- What is a FAQ?
- Why hire a specialist wedding photographer?
- How do I choose a photographer?
- What kind of cameras do you use?
- Do you shoot in JPG or RAW?
- How many photos do I get back?
- Where can I see samples of your work?
- How current are your samples?
- Where is your studio?
- Our wedding is so important we want to hire TWO photography companies.
- Do you shoot weddings outside of KL? How about overseas?
- How much should I budget for my photos?
- Who owns the rights to the photos?
- How do I book you?
- How quickly after the wedding do we get the photos?
- Do you supply videography services?
- Wedding tips
What is a FAQ
A “FAQ” is a listing of “Frequently Asked Questions”. When I first conceptualized this section I remembered back to how I felt when I went through this whole process. The wedding business was a bit of a mystery to me and there were few guide posts as to where or how to do things. My approach is bride and groom centric, answering queries I have been asked by couples over time. Please read through this FAQ before visiting me. It will also help empower you when you meet with other photographers and wedding suppliers.
Why hire a specialist wedding photographer?
Your wedding is the most important event in your life. If you want to have it captured without heart ache it is wise to get an experienced wedding photographer. Their reputation and experience grants you peace of mind that you are going to get great work back. Additional benefits are that you deal directly with the photographer, and so can view their long track record of quality work.
Do you like the photographers style?
- Are you viewing a balanced portfolio. Portraits are only one part of the day. Ask to see full days coverage. A few good portraits with heavy Photoshopping does not mean someone is a good actual day photographer.
Deal directly with the photographer not a sales person.
Do you think you can have a good working relationship with the photographer?
Make sure the photographer whose work you like is going to be the one shooting for you.
Have a realistic budget. In Malaysia an RM5000-RM8000 budget for the day is realistic if you wish to get a good professional photography team. If you are looking for a half day or a split day shoot, or for a solo photographer this pricing can vary.
Do not be pressured to pay a deposit on your first meeting. Take time to talk the decision over with your fiance unless you are trying to book the week before your wedding day! Yes it happens sometimes.
Ask if they shoot in RAW or Jpeg. RAW shooters will personally edit every photo they take. A jpeg shooter will not. I would personally never hire a jpeg shooter as a second shooter in one of my teams.
- If you have seen the photographer in action before at a friends wedding take notes. They should not be obtrusive.
What kind of Cameras do you use?
I am asked this question a lot by budding shooters. The camera brand does not matter. I shoot or have shot with most of the major brands. Currently we use Nikon, Canon, Sony and Fujifilm. We also shoot with a Phase 1 medium format camera for corporate work. That said, the most important component in photography is the person holding the camera. Their knowledge of light, angles, lens and camera capabilities and limitations all play a part in making the photo.
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Do you shoot in JPG or RAW?
RAW. I believe strongly that every actual day wedding professional should shoot in RAW format with no exceptions. Make sure you establish your photographer will shoot RAW before you book them. I could bore you with why but very quickly: RAW captures an ENORMOUS amount of data and enables the photographer to DEVELOP the photos properly after the shoot. JPEG doesn’t. A photographer who shoots in RAW must work on and edit EVERY image to make it look as good as it can. A photographer who shoots jpeg usually will not. Given the choice between a photographer who must edit the images meticulously and one who will not the choice is a no brainer. RAW RAW RAW
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How many photos do I get back?
ALL of them except possibly blinks, duplicates, or those rejected for aesthetic reasons. You may then use the images for personal usage.
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Where can I see samples of your work?
This web site is the best place to do this. I regularly put up images from weddings we shoot on this site. You will find them by clicking the links at the top of this page. While I have not personally counted them there are plenty of images for you to go through. I aim to give you peace of mind by providing so many photos.
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How current are your samples?
I try to update as frequently as I can, however as a working photographer I spend a lot more time shooting and editing than working on my web site. Our philosophy is: “You are only as good as your last shoot” so I try to do it as frequently as I am able.
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Where is your studio?
Quick “smart” answer is everywhere. But realistically most of our work is shot on location. This also includes corporate work which is often taken in company offices. We bring studio lighting and back drops for these shoots as well. When it is critical to use a studio or pool for my underwater work, then we choose one of the many locations I know which are best suited to your requirements.
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“Our Wedding is so important we want to hire two photography companies.”
Don’t laugh. This actually happens. This is a great way to ruin your wedding photography coverage. More than one company photographing your wedding can transform it into a paparazzi trash wedding. I have photos I could post on how this looks but as I have no desire to embarrass anyone I will refrain. If you have a big wedding tell me. I will hand pick a team of experienced photographers who will give you superb, unobtrusive coverage and who will work together as one team. No need for 4 photographers to shoot the exact same photo.
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Do you shoot weddings outside of KL? How about overseas?
Most of my weddings seem to be outside KL! Funny how that worked out. It seems I shoot in Penang, JB, Ipoh, Melaka Seremban, Banting, KK and Kinabalu more often than PJ and KL. So outstation travel is pretty normal for us. Also some of my couples are from overseas and we have had the opportunity to shoot all over the world.
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How much should I budget for my photos?
Most Bridal magazines recommend about 10% of your total wedding budget. This is a good figure for budgeting purposes. For Malaysian weddings this is usually in the RM4-7k type of range. I say usually as there are always exceptions well outside this figure.
“It’s unwise to pay too much. But it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money, that is all. When you pay too little you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business prohibits paying a little and getting a lot. It can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder it is well to add something for the risk you run. And if you do that, you will have enough to pay for something better”-John Ruskin
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Who owns the rights to the photos?
The legal rights to the photos belong to my photography company, but that doesn’t mean you are all tangled up in legal mumbo jumbo. You, as my couple, have the rights to use the images for any non-commercial purposes, including web page display, printing and/or burning extra CDs for your friends and family. However use in any commercial publication or for the purpose of advertising requires my express written permission.
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How do I book you?
A mobilization fee needs to be paid and the agreement signed to confirm your booking. Calling me on the phone and asking me to hold the date is not considered a booking. Popular dates may be booked up to 18 months in advance so please don’t procrastinate.
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General Wedding Tips
This may well develop into a section by itself but for now I will keep it brief. Remember the goal of the day is to have fun! You are the king and queen of your day so you should be relaxed and enjoy it. These tips are in no particular order.
- Have friends or close relatives help you in your planning and then delegate responsibilities to capable people. The best run weddings I have attended were run by caring family and/or friends. Have a clear check list with estimated times, important addresses and contacts on it. Do not get hung up if the timeline is not followed precisely.
- Make sure your hair stylist/make up artist comes to your home/hotel. You do not want to be caught in traffic either to or from the hair dressers. It WILL create an undue amount of unnecessary stress for you. We have seen the best planned schedules ruined because the bride was caught in traffic some where. Remember it is your day, not the hair dressers, so they should come to you.
- Get a good sleep before your wedding. Remember that only pandas look good with panda eyes! Make sure you go to bed EARLY unless you like a LOT of make up.
- If you know there will be a lot of alcohol in the evening, order room service before the banquet. A full stomach
will enable you to enjoy the evening. An empty one may be your undoing during the yum sing sessions. Make it memorable by popping a bottle of champagne over some sandwiches with your organizing team in your room before coming down for dinner.
- If you prefer a small intimate dinner with friends rather than a massive 500-1500 person affair talk with your parents EARLY. A lot of couples now have two dinners. Parents pay for one where they entertain their friends, and the couple organize their own smaller intimate one on a different night with their friends.
- Try something different as far as a wedding car. A lot of people are now looking for something a little different from a BMW or Mercedes. They are looking for vintage vehicles. There are people who offer them.
- Dance floors really ARE fun! So are live bands. They help make the event more memorable. Every wedding movie you have ever seen probably has a scene of the bride dancing with her groom/father/father in law. These are special moments. Just do it!
- Related to having a dance floor mentioned above because if you have one you will want to use it. Typically Malaysian weddings have too many guests attending who you don’t know, but you will blow 30 minutes of your evening at the door saying farewell to your parents friends when you would rather be hanging out with your friends. I saw the following idea at a wedding in Pekanbaru, where guests are GREETED at the door, so all the congratulations are done, and then the people who came just to show face can quietly beat it once they have had their fill. One wedding at the Connexion Nexus in Bangsar had the rude guests (the ones your parents included only because they were being polite) saying good bye to the couple right in the middle of them cutting the cake!!!! Extremely crass behaviour. So greet them when they come and let your parents say goodbye to them. YOUR friends are partying and so should you.
- Dome dinners: do it ONLY if you want a short night and want to head back for an early night, or you plan on hitting a night club with your friends later in the evening. Do not plan 5 speeches when you have a “dome dinner”. I promise you, your chances of getting even 3 of the 5 speeches done before people start leaving is very low.