Photography Q&A

  • Many of my clients use online services or do their own search of the web finding a suitable photographer for their needs. This list of questions has been complied from the top google search of questions, "What to Ask Your Photographer." Any additional questions are welcome and can be answered by using the contact form on my contact page above to get in touch personally with me. You can also get in touch with me via email or phone.
    Email: amber@museandmirror.com
    Phone: (217) 597-4085

What style(s) do you specialize in?

  • I shoot in an array of styles to give my clients full and diverse image selections. Photojournalistic photography, lifestyled moments, true candids and posed classical portraiture to name a few. Prefer one style over another? Just be sure to specify your personal taste. I love customizing my shooting experience with each individual client.

Will the photos be retouched and color balanced? Is that done before I see the proofs?

  • Absolutely! I never deliver photos that aren't "frame ready" or RAW. All images selected to be delivered have been culled to show off the best of the best and have been appropriately retouched for beauty (blemishes, skin hues, unflattering clothing bunches) and color (sky color correction, white balance correction, lighting corrections) with room for special request editing.

Concerning bridal photography, how many weddings have you shot, and how many do you do in a year? Also, what's your favorite part of a wedding day and time of year to shoot?

  • To date (answered September 2017) I have shot over 100 weddings, the majority being American Western culture weddings but many South Asian weddings as well. I currently only book weddings with select clients.

    My favorite part of the weddings I capture is the moment directly after the ceremony, when the bride and groom take their first "we did it" breaths. At this point in the day most of the tension has lifted and my couples and bridal parties are ready to start fully enjoying the day. This is when the "fun" moments are captured and smiles are most abundant.

    My personal favorite time of year to shoot is in late Summer or early Fall. Both seasons are beautifully colored with either flowers or changing leaves. The temperatures are usually the fairest for bridal parties to enjoy outdoor pictures.

Do you shoot both digital and film?

  • I only shoot digital.

What exactly is included in your packages?

  • This depends on the package you choose. Every package lists what is included and can be found on the pricing tab above or at the bottom of my luxury weddings page. I do offer custom quotes if one of my packages isn't the perfect fit. Any question is a good question and customization is easy-peasy.

How many hours of coverage do we get?

  • Your hours of coverage will be written into your contract based on the package you select. Each package lists the hours included.

What is the deposit and total fee?

  • The deposit fee required to book any session with me is 50% upfront upon booking. Luxury Bridal deposits 25% of what your total package is. Your deposit is applied to your overall bill and is non-refundable. The rest of your fees are due the week before the date of your wedding for bridal clients and due the day of for individual sessions. I accept payment in personal check, paypal online billing and cash.

Will you be my actual photographer, or will it be one of your associates?

  • I personally shoot all of my sessions. Who you are speaking with on the phone is exactly who you will be getting. Any associate photographers I have working under me for your sessions or wedding day as a second shooter will also be introduced via email.

Do you have backup photographers who will shoot my session/event/wedding if you're sick?

  • Yes! I never leave my clients to chance, in the unfortunate event I was to fall ill the day of your session you have the option to reschedule. On wedding days I have secured many backup shooters that can be called on at the drop of a hat who posess the same skill sets I do.

Will there be a second shooter or any assistants? Is there an additional fee for each (if applicable)?

  • Any wedding needing coverage for more than 4 hours will have a second shooter/assistant included in their wedding package. My second shooters are top rate and usually run their own photography business, with their professionalism and skill sets mirroring my own. I only work with trained professionals who posses the same zest for this field as I do, with portfolios to prove it. Second shooters may have less in-the-field knowledge as I do and may play the bigger role of assistant on your wedding day depending on the package you select. My prized Platinum Tuxedo package offers a second master photographer that is guaranteed to shoot just as well as myself. Master photographers play crucial roles in decision making for posing and lighting and take turns directing the photography for the day with me.
    I pay my second shooters and master photographers very well to ensure I am getting quality work from quality photographers. Additional fees only apply if you wish to upgrade your second shooter for a master photographer or if you wish for additional shooters. Rates vary by photographer hired.

How long after the wedding do we get to see the photos? How long after individual sessions will I see my photos?

  • Wedding albums are tyically delivered within 8-12 weeks depending on the size of your package (more images take longer to edit and finalize) and the the demand of the season (June brides will typically wait longer for the delivery of their images versus December brides).

    When booking one of my larger packages, couples will recieve a custom wedding link hosted on my website to "sneak-a-peek" at their wedding images within 48 hours after their wedding day. This online link typically shows 40-80 key images from your wedding day.

    Individual sessions have a wait time of 2-4 weeks.

How do you coordinate with my videographer? How do you envision working together?

  • Communication is key when working alongside other vendors. If you are having a videography service on a project or wedding as well as myself, please let me know as soon as possible so I can get in touch with them to go over the schedule of events. I like to have a "game-plan" for my events and including important vendors in on my "game-plan" makes things much smoother for everyone. Videographers have a tough job working around so many elements, having the photographer on their side to accomodate their needs is crucial. Teamwork is a must for both photographers and videographers to get enough "facetime" with their clients. Be sure to ask your videographers how comfortable they are working closely with your photographer, as most of the time we're on top of eachother catching the most important moments of the event.

How many weddings do you do a weekend?

  • I book just one wedding a weekend. I want my couples to have my all on their wedding day, back-to-back wedding sprees make for one tired photographer and I cannot put myself in that postion while maintaining my high quality standards.

Have you ever shot at my venue(s) before?

  • This is obviously a more personal question that varies by wedding, but here is a list of venues I have frequently photographed at:

    The Stonegate, Hoffman Estates IL
    The Oddessy, Tinley Park IL
    Two Brothers Round House, Aurora IL
    Wayside Chapel, Palos Heights IL
    Storybook Gardens, Rochelle IL
    Monty's Banquets, Bensenville IL
    Candlelight Banquets, Chicago Ridge IL
    Starved Rock Park, Oglesby IL
    I Hotel, Champaign IL
    Drurry Lane, Oakbrook Terrace IL
    Kennekuk Park, Danville IL
    Cantigny Park, Winfield IL
    Abbington Distinctive Banquets, Glen Ellyn IL
    The Stonecliff, Mackinak Island MI
    Shahi Nahari, Lombard IL
    The Seville, Streamwood IL

    Along with many churches and cathedrals, intimate held ceremonies in forested areas and city scapes of downtown Chicago IL.

Do you travel for weddings out of the state of IL or out of the country?

  • Yes! I love to travel for work and my own pleasure. I have traveled all over the country and many parts of Europe. All of my traveling documents are kept up to date. Traveling wedding packages are custom quoted to give you the best service while maintaining a budget. I emplore all destination wedding couples to consider hiring local photographers such as myself, even if it is not myself, as most destination weddings out of the country include photography services at extremely high rates for little actual services. Check out this link HERE to read more about the comforts of having your own local photographer shoot your destination wedding.

Will you follow a shot list? Or do you prefer to have free reign to capture the festivities how you see fit?

  • I do not follow a "shot list," so to speak. I shoot my events with my clients' needs in mind, but it is my job as the artist to craft personally tailored photography. This cannot be done with a generic list. Each event and wedding tells it's own story and I believe your pictures should as well.

What type of paper will you use for the prints and album?

  • All of my prints and albums are handled through Arsty Couture professional images. Their paper is acid-free, high quality stock that comes in an array of finishes: gloss, matte, linen textured, lustre and metallic. Their products are 100% guaranteed to stun and have that true quality feel only a small family business can give you. Each album is canvas wrapped with one of your images, vellum pages cover the first and last page to ensure your images ar never damaged by the sturdy hard cover and each book is hand bound and stitched, not glued.
    They are a wonderful company to work with and their turn around time is fantastic.

What are the restrictions for sharing photos online or for publication? Do you own the copyright to the photos?

  • I do not really have any restrictions regarding social media sharing online. If the image was included in your package, you are free to share, as long as you mention my direct website (www.museandmirror.com) in any social media posts the images are being shared. You may not, however, sell any of your images to individuals or businesses, enter any image into photo contests, enter your image into any publications (newspapers, magazines, corporate websites) unless you have reached out to me for specific written permission. I am pretty laid back when it comes to clients sharing their pictures, considering it makes me so happy they want the world to see my work!

    Yes, I hold all copyrights to any images taken by myself or additional shooters on any day I have been hired on to photograph. Your contract will have a more in-depth explanation of image rights for you to review when booking.

Do you bring your own lighting?

  • Absolutely. I use many different light forms; a number of small speedlights either on top of my camera or mounted to inconspicuous stands, full range ocoto light boxes for more precise portrait lighting and many light diffusers and reflectors suitable for outdoor and indoor. During events, all equipment is used with complete camouflage in mind. Your guests should be focused on your event, not some huge bulky piece of equipment the entire night.

What will you wear?

  • I dress for the occasion and always ask my clients to specify what style their event will be celebrated in. Black tie? I will most likely be in a floor length loose gown in a neutral color, something that will not distract but allow me to still be quick on my feet. More intimate and casual? Dress slacks, a buttoned blouse and sensible shoes will most likely be my attire. Uniquely out of the norm? Let me know! I love playing dress up about as much as I enjoy shooting.

Have more questions? Drop me a line through the contact page above or give me a call. Monday-Friday from 9am-8pm, Saturdays & Sundays from 11am-4pm. Emails are answered within 24 hours.


(217) 597-4085