Yuan + Marcos [Boston Country Club Wedding]



How many hours do I need a photographer for at our wedding? Four hours? Less? Eight hours? More? You’re saying to yourself: I have no idea. And yet, here you are, reviewing packages and pricing for photographers, and they (myself included!) are asking you to select from a Six Hour Package, Eight Hour Package... how do you decide, especially when you’ve only just begun your wedding planning?.

I’ve been a photographer for all duration of weddings, and when it comes to deciding how long you should hire your photographer for, I find it’s best to start with answering: what’s the first moment you would like to photograph on your wedding day and what’s the last? For example, let’s say you would love to capture images of you getting ready in the morning with your bridesmaids and groomsmen. This would be your starting point — your first moment — and you’d ask for your photographer to arrive then. Next, consider the last image of the day you’d love to see captured. If that last moment is your cake cutting, this would be your photographer’s end point. If you want to document some of the dancing that follows at the reception, then that would be your end point. Or, are you leaving the reception in a fancy getaway car at the close of the night and that’s a must-have picture moment for you? Then that’s your end point. From there, tally up the total duration from start to end, and that’s how long you’ll need your photographer for.

All this might seem evident, but when you’re just starting to plan your wedding, it can be misleading to select your photography package based on how long you have booked your venues for. Because, more often than not, you’ll want to capture moments prior to the venues (such as getting ready), and, just as common, you might conclude photography before your reception comes to a close. A good example of this is dancing at the reception. You’ll often have two or three hours of dancing and mingling to close out the festivites, but a good hour of photography is honestly all most need to capture the spirit of that chapter in the evening. By shaving hours off the end of the day, you could then start your photography earlier for those really unique moments like putting on the dress, portraiture time together, and greeting family and friends.

Again, when you think in terms of images and the moments you’d like to capture, you can select a package better suited for your needs and event. When I meet clients for an initial consultation, we’ll have this very conversation, and I’ll work with you to create a custom package that accommodates your photography timeline. If I think you need more hours, I’ll explain why. But if I think we can be more economical , I’ll share that as well. And as your planning evolves, it’s very easy to add more time to your package as needed.

Good luck with your planning, and please do reach out if you’d like to consider me being part of your day!

Aimee + Som [South Natomas Community Center Laos Wedding]



One of the rewarding perks of wedding photography is the exposure to cultures and customs outside the day-to-day reach of my Western comfort zone. I've documented Chinese, Japanese, Filipino, Vietnamese, Korean and Indian wedding celebrations, and, had I not been the photographer for these events, I'm not sure I would have had the opportunity to experience the uniqueness each has to offer. And so when I was approached by Aimee & Som to photograph their Laos wedding, I jumped at the chance, as I knew it would be an introduction to a wonderfully new set of details, colors, rituals, and bonding — and let's not forget tasty cuisine!  Yes, it was my first Laos (aka Lao) wedding, but new experiences make for a hungry eye, and I couldn't help but snap everything up and share in abundance with you!

I arrived early that crisp morning at the South Natomas Community Center to capture family staging the ceremony decor and putting the final loving touches on arrangements.  Aimee wore the traditional Lao silk sinh (Lao skirt), with Som dressed in the loose-fitting salong (pants).  As is customary, the groom's family must first bargain and negotiate with the bride's before the groom is allowed passage into the ceremony room. Levity ensues, a karmic cover charge is paid, and Som enters to join Aimee for the baci ceremony.   Designed to enrich the newlywed couple, the baci ceremony involves the tying of strings around the wrists of the bride and groom, inviting a unity of spirit and soul.  Though this may be a Lao custom, the crisscrossing of threads really made for a striking image and served as a reminder that the crux of all weddings really is the spinning of a renewed web between family, friends, and couple.  

Mother Nature blessed Aimee & Som with a full bloom of cherry blossoms, and we finished our day by taking advantage of all the glorious color. Thank you again Aimee & Som for having me not only as your photographer, but welcoming me as a participant. I'm so glad I made the trip up your way. Best wishes to you always!

Ceremony + Reception: South Natomas Community Center | Those Yummy Cakes: Ettore's European Bakery & Restaurant