Monday, January 23, 2006

Photographer's Progress

This past weekend we met with two photographers. Some may wonder, why, weren't you pretty much set on that front? Yes, two months ago we were. Even a week ago, we were. But we procrastinated and the pair that we had in mind booked another wedding for that day (they weren't exactly kind about it either, so if you want a photojournalistic style, do NOT go to Leikness-Dougherty, unless you want to be in the middle of negotiations, even setting up another meeting, only to find out in an email that they booked the spot already). I didn't exactly push for fiance to get the ball rolling with them b/c I wasn't enthralled with their portfolio and in the back of my mind I always thought that I'd be satisfied with one of those Chinese packages if things didn't work out. But in any case, losing them threw us in a frenzy to find a new photographer at this late stage. This also worried us about the co-op that we've been looking at/dragging out the process on (but that's another story for another entry). So I spent an entire day combing through the list of WPJA photographers in NYC, emailing the ones that had an OK price range and glancing through their websites to make sure that I am OK with their style and work. A lot of them had very plain or hard to navigate sites which made it a little difficult, or they didn't post much helpful info (like pricing) so I just sent a flurry of emails. A bunch of photographers responded back with pricing structures (it's such a chore to compare such different packages) and one even sent a couple of links. Surprisingly, a few could not point me to additional work online that they've done but asked us to meet with them. A few had already booked for our date but referred me to other ppl (all those referrals were dead ends b/c they were also booked). After a day of emailing, I set up appointments for 2 photographers for last Saturday and hopefully 2-3 additional ones for this coming week.

So this past Saturday was crazy hectic. After taking BM out for a birthday brunch in the Theater District, we went down to 14th St. on the East Side (the subway ride was really fast but fiance was unimpressed and we took buses for the rest of our trip -- he dislikes the subway for some reason) and then went back to the West Side, up to 28th St. We got to the first photographer a little early so we went to a nearby McDonald's to use their bathroom and work out some budget issues. By the time we got the bathroom open, it was nearly time to go so budget issues still hover over us. Anyway, this photographer lives in a pretty nice condo (or maybe co-op) and it really makes me wonder how much money these ppl make. It seems like a tough way to make a living (working these long days on the weekend and then developing prints, albums, etc.) but like the previous photographers, her apartment was pretty spacious (and you can't beat the location -- prime Manhattan real estate). And I can't believe how much trust they have -- letting strangers into their house. So this woman seemed very friendly but she only showed us a few albums with a couple images in each, which really didn't stand out to me. It surprised me b/c she said she's been published in a lot of magazines and major newspapers like the NY Times. But I guess her style is more documentary-esque and the images seemed kinda static. She gave us a copy of the contract, including prices. She seemed pretty reasonable but I'd like to see more of her work. Hopefully I can meet her to see some proofs sometime soon (she didn't have any at the time, which also surprised me).

Then off to see the other one in Chelsea. We passed through the Meatpacking District, which I've never really walked through b/c it used to be so sketchy but it is now like SoHo of yesteryear. This other photographer's studio was in a more shady section though. We were kinda early but had nowhere to hang out but inside his studio so he set us up with some albums to look through as he finished up taking some headshots for an actress. He told us that this is a busy time for him b/c it's the pilot season and many actors want new headshots. While we waited, the makeup artist that he usually works with greeted me (she claimed that she didn't want to freak me out in case I heard some noises in the back but I think she also wanted to hype up the photographer and possibly drum up some business for herself but she only does last minute stuff). Anyway, the albums he showed us were not bad but I thought the stuff he showed me online was a LOT better. You could tell his specialty is headshots b/c the stuff he had of the brides up close was fantastic. The rest of his work is pretty good too. I think his prices are a bit high but he was helpful in suggesting places downtown to take nice pictures, like by the bridges, the courthouses (the steps or with the columns), the greenery in Battery Park, or on the Staten Island ferry! I really like that idea b/c as he says, it's completely open and you get a full view of the City. I think you can also get some interesting breezy shots. He also suggested walking from the ceremony location to the reception site (if we keep both in Ctown), which I had always envisioned b/c you can get interesting pictures and you're sort of on parade. :) Looking through his albums, I also got the idea of wearing red slippers during the reception, probably with my Chinese dress. The couple in the book also took a cab instead of a limo, which I've been trying to convince fiance about too b/c I think it shows New York flavor and you don't have to rent out a limo (which I find kinda tacky). You could tell the photographer's quite artistic and so, maybe a little bit cocky (unlike the other photographer, he said he probably wouldn't do a location scout b/c he's probably familiar w/ the area already). It also didn't seem to register with him that one of the places may have a lot of big windows so lighting may be an issue.

The first photographer also gave us ideas on where to take nice pictures. She suggested the Maritime Museum at the Seaport where there is a balcony that overlooks the Brooklyn Bridge. Hopefully we'll be able to come to a decision about photographers within the next week or so. Because of all this, I'm finding that I have no time to do stuff that I really want to do, like the Winter Festival at Central Park (I always miss that every year) and Fortunoff's Wedding Survival Party (kinda like a contest with various games where you can win stuff and like the Target thing, to get you to start a registry with them).

Other decisions that need to be made soon:
- honeymoon
- ceremony location (so I can get the darned invites printed out!! This also affects who will officiate, which is another thing that I have to gripe about some other time!!)
- shoes so that I can get the dress properly fitted to length
- registry
- BMs' dresses
- music
- flowers

1 comment:

Mariann said...

It is so interesting to read your posts and see the brides and grooms' point of view as they're organizing their wedding.

I am looking at it from a different point as I'm also a photographer.

Let me know if you have questions or something I may be able to help with.

Warm regards,
Mariann Szucs