Penny’s Wedding HQ has been buzzing this week after a fabulous interview with the very talented Kat Hill. The images we have seen are simply breathtaking. Read all about her work and most importantly, how to book her – better be quick as her diary will be filling up fast!
I’ve been doing photography for a while now, but I’m relatively new to the wedding scene. I caught the bug two years ago when I photographed a friend’s big day and haven’t looked back!
What is your photographic style?
It’s a mixture of both reportage and a more traditional style. I do like to take a step back and be as unobtrusive as possible for most of the day, but for things like couples shots, I believe a little bit of gentle guidance goes a long way. And after all, that’s what some clients are looking for when they hire a professional photographer – someone who knows what angles might work best for them, or how holding yourself slightly differently might be more flattering.
I also get a lot of inspiration from fashion photography. Not so much the trends themselves – it’s impossible to keep up with! – But I love seeing how posing and lighting can make someone look their best or show off an item of clothing (like a wedding dress!) in its best light. Invaluable knowledge for a bride’s big day!
Do you have a portfolio that we can view?
My online portfolio is at www.kat-hill.com , though my blog is updated on a weekly basis so you can see what I’m getting up to there too: www.kathillfotographie.wordpress.com
How can you advise a couple who are undecided about styles?
Don’t be afraid to sit down and have a chat with your photographer! If you find it hard to put into words what exactly it is that appeals to you about a certain image, show them photos that you love and photos that make you shudder in horror – rip out examples from magazines, or print out wedding photos from the internet.
As a photographer, my main aim is to create photos that my clients will be over the moon with (if you’re in tears I know I’ve done a good job!). So it’s really important to me that I know your tastes, and I really want to take the time to get to know that, and get to know you.
Describe a typical wedding format so our readers know what to expect
I usually arrive early enough to photograph bridal preparations. It’s one of my favourite parts of the day – the emotions are all there: the excitement, the butterflies, and the anticipation. I’ve had brides and bridesmaids tell me afterwards that having a photographer there really helped calm things down!! For some, it helps that they can channel their nervous energy into posing for some gorgeous shots. I do take my lead from the bride though, and some just want to be left to it and I’ll happily stay in the background and take candid photos. If there is time I’ll also go photograph the groom getting ready but normally it’s straight to the ceremony.
After the ceremony is when I suggest the groups photos take place, because guests haven’t quite had the chance to slope off to the bar! If I can, I try to enlist the help of someone from the wedding party to try gathering the groups – it’s not laziness on my part! They’ll know who people are and it saves the guests from being ordered about by a complete stranger.
Once the group shots are done, I’ll normally ask the Bride and Groom to set aside 45 minutes or so for some couples photographs. Occasionally I have clients saying they’re not so bothered or they feel uncomfortable having so many photos of themselves when they feel like they should be entertaining guests but after I tell them my approach to this, they mostly see the benefit of it and say afterwards that they’re glad they took that time. With the madness of a wedding day, a bride and groom don’t really get that much time to themselves, so what I like to do is pull them away for photographs but for the first 10 minutes or so, I don’t really interact with them at all. My long lens is on and I stand quite far away. Think about it, you’ve just got married and until now you haven’t had a chance to speak to each other properly! You really don’t need me to be posing you, because these first few moments of your married life together will be naturally, spontaneously, effortlessly gorgeous.
After couples’s shots, it’s normally time for the wedding breakfast. I don’t photograph during this time because people often don’t want to be photographed eating – it’s never very flattering! What follows – speeches, cake cut, first dance will all be photographed in a documentary style. I normally stay until just after the first dance (though in reality it’s always a few songs after to catch the dance floor action!) but I can stay until the very end if previously agreed this with the couple.
Who exactly will be shooting the wedding?
I photograph all weddings I book, though I will almost always work with a second shooter. I think it’s important to have another set of eyes on the day, because weddings are such big affairs (normally!). It’s pretty likely that there’ll be a lot going on all at the same time and with two of us there’s less chance that anything will get missed!
In which part of the country do you work?
I’m based in London, though I travel all over the UK and beyond.
Would you travel overseas?
What would happen if you were sick on the day of the wedding?
Not being able to shoot a wedding due to sickness would be so disappointing! If I didn’t think it would affect my performance on the day and could medicate myself enough, I would still do all I could to turn up. However, if I were really on death’s door, I’m lucky enough to be friends with a handful of photographers who have a similar style to mine. We all help each other out where we can.
What type of camera equipment do you use to shoot weddings?
I have the full set of pro camera equipment necessary, and I do lug it all around with me just in case! I also carry back up equipment.
Do you carry liability insurance?
Yes, I’m fully insured.
Explain your wedding packages – costs, hours, products included
I don’t really have one-size-fits-all packages because every wedding is different. Some of my clients may just want a few hours coverage over the ceremony/reception, whereas others want full coverage from first thing in the morning until last thing at night.
I’d love for potential clients to get in touch and I’ll be more than happy to provide a bespoke quote once I know a bit more about their plans. I also provide discounts for Monday – Thursday weddings.
How soon after the wedding date are the photographs available?
I normally say four weeks, but try to turn them around in two. I don’t send away my images for retouching as I like to imprint my style from the moment I click the shutter, right through to when I hand over the photos to the client.
How can we book you and are any deposits needed?
Just give me a call on 07929 657 524 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
As standard, a booking fee of 50% (to a maximum of £400) is needed to secure your date.
Penelope x x