Something New Entertainment’s DJ Anna-Jeannine “AJ9” Herman: What first interested you in photography?
Making the Moment Photography’s Brett Yacovella: When I was 5 years old a brother and sister I would play with often were moving away from our neighborhood, and I wanted to have a way to remember them. I begged my father to show me how to use our polaroid 600 (the one with the rainbow stripes down the front) and I was hooked from then on out 🙂
BY: About 6 years now – it all started with photographing close friends weddings, and has moved out from there 🙂
AJ9: How would you describe your photographic style?
BY: Some describe my style as modern, yet classic. Others quirky and dramatic, still others as natural and uncontrived. The truth is, it’s all those things and more.
Rather than try to label my images, I’d like to share how I make them.
I am as unobtrusive as I can be through most of the day, watching events unfold and anticipating moments. Call it photojournalism if you must – I am simply there, observing, waiting and creating as the occasion warrants.
During the photo session with the bridal party, I will take control and set up the shots – I use my expertise to find the best light and backgrounds for a session, use my eye to create tableaus or stories to capture, and direct only as much as is required. With some groups I am more hands-on in direction, and with others I am able to offer less. Regardless, I work to create images that stand alone as works of art.
AJ9: What do you enjoy most about being a wedding photographer?
BY: This list could be crazy long – but here are some thoughts in no specific order; Getting to know the families and the back-story behind a couple’s life, Creating spontaneous artwork, Making people laugh, Letting people make me laugh, Best job ever – while editing photos sometimes I get to wear my PJ’s, I like seeing people come to life – truly I do, I get to go to the most elegant & fun parties people will ever throw – how cool is that? Seeing couples freak out over the imagery we create. Honestly? Buying cool lenses & other photo-gear 🙂
BY: Great question – but I don’t know if I can pin just one down. Of great importance is that “chemistry” with the photographer. You need to feel comfy and “yourself” when around this person. If the person puts you at ease and you laugh? You’re in good shape 🙂 I’d also encourage couples to accurately understand what it means to invest in their photography – the market is saturated with tons of cheap “photographers” – be very careful. Ensure the potential hire is a true professional – working full time at their craft, and fully devoted to creating imagery that will stand the test of time.
AJ9: What are some ways that couples can prepare for their wedding day to help ensure better photos?
BY: Find a photographer that will plan with you – from the beginning of the day forward. If your photographer just wants to “show up”, it can be problematic. Not only should you find a photographer who will help you plan out how photography fits into your day, its important that a bride and groom commit a healthy amount of time into their pictures. There’s a lot of time pressure on your wedding day, one of the secrets to good photography is not letting your photography time feel that pressure. In short – give yourself plenty of time, you’ll thank yourself later.
BY: Honestly.. every day is different, so that moment tends to shift for each family and couple. Sure – I care about seeing the groom’s face when he sees his bride for the first time – and yes – I LOVE candidly snapping the subtle emotions of friends and family during intimate moments. But because my approach is so unique, so un-canned – that moment tends to unveil itself during the day, and I make it my job to be on the look-out for it. Every day is so full of important moments, and as a visual story-teller, I look for and capture every one I can.
AJ9: What’s the question I’m not asking you but you wish I would, or What’s the question that clients usually don’t ask you but you wish they would?
BY: I always look four couples to ask the following questions – and if they don’t, I usually encourage them too 😉
• Can I see a full wedding? (Portfolios are nice and all – and I love mine. But you need to see what REAL coverage looks like across the board)
• Do you back-up the images your working on? (We do – three copies, one of them being off-site at times. Too many photographers risk priceless images by not having a back-up copy. This is a must!)
• What inspires you? (Ask – you need to understand and click with a photographers driving force. There’s no right answer for this)