December 13th, 2008
Who are you? Where are you from? Why are you a Wedding Photographer?????!
My name is Erica Berger. I was brought up in NY – Westchester – a little bit outside of NYC. I moved to California five years ago to study at the Academy of Art. I studied New Media which is a graphic design, web design, lots of photoshop. I have been using photoshop for half of my life. I am 25. I fell into wedding photography. I knew I wanted to do photography – I am super happy to call myself a photographer. I love my job. It’s amazing and exciting. Every single day there is something new in my life. Whether it be a super cool shoot, a new location. A couple contact me that day. I love working – I might be a work a holic! I am passionate about my work and I give it my all.
What are your goals / plans?
My goal is to keep learning. I have attended 2 workshops this year and I am another one coming up. The best thing about photography is that you can keep learning – ALWAYS. I like to keep things very fresh – I’m always buying new lenses and learning new things. I plan to make huge albums, master off camera flash, but the brand new 5d, and decorate my apartment with photography from photographers I admire.
What is in your bag?
2 5ds, 430 flash, 580 flash, 50 1.2, 24 1.4, 70-200 IS 2.8, 24-70 2.8, 14mm, 24 TILT, 20d, rebel, 20 gigs of cards, double A batteries
How long have you been shooting weddings?
This is my third wedding season.
How many weddings have you shot?
Around 100 – I shot 58 last year – I plan to shoot around 40 this year!
What are people saying?
What is the process?
It all starts with you checking out my work. Then the email – most of the time I will give you a call as soon as I can so we can talk about your wedding to see if we would be a great fit. Then you guys come to my super cool apartment complex in the city – 3rd and Folsom. I hold all meetings during the week – anytime even after work. We sit, talk – look at my books. Then you guys email me requesting a contract through email – I send that over to you.
The deposit is half down. Then you guys let me know when you can shoot the engagement session – most couples like to do this a few months before the wedding. I put the photos up online so you can download them – they are in full res. The photos will with the dvd of your weddings photos.
Tell me about the wedding day and your role!
I arrive an hour before the bride puts on her dress. A lot of my couples see eachother before the ceremony. This allows us a lots of unstressed time to take fun cool portraits. Some don’t – then we take those during the cocktail hour – it takes round 45 minutes.
I shoot with a long telephoto lens during the ceremony – I do not use flash and you will not notice that I am there. I will capture things – emotions – moments and you will be super surprised because I will never be that close to you during the ceremony.
Then we do the family photos – or you can have the family come before hand.
I capture the details during the cocktail hour.
I have fun at the reception- I get in the mix of it. I capture the faces – the party – the tears. I don’t miss a beat.
I exit a little bit after the cake and toss – when I get tons of dancing. I ask you guys before I go to go around and take photos of loved ones we might have missed!
You will get the photos 3 – 5 months after – unless you get rush service. Please choose 40 photos for the album and send them over to me on a dvd. As soon as you get the photos they are out of my hands and your responsibility.
I will send you the album 1 – 2 months later!
Who do you work with?
I work with a few photographers (4). They are my assistant and 2nd shooter. They are handing me lenses some times, but shooting mostly. They are there to make things go smoother, quicker and to capture the candid shots. If you want another photographer to come along – one of my guys – it is a $400 add on!
Where can I view FULL weddings?
Your wedding will be up there as soon as you get your DVD.
How long are the engagement / trash the dress sessions?
Two hours before sunset.
Where will the engagement photos be?
They will be here http://ericaberger.myphotoalbum.com/
Please check a few weeks after your session!
Do I have to trash my dress? What is that?
Trash the dress is out of place wedding photography. It is cool – hip – urban – so much fun. I just had one on the Brooklyn bridge – walking around NYC. The dress was fine – it went to be dry cleaned after! But, if you want to go in the water – I am game. I will go in with you!
What should we wear?
Check out my what to wear page on my blog – I have visual examples!
How many photos am I going to get that look like your blogged photos and the ones on your site?
I take about 2000 – 3500 photos at the wedding – it all depends on everything. I have an editor – who rocks – she narrows the photos down to around 700. You don’t need the blinkers, out of focus ( I shoot wide open )
Then I make an Erica’s Favs folder – these are the photos that I blog – I choose a bunch from the highlights from the day. These are the artists choice – they are edited twice over – once in Lightroom – then Photoshop. You are guaranteed about 20 of these ( super edited )
ALL of the photos are looked through – and make a little bit brighter, warmer and more vibrant. There is not a photo that is missed – most of them look pretty cool from the camera.
There is also a black and whites folder with 50 rich, intense black and whites.
If you guys want a few more photos done up it is $25 per photo – at that time you can let me know how you want me to treat the image.
Below are a few examples of before and after – the first three photos are ran through lightroom and the next are photoshop.
The first image is an example of really low light – this was grand central.
The second image is an example of how I would treat a photo that was taken in really bad weather – I would play up that bad weather and make the photo more dramatic!
The third photo came straight from the camera!
The fourth photo is an example of a pretty cool photo taken to the next level – I put a bunch of actions ( effects) on it to make it really special. You will get at least 20 of these from your wedding – or more depending. You will get at least 10 from your engagement shoot.
The last photo is a before and after – for the glam shots I will take out some bags – if any!! Heather is so BEAUTIFUL – I wanted to soften up the photo and brighten her eyes. The photo would of came out that way if the sun was hitting her – but this photo was taken right before the sun went down when there was free time at the wedding.