1. Introduction: What's your story?
Back in 2018, I was going through the wedding experience but as the bride, and I remember being SO overwhelmed. I didn't know what I was doing, but I knew one thing for certain and that was who I wanted to photograph my wedding. I knew the style I wanted and the person that was going to be there to document one of the most important things to happen to me. We went through engagement pictures and then of course, our wedding photos, and in the back of my mind throughout it all I wondered what it would be like to give someone what my photographer was giving to me. I wanted to know that feeling, and I wanted to share in the joys that is a wedding day, but on the vendor side. So, after I had already been doing photography for grads, families, and maternity, I decided to jump into weddings. It was the best decision I ever made. It's been 3 years since I shot my first wedding, and each day I'm doing this, I fall in love with it even more. I didn't start my photography business for the recognition or the money, I started it because of the relationships I was able to build with others. I've met some of my greatest friends just because they reached out to me to shoot their wedding. My brides and couples hold such a special place in my heart, and I spend every minute I can in this business making sure that those around me feel loved, valued, and beautiful. Yes, I'm your wedding photographer, but at the end of the day I end up being so much more...the person who gets you snacks when you're hungry or drinks when you're thirsty, who gives you a bobby pin out of my own head when one of yours falls out, I calm you down when you get nervous about time because weddings never run the way it's written on paper. I'm your person on your wedding day. And the reason I continue to do what I do is so that even after the wedding, I'll still be your person.
2. How long have you been shooting weddings? How many weddings have you photographed?
The first wedding I ever shot was in 2018. It was my first year as an elementary school teacher so I was doing my best to balance a teacher life as well as the photography life I wanted so bad. I shot as many weddings as I could without emptying my tank, leading to the point where I was able to leave education and become a full time wedding photographer this month (June 2021). I am OVER the moon to be at the point in my photography career, and it's because of the 40+ brides that have trusted me to capture their special day.
3. How would you describe your photography style?
I would describe my photography style as journalistic. I do my best to capture your day as it unfolds, like keeping a journal of all the big moments, and even all the small ones too. Of course, we create a timeline to maximize photos for the day, but I'm also hiding in the shadows and following you and the groom around to make sure there's nothing that I miss. Like when your grandmother sees you for the first time and starts to cry, then hugs you, or when the flower girl loves her flowy dress so she spins and spins in circles. I try to create a visual journal for you that tells the story of not only your wedding, but the love that surrounds you. Post wedding day, the photos I deliver to you are warm toned and pull you in with all the feels.
4. How well in advance should couples book their wedding photographer?
Honestly, there is no right or wrong time to book your photographer. What I will say is that it's up to you to figure out what's most important to you when it comes to your wedding. Some people think the caterer is most important, others thing photographers. You should go with what you want most and then work from there. If there is someone you envision capturing your day, it does not hurt to reach out and put your date on their radar. On top of that, if photography is the most important thing for you, you could also book with them first then find a venue that has their date available. We book up so quickly in certain months, so it's never too early to start talking with your vendors. On average, I have brides reaching out to me around a year in advance, give or take a few months. The months that fill up the fastest are May and October, so if you're considering either of those months, I'd suggest reaching out with more than a year to go.
5. What are the different packages that you offer and which one is your most popular package?
I offer a few different packages for my couples. The first package I offer is "The Six" ($2,350) which is a 6 hour coverage package that includes an engagement session and delivery of a hi-resolution online gallery. The next package, and most popular package, is "The Eight" ($2,750) which is an 8 hour coverage package that includes a second photographer, an engagement session, delivery of a hi-resolution online gallery, and a 30 minute bridal or boudoir session located in the triad. Another package I offer is "The Eight +" ($3,450) which is everything that "The Eight" offers except it's a 1 hour bridal or boudoir session, along with a photo album after the wedding. I do have some a la carte options, like extra hours ($250), bridal portrait session ($300), rehearsal dinner coverage ($400) or a second photographer for The Six ($350).
6. Are you the wedding photographer who will be shooting on the wedding day? Who else is there in your team?
I'm Maggie, I'm the lead photographer and the person responding to all of your emails! I started the business and have built it from the ground up, but I have recruited a couple people along the way. When I first started shooting weddings and wanted a second shooter, rather than hiring someone who had a business of their own to take care of, I decided to reach out to the person I trusted most and who I knew would be a huge asset to the business. A close friend of mine, Kristan, had been shooting close family for years and we shared very similar visions and styles. She knows me so well and bringing her on made it so easy. We communicate and work well together, and it's like she's able to read my mind. She moves when I move and wedding days roll so smoothly with her around. Recently, since we've decided to dip our toes into the film world, my husband Erik has also joined our team. He does most of the film side of our business and tags along any time any of our couple's opt to do both photo and film.
7. Do you charge a travel fee? For what distance? What does that cover?
We LOVE to travel!!! We are always up to follow you wherever and capture your day in new places. We don't normally charge travel fees within North Carolina, unless there is an overnight stay required. If our contracted end time puts us back at home later than 12am, we do look into overnight stay and that would be an extra charge for our couples. Of course if we're shooting a destination wedding (goals!!!), we'd ask that our couples provide transportation and overnight stay for us to get there and stay there!
8. Are albums or prints included in your packages?
Albums are included in our highest package, The Eight +. Otherwise, I do try to send a special gift to my couples, but the gifts vary depending on the year. I try to change it up!
9. How long after the wedding will the couple receive the images? How will they be delivered?
Editing time and delivery are tricky, because it truly depends on what is happening in that same timeframe. My rule of thumb is that I deliver the final gallery between 6-8 weeks after your wedding date. If there are multiple weddings in the weeks before/following yours, we'd probably be looking closer to that 8 week mark. On the flip side, you could get your gallery sooner if your wedding is during a time in which I don't have many other galleries I'm working on that the same time. I send the gallery to you via email where you can open and view each of the photos. You have the choice to download them and save them, or you can purchase prints/canvases straight from the gallery. I try to make the process as easy as possible for my couples!
10. What is your cancellation and/or refund policy?
I try to be as flexible as possible when it comes to dates for my couples. I don't charge a rescheduling fee as long as they let me know ahead of time. After all, a lot of things requiring us to reschedule are out of our control. In order for brides to secure their date, they send me a contract with a deposit. The deposit locks in their date and is nonrefundable. When it comes to canceling a wedding date, as long as the couple tells me 90 days before the wedding date, they'll be refunded anything they've paid outside of the deposit. If they choose to cancel within that 3 month period of their wedding date, any amounts paid are nonrefundable because we're unlikely to book a replacement wedding within that time frame.