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How do you describe your photographic style?
Kyo shoots simple, natural, documentary-style photography with a focus on people.
Although we specialize in candid photography, we should also mention that Kyo very occasionally offers a little direction to help capture some artistic shots. If possible, he likes to have at least 20 minutes alone with you (the bride and groom) shortly after the ceremony. The rest of the wedding day will be such a whirlwind, it’s always wonderful to have pictures of just the two of you sharing a short, peaceful interlude.
What inspires you?
Kyo is inspired by the masters of documentary street photography like Elliot Erwitt, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Robert Frank, and some fashion photographers who have a flair for the unexpected, like Peter Lindbergh and Deborah Turbeville. He also gets inspired by nature. Besides his camera, his other favorite piece of gear is his mountain bike. Getting into the forest and mountains on his bike is one of his favorite ways to decompress and refresh his mind.
Janna loves color and design and food and cooking. She was a children’s book editor before working with Kyo, and she has always loved putting pictures together to make stories. If she’s not in her office designing books, magazines, stationery, and whatever else she can conjure up out of Kyo’s photography, she is probably in the kitchen, cooking or baking. She is a volunteer with the Metuchen Farmers Market and strongly believes in supporting local farmers and food artisans. She sometimes posts her recipes on our blog.
Do the two of you (Kyo and Janna) both take pictures? Or does Kyo work alone?
Kyo is our primary photographer, and Janna is our graphic designer. However, Kyo will bring his lighting assistant with him, so he’s usually a two-person team. We also offer a second photographer, if you are having a large wedding or want the most comprehensive possible coverage. If you choose to have a second photographer, it will be a three-person photography team (Kyo, the second photographer, and the lighting assistant).
Janna will work with you before and afterwards to design your guestbook, wedding album, thank you cards, etc, and to make sure that we have all the details so Kyo is well-prepared for your wedding day.
Do you shoot digital or film?
For weddings, Kyo shoots digital.This allows maximum flexibility — for instance, you have the option of converting any picture from color to black-and-white.
For his personal work, though, Kyo sometimes still uses his old Hasselblad film camera.
What kind of equipment do you use?
Kyo uses Canon cameras, specifically the Canon 5D Mark III and many prime lenses. He prefers bright, sharp prime lenses, since he likes to play with light. Prime lenses tends to be sharper and brighter than zoom lenses because there isn’t as much glass in the lens, and they are lighter weight. Because they absorb more light, he can shoot in darker situations without having to add too much artificial light. Also, unlike a zoom lens, in order to get closer to a subject, you have to literally move closer. Kyo likes the way this forces him to physically move to capture the moments he wants.
Do you have backup equipment?
Yes, Kyo always brings backups for each of his camera bodies and lenses.
Do I get the digital files? Will they be watermarked?
Yes, you’ll get the digital files from your wedding day, and they will not be watermarked. You have unlimited printing rights for personal use — make as many prints as you want for all your family and friends!
When will I get my pictures?
Within a few days after your wedding, we’ll post a highlight or two on our Facebook page. We will deliver your complete online gallery 6 weeks after your wedding. You’ll be able to use the online gallery to pick pictures for your wedding album or book. You’ll receive your complete image files on disk when you we deliver your final album or book to you.
Can you tell me more about how much it costs?
Our starting package is $3100 and includes 8 hours of photography, a lighting assistant, careful editing and color-correcting of each image file, a password-protected online gallery, and delivery of complete edited image files with unlimited printing rights for personal use. For more complete information about our pricing and products, just get in touch with us.
What are your payment terms?
We require a 50% retainer along with the signed contract in order to reserve your wedding date. The remaining balance is due one month before your wedding.
Do you take credit cards?
Yes, we accept cash, check, or credit cards. We use a secure online payment system so you can even pay us via ACH (e-check). Or if you prefer to send a check through the mail, that’s fine too.
Do you have insurance?
Yes, we have liability insurance. If your venue asks for a certificate of liability insurance, just let us know and we will provide it to them.
What if you get sick?
If Kyo got very sick or injured and were unable to photograph your wedding, we would make every effort to find a replacement photographer immediately (at no cost to you, of course). If it were impossible to find a replacement photographer, we would refund everything you paid us. This clause is in our contract. Luckily, it has never happened!
Do you book any other jobs on the same date?
No, we only book one job per date. So you will have our complete focus on your wedding day.
My ceremony/reception venue is going to be very dark. Will that be a problem for the pictures?
Not at all. Kyo has years of experience with all types of lighting situations, and has photographed in very dark churches, candlelit receptions, rainstorms, and pretty much every type of light. Dealing with challenging light is part of what makes his job fun and interesting.
Can you recommend any really talented florists or DJs or other wedding vendors?
Having worked in the wedding industry for so long, we love to recommend people and places we think are great! Just let us know what you’re looking for and we’ll give you our list of top picks.
What happens if the weather is bad?
In terms of the photographs, don’t worry too much about the weather. The unpredictability is what makes the photography exciting! Sometimes the most challenging weather conditions inspire the most beautiful images. Rain, snow, sleet, bright midday sun — they are all interesting and dynamic. That being said, one thing Kyo recommends is that you should be prepared for less-than-ideal weather, just in case. Having a big umbrella and rain boots on hand in case of a downpour is a great idea.
I’m having trouble deciding whether to do the “First Look” before the wedding, or wait until I walk down the aisle for my fiance to see me. What do you recommend?
Each of these options has its advantages and disadvantages. The advantage of doing a “First Look” before your ceremony is that it gives you more flexibility with your schedule — you can do the portraits before the ceremony, so you don’t have to miss any of the cocktail hour or reception time with your family and friends. The advantage of waiting to see each other until the bride walks down the aisle is that it gives that moment extra poignancy and emotional impact. Either option is great, it depends on what you decide is most important to you.
Do you travel for weddings?
Yes, Kyo has photographed destination weddings in Europe, Asia, India, and Central America, and in Maine, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia, and Wisconsin. He especially loves to photograph weddings in new and different locations, because he loves seeing places with fresh eyes.
How many photos will you take at my wedding?
That’s hard to answer because it depends on the length of the wedding, the number of guests, how wild and crazy people get, and the number of photographers (if you decide to include a second photographer). For an 8 hour wedding, we typically deliver anywhere from 400 to 700 images.
What’s the difference between an album versus a book?
An album is printed with photographs (c-prints) mounted on archival mats. A book is made from digital prints on paper. Some people prefer the classic elegance of a traditional album, while others prefer the more modern style of a fine art book. We work with some of the best album and book binders in the business and would be happy to show you samples so you can decide what style is best for you.
I’d like to make my album myself. Can I do that?
Yes, you are free to use the pictures on your disk however you like! All of our wedding collections include a product credit, though, so if you’d rather make the album yourself then you can use the credit toward something else such as an engagement session, second photographer, or day-after session.
Where did you learn photography?
Kyo got his B.F.A. in Photography from the Corcoran School of Art in Washington, DC, and moved to New York City right after graduating. He worked as an assistant for some photographic legends such as Mary Ellen Mark and Deborah Turbeville, and continues to learn as much as he can from the incredible photography world in New York City and nowadays, online. He follows fellow photographers on Instagram and often posts personal work on his own Instagram feed.
How long have you been a wedding photographer?
Kyo first started assisting for a number of Manhattan wedding studios in 2001, and quickly became a first photographer. Kyo and Janna started working together full-time on Kyo Morishima Photography in 2010.