I write this post with joy and a touch of regret already. I already know I will miss mentioning some fantastic photographers. But these folks truly made an impression mostly because I met them more than once or because I’ve encountered their work quite a bit online.
I obviously love working with Liam, who is certainly my partner-in-good-willed-mischief and spouse. Liam likes primes, which are ideal for portraits and low-light situations, but he does often use a zoom too. In a world where too many novices assume that a very long lens used up close=extra cool photos during the ceremony (gasp here), someone who likes primes is a dime in a huge bucket. Although Liam does prefer to work in a photojournalistic style, I’ve watched him photograph tons of couples and I can tell you that he has a “thing” for overall composition. I think this is why a lot of couples who want a little bit of classic photography choose him. (Our joint package is $1000 for my officiant services and photography by Liam for up to 2 1/2 hours with an online gallery of downloadable images.)
Katie Jane Photography: I am quite sure we will meet many times in the future. Katie Jane is undoubtedly among the least jaded wedding vendors I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. She is very sweet, trustworthy, and professional. I believe she uses zooms and primes, which makes me like her all the more. Her style is a mixture with a focus on photojournalism; it is very clean. At this time, she is only booking elopements or smaller sessions. I would choose Katie Jane for family portraits with my sister’s family or mom and step-father without any hesitation.
Aga Images: I believe that Aga and her partner/spouse use digital cameras. Nevertheless, I could swear I have seen Aga use a Yashica rangefinder (35mm camera). So I might be wrong there. I like their focus on composition, which is stellar. If the composition is beautiful, effects are unnecessary. They do big and tiny weddings, and they are very nice and earthy people. Since I love film/analog, I’d personally choose Aga.
Ryan Brenizer: Years ago, I noticed a determined-looking guy running around a Tribeca loft after I married an interfaith couple in a rather lavish setting. Ryan’s work is sexy…and pricey. He is well-known for his uses of light–or, rather, flashes. Actually, he is a bit of a celebrity himself. His work is exceptionally glamorous. I believe that Liam would choose him.
Kim Coccagnia: Kim and her partner are wonderfully normal people. I can imagine dinner with them would be a relaxed and fun affair. She has many years of experience and yet still comes across as very modest. Kim’s style is very documentary/photojournalistic. I’d choose her for my upstate cousins (she works in NYC too!) in a heart-beat.
Laura Boyd: Laura and I met when she photographed one of my eloping couples, though she mostly does boudoir sessions. She has a studio in Manhattan, and I know that she is very much a pro from our chat before our couple arrived. If I ever had the guts to do a boudoir session, I’d give her a call. Her calm presence would make anyone cozy.
Julia Newman: I recognized Julia’s face the last time she photographed a small wedding at which I officiated. But I didn’t know her name, so I had to inquire as we waited for the guests to arrive. Apparently, at some prior point, we worked together on another wedding. Her style is very clean, detail-oriented, and, obviously, photojournalistic: I barely knew she was there. If I had the ability to hire a photographer for my friends planning a mid-sized or large celebration, I’d try Julia first.
Photo Pink: Liesl and Randy are very cool. Not in the too-kool-for-school way. They naturally fit the definition of the consummate urban photographers–smart and sassy with mellow demeanors. For those who love street scenes and self-identify as offbeat, they are assuredly the way to go. Both seem to have eyes for details. They do big weddings, as well as elopements. They travel too. I wish I could be as cool. On a personal note, I love chatting with these two: they keep excellent company, which is important because you will spend lots of time with your photographer.
Michael Chadwick: Michael is a bit of an old-school professional in a good way. He photographs weddings and marathons and theater productions. He seems to have lots of energy. I can’t believe how well he managed the cold the last time we met. If you want someone to play creatively with stuff in photoshop, I think he is your best bet. I think he’d be a great match for my dad.
Jen Huang: I met Jen some time ago when she photographed one of my eloping couples. She is a really pleasant person. And I immediately glanced with awe at the Contax medium camera draped over her shoulder. Of course, I googled her only to learn that Jen is a world-traveller and well-known photographer. In world overflowing with digital photographers, Jen still uses analog/film. Her work is very romantic and downright pretty. My grandparents would love her as much as I do.
Katie Chao: If you are on a serious budget, pick someone like Katie. I’ve worked with her on three mid-sized weddings and two elopements (and I know I have another one coming up with her too). Too often newbie photographers care about the coolness of being a wedding photographer without caring about improving their actual skills and equipment. I know Katie cares about her clients and the actual images, and so I know she is here to stay. She is a genuinely nice person and takes great photos. And your savings’ account will thank you for choosing her.
Here are some more!
Kelly Williams’ Events: Kelly and I met when she photographed my first gay wedding in the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens in early June. She is one of the few photographers who ever took my card and kindly sent along wonderful images of our couple. That’s a very seriously amazing professional courtesy to extend.
De Neuva Photography: Nicki and I first met over a year ago. We met again at a recent elopement of a joint couple — two women who married by the Gapstow Bridge. I believe we are both sponsors at independent wedding blogs, which is very cool! You will notice on her blog that she is comfy with off-beat couples who want to try something a little different, such as photos in a museum.
Anne-Claire & Dustin of Bacd Photography: This husband and wife duo photographed one of my iCi couples. Due to the tight ceremony space, I did not get to see them as much as I usually might. Yes, that means that they are wonderfully non-intrusive! Two weeks later, they quickly recognized me — we were working together again, but this time for a Central Park elopement.