“...What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that's gone forever, impossible to reproduce...”
It's no joke, investing in your wedding photography is precisely that - an investment - there's no going back to that moment afterwards. Once it passes, it's consigned to the annuls of history and the only place that you'll be able to see it again is in your mind's eye. Unless of course, it's captured for you by a skilled artisan memory trapper, like myself. When you hire a professional photographer, your memories of your wedding become their charge, so it's worth taking the time to ensure you trust them to capture those precious commodities masterfully and to the best of their ability. You're not paying for someone to just take pictures, you're paying for experience, quality, expertise, artistry, knowledge and skill, all rolled up, in my case anyway, in one large, bearded, axe-wielding, be-kilted package.
KEEPING THINGS SIMPLE
I really do like to keep things super simple, so I offer two all-day wedding Collections, The Grizzly and The Ursa Major.
The Grizzly Collection is an all-day, digital-only package from prep to party, with no limits on time or number of photographs captured, and includes a private online gallery and all your hand-picked and beautifully edited images delivered on a wooden USB in a presentation box. The Ursa Major is the same, but includes a stunning 14x10" lay-flat album to display a selection of the most beautiful images from your day, and, depending on where you're based, a pre-wedding shoot.
I also offer Engagement, pre-wedding and Rock The Dress Shoots, as well as a range of beautiful hand-made albums, made to order just for you (and your parents!). These are all available at additional cost as part of the standard Grizzly Collection, if the Ursa Major is not for you.
This all-day collection includes coverage from bridal preparations right through to after the first dance. Images can be viewed in a private online gallery and are presented to you in a gorgeous customised USB nestled inside a presentation box.
The Ursa Major
This all-day collection is the same as the Grizzly, but also includes a stunning 14x10" lay-flat album and a pre-wedding shoot in the beautiful Redesdale Forest, to really tell the story of your amazing wedding.
How do you photograph weddings?
I'm mostly a documentary wedding photographer, which means I like to capture natural, non-posed images as much as possible. I do sometimes provide a little bit of guidance and direction where it's needed, but this is always with a relaxed, laid-back vibe, with you guys focused on each other, rather than me. I do set up a few shots, particularly nighttime 'wow' shots to add some drama into the mix. A good way of describing my style is "mostly-candid-sometimes-posed-but-always-epic." The best way to get a feel for how I work is to have a look through a full-wedding album, so you can see for yourself what kind of images to expect. I'm always happy to provide access to past client wedding galleries, so please don't be shy about asking!
Where are you based and do you travel?
I'm Northumberland-based, so mostly shoot the North East and Scotland, but do travel further afield, including Lancashire (where I have a second base), Yorkshire, Cumbria and The Lake District, Cheshire and Staffordshire. Reasonable travel and accommodation fees may be applicable to some destinations. I also shoot weddings abroad, these are charged at my standard day-rate, plus flights and accommodation.
When will we get our photos?
You will receive an online gallery link with all your photos within 4-6 weeks (sometimes less depending on the season I photograph your story). Your USB is sent shortly afterwards.
How many pictures will we receive?
This depends on a lot of factors, from how long you want me to be at your big day, right through to the time allocated for photographs and the willingness of people to be photographed. The short answer is, for all-day packages, I guarantee a minimum of 350 images, but most of my all-day couples receive more, usually between 450-650.
How does payment work?
I usually take a 25% deposit to secure your date in my diary with the remaining balance due six weeks before the wedding. Both deposit and final balance are usually payable by bank transfer (BACS). All of this is detailed in the electronic documents I send through when you book.
What about businessy stuff?
Running a business nowadays involves lots of paperwork and legal requirements, and like any other reputable business, JPRShah Photography is no exception. I provide all clients with an electronic contract that details everything you can expect from me as a photographer and the terms and conditions of our agreement. I am also fully insured, as is my equipment, with Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Policies.
Do we need to feed you?
I am a larger gentleman, and the owners of Chinese Buffets usually get anxious when they see me walk through the door, but you needn't! Whilst it is lovely to be fed, I do appreciate that it can be expensive, especially if it's the same food as your guests, so it's not necessary. I can usually buy some bar food from your venue for myself and my apprentice, or if this is not an option, bring a packed lunch.
Do you back up your images?
Yes! I always keep three copies of images on external hard-drives and on the cloud should anything untoward happen. I also keep full copies of a client's finished images in case you lose your USB and need a replacement.
What's Your Favourite Movie of All-Time?
That's tough! Whilst I do love a bit of Arnie, my favourite movie of all time has to be a toss-up between The Lord of The Rings: The Fellowship of The Ring, and The Green Mile, which I always sob to at the end! Forrest Gump a close second, tied with Star Wars: Return of The Jedi and The Fitfth Element. Oh, and The Muppet's Christmas Carol. I did say it was tough!
Are you a grumpy photographer?
I am aware that many people have a bit of a negative view of photographers in general. Perhaps they are a bit bossy, get in people's faces, or come across as rude or aloof. I'd like to think that I'm not like that at all! I believe that a massive part of being a photographer of people, is that you have to be a people-person. It's part and parcel of the job! Even if I'm tired, or feeling a bit under the weather, my role on the day is to interact with you and your guests, be polite, respectful and above all else, have fun! I love my job - it's never just a day at the office, so expect me to be just like an old friend.
What equipment do you use?
This is a weird question for a client to ask in general, unless they are photographers themselves. I bring three pro-level cameras to every wedding and a wide range of lenses and flashes, so always have two options for backup. All my cameras are mirrorless, for lightness, and are full-frame devices. In real terms, it shouldn't really matter what cameras a photographer uses - if you love their work, and like them and the way they go about their business, then choose them based on that!
What will you wear to our wedding?
I wear my kilt to most weddings - it's comfortable, smart and looks great. I accessorise with a sporran and maybe even a bandanna. As much as I love to go full Scotsman to a wedding, I do unfortunately always wear boxers - there's been a few incidents involving guest's selfie sticks and some of the positions I get myself into to take photos means it's always better to preserve my modesty. If you feel a kilt would be inappropriate for your day, I'll wear something different, but always smart, to compliment your guests and ambience (e.g. - a suit or Tux). It's really up to you!
Do we get full copyright to the images?
This is an interesting question - and the answer is, as a matter of law, NO. Copyright Law states that image copyright belongs to the person who captured the images, so the images effectively belong to me as the creator. Photographers provide a 'Print Licence' to a client, which allows them to view, print, share and enjoy their images, but prohibits actions like re-editing, selling-on, or passing off the work as their own. Lets face it though, what would you like to do with your images? View them, share them with friends and family in print or on social media, make canvasses and albums, and enjoy them for the rest of your life - a print licence lets you do all of this. You may want to know what I will do with your images - well, being very proud of them, I may want to use them on my website or social media, or enter them into competitions. If this is something you'd rather I not do, then I won't.
What if you're ill on our day?
I can categorically say that I'd have to have lost both arms and a leg not to turn up on your day. Out of all the jobs I've ever had, being a wedding photographer is the one with the MOST responsibility, and it's a responsibility that I've never shirked yet. If I feel a bit crap and have a snotty beak, well, I just suck it up and come anyway. That being said though, if something dreadful happened to me and I genuinely couldn't make it, I do have a network of other excellent photographers who could step in on my behalf at short notice, so if the worst happens, you know, as do I, that the option is there.
Is there just one photographer?
Yes and no. I have an amazing (and I really do mean amazing) Apprentice, Caitlin Goodall, who is developing her skills to become a fully-fledged photographer for JPRShah. Caitlin usually accompanies me as an assistant and second shooter for local North East weddings. My wife is also a highly accomplished photographer and will often attend weddings with me that are further afield, so there are usually two of us shooting your day. If neither are available, I am very capable on my own! However, I also have access to a range of pros who can join me as second shooter at your request. This is usually at cost.
Are you LGBTQ friendly?
I really don't like being asked this question, but I am aware that it sometimes needs to be asked. My job is to shoot people who love each other, and it makes no difference to me whatsoever if that is a MR and MR, a MRS and MRS, a MR and MRS, an Mx and Mx, a MR and MRS (who was previously a MR), or any other combination of titles. I have no preference, no prejudice and absolutely no hesitation to being a part of your day. As a couple, your love is unique, and my job is to capture that uniqueness, in whatever shape or form it comes in, and that goes for ethnicity, race, and religious beliefs, too.
Why do you have an axe?
As I'm a bit of a viking at heart, I love wood! It's such an amazing and tactile substance that has given us shelter, heat and light for thousands of years. Someone who loves wood, needs an axe or two knocking about (I have three, plus two throwing tomahawks!), plus, I live in the sticks and heat my home with wood burners. I love heading out to chop firewood and kindling on my days off. Don't worry though, I don't bring my axe to weddings - I wouldn't want to get arrested - but if you want to have a go at chopping some logs, you're always welcome to give it a go if we meet up at my gaff!
Do you also do family shoots?
No! As the old adage goes, "Never work with children or animals". My wife on the other hand is a baby whisperer and all-round lifestyle, family, child and baby photography genius, so I leave all that mushy stuff to her. I obviously taught her everything she knows! If you are also on the lookout for a lifestyle or family photographer, then go over and check out her page at: