By: Rachel Ventura
I am a huge fan of photography. Capturing a beautiful moment on film is truly an art form. I almost always have a camera in hand, trying to capture that perfect split second to keep as a memory forever. I am more interested in action, photojournalistic style photos, rather than posed, uncomfortable and impersonal shots, but that’s just my opinion. I would love love love to take a class to learn more about the craft, but I’m a smart lady, so I usually let the professionals do it for me. Over the years, I have tried quite a few photographers and companies. I have always been a believer in “you get what you pay for,” and in some cases this works out, but it’s not always that way.
I wanted the best photographer for my wedding. It was an expense I was not worried about paying. It was to be the most important day of my life to date and I wanted to be sure we had the best. We found an amazing photographer who shot in our style. They did an excellent job and I absolutely love my wedding photos, but it definitely came at a premium price. Unfortunately, the company is no longer in business; otherwise, I would give them a shot out. Looking back, I probably could have researched a little more and found a just-as-amazing photographer for a little less money. But like I said, for such a special occasion, I didn’t mind shelling out the big bucks.
The majority of my experiences with photographers has been with my children. My daughter’s first photos were taken by Picture People and we went back to them a few more times. They do a really great job and they have a pretty good variety of props and backdrops. The fact that you get the pictures right then and there is amazing! I love that just a few minutes after the photo shoot is over, you get to see the pictures, pick out what you want, and take them home. So convenient! It can get a little pricey though, depending on what you want. They do have some really great promotions from time to time, where you get a few sheets for a low price. The only downfall is that it usually has to be of the same pose. I don’t know about you, but I always like way more than 1 picture! It can be tough to choose just 1, which is why I spend so much money there!
We’ve also used Sears and Target. Both were okay. I definitely wouldn’t say they were horrible, but I also don’t think I would recommend them. The prices were lower than Picture People, which is what attracted me in the first place, but the quality was not the greatest (which made me believe that you really do get what you pay for). It also felt stiffer and less personal. The last time we went to Target, my daughter was 9 months old. She didn’t want to sit still or pose (what 9 month old does?!) and we were having a tough time getting her to smile. She had always been a serious baby so her refusal to smile was not a problem for me. Either way, I wanted photos of her, as she was, not fake, posed, unnatural pictures. After 5 minutes of trying to get her to stay still and smile, the photographer said, “Ok, we’re done. She won’t sit still and it doesn’t look like she’s going to smile.” And she left us to pay. 5 minutes! That was it! I could not believe it.
However, my “you get what you pay for” philosophy was disproven when my good friend Gayle turned her love of photography from a hobby into a business. GLC Photography is amazing and I cannot recommend her enough. Gayle is a wonderful mother of three beautiful boys, the owner of a fantastic hair salon in Abington, Studio 23 (she also happens to be my hairdresser and I highly recommend her for that as well!), and to top it off, she is an awesome photographer!! To make a long story short, she is a ROCK STAR and I’m proud to call her my friend. She is located in Abington, where she can perform the photo shoot with professional lighting, backdrops, and props. She will also travel to your home or your location of choice. We had our family photos done at the NRT sheep pasture in Easton and the photos came out beautiful! Her prices are seriously a steal. I really think she could and should charge a lot more, as she does such a great job, but since she is a mother of 3 herself, she understands a family’s needs. She is a caring, compassionate, amazingly talented woman, and it truly comes out in her work. If you’re in the market for a photographer, check out GLC Photography- you will not be disappointed!
What photographers and companies have you tried and who do you recommend?