My Ideal Wedding Photography Client

What's your ideal client? was the question that stared at me from my computer as I sat at my desk in Kennesaw Georgia in the USA. I began to reminisce the fantastic client's and couple's weddings I have the honor photograph over the years.

Engaged

Although I love all my couples and have become friends with all of them, I had to be honest with myself and now you as your read this.

Wedding Photography

So my ideal client is 38 to 50 years old. Second marriage, may or may not have children from a previous marriage. They view their upcoming wedding as the most important thing they've embarked on in many years and.....

  • They're open-minded to different photo ideas

  • Love the creative side of photography

  • Delegate all the key parts of their wedding day

  • Love their families

  • Want a custom designed wedding album

  • Love wall art created from their photos

  • Enjoy a healthy lifestyle

  • Totally trust me to capture the day - they can relax!

If you know a couple who fits "my ideal couple" I would be grateful for the referral.

I have photographed weddings at Little Gardens in Atlanta, The Grande, Juliette Chapel, Smith-Gilbert, Omni Hotel, Ponte Vedra Inn and Lodge to name a few. I'm looking forward to my upcoming weddings and shooting at Embassy Suites, East Cobb Center, Marietta Garden Center, Gardens at Kennesaw, The Whitlock Inn, The Magnolia House and The Brickyard.

Bright, Sunny January Wedding at Juliette Chapel in Dahlonega Georgia

Zoe and Brandon got married in the middle of January at Juliette Chapel, Dahlonega. Juliette Chapel is a beautiful country, wedding venue in North Georgia, just a short drive from Atlanta. It was a gorgeous, but cool day and the sun shone the whole afternoon and into the early evening.

Bride and groom prep

Zoe and Brandon got ready in the adequate, but small bridal rooms in the adjacent reception hall, and the atmosphere was full of laaughter and excitement. Brandon and the guys took no time at all!! Zoe, her sister and best friends were being pampered by the hair and makeup artists and took the amount of time that they wanted.


First Look

The couple had decided on a first look, which I carefully orchestrated for them. It was an emotionally charged few minutes which took place outside or the reception hall and right before the ceremony.

The ceremony

The ceremony was an intimate affair in Juliette Chapel. With the late winter evening sun streaming through the large windows it could not have been more perfect! During the ceremony the officiant, Reverend James Hamp had the guests and bridal party and the photographers laughing with his quick, witty humor. It was so relaxing with all the laughter and it truly was a beautiful way of involving everyone in the ceremony.


After the ceremony

The reception was in the adjacent reception hall at the venue. They chose Juliette Chapel because because it was a little out of the city, but not too far as to make it a long drive. The ambiance with being in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the ability to totally personalise their day made it so special. It was a relaxed, but not rustic wedding, which meant people could totally have fun without the fear of breaking anything. I love shooting Juliette Chapel weddings because the surroundings are absolutely amazing. All around the buildings are great vistas and and intimate little areas to photograph the Bride, Groom and families etc.


For dinner they self catered which meant everyone got their favorites!!, which was such a great idea. The cake was amazing and created by Chef Pavla of The Bohemian Bakery. The first dance was a good old traditional wedding shuffle, and they finished off the evening with the craziest garter throw and bouquet toss!! Which made it very difficult to photograph as I was laughing so much!!


One of the most memorable parts of the day was the bride and bridesmaids outside in the chilly, January air in their little kimonos getting their photos taken, because it made everyone laugh and the photos came out so beautifully.

Wedding Photography Styles - Kennesaw Georgia

Wedding photographers styles are so different across the board! I've been told my style is creative or artistic. I think I offer a unique style for my couples in that I can quickly adjust their stance to create a more natural looking and stunning portrait. I love documenting the day as it unfolds, then recreating the wedding day in chronilogical order for wedding albums.

Wedding Photos

The accompanying images were shot at The Kennesaw Grande, Kennesaw, Georgia. I can see a lot of influence from one of the photographers I respect, Jerry Ghionis from Australia in some of my photography.

Getting Ready Shots

I love to create unique getting ready photos for my couples and I always take time to look around the room, window light and furnishing to get ideas to create something special. One of the photos here was shot at Little Gardens in Lawrenceville, near Atlanta in Georgia and reminds of Yervant's style.


Wedding Dress Details

This photo shot at Rock Springs Presbyterian Church is one of my favorites. I love the light, the bride interacting with the bridesmaids who are helping get the dress buttoned up.

New Wedding Venues

Super excited this first week of 2019 as I have weddings coming up this year in three wedding venues near me that I've never shot at before. Embassy Suites in Kennesaw, Georgia, Juliette Chapel in Dalonaga, Georgia and The Magnolia House, Powder Springs, Georgia

Have a great weekend, let me now if you have any questions - Chris

Getting into the Wedding dress - Bride and Bridesmaids, Atlanta Georgia

Getting into the Wedding dress - Bride and Bridesmaids, Atlanta Georgia

Grooms details, Kennesaw, Georgia

Grooms details, Kennesaw, Georgia

Bride getting makeup applied, Acworth, Georgia

Bride getting makeup applied, Acworth, Georgia

Bride and groom laugh at Wedding Photographer, Little Gardens, Lawrenceville, Georgia

Bride and groom laugh at Wedding Photographer, Little Gardens, Lawrenceville, Georgia

OMNI CNN CENTER, ATLANTA GEORGIA WEDDINGS

I loved the vastness of the Omni, it's huge! I was there to shoot a wedding fashion show for Impressions Bridal. I got to see tons of wedding gowns, selfie stations, invitations and of course wedding cake bakers. My job was to photograph the behind the scenes getting ready images of the brides and the grooms and then shoot during the afternoon as they walked the runway in their beautiful outfits.


Wedding Photography

The ironic thing was that I truly felt like I was shooting a wedding and did pretty much treat the day like that, except for the runway shots. It was so funny that between the runway shows I took some of the "brides" to a quiet area In the Omni to shoot little tighter than for detail. I wanted to shoot as close to one of my real wedding photography assignments as I could and took time to shoot the dress details to perfection!


Tap on the Shoulder

I had just walked with the "Brides and Grooms" to a quiet area that was flooded with natural light from the huge windows that look to the front of the CNN building. I felt a tap on my shoulder and at almost a whisper a little voice said "Excuse me, could you possibly take some photographs of my bride?" It was the owner of Sweet Elegance Bridal. I looked around, "Of course" I replied without hesitation, and began to use the natural light flooding in from the windows. The bride looked stunning and it didn't take me more than a few minutes to get her positioned and a few instructions later we began creating some beautiful wedding-like portraits.

In the accompanying photos at the Omni CNN Atlanta are gowns from Impressions Bridal and Sweet Elegance Bridal

I haven't shot a full, "real wedding" at the Omni, but would love to if given the opportunity!

Let me know if you have any questions - Chris

5 Secrets to Selecting the Right Wedding Photographer

Are you recently engaged and starting to plan your wedding? Have you begun looking for the perfect close-to-home or destination wedding venue and wedding photographer? If yes, my post might help you with asking the right questions in selecting your ideal wedding day photographer.


Secret 1: Connecting

Speak with your prospective wedding photographer on the phone. On your wedding day you’ll both spend a lot of time with your photographer, so it’s really important that you connect and can work together. The phone is the perfect place to have that initial conversation. I offer a free Zoom/Skype consultation to discuss your needs and help you find the right level of photography coverage for your big day.


Secret 2: Style

The photographers style. Look at your prospective photographers wedding portfolio on his or her website. If you like the style ask a few questions about specific images. Questions like, the image with the tears on the brides cheek, how did you shoot that? The grooms boutonniere photo, at what time during the day was that shot? What style do you call this type of image? As a Certified Professional Photographer I will document your day as it naturally unfolds in. I have the skill and experience to adjust you, your bridal party and guests to get the most beautiful, natural looking images possible.


Secret 3: Portfolio

Ask to see a complete wedding day from a previous client. This is super easy to do with Skype or Zoom and you’ll be able to look at a complete day from start to finish and not just a select few of the images that are viewable on a website. Additionally, don’t be afraid to ask if the photographer shot the image or if it’s from a second shooter or an assistant. I always share with my couples which images were from second shooters that made the final edits that way they know they are getting what we agreed to when they hired me.


Secret 4: Cameras

What camera system do you use and what’s your favorite lens? Is a great question. Nikon has been my choice of camera systems for many years and I have a selection of cameras. and always bring back up cameras and equipment to weddings. Lenses are super important as the lens directs the image/light to the sensor, which usually means, higher quality lenses produce a superior image.

I have a wide selection of Nikon & Sigma lenses. I always bring some of my specialty lenses from other manufacturers like Sigma (the Sigma 50mm F1.4 Art is one of my favourites).

You should consider the genres of photography on your wedding day. From fashion, with the dress and grooms tuxedo etc., products, using macro lenses for rings, cufflinks etc. and back to products with shoes and of course portraits. Each one looks better when we use the lens designed for that type of photo.


Secret 5: Certification

It doesn’t hurt to ask if the photographer has any type of certification or other supporting credentials. The peace of mind knowing that your photographer has the craft and technical expertise to photograph your big day is priceless. Photography, like a lot of industries, continues to change with technology. Photographers who invest time in learning and continuing education are valuable not only to clients but also to the industry at large. I am a Certified Professional Photographer, CPP and a member of PPA. Being a CPP means I adhere to a strict code of conduct and I am accountable to PPA at all times. I continue to learn new things every day to better serve my clients.


If your prospective photographer checks all the boxes, I’m pretty sure he or she can shoot at any wedding venues, any weather or challenging situations to produce awesome photography that will document your day to perfection.


I hope my post helps you with selecting the right photographer for you both on your wedding day. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have.

I shot the posted wedding photographs at The Grande in Kennesaw

Rock Spring Presbyterian Church, Atlanta. Although I haven't shot weddings there, some of the photos remind of The Gardens at Kennesaw Mountain, Georgia and similar to Indigo Falls, Dallas Georgia

Bride and Groom on Rock Spring, Atlanta Church steps

Bride and Groom on Rock Spring, Atlanta Church steps

Smiling Groom getting boutonniere assistance

Smiling Groom getting boutonniere assistance

Happy Bride Twirling in the barn at The Grande In Kennesaw, Georgia

Happy Bride Twirling in the barn at The Grande In Kennesaw, Georgia

Excited, smiling Bride getting ready next a mirror

Excited, smiling Bride getting ready next a mirror

The Three Most Important Things to Think of When Planning Your Wedding

About a week ago I sat down tointerview local bridal boutique “Impressions Bridal” and the manager Sheilah Barnhart. The interview was part of a project I started early in March and will most likely take me a few months to complete, however we’ll talk about that at a later date. 

After our interview had finished I asked a question “In your opinion what are the three things a bride to be should be aware of as the wedding planning process starts?”

Sheilah didn't answer me right away, she stopped and thought for a minute and then said “I think a bride has to find the absolute right dress. It’s got to be comfortable, look beautiful and make the bride look and feel like a million dollars on the the big day. . Next, the photography, these are memories that are being created on that day with family, friends and loved ones. The day needs to be captured and an album created so as husband and wife they will have the images of the day forever. Thirdly, (with a huge smile on her face) the band or DJ have to be the best!  If there’s a celebration there needs to be something to get people up on the dance floor and have a good time and it’s those great times that people will always remember.”

Sheilah Barnhart is the manager of Impressions Bridal, Kennesaw Georgia.

Chris Cottrell is a Professional Photographerbased in Kennesaw, near Atlanta Georgia

 

The right dress
Chris Cottrell - Photographer
Wedding Reception Dancing