Everything you need to know
All your Wedding-Photography-with-Brooke questions answered here... read on!
I've never been to two Weddings the same. But I have picked up on patterns & devised some clever tricks & techniques to get great photos at all kinds of wedding. Here's a bunch of answers to help you with all your photography- related questions.
I photograph the day as it unfolds; atmosphere & un-repeatable moments, personalities & little details.
There are usually two key times during the day where I step in to direct; the family group photos & the portrait session (usually beginning with the full bridal party & concluding with just the Bride & Groom). I ask for just 1 hour for the portrait session & I guide you with posing so you can relax, we can make the most of that time & get you back to your guests in a timely fashion!
I have photographed many weddings since 2005 & over that time my style has developed & settled into what I have found to be the best, most natural approach for me to use. I see the documentary-based approach photography as an authentic method to record the love, connection & celebration of your wedding day.
I am pumped about how the documentary style allows me to deliver lovely images which are at their essence are meaningful, authentic moments, in which you see (& recognise!) the real you & feel the emotion flooding back.
What does “Documentary style” mean?
Yes – most weddings I shoot with a second photographer alongside me, but when you talk & make plans with me for your package this will be discussed & clarified.
Will it be you taking our photographs on the day?
I shoot with Canon; Two camera bodies and a selection of lenses. I also use flashes and tripod when appropriate, however most of the time it’s me & one camera. I’m not a big gear geek, but I know & love my tools.
What equipment do you use?
Yes – I enjoy travelling & am always stoked to go on an adventure, doing what I love.
Whether you’re making vows at some back-country family farm or a Pacific Island, the skillset I draw from & the tools I use for the job are conveniently transportable. My passport is current & I just need flights & accommodation (humble, but secure) covered. (In some instances I may be able to extend a special rate to help make things possible.)
Are you able to travel around New Zealand / The Pacific / Overseas?
Fill me in on your plans & priorities & I’m happy to to help you develop a tentative idea of timings & how the photography might fit into your day.
I base my different packages on my experience of what I’ve seen work at real weddings. You’ll notice the hours I offer in my packages always factor in a little leeway to account for the fluctuations which naturally occur on a wedding day.
As your wedding draws closer & details become confirmed, you might find you want to add time or alter when or where your photography begins - just keep me in the loop with a quick email or call & we’ll make plans to make things work.
How do we know how many hours we need you at our wedding?
We make plans in advance about when & where you want me/us to arrive, so you can know when & where to expect me & your second photographer (& we'll know where to be, when).
In all the excitement & craziness of a wedding day I am a friendly face; a good-natured & adaptable ally who’s got your back. I only work with like-minded associates as my second shooters, so if you’re booking two photographers, you get two new friends on your team!
Amongst my weaponry I have been known to offer on such diverse skills & elements as; lame jokes, sunblock, sweet natural posing skills, dress wrangling know-how, an extra layer to wrap a cold bride/bridesmaid, button-hole pinning experience, a wild & creative mind, a pack of wet-wipes, an spirit of adventure, & a bag of sweets... And when you are looking for an sneaky excuse to step away from the crowds of adoring guests with your newly married spouse, I have the perfect front & just the right amount of sass to smuggle you out of almost any situation...
What can we expect from you on the day?
No problem at all, it’s not unusual to feel a little apprehensive. But don't despair! You just need to be yourself.
During the portrait session I will guide you clearly with your posing, with the goal of helping you look good & natural, & feel relaxed & happy. I see this process as a collaborative one, so you are welcome to contribute & sing out if something feels a little weird or not quite right for you.
The rest of the day you just do what you do & have a grand old time – during this time I’ll be capturing things in a documentary style as they unfold, people being their natural selves; laughing, interacting, busting moves on the d-floor… I’m seeking out the honest & lovely moments that happen through your day.
Help, what do we do!?
(We don’t know about posing & feel a bit freaked out about being in front of a camera…)
What's the deal with Offpeak Offbeat packages?
These are packages are available during my "offpeak" period; that is any day April – December AND Sunday – Friday during January, February & March. They often seem to appeal to folks planning weddings which might be described as "offbeat"
Fire me a request with more info about your plans & I'll put a package together, just for you!
Saturdays in summer is peak wedding season in New Zealand, so on those 13 Saturday’s days falling in January, February & March only my two main wedding packages are available for booking.
It all depends on your package…
All packages include your own webpage (an online & easy to share visual overview of your wedding day) & an online gallery of edited JPG images for you to (download &) keep. You can expect an email in time for your one-month anniversary with the link & password for your online gallery. These files are yours to share, copy, print and post the photos to your heart’s content. (They’re all yours so there’s no need to contact me for enlargements).
If it’s not already included in your package I highly recommend considering adding an album, (even if it’s for your one-year anniversary). There’s something magical about turning the pages, seeing the happy faces & calling to mind those special memories. Trust me, it’s a special thing.
I offer framed prints, a set of eight Wedding Journals & high quality Leather-bound Albums.
What do we get after the wedding?
For me, the heart of my job is based around creating & delivering images that capture the stories & real emotion of how your day unfolds… so I’m not interested in photos that look fake, heavily retouched or drenched with layers of photoshop filters. My editing process is light, bright & natural.
(Of course I’ve got your back, so if you are cursed with an unfortunate wedding-day pimple right your nose, I’ll use the tools at my disposal to ensure you don’t have to be reminded of such evil!)
What do you do to the photos?
Where possible, it can be fun to meet & scout the area together. Often we can arrange this to coincide with the day of your rehearsal which allows me to meet the bridal party, celebrant & your parents ahead of the wedding day.
I am confident shooting on the fly, without visiting the location in advance, so this isn’t a necessity. That said, I do like to be aware of the options, especially if inclement weather may arise (a must for winter weddings or when the forecast is threatening).
My general approach is to have a tentative plan, as a starting point… but it’s great if we have a little room to move & allow for the magic that only happens when you relax, enjoy the moment & go with the flow.
Do you scout for locations before the wedding?
Yes please! Photographing all day takes a truckload of energy, so meals for me & my second photographer would be greatly appreciated! I am a Pescatarian (a vegetarian who eats fish & eggs).
A little word in advance to caterer, respectfully requesting we’re not last on the list goes a long way & can make all the difference to ensure we’re fed & ready to photograph the next part in the proceedings.
Do we need to feed you on the day?
Do we need to meet before we book you as our photographer?
Many people do like to arrange a meeting if possible, but it’s not a requirement. My home is in the Waikato, my second home (the beloved family bach) is Raglan, & I’m regularly in Auckland. If distance keeps us from sharing a drink in person, I’m happy to arrange a technology-assisted chat over the phone or skype.
I have worked to weave this website through with both my personality & my approach to photography, in an effort to keep it real, be myself & give you an accurate representation of who I am & what I do. So if you like what you see & read here & want to book me for your wedding, please do! And if you want to see my face moving & hear my lovely voice click through here (& scroll down) to see a video of me (& if you like a chuckle scroll down further for a mad musical short film I was part of).
What are engagement sessions & do we have to have one?
Engagement sessions are a lot of fun & as well as giving some gorgeous up-to-date photos of the two of you. As there is just the three of us there’s no pressure, no rush & they offer a great opportunity to get a little more comfortable in front of a camera as we meet & work together before your wedding.
Just like researching wine & buying one bottle to check it is what you want can give you confidence to order a whole case, so you can book an engagement session with me early on in your wedding planning, before you move ahead with your booking.
Engagement sessions cost $400 & take 1-1.5hours. You get all the edited images in digital format. We’ll talk together to arrange the time, place & any other details.
We love it! We want to book you for our wedding! What now?
Just let me know you’re ready to book with me (click through here to drop me a note with all the appropriate info)
I’ll send you an agreement to read through and sign, and give you my bank details so you can transfer your $500 deposit. We’ll arrange the remaining payments dates as you count down to the wedding, usually at 6 months, 3 months & 1 month out.
Your booking secured when I receive your initial payment of $500 & once I have received your signed agreement. You will receive an email to confirm everything has come through, you're ll sorted & your wedding is locked in my calendar.
What happens if it rains on the wedding day?
We get out the umbrellas! Whatever the weather, my priority remains to keep you happy & comfortable, & take awesome photos.
There are always going to be some uncontrollable variables to any occasion & whatever we may find ourselves faced with, we’ll roll with it. Meaningful moments can continue to be photographed & significant events continue to occur, despite what the weather does.
I’ve found a good, practical way to make sure rain doesn’t stand in the way of a fantastic day is to talk & plan for the possibility of inclement weather. I’ve seen many good people simultaneously 1. hope for the best & 2. have a back-up option waiting in the wings, in fact I recommend it!
Do we need to give you a “shot list”?
No, I capture the majority of my day as a photojournalist, as it naturally unfolds. It’s good to hear about your priorities & any special or significant elements you’re incorporating into the day, but otherwise I allow spontaneity, creativity & the long crazy lists in my head guide me.
I do have a couple of online forms which I’ll ask you to complete closer to the wedding day to give me a running sheet for the day, important addresses and phone numbers, and a list of family/group portraits you’d like taken (I recommend up to 10 groups). You can leave the rest up to me – don’t worry, I love capturing the tiniest of details!
If you mean the high resolution JPG files of each of your edited images… yes! These files are yours to print, share, copy (& back them up!) to your heart’s content.
If you mean unedited RAW files, then no… the editing process is as much a part of my service as the photography itself.
Do we get digital negatives of the images?
We're private people. Can you be discrete with our photos & not share them for all the world to see?
Yes, I can... in fact it's pretty central to how I work.
Most people can agree that weddings are pretty wonderful occasions. I have the rare pleasure to see the inside of many different wedding days & still I get excited for each new one I am part of. I respect the vulnerability & trust of people welcoming me into their lives, on such a landmark day, alongside the humans they hold most dear.
Beyond the things & the prettiness is an intensely personal exchange between two people. A wedding is a day that entwines such depth & diversity of meaning & expectation. This is a date carved into an enduring & evolving family history. Alongside the crowd & celebration, this is a day which holds special moments, private & sacred. I am privileged to capture some of these moments & while my interactions are measured & my craft honed, these images are not solely mine. The photos I create are much more than products to advertise my business.
I deliver weddings online for my clients, but from the back-end of my website where the general public can't stumble across them & rummage through them. I do this so it is you, the couple, who decides how they share the images & with whom.
If you like what you read about why & how I do what I do, please make contact & I will share more of my stories & the images I have been honored to create.