Help choose a photographer!
Feb 27, 2010 at 9:17 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 11

JSTpt1022

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Fellow headfiers, although I never made a formal announcement, I'm not that narcissistic and you all don't know me that well, the fiance and I are planning a wedding. We are torn on the issue of a photographer and I was hoping to enlist your collective opinions.

We are torn between two photographers:

Cousins Photography

Joe Sanfilippo

This isn't one of those he said/she said type of indecisive moments. Both of us are equally torn. Thank you all in advance for your help.
 
Feb 27, 2010 at 10:10 PM Post #2 of 11

limpidglitch

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Sanfilippo. Can't really see how anybody would even consider Cousins, all plastic and pastel.

If you go for Sanfilippo however, make sure he has remembered to swab the sensor before he starts shooting. Some of the pictures in his gallery were a bit spotty.
 
Feb 27, 2010 at 10:31 PM Post #3 of 11

WalkGood

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Quote:

Originally Posted by limpidglitch /img/forum/go_quote.gif
... If you go for Sanfilippo however, make sure he has remembered to swab the sensor before he starts shooting. Some of the pictures in his gallery were a bit spotty.


Have you cleaned your screen lately
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Feb 28, 2010 at 4:08 AM Post #4 of 11

artforme

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I agree that Joe Sanfilippo seems like the better choice, on purely artistic merit. I don't know how pricing comes into play, but it looks like Sanfilippo has the better eye in terms of composition. Plus I dislike wedding photographer's websites with music. Since Joe does not have music, I give him a big plus for not following the crowd.

My vote goes towards Sanfilippo.
 
Feb 28, 2010 at 3:08 PM Post #8 of 11

limpidglitch

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Graphicism /img/forum/go_quote.gif
As a fellow photographer I'd have to say go with Cousins for the better composition, Sanfilippo's look like snapshots with a good quality camera... that needs it's lens cleaning (couple blodges in examples).

Congrats BTW!



I wouldn't call consistent rule-book composition good photography, I'd call it boring.
The way he does compositions make everything look like stillebens, that's not a good way to portray an event that's supposed to be about life.
 
Mar 9, 2010 at 8:51 PM Post #9 of 11

AVU

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I honestly think both have their positives and negatives, and that you'd probably be fine with either. I know that's not what you want to hear, but I think it's the truth. I don't find Joe's that much more interesting or artistic, for what it's worth, and I'm a photography professor. Frankly, I'm more worried at both having far too much contrast - it seems like the details of the wedding dress are blown out in almost every shot - which is typical for non-medium format digital cameras if you're not careful. My advice would be to look through the portfolios and choose the kind of shots you most admire, and communicate that with the photographer(s) beforehand, so they understand the kind of aesthetic you're looking for. What's spontaneous to one person can seem offhand to another. I am sure the differences from wedding to wedding far outweigh the differences between photographers over all.
 
Mar 9, 2010 at 9:45 PM Post #10 of 11

Head_case

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Quote:

Originally Posted by JSTpt1022 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I'm not that narcissistic and you all don't know me that well, the fiance and I are planning a wedding. We are torn on the issue of a photographer and I was hoping to enlist your collective opinions.

We are torn between two photographers:

Cousins Photography

Joe Sanfilippo

This isn't one of those he said/she said type of indecisive moments. Both of us are equally torn. Thank you all in advance for your help.



Like others here, I could qualify my opinion with a meta-narrative....

Only, I wonder why you are limited to these two photographers? Surely there are others?

Of the two, Sanfilippo's work portrayed through the internet/digital display comes out worse for contrast and tonal rendition. The skin tones of his brides on my screen (Gretag Macbeth calibrated) look very unnatural and unflattering. Equally, it's unforgiveable to having a lop-sided tilting wedding cake, and a church sacristy which looks like it's in midst of subsiding and toppling over. Within the genre of documentary style weddings, there is nothing compelling in reviewing his body of work, to make me wonder why New York has no other photographers at your disposal? His work looks digital, and it looks like he has too much digital noise in some of the images, without possessing the finesse nor refined and visceral feel of traditional film emulsion. I hope he doesn't read this - but I'd recommend you pass by his work, unless you see his hard prints (proper prints) and his work looks more compelling than what he has presented on the internet.

Cousins' work is more interesting, at least if anything, he uses depth of field (selective focus) to control the interest in the couple/subjects, and shows a technical ability, to focus on the subject (rather than losing the subject within the background of the church etc), and explore the fixed repertoire of fixed poses. There is nothing exotic nor original about his work, although it is competent, if not a little clichéd, however that tends to be the genre of wedding photography, unless you can hire Annabel Williams or Stu Williamson
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).

Cousins is the more advanced internet website presenter. Although I find the square format more attractive, his music sound clip marketing overcompensates for the browsing experience of his site, over and above Sanfilippo's and he offers a multi-media presentation, rather than letting the viewer concentrate on the images, or letting his images speak for themselves. I find this a dubious marketing ploy, however that is why I am not a wedding photographer lol. His contrast and tones look better controlled, however the merits stands or falls on the hard copies of the prints, and not on digitally shrunk web .jpgs. The tonal range is a function of latitude of the capture media; film emulsion based photographers have that advantage, since film's latitude compared to the digital DMax of the digital sensor is richer and more natural, instead of getting a binary 1 or 0 reading for dark and high values, which then register with no detail at all.

The prints will be your guage as to whether either photographer is worth employing. Unless like some who are happy in virtual space, to abandon vinyl, cassette, or CD physical media, you're happy with digital files on your hard drive for souvenirs instead of tangible prints.

Bottom line: look elsewhere. I'd be amazed if you couldn't find anything else in that big large Apple
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Mar 9, 2010 at 10:20 PM Post #11 of 11

jilgiljongiljing

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Quote:

I honestly think both have their positives and negatives, and that you'd probably be fine with either. I know that's not what you want to hear, but I think it's the truth. I don't find Joe's that much more interesting or artistic, for what it's worth, and I'm a photography professor. Frankly, I'm more worried at both having far too much contrast - it seems like the details of the wedding dress are blown out in almost every shot - which is typical for non-medium format digital cameras if you're not careful. My advice would be to look through the portfolios and choose the kind of shots you most admire, and communicate that with the photographer(s) beforehand, so they understand the kind of aesthetic you're looking for. What's spontaneous to one person can seem offhand to another. I am sure the differences from wedding to wedding far outweigh the differences between photographers over all.


Great post.
 

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