Frequently Asked Questions
I've heard horror stories of lost digital images. What do you do to prevent this?
I've heard of it happening, but don't know of anyone that experienced it. Here's what I do. My Canon 1D uses both Compact Flash and SD cards. I burn raw files to the CF card and JPEGs to the SD card of every picture. The raw files are transferred to my EPSON P-2000 during the wedding as a 40gb hard drive/photo viewer. The data on the CF card and the P-2000 are maintained along with the JPEGs on the SD card until I return to the studio. They are then uploaded into my computer. Once I develop the wedding, all the images are transferred to a DVD where they are indefinitely stored. I would have to lose files from three locations to lose the entire wedding.
Does the deposit count against the total cost of the portraits?
Yes, it is a down payment towards the total cost of the wedding portraits. It is also not refundable should your wedding plans change.
What time will we start taking pictures?
I typically start 3 hours before the wedding begins. My goal is to be finished with
pictures 45 minutes before the wedding starts. Please add 30 minutes if you want
outdoor pictures on location.
Can friends and relatives take pictures too?
Yes, as long as we are on schedule and there is adequate time to take all the necessary pictures and ONLY after I am done. Too many times people do not know who to look at when there are multiple cameras ready to shoot. Everyone needs to know to look at the main camera and after I'm through to look at the others.
How many hours do I spend at the wedding?
I'll start 3 hours before the wedding starts. I will cover the reception assuming it starts immediately after the wedding. I typically don't do the wedding dance, but can for an additional charge. I will usually spend over six hours shooting your wedding. Usually I'll leave after the guests have been served dinner since most people don't like to be photographed while eating.
Do I retouch the images?
I am a NAPP member (National Association of Photoshop Professionals) and use
Photoshop CS3. Each image is given enhanced to produce the best image possible.
Are the images digital or film?
Everything is digital. I shoot a Canon 1D Mark III (10.1 mega pixel) and I have a Canon Mark II N (8.2 mega pixel as a back up. I use a 28-300 Image Stabilizing Canon lens. Camera and lens combined have a value over $7,000. I also have a back-up studio light available just in case. I archive the images to DVD and store them in a safety deposit box for added protection.
Can we do any outdoor pictures?
YES!!! Falls Park in Sioux Falls or McCrory Gardens in Brookings are great ideas. Better yet...NO CHARGE FOR THIS SERVICE, but it will require some extra time.
Do I take credit cards?
I now accepted Visa and Mastercard credit cards.
Are sample books available?
Yes, they are available upon request. Please contact me to schedule a meeting. When you look at the samples be sure to notice:
1. Photos are framed and centered well
2. lighting is effective
3. Details are visible
4. People look comfortable and relaxed
Can you describe how the engage photo session works?
We can do a session either in studio or outdoor. Proofs can be viewed at the convenience of your own computer for 30 days after the proofs are placed on line.
How long will it take to get my proofs?
Usually two weeks, sometimes up to four weeks at the peak wedding and senior picture season. I will mail them to you or deliver them to you depending on your location.
Is there a fee for mileage?
No mileage is charged for weddings within a 50 mile radius of Sioux Falls, SD. Outside of that area depends on the distance from Flandreau. Please see the map on the homepage.
How far will I travel for pictures?
I have traveled from Kimball, SD to central Minnesota and from Watertown, SD to Sioux City, Iowa. to shoot a wedding, but there will be a mileage fee usually between $50 and $100. Possibly more if a motel stay is required.
Who is the photographer that will show up for my wedding?
I am the only photographer and I take all my images. I do bring my daughter
along as an assistant when she is availab.e. She is 19, but has a talent at taking great pictures for her age. She is currently the school photographer and year book editor...just as her father was twenty some years ago.
Do I provide a photo album with the enlargements?
You will receive a proof album with all your proofs. I do not supply albums for your
enlargements. Photo albums are personal and you should be able to select the album that fit your personalities at a cost that fits your budget.
What is Portrait Memories philosophy about shooting weddings?
My goal is for you to have fun and for me to have fun. I need to keep you
relaxed, laughing, and at ease. I try to build in time to allow a little break during
pictures to allow you time to relax.
Can I get color, black and white, or both?
Yes, all of the above for any image you desire.
How long have you been shooting weddings?
I have been shooting weddings for over 18 years.
When do I have to pay the final balance?
Due to recent insufficient funds checks, I've been forced to require full payment two weeks prior to the wedding. This will allow time for the checks to clear while I work on the proofs. Sorry, to have to do this, but if I'm going to take $800 losses frequently the prices will have to go up considerably. All new contracts will include this wording.
Can I select any "must have" pictures to be taken?
Please do. It is your day. If there are any special groups that you want, please
write them down today so that you can be sure and remember on your
wedding day? There are so many divorced parents that it is impossible to know what
groupings are desired for pictures. Because of this, I encourage you to list any special
photos that are "must haves" for you.
The bride does not want to be seen before the wedding. Can you do this?
Yes, I can do whatever you like, but there are more things that can go wrong with this approach.
1. When the wedding is done, guests are not thinking pictures. They are thinking
reception, dinner, dance, PARTY. Someone has to be assigned to keep the
necessary people available for pictures.
2. Any group pictures that include small children can cause problems. As the day
progresses it can be long for these young children. It may be nap time for
them rather than picture time.
3. It takes 60 to 90 minutes to take all the group, wedding party, and family shots
that have both the bride and groom in them. Have you allowed enough time
between wedding and reception?
4. I will also need 20 minutes to set up my lights and to meter the levels and balance the lighting. After I will need 30 minutes to tear down and carry out my
equipment. If I have to drive to the reception, you will need to allow time to
take pictures there too. Rarely do I make it to the reception before the wedding party arrives.