ISPWP Member Spotlight - Tanushree Vaidya

Posted by Tanushree Vaidya Photography on July 25th 2023

Photographer Contact Information

San Francisco, California, USA Photographer 4697208843

See This Photographer's Website

IsPWP spotlight


1. How did you get your start and why did you chose wedding photography as a career?


I actually studied commerce in college. Around the age of 18 I decided I wanted to build a life where I helped people transform themselves and put their best selves forward – at the time hair styling seemed like a perfect fit. I worked in the hair industry with several of the country’s best talent and on a ton of major Indian celebrities, I came across the slowly flourishing Indian Wedding Photography industry. It was slowly evolving and letting more women take the lead, photos stopped being as traditional and started becoming more artistic and editorial. I felt like if I could make art even half as good as what I saw around me it would give me immense satisfaction. Plus as a 21-year-old woman, the idea of being paid to travel the world and shoot people in glamorous wedding finery felt too good to be true. I hustled my way into what today is one of India’s best photography studios, Stories by Joseph Radhik. It was here that I learnt and grew – both as a photographer and a person.


2. Tell us about some of the more unique weddings you've shot.


Every wedding is unique in its own way, especially South Asian weddings because there are several different kinds of ceremonies and you need to be amazing at all of them. I’ve had the opportunity to shoot weddings that were a total of less than 10 people and some where the guest count runs into the 1000s. I personally love the intimate, smaller weddings because you get a front row view of emotions and relationships but I did shoot one wedding where they had John Legend perform “All of me” at the reception. Not a dry eye in the entire venue as the newly weds shared such a beautiful moment with their 500 guests.  That was one evening I will never forget.



3. What are some of your favorite local venues?

I absolutely love shooting at San Francisco City Hall. Whether it’s a civil ceremony or an Engagement session, the lighting is beautiful and flattering throughout the day. The architecture really gives so much grandeur and old world magic! I also love shooting in Sonoma & Napa.


4. What advice would you give a bride who is looking for a wedding photographer?


This is a piece of advice I share with every Bride on our consultation call: find a photographer whose work genuinely resonates with you. Budgets are all too real and I understand that things add up but everything you get at the wedding gets used and goes away and all you hold tangibly are the memories you have, the new family you are now a part of and the photos we take. Make up washes off, Planners go home, food gets eaten, rentals go back. So find the person you genuinely trust and enjoy working with. Also, ask for full galleries or something shot at a similar venue to see if this feels like a good fit. Don’t be shy, ask as many questions as you want because it is your big day and you deserve everything to be perfect!



5. What's your favorite part of the wedding day to photograph?


My style focuses on story telling and capturing the essence of the people in my photos. One of my most favorite parts is the portraits. Shooting the couple together is always exciting because those are obviously essential shots but what I always really enjoy is getting portraits of the couple individually with their parents, siblings and close friends. After posing for a simple photo together, I like to have them engage with each other for a bit longer - this is when they loosen up and you get a small look into the dynamic they share. A real hug or your parent telling you why they’re proud of you creates photos that will be always be so memorable for everyone involved.



6. What kinds of weddings do you love to photograph?


I’ve been lucky to witness intimate gatherings with a handful of guests and elaborate affairs that have hundreds of guests join in for a week long celebration. My favorite kind of wedding is one where I get close enough to witness genuine emotions and stories up close. I can’t count how many times I’ve teared up as the bride’s family bids her good bye as she rides off with her husband!


7. What are your top tips for brides to help them get great photos on their wedding day?


Communication is everything! Talk to your vendors and share as much as you can with them. Tell them what you like, what you dislike and bonus points if you can have photo references handy. Words will get you only so far, visual representations will make all the difference!


8. How important is it to hire an experienced wedding photographer?


Having a professional photographer in your corner is HUGE advantage. The right photographer for you is a thorough professional; one who knows rituals, understands nuances particular to your culture and guides you through the process. Photographers are often problem solvers, helping the couple navigate the day as different vendors come and go but your photographer will be by your side through out. I personally carry all kinds of last minute things I know my couple might end up needing - everything from mints to pins and snacks.


9. What do you find is the biggest challenge in wedding photography?


The biggest challenge in Wedding Photography is dealing with situations that arise spontaneously. I feel like photographers are constantly adjusting through different phases as the day progresses from getting ready to the first look to the ceremony itself and the reception after. Moving from one place to another, adjusting to the lighting and composing images in new and unfamiliar spaces with a clock ticking in your head can be stressful but the right professional has the skills to overcome these challenges and think on their feet.


10. Do you do "destination weddings?" If so, what are your favorite destinations?


I’ve photographed weddings in over 14 countries and in countless cities. Some of my favorite places are Italy, Bali & California. I’m partial to places that showcase their architecture and culture in their spaces and I feel like all 3 of these locations have distinct aesthetics.


11. What do you do for fun when you're not shooting weddings?


I love watching movies - I like to watch things as they release. I also bake, read and travel. My favorite days off are spent relaxing by the ocean with a good book or baking with fresh produce and unwinding with some pop corn in front of the TV. I’ve visited 28 countries so far and hope to get the number moving up again now that the pandemic is over.


12. How would you describe your style of photography?


My photography focuses on capturing the essence of people. I love creating portraits that draw attention to the my subject’s best features and the dynamic that they share with each other and their loved ones. I enjoy capturing ephemeral moments of joy and emotion as they unfold. It gives me great joy to tell your story with authenticity.


13. What do you offer to clients that is unique? What is your Unique Selling Proposition?


My USP is that I take the time to get to know and understand my clients. I ensure that they are comfortable, the atmosphere is light and friendly and we focus on having fun and just happen to make beautiful photos along the way. This allows me to capture them completely unfiltered, showing a glimpse of their real personalities instead of putting them in cookie cutter poses.


14. Do you offer albums? If so, describe the albums you offer and why you think it's important to provide albums.


My albums are my pride and joy. I work with a press in Poland where my albums are handcrafted to be heirloom pieces that are built to live for 80+ years. I have access to a variety of finishes and paper textures that are made to stand the test of time. My favorite finish is a beautiful Navy leather book that is bound to lay flat with gold lettering on the cover. Albums are a tangible way to transport yourself back to your big day; there’s this old world charm in thumbing through your story in a book.


15. What (or who) inspires you?


My biggest inspiration comes from a multitude of places; Fashion Editorials, Painted works of Art and Street Photography. In particular, I look up to the amazing Annie Leibovitz, her portraits are everything I hope to create one day. I love Rene Magritte and his surrealist paintings help me dream up all kinds of interesting compositions. Henri Cartier Bresson was the first street photographer I came across and I love his work.


16. What would you say was the biggest reason for your success?


I attribute my success to the effort I’ve put into being a thorough professional and adhering to an ethical code of conduct. I also pride myself in being approachable and easy to communicate with. I care about the small details that some people often overlook and this helps me deliver photos that truly tell your story authentically.


17. What future plans do you have for your business for the next year?


I’m really excited to launch Destination Engagement Sessions soon. I want to combine my love of travel and street photography with Engagement sessions. I envision short sojourns to exotic locations where we spend 2 days together traveling as I create portraits that truly capture your spirit and the dynamic you share.

Photographer Contact Information

San Francisco, California, USA Photographer 4697208843

See This Photographer's Website

Photographer Bio

Born and raised in Mumbai India, Tanushree has always been passionate about artistic pursuits.

Aside from her degree in commerce, she is a professional hairstylist and has worked with some of the best names in the Indian Hair Industry for 5 years.

Always working towards the kind of work life she envisioned for herself, Tanushree found joy in the world of wedding photography in 2012 in Mumbai, India and never looked back. She spent 4 years as a Creative Director at Stories by Joseph Radhik; one of the most sought after photography studios in India. Her time there allowed her to experience weddings varying in size and scale; all while growing her skillset with a highly talented group of artists.

In 2018, Tanushree moved to California to build her life with her then partner, now husband. She now runs her own photography studio, happy to lead teams of varying sizes to fit the needs of her clients. She loves photographing people, helping them put their best foot forward and creating portraits that are truly authentic to their personalities.

When she’s not working on her photography, Tanushree works on Kaapus Co.; a line of sustainable, block printed home linens she founded in 2022. She enjoys the design process and is passionate about supporting handicraft artisans in India.

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