Jacob and Mandy engagement

El Matador Beach Engagement

I loved spending time getting to know Jacob and Mandy before their big day. This couple radiates love and happiness from the moment you’re around them to every thought you have about your time together with them. The setting in Malibu with the tide rushing in and the paint (milk based) flying, we had a blast.

*Justin & Bethany

Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography

Shooting with INTENTION!

Recently I got the opportunity to lead and shoot an editorial styled session at the amazing W HOTEL BEVERLY HILLS. I had a style in mind and I knew that the uses would be for Marketing and advertising purposes for The W Hotel. I approached the shoot like I would any wedding or glamour session and when the lights faded,  I was very happy with the product.

Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography

WHY HIRE A PROFESSIONAL ?

It happens all the time, we all have done it at one time or another, I’m talking about bargain shopping. We want something that’s top of the line but don’t want to spend top of the line prices. What happens is we settle for something cheaper and it just doesn’t hold up to the uses we use it for. I’ve seen it in this field of work too. I can’t state the importance of this enough, hire a professional. Sometimes amateurs slip through the cracks either because they are cheap or because it’s a cousin or a friend or a cousins friend. If someone shoots decent pictures that doesn’t make them a professional photographer. At weddings we have to produce 800-1000 amazing photos and be ready for any situation. Wedding photographers, true wedding photographers, are like war photographers, we get right in the mix and document everything completely telling every story. We do have a set of shots we always get but the real photos come from experience. When I first started shooting weddings I went as an assistant. I worked long and hard to become a professional, and have dedicated many sleepless hours and a lot of money to get good at my trade. I am a Professional, this isn’t just my job, this is my life. I eat,sleep,and create photography 24/7. I see a lot of people that buy an expensive camera and then place the title photographer after their name. That’s like placing officer before your name and pretending to be a cop, or dressing in fatigues and pretending to be a soldier. It’s fraud plain and simple. I know a lot of people are going to say “well everyone needs to start somewhere”. Yes they do, as an assistant or an employee of a real photographer, and even then it still may not make you a professional.

Case in point: A friend of ours got married recently. After talking with them about photographing their wedding they said that they had a family member that was going to give them a DEAL and photograph their wedding. They had seen some of his portraits and were amazed. We advised against it, but they said he was affordable and they could use the extra money to hire our photo booth for the event. The last thing any professional will do is compete on price, We will be out of a job so fast it’s not funny. Well,long story short, all of their wedding photos turned out like crap. They have been left with nothing. The only images from that night that they do have are from our photo booth. The so-called photographer  ( man with a camera ) has claimed that it wasn’t his fault. On top of it all they didn’t have a contract in place to protect them. So the “man with a camera” passed blame along to them and just goes about his day to ruin another couples wedding. Their wedding was beautiful, and they spent alot of hours and money into putting it together. But now due to the “man with a a camera” they have nothing to show for it. It’s sad that this happens to so many people. The bride contacted us recently to say that she wishes she would have listened and that she is now in the process of editing the images herself to try and salvage what was lost. After spending all of the money on everything else don’t you want to remember that day? Don’t you want something to pass down to your children? Don’t salvage your wedding, enjoy it forever, HIRE A PROFESSIONAL!

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Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography, Photography, Wedding Photography

Tips for spotting Professional Wedding Photographers and why they’re prices seem high.

With all of the digital devices in the world today you find a lot of people claiming to be a photographer. As a Los Angeles Wedding Photographer we have come into contact with a lot of clients over the years that say “my cousins got a camera and is a pretty good photographer so he’ll be shooting some photos at the event as well”. To this we say “We understand that your cousin has a camera but we prefer that they enjoy all that you have done for them on your wedding day and to not allow anyone who is either building a portfolio or competing in our market to photograph an event with us. We are the only Professional Photographers to be shooting the event.”  After dealing with this for so long we have come up with some tips in what to look for in a real professional wedding photographers portfolio.

1//Work

When you look at the body of work for a wedding photographer try to look for seasonal change in the photos, most wedding photographers work all year long and in any climate.

2//Depth

Look for a depth of work. One or Two couples could mean that they staged the shoot for portfolio purposes. While this isn’t completely frowned upon in the pro-photo community, it is fake and could manipulate the client into thinking these images are possible on the fly.

3//Editing

If all of the photos look like instagram and snap-chat have their filters all over them, and you say to yourself “I could do that with my phone,” then someone probably did. A lot of first time shooters start out searching for an identity to their style by tossing out wide ranges of filters and editing an entire event with those filters.

4//Style

Most professional photographers have figured out a style that helps them to be successful. These styles are seen throughout their portfolio and the weddings or events they capture. It’s all about consistency. There are some cases where the best wedding photographers in the world decide to change their style, but it is usually over a period of time; and its not very noticeable.

5//Pricing

Being a professional photographer is a business, and businesses have overhead costs. When your looking for a real photographer you should expect to pay a little more than an amateur photographer that doesn’t have photography as their priority (owns a business).

SO WHY DOES IT COST SO MUCH?
We used to get this question everyday when we first started out or when we would tell people what we do. Its OK to ask this question, and we have shorter answers for this but, after years of shooting weddings and portraits we have come up with a clearly defined response. Our pricing starts with sessions and packages that are based off of what a clients wants and our overhead cost. As Professionals we are required to have all kinds of insurance, business licenses, memberships, advertising, update and upgrade gear to stay relevant, marketing materials, maintain their mode of transport, and pay personal bills. On average a professional photographer in California has an over head cost of $2000 or more a month, even in off-season months.
Then we look at the cost of bridal shows and expos. The Los Angeles Bridal Show costs $2,495 for a small booth, and the Bridal Salon cost $5000 for a small booth. All of these expo expenses usually have to be paid by the end of the previous year, not to mention the costs of supplies (sample albums, large prints, brochures, cards, etc.)  So the total cost for a photographer just to operate during a year is $32,000+ before any profit is made. That’s why a REAL professional costs more.
Have any questions or think we missed something? TypO? Any feedback is welcome. Thank you for reading.
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Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography, Photography, Wedding Photography

Meet Jeff & Jaime

Jeff & Jaime had a sweet, charming, rustic wedding at the Placerita Canyon Nature Reserve in Newhall, CA. A small ceremony with mostly family and close friends. We were honored to be there and share in their special day.
Los Angeles Wedding Photographer

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Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography, Photography, Wedding Photography

Meet Brian & Samantha

Brian & Samantha got married at the beautiful Summerwood Winery & Inn in Paso Robles, CA. We loved the charm and beauty mixed with rustic simplicity of this wedding. The band Moonshiner Collective was great too!
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Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography, Photography, Wedding Photography

Meet Bryan & Christine

Queen Mary Weddings
Bryan & Christine are had their wedding at the Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA. It was such a privilege to photograph their fun wedding. It was a small ceremony and reception with just family and close friends, most of whom drove out from Arizona – where Christine’s family is from. We loved getting to know everyone and loved that they allowed us to get creative with the Aerial shots. Bon voyage you two!
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Posted in Los Angeles Wedding Photography, Photography, Wedding Photography