs as you mingle with each table. If you’re planning on doing formal table shots, please keep in mind that these will take about 3-5 minutes per table.  For example: 20 tables would require 60-100 minutes of time (!!).

Cultural Weddings – For cultural weddings like Indian weddings, there are elements like the Baraat that require time to photograph. For Jewish ceremonies, there’s the Ketubah to be signed by the couple, please allot enough time for cultural elements throughout the wedding day.


 

WHAT IS A "FIRST LOOK"?

A first look is when the bride & groom see each other for the first time prior to the ceremony.  Same can be done with the parents of the couple. This is a private and intimate moment between the bride & groom. This decision is entirely up to the couple, however many couples now are opting for a first look to get pictures done early and focus more on spending time with their guests after the ceremony and enjoying their cocktail hour and the reception. We can also do "Father & Daughter" reveals, "Son & Mother" reveals, etc.

A "first look" is important if you are planning on having a sunset ceremony and leaving little to no daylight for pictures after. We encourage our couples to do a "first look" so that pictures can be done outdoors in natural light prior to the ceremony, then after the ceremony a few more romantic sunset shots and then you are free to enjoy your cocktail reception. Benefits of a "first look" include time alone together, emotional reactions, opportunity for more images, you will be refreshed and all your nerves will be gone, and your big day will last longer with more memories to make!

 

WHAT TIME SHOULD WE GET MARRIED?

Should we be asking you? YES! Good lighting is super important and you should definitely be aware of it especially when it comes to planning your ceremony time (and if you choose not to do a first look). I am a natural light photographer, meaning I prefer to utilize natural lighting (aka the sun), and yes, we can always light your photographs artificially - with external lighting units, but the truth is - Sunsets are much more gorgeous. Make sure my style fits your wedding!

 

How long will host the online gallery?

The Online Galleries are hosted for each client for one (1) month guaranteed. This is a very amazing way to easily share your photographs with family & friends. Simply provide them the link. We do try to keep the Galleries hosted longer than a month, but due to the max storage, we do have to delete the gallery from the server at some point. 

 

WHAT IS A "UN-PLUGGED WEDDING"? 

An "un-plugged wedding" or ceremony is when you ask your guests to put away their cell phones during the ceremony. Yes, I would absolutely suggest an un-plugged ceremony because I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve had someone hang their arm out in the middle of the aisle directly in front of me (or better yet - actually STAND right in front of the camera with no care for the Professional hired) and ruin my shot. You paid good money to have a professional capture these moments, and that’s my job, but in actuality they are ruining your photos, not mine.

In addition, during the ceremony people are too busy on their cell phones playing photographer that they miss the ceremony because they’re not paying attention. I have your best interest in mind. The ceremony is very important -- Let's work together to make sure you get the best of photography during this intimate and important moment.

THE OFFICIANT WALKS UP THE FRONT OF THE CEREMONY AND READS.... 

OPTION 1\\\ "LADIES & GENTLEMAN, THE BRIDE & GROOM WANT YOU TO BE ABLE TO TRULY ENJOY THEIR WEDDING CEREMONY WITH THEM, FEELING PRESENT AND IN THE MOMENT WITH THEM. THEY'VE HIRED A PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER AND THE PHOTOGRAPHS WILL BE MADE AVAILABLE TO THEM FOR EASY SHARING - WE ARE INVITING EACH OF YOU TO SIT BACK, RELAX, AND ENJOY THIS BEAUTIFUL MOMENT. THEY ARE RESPECTIVELY ASKING THAT NO ONE HOLD CELL PHONES UP OR CAMERAS DURING THIS INTIMATE CEREMONY. OF COURSE, THEY WILL BE MORE THAN HAPPY TO SHARE THESE MEMORIES WITH EVERYONE ONCE THE PHOTOS ARE RECEIVED. THANK YOU!"

OPTION 2\\\ "HELLO, IT IS MY PLEASURE TO WELCOME YOU TO THE WEDDING OF ____________ & ___________. PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO SILENCE ANY CELL PHONES, AND PLACE THEM AWAY, UNSEEN, AS THE BEAUTIFUL BRIDE WALKS DOWN THIS AISLE TO THIS HANDSOME GROOM. THEY HAVE REQUESTED TO PLEASE SILENCE ANY NOISY ELECTRONICS. AND THEY HAVE REQUESTED THAT NO PHOTOS BE TAKEN DURING THIS TIME OR POSTED TO SOCIAL MEDIA UNTIL THE COUPLE THEMSELVES MAKE THE OFFICIAL ANNOUNEMENT. THE BRIDE & GROOM WANT YOU TO ENJOY THIS JOYOUS OCCASION IN CELEBRATION OF THEIR LOVE. THANK YOU!"

 

WHEN DOES THE SESSION  START?

SMP Staff Members value your time and we always make sure to be on time or earlier, preferably, to each Event/Session to make sure we start at the agreed time. As part of our policy, the session time starts when we arrive and are completed in setting up our gear. If our client(s) are fifteen, twenty, thirty, forty, or even an hour late to the session/event, our company is still owed for our time to service you at the time you requested for your session. So, for example, if the session starts at 10:00am, with SMP on time to the Event/Session site, and the client is fifteen minutes late or more to the session, we now only have forty-five minutes or less to work with for posing & capturing (unless you would like to purchase more time for your portrait) and full payment for our time is non-refundable. This is standard policy to prevent client(s) from arriving or being ready 30 minutes to even hours late to a Event/Session at a time they specifically requested us to book for them.

 

DO YOU USE A "SHOOT LIST" FOR WEDDINGS?

SMP always refers to a shoot list to be able to add that essential tool to capturing the moments at your Wedding. Also, please keep in mind that every Wedding is unique, and there will be some elements like other Weddings, and some different, unique elements making up your Wedding Day. Some clients hire us for Ceremony, some for Prep, Ceremony, and Reception, and some for 12 to 14 hours of coverage. Each Wedding is unique, and we do use a Shoot List to make sure we capture your Wedding the best.

 

TATTOO REMOVAL

This is truly a common question, and it’s easy to answer: SMP does LIGHT RETOUCHING and this not include tattoo removal. Some people love their tattoos, some of them would prefer to hide them. IF you want to hide them, please ensure your clothing will fully cover the area, or hire a airbrush artist to do so for you. The editing for tattoo removal is intense and takes a much longer time of editing and post-processing to do so. If you have a tattoo is 1000x easier to have a make-up artist airbrush the tattoo(s) to ensure that no matter the pose, the tattoos are not visible, if you are trying to hide them from photographs.

 

EXCLUSIVE PHOTOGRAPHY COMPANY POLICY

Our team, when hired by our clients, chose only our company for all their photography needs for the Event/Session. This means that we will be their Exclusive Photographer(s) for their Event/Session. Which entitles SMP to be the ONLY photographer(s) at the Event/Session. It is understood that no other photographer, either amateur or professional, shall be allowed to photograph at the event in a way that interferes with the photographer, and or the photographer(s) for SMP deems interfering with our team.  Please be aware that sometimes guests, families, and friends might feel the "urgent" need to capture all your beautiful moments, which might lead to them obstructing our way or ruining photographs. We kindly ask for you to remind them that you have hired a professional photography company to capture the moments, and for them to enjoy the event by dancing, drinking, talking, eating cake, and making beautiful memories with family & friends.

 

MINI-SESSIONS & SPECIALS

Occasionally, we will offer Mini-Sessions on a particular day in a specified location, which are typically 10 to 20 minutes long, and centered around a theme — Spring Time Fun, Beach "Bum" Cuteness, Easter, Mother’s Day, Summer Fun, Fall, Halloween, St. Patty's Day, Princess & Princes, Christmas, etc. This allows us to schedule several families back-to-back, which keeps the cost low — it’s a win-win situation for everyone! SMP does NOT guarantee that we will have ANY mini-session opportunities per any calendar year due to our high volume in clientele from Weddings and normal Portrait Session bookings. We only offer them when the right circumstances present themselves, and you have to remember that due to our high demand in Weddings, we are usually too busy to have mini-sessions multiple times a year. We do try to offer one type of mini session at least once a year.

MINI SESSIONS: We do cull, apply our Signature Look to each image, and upload the images to an online gallery for you. If the Mini Session advertised 5 to 10 images, you will receive 5 to 10 images in Color, and also those same ones in Black + White, as well. SMP will cull (selection/elimination of images process) ourselves, and provide you the best 5 to 10 images from the mini-session. Please remember, a Mini-Session is NOT a regular session. It’s not as long and will not provide as many images. It is a short session of 10 to 20 minutes in length and typically only 5 to 10 images only are provided for the highly discounted promotion price.

 

DOES SMP RECEIVE THE RAW MATERIALS?

SMP is hired to take the time to, not only capture moments at your Event/Session, but to edit the photographs, selecting the best images, and editing those digital images to our artistic standards. We eliminate duplicate images, test shots, missed focused shots, shots with bad expressions and other images that may dilute the overall product delivery. For example, because we shoot with low apertures, sometimes we take a few extra shots to make sure we have the perfect metered light. We don’t expect you to have the expertise or the time to know how to meter light, so we spend hours doing that on our end even during the capture of the session or event - That’s what we are hired to do. In another example, candid laughs and emotional tears are some of the best images from the day. Unfortunately, they can also yield some very unflattering facial expressions and body movements. We might snap a few extras of any of these moments to make sure we have a great shot with the ideal expression for the moment. Also, the same with dancing shots - we have seen our fair share of expected nip-slips from dresses jumping to high to the beat, all the way to a guest sitting too fast on a person’s lap for a quick photo and accidentally showing her underwear as she leaned forward into a hug. With our expertise of processing thousands of images each year, we may eliminate ones that we feel are duplicates and only deliver the best one. We do not provide any unedited, original digital frame negatives to any clients for any price. Providing all, or some, of the original digital frame negatives is a choice of the photographer and/or photography company legally. SMP always retains full copyright of all the images taken on our cameras. The work we share with our clients & the public is an artistic representation of our company, photographers, and our work; which is why we want to always make sure your finished product has been through post-processing & retouching with our editors. Also, we always recommend that as soon as you receive your final product from us, to always backup your photographs to a computer, extra disc, flash-drive, cloud, external hard-drive, server, or whatever you are comfortable for saving the completed photographs to. All RAW materials are deleted once gallery has been uploaded and delivered to you via email. We do keep the same delivered high-resolution edited JPEGS up to one (1) year after the event date only. 

 

COPYRIGHT

STATEMENT

As a professional photography company, SMP does retain Full Copyrights at all times of all the images captured at any Event/Session. We will release the Print Release to the client(s) that hire us for their individual sessions and events for the completed digital JPEG images that are retouched and provided to them.  The Print Release is only for private use, not for publishing or licensing on any website and/or publication. If publication or licensing occurs without SMP's knowledge and consent, complete royalties & fees are due to SMP. We kindly ask that you provide us credit on the photographs. The Print Release is for personal printing services only to the CLIENT only who purchased it. 

 

DO YOU BACK-UP YOUR DIGITAL FILES OF MY SESSION/EVENT?

Yes, in three separate locations to prevent theft, misplacement, accidents, or complete loss during the editing process. We go to great lengths to protect your most precious moments while we are busy editing. 

After Delivery of the Final Product: You (the client) are fully responsible to back-up & secure your completed photographs for the future. Yes, we retain all the completed & delivered photographs for up to ONE (1) CALENDAR YEAR after the date of the session/event/wedding. We would be more than happy to advise you on many ways to protect your images for the long-run: print the images, burn a CD(s), DVD(s), and USB Flashdrives of the digital images in multiple places, place a copy of the digital files in a safety deposit box, place the digital images on multiple flash drives/external hard-drives/cloud storage, and. Make sure to always protect your images because in the course of time, there could be theft, robbery, accidents, loss of the materials. Always plan ahead and secure your memories. 

 

HOW LONG DO YOU KEEP the completed PHOTOs ?

We keep the edited, completed, and delivered photographs of your event or session for up to one (1) calendar year. Originals are culled and deleted after in the editing process is completed, and edited files are backed-up and delivered to the client digitally. After that time, your completed product would have already been delivered to you, and it is your responsibility to make copies of it, and most importantly, safe-guard against any accidents of losing the completed material. We always recommend that as soon as you receive your final product from us, to always back-up your photographs to a computer, extra disc, flash-drive, cloud, external hard-drive, server, or whatever you are comfortable for saving the photographs to. All RAW materials are deleted once gallery has been uploaded and delivered to you via email. We do keep the same, delivered high-resolution edited JPEGS up to one (1) year after the event date only.