If you're in the market for a photographer but would like to gather some information before making a decision, I've compiled a list of answers to some of the questions I am asked most often during the booking process. If this list still leaves you wondering, please do send me an email; I'd love to tell you more!
How far in advance do you book?
I typically book wedding couples anywhere from 4-18 months prior to their wedding day. I highly recommend booking your photographer as soon as you have a date set and venue lined up because weekends are limited and dates can fill up quickly!
Are YOU going to be the photographer who comes to my wedding?
Yes! I do not contract out my events to associate photographers, so when you book with Awakened Light Photography you can rest assured that the person you are communicating with and the portfolio you're viewing IS the same as the person who will show up to photograph your wedding (that's me)! I typically bring an Assistant with me as well, so don't be surprised to see an extra person. If you request a package with a Second Photographer I will bring along a second professional to cover more of your event!
What if you become sick or something terrible happens?
I have never missed an event that I've been scheduled for, but in the unlikely circumstance that a serious emergency takes place (knock on wood, right?) I do have back up! I am a member of the Professional Photographer of Michigan and have networked with colleagues all over SE & Mid-Michigan to share referrals and call on each other if/when backup is needed. I've seen folks jump in to help each other in a matter of moments and I would be sure you are taken care of.
What is your service area?
I am based in Oxford, MI and am happy to travel up to 90 minutes without a fee for most wedding packages. (Serving Oakland, Macomb, Livingston, Genessee, Lapeer, and surrounding counties). For locations outside of this radius there may be a travel fee depending on the start & end times of your event coverage. I am happy to discuss this with you and will always let you know if there is a travel fee before booking!
Will you help me with my timeline?
Yes, I love chatting with brides about the timeline of the wedding day and helping them determine how much time to allow for each set of photos! This conversation can take place right away, or a few weeks before the event depending on how soon you like to be organized. I can ask you some questions to figure out what you would like to include and send you a personalized timeline to work from, or you can send me a rough draft of your timeline and I'll help you tweak it. I'm someone who loves list-making, so I enjoy helping in this part of the process!
What is your turn-around time and how many images should I expect?
My post-wedding process includes sorting through the images, choosing the best photos that tell the story and show the beauty & details of your day, and then editing each photo to be delivered to you. Depending on the on/off season, your gallery should be ready in about 2-4 weeks! You're more than welcome to check in any time for an estimated finish date! I typically deliver approx 50 images per hour of coverage, so an 8-hour wedding day averages around 400 photos. This can fluctuate depending on the timeline of the day and the number of locations and people involved, but don't worry- I love to share loads of great photos with you!
What additional products do you offer?
I would love to show you in person! I have many beautiful products available including custom leather albums, matted & framed prints, canvas or metal wall art and collages, USB's with digital images, and acrylic blocks. To see these in person please schedule a time to visit my in-home studio and showroom! I also do free consultations to help you decide which products would be best for your home!
How do I go about booking Awakened Light Photography?
Just send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to check the availability of your date. I'll get the details from you and when you're ready to book I will send you a link to e-sign your contract. A 20% non-refundable retainer is required to reserve your date, and the remaining balance is due within 2 weeks prior to the event. I accept PayPal, credit card, or a personal check by mail. It would be an honor to work with you!
Are you licensed & insured?
I get it, it's so important to be able to trust someone before you hire them to capture such an important day. I am an officially registered, tax-paying, insured LLC with a collection of top-notch gear. If you're into the technical details here's an important one: I carry two cameras at all times, and each has dual SD card slots to ensure that all images have an immediate back-up copy. I also have lighting equipment, so no need to be afraid of the dark.
Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any other questions. I will always respond within 24 hours, so if you don't hear from me please double check that you entered the correct email address (email@example.com), or just send a text or give me a call at (989)321-0365! I look forward to hearing from you!
Nikki Schuler specializes in wedding photography and portraits and is the owner of Awakened Light Photography, LLC. She has traveled to over 40 countries using creative arts as a ministry and resides with her husband & 4 children in a cozy vintage farmhouse in Oxford, Michigan.