THE PROCESS

Do you work with a second photographer?


Sometimes yes, and sometimes no. Most of the time… Yes. Having a second photographer allows you to obtain images that are very unique and frankly, that I can’t get myself! It’s also great to have another shooter because this frees up space all across your timeline when two people are efficiently getting the job done. The people I’ve chosen to help me out with weddings are lovely people, you can read more about them here; http://www.shellymakphoto.com/abouttheteam




What is this film photographer listed in your packages?


Film is a lost art that is barely becoming popular again. And to think, a lot of our parents and grandparents only had this one shot with each picture! A roll of film is completely unique and displays an authentic beauty that celebrates the beginnings of popular photography. This is why I want to include it in my packages. I have an extra photographer that will come with my team on your wedding day and just take one roll of film’s worth in photos. She’ll only capture unique things that maybe you hadn’t kept your eye on, or a special moment that is too good to pass up. These raw photos will be an extra treat to enjoy when so many of your photos will be posed and calculated.




Do you edit all of our photographs?


It depends on how many photos have been taken of your special day! Every photograph I give you is lightly retouched and color-corrected by my editor who does a fabulous job. When I get the photos back from her, I like to go in and double check everything to make sure it's my style, get rid of distracting objects in backgrounds, touch up temporary things like acne or messed up hair, and adjust angles in which the photo was taken. These are all minor things that’ll make the pictures THAT much better.




Do you also provide video services?


Nope, strictly photography. But take a look at this page about vendors I suggest! http://www.shellymakphoto.com/wedding-vendors




Do you have past clients we can speak to as references?


I can absolutely understand why you'd ask this because I would ask it too. But I don't provide client references to prospective wedding couples mainly because any reference I would give you would be biased anyways! And more off, I truly respect my clients' investment in my work and could never ask them to market for me on their own time.




How long does it take before we receive our products and photographs?


You’ll get your photos + your custom wedding photo box in 8-10 weeks or less from the date of your wedding. This is subject to change being that I do work 50+ hours a week at a police department.




Are our digital files watermarked?


Nope! These high-resolution files do not contain watermarks.




How many pictures will we receive?


I usually promise my clients at least 400 photos MINIMUM. Which, I normally never deliver that little. But, it’s important to remember that the number of images you receive depends on how long I’m photographing your wedding. So it can vary from 800-2000 images, maybe even more!




Do we receive the raw, unedited files?


No. I give my customers a finished, polished product. The raw, unedited files aren't available for viewing or purchase. I think of myself as an artist and to truly enjoy the product I’m selling, I like for clients to see the finished product first above anything. I have high standards for what I produce, so everything that doesn’t make the cut gets archived. But please know that any images that don’t make the cut are truly no good! (see more about this in the following question's answer).




Can we see the outtakes and all of the images that didn't make the "final cut"?


Unfortunately, no. But I pride myself on giving my customers majority of the images I take because I know we all love options. The only reason you won’t get an image is either because: the image is a duplicate, it’s blurry, someone’s eyes are closed, or it was a test shot. Trust me, I like options too and understand that not everyone knows the angles you specifically like or prefer.




Do you need to attend our rehearsal?


Rehearsal dinner coverage is available for an extra $55 an hour… Otherwise I don't attend the rehearsals. We will talk details about the big day well before the rehearsal dinner so rest assure that my lack of attendance to this dinner won’t impact my performance on the day of!




What is this Dropbox you speak of in your package descriptions?


Well, once your wedding is over, I give you a USB with all your images, a tangible photo album AND some links to your own online Dropbox folders so that you can access all your photos whenever! You’ll get two links; the first link is to the folder with ALL your wedding photos. The second link is to the folder of photos that everyone is going to be bugging you for (It just excludes the portraits of you two)! Do what you may, but I set this up so that you can share the second link with your bridal party, extended family, or anyone who has a photo they want from you! They can only view and download, not edit or delete the photos (same applies to both these links) unless you send them an email-invite to the folder. So it’s safe to share with tons of people!

I will add instructions to everything ‘Dropbox’ on your wedding USB.




Do you offer engagement sessions?


Yes, I do! I love couple’s photos because they’re usually more playful and casual. The sessions are generally shot at 4-5pm during the winter months, and 6-8pm in the summer months. They’re also included in my wedding packages, but you can individually book them is that’s all you need!




Can we provide you with a "shot list" or "must take pictures"?


Other than the family groupings, I'd prefer that you didn't. And not because I’m a prude and want things my way, but because I really do believe that it is counterproductive to the work you've seen on my website and will result in a different look to your photos. Now, I’m not saying don’t show me what you’re envisioning! Because I love to meet my client’s expectations. But I do have a certain style and enjoy documenting authentic love through that creative process. A lot of the poses you see on Pinterest and what not will unsurprisingly happen with my style of photography. But giving me a list of honey-do’s reduces my ability to capture your love naturally… And I want to create unique work for you.




Can we pay extra for an expidited delivery date?


Yes! What you pay will cut your delivery time in half. Depending on your package, the expidited rate is 25% of your package's original cost (expluding discount given or items omitted). For services under $200, the expidited rate is a flat $60.00.




Why do you offer fingerprinting services?


Well concerned citizen, I'm actually a trained Crime Scene Investigator! And throughout my training, fingerprinting quickly became one of my favorite areas of forensics due to its complete individuality. NO one on this planet has the same fingerprints as you do because of how you were uniquely fashioned in your mother’s womb. And just like your fingerprints, your relationship with your loved one is completely unique.

Now because I’m an artist, I’ve found a cheesy way of exemplifying that. I love taking each of your ring fingers (or maybe your finger with the coolest print) and creating a little graphic of them in a heart. For more on this process, check out www.shellymakphoto.com/fingerprints




Is it safe to give you my fingerprint?


Yes it is. I’m using your prints strictly for an artistic idea, not to report them (which is not ethical anyways; I can’t just add random fingerprints to the national or local database without a slew of information). So let's get into this; if I honestly wanted to plant your fingerprints somewhere, I would need 1) a strong hatred for you that I do not have for any person or thing on this planet, and 2) (I'm not even sure if this is possible) a LOT of money to spend on reconstructing your hand, your fingers and all it’s sweat pores into a 3-D gel model that sweats your body's amino acids (which could probably be considered identiy theft and I don't plan on going to prison). Also, I don’t even care or know how to begin that process. Once I’ve photographed these prints and imported them into my filing system, they can’t be given or sold to another soul (or system) according to my contract. Second, CSI shows are FAKE NEWS! Because of these shows, a lot of people put more weight on the forensic value of fingerprints (this isn’t to say the opposite, but they’re not as prevalent as you may think). Finding a FULL fingerprint at a crime scene is not normal… And finding a print’s match happens far and few between! I wish it wasn’t like that… But the reality is that finding a usable, wonderfully sweaty, smudge-less fingerprint is quite rare. Now, “what about shows like Forensic Files?” you may ask. Those shows are more accurate than most. But you have to realize, TV shows like this only show cases where there was usable evidence and there was a usable fingerprint. They don’t show you all cases where there was no usable evidence (which is the majority of cases). So don’t be tricked into thinking that fingerprints are 1) very prevalent and 2) easy to plant.




How much retouching do you offer?


Light to moderate retouching is included in all packages. Heavier retouching is considered tier 1 retouching and costs $12.00 a photo. Extreme heavy retouching is considered tier 2 retouching and costs $21.00 per photo. Light to moderate retouching includes lightly edited and color-corrected techniques. I like to get rid of distracting objects in backgrounds, touch up temporary things like acne or messed up hair, and adjust angles in which the photo was taken. Tier 1 retouching includes portait-type editing in which every aspect of the photograph is refined (complete facial retouches and such). Tier 2 retouching includes completely altering certain aspects of the photo that are not naturally pre-existing (editing bodies and skin).





MONEY & OTHER CONCERNS

When should we book you for our wedding?


I usually prefer to be booked no more than a year out. I know sometimes that is not music to a bride’s ears especially if you're a planner, but I am also a full time C.S.I., so I need to accomidate that schedule first before I can commit to a wedding.




Can you hold a date for me?


I'm so sorry, but I can't hold the wedding date or pencil you in until my contract is signed and a deposit is made on my services.




What is your pricing?


Check out my packages through this link! http://www.shellymakphoto.com/investment

If you don’t see what you’re looking for there, email me and we can customize your package.




What is your payment schedule?


Once we settle on your customizable package price, a 50% deposit of that price is due upon signing the contract (this can be broken up into payments if you’d like!). This reserves your date. Then, the left over balance is due before or on your wedding date. I'll send you an email reminder about that final payment.




Can we pay you part of the amount after the wedding?


I do require full payment before or on the wedding date. Payment for additional coverage time, additional photo albums however, are all due post-wedding. If you have any concerns about the payment schedule, please don’t fret, I’m here to help!




If I need to cancel my wedding, is the deposit refundable?


The deposit fee and all it's monies paid are non-refundable. The deposit guarantees that I'll hold the date exclusively for you and once you've signed the contract I do turn down all other commissions for that date. Any other payments made outside the deposit may be refundable depending on our contract.




What if you die or get sick?


In my years of photographing weddings, I have never missed a wedding for any reason. I take this process very seriously and would never just "call in sick" without a very severe reason behind it. If I were to die or be on my death bed, we would find you a replacement photographer at the same skill/price level that I possess. Your wedding WILL GET COVERED if it’s literally the last thing I do!





SMP BUSINESS DETAILS

How would you describe your style of photography?


I try to photograph people in a very journalistic and authentic way. I like showing a process, capturing raw emotion and love documenting uniqueness. I don’t mind trendy, I don’t mind classic… And I try to incorporate all of that in my eclectic style; I'm very laid back.




Do you have a business license?


Yes! If you need to know the details of this, shoot me an email and I’ll spill the beans.




Do you have insurance?


Yes, absolutely. Let me know if your venue needs a copy of this at least two months before the wedding and I will send all my info over!




How long have you been in business? How many weddings have you photographed?


I've been in business since 2014 and have been the lead photographer for about 20 weddings. This number seems low and probably makes your eyes widen a bit. In the spirit of transparency, this number is low mainly because I am also full time C.S.I. (No, not like Dexter, you crazy). BUT, I have been a second shooter for plenty more weddings and have the process down. I’ve grown to be adaptable while still maintaining a professional and time efficient standard. I am always deeply honored when I'm commissioned to document a love story’s new beginning, and I take that responsibility very seriously.




Where do you live and how far will you travel?


I am currently based in North Orange County, California. I will travel anywhere as long as my schedule permits! I must note though, that locations outside of Orange County are subject to a price increase: $1 every 1 mile (to and from) outside of O.C.’s borders.




What cameras and lenses do you use?


Guilty: I’m a Canon nerd. I have a Canon 5D Mark III. My lenses used are a 40mm F/1.8, 50mm F/1.2, 85mm F/1.8, 60mm macro 2.8, 24-105mm F/4 and a 70-200 F/4.





THE DAY OF

What happens if we don't have a wedding planner or coordinator?


Unfortunately, if you two don't have a wedding planner or someone who will be coordinating day-of… I become that person. I’m the one that will have to keep everything on time (so that I get my photos!) which is a bit stressful when that isn’t my job in the first place. It takes away from my focus being on capturing authentic moments throughout your big day. So, because of this, any package chosen is subject to a price increase if there isn’t a planner or coordinator handling your wedding.




Do we need to feed you at the reception?


I know I sound demanding, but it would be really kind if you did. Feeding us ensures I stay mobile and that I don't faint from starvation! I prefer to be fed when you are fed, not afterwards. This is because when you're eating I’m not going to be in your face with a camera because that’s not cute. And when you're done, I want to be able to continue coverage of the day. We do bring our own snacks and water, but a hot meal is always lovely to have!




Can our family & friends take pictures with their cameras?


Of course they can and it doesn't bother me! I do request a few things though;

-I don't allow family or friends to come along for the bridal images or the images of you two alone for privacy purposes and I like to have that moment be for you two to take a BREATHER! I totally understand wanting to just come observe, but I don't allow anyone to come watch me work unless previously requested and approved. I firmly believe that each wedding requires 100% of my respect and attention, and having lookey-loo’s is not in the best interest of the client.

-My contract states that there cannot be any other professional photographers at the wedding besides the ones I designate. That is simply because I don’t want to have to struggle to obtain my client’s attention. Additionally, the wedding day is not a day for me to experiment with collaboration compatibility with another photographer. Having a second photographer there to compete with disables my ability to accurately document your love story. So please let me know ahead of time if any additional professional photographers want to take some pictures!




If we're running late, will you stay later than you were scheduled?


Or course! The photography starts and ends when you want it to. If you two decide on the day of that you want more coverage, I do have an overtime rate of $63 per half hour and it goes into effect only with your permission and approval. I'll bill you for those hours after you return from your honeymoon.





WEDDING

F.A.Q.

© 2020 BY MICHELLE MCKEEVER

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