10 Questions with Fitz Carlile

WeddingRule Interviewed one of the most popular and a highly sought-after wedding photographer from California, Fitz Carlile of Fitz Carlile Photography. Los Angeles based Fitz is the founder and owner of Fitz Carlile Photography.

Fitz Carlile Photography

Photographer - Fitz Carlile

10 Questions with Fitz Carlile

1. Introduction: What's your story?

My father handed me his 1978 Konica AutoreflexTC SLR camera when I was 18 years old. A fully manual film camera, I shot exclusively on this camera from 1991 until 2009. I took this camera around the world with me, through the Middle East, Africa, India, South East Asia, China, Japan, and across America with the camera strapped to my motorcycle's gas tank. Landscapes, wildlife, culture, street scenes, abstact, it really didn't matter, I loved exploring all of it through the lens. I turned professional in 2009 after 18 years as a film camera hobbyist, primarily working towards the commercial and advertising industry. I shot onesy twosey weddings for friends on occasion, and after I had 10 weddings in my portfolio I launched a separate website exclusive to weddings in June 2015. In September of that same year I was recognized as 'one of the top wedding photographers in Los Angeles' by the wedding blog Zankyou.com. So that's how I got my start in weddings. In January 2022 I was named 'Artist of the Year' by the global photographer community LooksLikeFilm, a community with over 60K members and 188K Instagram followers.

2. How long have you been shooting weddings? How many weddings have you photographed?

My first wedding was in 2010, my friends Amanda and Chris took a big chance with me, I'd never photographed a wedding before. If it were not for them, I'm not sure I'd be where I am today, and I am a big believer in gratitude. They are life long friends of mine. Although my work has come a long way since then, and I still look at those wedding photos from 12 years ago and wonder how I ever got away with charging even a penny for the work, they cherish their photos and are so happy they took the gamble to have me photograph their wedding day. Thank you so much for igniting a spark that I didn't ever see coming, Amanda and Chris <3

Since then, I've probably photographed 200+ weddings, up and down California, Europe & Mexico.

3. How would you describe your photography style?

Cinematic photojournalism, inspired mostly by the great directors and cinematographers in the film industry, including Stanley Kubrick (2001 Space Odyssey), Emmanuel Lubezki (The Revenant), Conrad Hall (Road to Perdition), Gordon Willis (The Godfather), Robert Elswit (There Will Be Blood) and my hero Roger Deakins (Blade Runner 2049)

4. How well in advance should couples book their wedding photographer?

The right time to book is immediately after you've booked your venue. Peak months in California are July through October, with September and October the busiest months of any given year. I have clients who book 16 months out, I have clients who book 4 weeks out. It's all over the map - but book early if you want to ensure availability - across the board in the wedding industry!

5. What are the different packages that you offer and which one is your most popular package?

3 standard packages:

Package 1: $5000

8 hours coverage | Up to 400 images | Polaroid Images taken throughout the day | 2nd photographer additional rate

Package 2: $6000

8 hours coverage | Up to 400 images | Polaroid Images taken throughout the day | 2nd photographer additional rate | 2 Hour Engagement Session | $250 Album credit

Package 3: $5000

10 hours coverage | Up to 500 images | Polaroid Images taken throughout the day | 2nd photographer additional rate | 10x10 album with 10 spreads

6. Are you the wedding photographer who will be shooting on the wedding day? Who else is there in your team?

I'm your man, unless I'm eaten by a shark or swallowed by a whale (of if I'm simply too ill to shoot). If you hire a second shooter, then you're going to have one of 4 shooters on my roster whom I exclusively work with. Your second shooter is whomever I decide to hire that day, depending on venue and shooter availability.

7. Do you charge a travel fee? For what distance? What does that cover?

If your wedding is 50 miles outside of downtown LA, there's a travel fee. If Your wedding is 100 miles outside of downtown LA, there may be a hotel fee. Every destination wedding is different.

8. Are albums or prints included in your packages?

Albums are included in one of my packages, otherwise, a la carte.

9. How long after the wedding will the couple receive the images? How will they be delivered?

4 week turnaround via an online gallery.

10. What is your cancellation and/or refund policy?

There is a 50% retainer paid upon signature of the contract, which is non-refundable. I am turning down inquiries once I receive the retainer, so this retainer is non refundable because I am losing potential work by turning down future inquiries after committing to your wedding date. The retainer recoups any future lost wages from turning down work.

Other cancellation policies:

1. 120+ days before the wedding date: no additional charges
2. 75-120 days before the wedding date: 50% of the outstanding balance
3. Within 75 days of the wedding date: 100% of the outstanding balance

Gallery

Awards

WeddingRule Editor’s Choice 2022