Maysie and Stuart’s ‘Red Wedding Dress and Blue Jeans’ Relaxed Wedding at Home by Simon Hawkins Weddings
Happy Friday everyone! I am so excited for the weekend, as it’s the Royal Wedding...
Good afternoon readers! Welcome to Wednesday, I hope back to school week is treating you well so far? Today we are delighted to welcome super talented Stephanie Veldman all the way from South Africa. She is here to tell you all about her wonderful wedding photography, and to offer you all a fantastic EXCLUSIVE BOHO READER OFFER! As a lady who loves to travel, she is just dying to come and shoot your Boho Wedding, so is offering 15% off any booking taken before November 1st.
I have been photographing weddings for 6 years now, and love the excited energy that comes with every celebration. I get to travel to different locations, meet so many people and be a part of something very intimate with people I barely know.
I am a very nostalgic and sentimental person and perhaps that is why I take photographs, to hold onto things that have passed. I love capturing slivers of time and making them last in the form of something you can hold and see and keep. Weddings are no doubt some of the most special days that I am a part of. I hope to blend in as much as possible and simply take photos of as many details as I need to make up the story of the day.
How long have you been taking photos for?
I got my first SLR camera when I was 10. I grew up in Botswana and wanted so badly to be a game ranger when I was bigger, so I used to just love taking photos of the animals and landscape. The amount of film wasted on random bush photos! Professionally, I have been photographing for 7 years.
When did you start your photography business and what made you start?
I started it after a friend basically forced me to shoot her wedding against my will. She posted the photos on Facebook and the requests started coming in – that’s when I realized I could actually travel, have fun AND get paid!
Where are you based?
Cape Town, South Africa. Right on the bottom tip!
How far will you travel for a wedding?
Any distance, definitely!
How would you describe your style?
Natural, Intimate, Nostalgic. In three words.
What is your favorite bit of technical kit?
My 85mm 1.2 lens. It’s dreamy!
What makes you different to your competitors?
I think my style is quite different to a lot of wedding photographers in that its very real and raw. I really just try and shoot things as they are and do not photoshop my images. Its important to remember the day as it was, not as somebody (the photographer) has set it up to be.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I enjoy being allowed into such a private space on the wedding day. I get to see the bride and groom getting ready with a select few close friends of theirs. I see all the emotions of the day playing out and the excitement from both sides. It’s always a happy day, people are smiling and crying happy tears and dancing and laughing, everyone is in a good mood and most people want to be photographed, which is great. If I get to travel to a new place for a wedding that is first prize!
What sort of couple do you think you attract?
In love ones! I have shot most of my weddings for creative people who book me for my style and give me free reign completely – just how I like it! I definitely attract people who seem to have their priorities in place – they don’t get stressed out and lost in small details – they enjoy their wedding and are very present on the day. I shoot a lot of relaxed, unconventional weddings, often taking place in peoples homes. Some are more like parties or really big intimate dinners rather than weddings. I’ve been lucky with my clients from the beginning.
What would be your ideal wedding to work on?
Home weddings are just so special! I love throwing in a bit of travel too….destination weddings that last all weekend! Its really great to get to “know” a crowd before the wedding day, it gives everybody a chance to get used to being photographed and to feel comfortable with me around. And the energy of a destination wedding is always great as people are excited to be in a new place.
Who is your favorite photographer and why?
That’s a hard one. Nan Goldin has always been in the top favorites for me. Her work is extremely intimate. You feel as if you’ve been let into somebody’s private life.
If you were to get married who would take your pictures / who did take the pictures at your wedding?
I’m not married and there are so many options…but I love the Kitcheners based in Scotland…
What in your opinion makes the perfect photo?
An image that captures emotion above anything else.
What advice would you give couples when choosing their wedding photographer?
Book somebody for their style. And make sure you get on with them and have the same ideas in place. You don’t want somebody who you feel uncomfortable around…meeting up or skyping beforehand is a definite must for me! I think your photographers energy is very important. You don’t want somebody who is highly strung and stresses out if things run late. Obviously budget is always a main factor in your decision but don’t try skimp on your photographs because you will have them forever.
Can you give me some information on your pricing structure?
I offer three packages. My most basic package is 8 hours of photography for €2 500. Travel is not included in this price. My other two packages include albums and prints and the one has more hours of coverage. In South Africa I usually shoot with a second shooter but I realise this is not always possible when travelling abroad so I am happy to shoot alone. I’m very open to discussion on my packages, so that I can accommodate people’s needs. Check out my special offer at the moment!
What is your ideal way to spend a day off?
Well if I’ve just shot a wedding I will DEFINITELY spend at least an hour looking at the photos and editing some – I get so excited to see them! Otherwise I love a lie in (so not a morning person) with coffee and rusks in bed. A nature walk and some cooking and eating! Cooking is my way of relaxing.
What can you never leave the house without?
Lipstick, water and little snacks. …you never know!
If you weren’t running your business, what would you be doing?
Game ranging?! No. Maybe I’d be a chef
(Travel is not included in these package prices, but I can easily write up a quote estimate for you and we can take it from there!)