Denver, Colorado, United States Photographer
http://www.josephmilton.com email@example.com 503-317-2215
Today we’re kicking off a new ISPWP feature: Member Spotlights! We ask one of our members a few questions to get to know them a bit better and get their perspective on wedding photography. Our first spotlight is on Jesus Tirso who owns and operates Decca Photography, one of the ISPWP Houston wedding photographers.
Tell us about your business. How did you get your start and why you chose to do wedding photography?
First off, this is my third full year as a professional wedding photographer in Houston – but photography has been my passion, hobby, and creative outlet for 31 years!
My interest in wedding photography was sparked when I started photographing models. Early in 2005, I met a phenomenal photographer, Mike Fulton of TriCoast Photography, on a local Texas photo forum and we struck up a friendship. He encouraged me and provided critique on my photos and before long we started talking about the wedding business. I tagged along on a bridal session with him and his partner Cody Clinton and that was my start in the wedding business. Next thing I knew, I shot a wedding with them – I was actually the fourth shooter – and again I enjoyed it. We continued to talk and soon afterwards I did my first solo wedding in June of 2005.
I went into a short-lived partnership at the start of 2006 and, for various reasons, decided to go on my own at the start of 2007. In this short time, I have photographed sixty weddings and forty bridal or engagement portrait sessions.
I have a strong desire to provide my customers with the best I can so I have made it a point to continuously improve my skills by attending workshops and seminars by some of the top photographers in the industry as well as being an active participant in on-line communities that foster the sharing of knowledge. These on-line communities have also allowed me to form working relationships with many other photographers who take pride in assisting each other when necessary.
What I enjoy the most about wedding photography is being able to share in a couple’s start of their life together and providing them with a product that they’ll treasure for their entire life as husband and wife.
What’s your favorite part of the wedding day to photograph?
The bride getting ready – no doubt about it. It’s not a “natural” event – make up artists and hairstylists working on multiple people at the same time – but it is a relaxing time for the bride, her family, and her friends. This is the time when you observe the bride having fun, telling stories, cracking jokes, and all that with her friends. This is also the time when you can observe the bride being transformed from her “normal” self to that “princess” for a day!
Capturing this casual interaction between the bride, her friends, and family is by far my favorite part of the wedding day.
What are your three favorite local venues?
This is a tough question because each venue brings something unique to match the couple’s personality. If I had to choose, I must say that my three favorite venues I have worked at have been the Barr Mansion in Austin, TX, (that’s local in Texas terms!) which is a historical home dating back to 1898 and has the unique distinction of being the only food service venue in Texas to be USDA certified organic. It is a beautiful home with a fantastic reception venue and gorgeous grounds.
Another venue I enjoyed is The Parador in Houston, TX. The Parador is another historic building dating back to 1928. It has a very unique Mediterranean style and gardens that are a photographer’s dream come true!
Finally, and very close to my home, is the Chateau Polonez, also in Houston, TX, and a very close two miles from my home. The Chateau is a European styled venue with a dramatic double staircase, beautiful interiors, and amazing gardens – again, a photographer’s paradise.
Each of these locations is not only beautiful but I have found them to provide excellent service to ensure that everything goes perfectly for the couple.
What kinds of weddings do you love to photograph? What makes one wedding better to photograph than another?
I’ve found that there are unique features to every wedding. The thing I love the most is when you can feel the family love, closeness, and unity during the wedding. I love photographing south east Asian weddings because often times this comes through so loud and clear. Family and friends travel from throughout the world to attend and celebrate with the couple. The many events allow the family and friends to share and really enjoy the entire union of not only the bride and groom but their friends and family. The ceremonies are rich in rituals and pageantry – with each symbolizing something with either a historical or religious meaning.
What are the three most important things brides should consider when hiring a photographer?
There are so many things that should be considered that this could go on for a while. The first one in my mind is of course someone whose work you really like – better yet, love. The key thing here is to request to see complete weddings, not just portfolio material. The photographer whose work is consistent will be able to show the bride multiple complete weddings that show that style she loves delivered consistently from one wedding to the other.
Once you find someone that provides the style of work you love, look at the products that you’ll be interested in. Take a look at those samples as you’d purchase them. For example, if you’re looking at purchasing a 40×60 gallery wrapped canvas print, ask to see a sample. If you’re looking at purchasing an album, ask to see several samples. There is no substitute for actually seeing, feeling, touching the products – and no image on a computer is a substitute for this.
The last thing is one that rounds out the equation. On the wedding day, the photographer is someone that will be with the bride the entire duration of the day. From the moment she starts to get ready until the moment she makes her exit. Make sure you get along with the photographer. Make sure personalities and approaches match. There is enough stress at even the best planned wedding – you don’t need a photographer to add to this stress.
So, in summary: consistent delivery on the style of work you like, ability to see samples of the actual products, and a stress-free personality. There are many more, but I think that these three help set the right level of expectation and lead to a happy customer.
Jesus Tirso is the owner of Decca Photography, a Houston Texas Wedding Photographer.
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