Local pros give tips on how to make your wedding photos picture-perfect
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Whether you’re planning a wedding for 20 or 200, it’s just as important to perfectly document the day as it is to find that perfect dress. “Other than your personal memories, the wedding photos are the only way to tell your story afterward,” says Kent Miller, owner of Kent Miller Studios in Peekskill. After consulting with local photography experts, we came up with the top tips to ensure the best wedding photos.
Like Your Photographer
Since you’ll probably spend most of the day with your photographer, find someone you like, not only whose work you like. “There are tons of horror stories out there because photography is filled with independent photographers who don’t know weddings that well,” says Dan Fried of H&H Photographers in the Bronx. “I have heard of a photographer charging top dollar and showing up at weddings in ripped jeans.”
Understand Your Contract
When signing a photo contract, make sure it’s clear who owns the photos, if there is photography insurance, and how the photos will be developed. Many photographers offer a variety of package deals for developing pictures. Some packages include a CD with low-resolution images from the wedding so you can print the pictures yourself.
Unlimited Day vs. Hourly Blocks
You can hire a photographer for an event or by the hour. According to Joe Pregiato of Arbor & Ivy Photography in Eastchester, the unlimited shooting fee in Westchester can start at around $2,000 and go as high as $5,000 (the fee typically does not include photo development.) Those who pay in hourly blocks generally pay $275 per hour. Which should you do? Miller advises hiring a photographer from start to finish. “I have gotten some of my most sought-after shots simply by waiting until the very last minute when the bride and groom are walking out of the place, and they let their hair down and give each other a kiss.”
Know Your Photo Options
Whether it’s the view of the Hudson River at Glen Island Harbour Club in New Rochelle or the 30-foot stained-glass window at Sleepy Hollow Country Club in Briarcliff Manor, Westchester wedding venues can provide great picture ops. So do your homework ahead of time, and know what’s unique about your location. And let your photographer know what you want shot. One of the newest hot spots: The Ritz-Carlton, Westchester, offers a new Rolls Royce in which the bride and groom can take pictures. Also ask if and how the place accommodates for bad weather. “Don’t wait until a week before to realize the pictures are not going to work out because it might rain, or the catering hall is too small to take pictures,” says Alfonso Martone, owner of Photography by Alfonso in Scarsdale. “You should always prepare to have one outside venue and one inside venue.”
Au Naturel Makeup
Less is more. Although it is important to wear more makeup than on a girls’ night in, our experts say don’t overdo it. Makeup—too much of it—can be the primary reason pictures do not come out well. “If you shoot black-and-white film, the red lips will come out black, and it will look gothic,” says Pregiato. “I always tell brides to wear absolutely more makeup than usual, but don’t go over the edge.” Also, if the bride wears too much bronzer and the groom wears none, there may be too big of a contrast when the picture develops.
Arbor and Ivy Photography
Kent Miller Studios
115 N Water St, Studio 3 S, Peekskill
5909 Riverdale Ave, Bronx
Photography by Alfonso
193 Brook St, Scarsdale