Raleigh North Carolina Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer
 

FAQS

 
 

you've got questions, we've got answers!

 

What makes your work different from other photographers' work?
Our sessions are candid & fun, we usually have some bad jokes to tell or a game for you to play. We don’t expect you to show up ready to model for us! We’ve got posing + prompts for you that will uniquely show you off as you interact with each other.  Before you know it you’ll have forgotten about the scary black box pointed your way. Our vision is fun, meaningful imagery that speaks to you and of you. At the end of the day we want you to enjoy yourself! We’re going to find a pretty place and go for a little walk and stop when Rachael squeaks signifying she found that good good light.

We strive to take all our photos in relaxed settings and use natural light as often as possible. While we will opt for natural light everytime if it’s available, we aren’t scared of flash. Jared and I are well versed in off camera flash, a feature we believe sets us apart from the majority of natural light photographers in our market.

Engagement sessions
All of our wedding collections include an engagement session.  We do this for a very specific reason! We want to spend some time with you as a couple and get to know each other before the wedding rolls around. Believe it or not the people you spend the most time with on wedding day is your photographers. That’s HUGE! So we absolutely want you to trust us and be comfortable with us. Your wedding images will be a more authentic and reflect “you” when you don’t have a stranger with a lens in your face.  Even if you’ve already had an engagement session with someone else, we highly recommend you plan one with us for this very reason.  Then you’ll know how we work, what to expect and vice versa, and get some awesome photos in the process.

What if I'm awkward in front of the camera?
Don’t doubt yourself! Literally everyone tells us they are awkward and 95% of them are wrong.  If you are part of the 5%, trust us we can hide the awkward and show you what works. Give us 10 minutes to get you warmed up and you'll be a pro in no time!  Don't take it so seriously, this is supposed to be fun and a celebration of you two.  We want you to interact as normal and of course we'll throw some posed shots in there too because everyones' mom loves those.  All of our wedding collections include a complimentary engagement session so we can get to know you and also give you an idea of how it works for wedding day photos. This gives us get an opportunity to see how you interact and what poses work or don't so we can capture your individuality.

You only book sessions Monday - Thursday, why is that?
We don't mean to make it hard on you to schedule.  However we specialize in weddings so that means almost all of your Saturdays + Sundays are spoken for.  We are firm believers in work/life balance so we highly value the few weekends we have that aren’t booked. This is our family + friends/sanity time that we use to recharge in order to keep rockin’ our weddings + sessions for all our amazing clients. But Rachael what about Friday? Well I’ll tell you, Fridays are our wedding day prep/on-call bride support time. This is when we check, double check, and triple check timeline, family list, and questionnaire info so that we’re on top of our game Saturday. Every outlet in our house has some sort of photo related gear charging and we’re cleaning, checking, and packing gear. It wouldn’t be fair to our wedding couples to take away this very important prep time as they’ve hired us to document one of the most meaningful days.

** If you absolutely cannot make a weekday work, we do offer a limited amount of Sunday evening sessions with an upgrade cost of $150 in addition to the session cost **

How many weddings will you book a year?
We take 25 weddings a year and after that we have to say “no”. We give 110%to all our amazing couples who book us for weddings and we want to make sure it stays that way. With all we invest in each couple we feel it would be stretching too far to take on more than this and still continue to bring the level of awesomeness that we’re all about. Plus we also enjoy having the occasional weekend off to spend with friends, family, and each other.

How many photographers will be there at our wedding?
There will always be two photographers at your wedding in order to get multiple perspectives and extra shots of all of the details.  Jared and I almost always shoot together, however we do have a list of qualified photographers to call on in the event Jared is unable to attend.

How do we book?
You will be officially booked with Rachael Bowman Photography as soon as a signed contract and a 40% non-refundable retainer is paid.  In this age of technology, we are able to make the booking process very simple.  Once you’ve decided on a collection, we’ll send you a link where you can view, sign, and pay online.  Use our contact form or send us an email to get started.  Keep in mind that certain months are in high demand so it is best to book sooner rather than later if you are ready. 

We love you but you’re out of budget, can you cut me a deal?
Jared and I paid for our own wedding out of our own pockets so we certainly understand being in this space. If our range is close but just over what you can do, please still inquire and we’ll see if theres a way to customize a collection to make it work for your budget. However if you’re here to price shop, we’re not for you. We’ve spent a significant amount of time calculating our CODB and building in profit for us to be successful and keep the tax man happy. We promise we didn’t pull these numbers out of thin air, we got the skills but do have to pay the bills. We fully believe that photography is the most meaningful wedding day investment and hope you do too!

You took so many pictures, do I get them all?
You'll hear our cameras clicking a lot, we take a lot of images to ensure that we capture those perfect moments.  With that being said no you won't receive every image we take.  We choose the best of the best then edit and deliver them to you.  We want you to have all the good ones!  Trust me, you're not missing anything in those ones we don't deliver, it's all eye blinks and someone walking through the frame. 

When will my images be ready?
For SESSIONS we will post your images in an online gallery 3-6 weeks after your session.  With sessions you will receive a download pin that will allow direct downloads of your high-res images from your gallery. 

For WEDDINGS turn-around is a bit longer (6-8 weeks) due to the high volume of images to be edited.  Once your images are ready we will give you access to a viewable online gallery while we ship you a USB device containing your high-res files and printing documents. 

What equipment do you use?
We use professional full frame sensor Canon cameras and equipment - the 5d mark iii, 70-200mm lens,  50mm lens, 24-70mm, 24-105mm lens, & the 100mm macro lens, among other items. We carry backups in the rare event that anything should occur to one of our cameras or lenses so we can keep on rocking.  

Where are we going to shoot?
This is up to you, we have tons of "go to" places and ideas but if you have a special place in mind let's talk about it!  We're all for coming out to the family farm, your home, or first date spot.  If it's sentimental to you it's going to make those photos that much more special.  We offer special discounts for in-home or adventure sessions. Adventure caveat - Rachael is not jumping out of a plane, sorry not sorry.

Keep in mind that if a location requires a permit or fee you will be responsible for covering that cost. 

Do you have any reviews we could check out?
Oh yeah! You can either pop over to our testimonials page or go directly to the source here. We also have some great reviews on our google business listing.

Editing VS. Retouching
As photographers, our job is to document you and your surroundings in a flattering way. We strive to eliminate background distractions in the moment and in general get things right in camera. All of your images you receive from us will be color, exposure, and crop corrected and be of a similar caliber to what you see on our website portfolio. This is what we call editing, for us it is delivering a final product that meets our high standards. We take care of temporary blemishes so if you wake up with a zit smack dab in the middle of your forehead on wedding day we have your back.

Now Retouching is a whole different beast. I can’t tell you the amount of times we hear “Can you make me skinnier?”, “Can you take 10 years off of me?”, “Can you add Bob into this photo?”. Photoshop is a powerful tool that certainly can do those things and we have spent years working with the program so it’s within the realm of possibility. However “just Photoshop it!” is not as easy as it sounds. Extensive retouching like this takes a significant amount of time and goes above and beyond documenting you. We are happy to do the work however we do charge on a per image basis for extensive retouching requests.

I found this other photographer whose editing style I like, can you edit my photos like that?
We have spent years developing and fine tuning our editing style to match our creative voice. If you choose to work with us you’re choosing our brand that we’ve built which is reliant on our editing style. It’s very important that you love the style you see us present because we simply cannot edit to another photographer’s style. We are happy to refer you to another photographer that we think would be a good fit if ultimately you decide that’s what you want.

Do I have to order prints through you?
Short answer "No".  However we highly recommend ordering prints through our galleries because we work with professional labs, but it is not required. We edit on color calibrated monitors that we update regularly so that what we see on screen is what prints at our labs. We keep our print costs low because we would much rather you order through us and get a quality product.  We realize it is very tempting to go down to your local drug store and run some prints off but trust us, it’s a bad idea!  Not all labs color match files so it’s very likely your drug store prints won’t look like the images we delivered. If you would like suggestions for consumer labs we can steer you towards some better options, however we cannot be held responsible for prints not purchased through us.

Do you charge for travel?
Only if you fall outside of our covered area, which we will let you know upfront when we respond to your inquiry so there are no surprise costs.

For sessions, if you are within a 50-mile radius of us you're covered.  

For weddings, we cover you up to a 100-mile radius. 

If your location falls beyond those specifications we do charge 55 cents per mile in addition to an hourly rate for our time.  If your event is more than 3 hours from our location we require that hotel accommodations are provided the evening of your event.  For destination weddings airfare and lodging is required as well in addition to your collection price.  We will need to plan to arrive 2 days ahead of your event so that we can ensure no airline delays or cancellations affect your wedding day coverage.  Reach out if you have any questions or would like more information and an estimate travel cost.

 

Did we leave something out?

send your questions our way