Weddings and
frequently asked questions!


How would you describe your style?

I take a documentary/lifestyle approach to photography…which basically means that I favour candid, real and unscripted moments. That doesn’t mean that I don’t pose – I certainly do when it comes time to take the formal shots and portraits – but throughout the day, I’m more of a fly on the wall taking photos as they happen without being too in-your-face all the time. My editing style is film inspired – I love warm tones, contrast, vibrant colours and images that provoke emotion.

How and when do we see our photos?

I deliver a sneak peek of your photos within the week after your wedding and the rest of your gallery will be ready within 6-8 weeks after your wedding. You will receive your own stunning online gallery where you can download, share and print your photos from.

Do you help with the timeline?

Absolutely, I will let you know how long each stage of your wedding will take and help you plan your day so you have time to enjoy yourselves.

We feel super uncomfortable in front of the camera!

You’re not alone! Most people have never been photographed professionally and it can feel overwhelming. I’m not lying when I tell you that about 95% of couples tell me that they’re not confident in front of a camera. What I can promise you is that, on your actual wedding day, you’ll have so much going on that being nervous about being photographed will be the last thing on your mind.

For much of the day, you won’t even know that you’re being photographed as I’ll be taking candid shots. You just do you and I’ll take care of the rest!

When it comes time for the formal group photos, I’ll tell everyone exactly where to stand, which way to lean, where to look and what to do with their hands. While I will pose you for your portraits, my approach to this is a little more relaxed than a lot of photographers. I prefer to gently stage the scene by telling you where to stand (or sit, or walk…or run!) and then I let the organic moments happen. I’ll certainly let you know if a hand should be moved or if I want you to look in a certain direction, but generally speaking, I find the most authentic portraits happen when I let a couple have a moment to be themselves.

Watch this 2-minute youtube video from famous photographers Sarah & Phil Chester, it's quirky and fun and might help you relax having a few things up your sleeve on your wedding day! - Posing Video
What happens if the weather packs in?

Let go of caring/worrying about the weather and the forecast, it is completely outside of your control, embrace it instead. As long as you are up for an adventure it will be incredible I have enough umbrellas for you and the bridal party, we can try and stay dry (or not!). Rain makes the colours pop and can make for some pretty epic images!

Can we print the images?

Yes of course! I give full personal printing rights with all of my images. You can also order professional prints through my online print store.

Do you bring a second photographer?

Some of my collections include a second shooter, some don’t. Whether or not you want an additional photographer is entirely up to you! I shoot the majority of my weddings solo. I’m very comfortable and confident in my ability to capture the entire day on my own.

That being said, there are definitely upsides to having two photographers. The big advantage is that you and your partner can have your “getting ready photos” taken simultaneously, which generally ends up saving about an hour of time. When there are two photographers it’s easier to get lots of different angles of the ceremony (i.e. your partner’s face while you’re walking down the aisle, more photos of guest reactions, etc..), and it also means that there’s someone to stay behind and photograph the cocktail hour/reception if we have to step away for group photos or portraits. It really comes down to your wedding, your preference and the coverage that you desire.

Will our photos be in colour, black and white, or a mix?

Typically, you should expect your gallery to contain somewhere between 20%-30% black and white images. It honestly really depends on the particular wedding. Some days (or some parts of the day) may lend themselves better to black and white conversion than others. If you have an inclination one way or the other I’m happy to edit to suit your preference (just make sure to let me know ahead of time!).

How do we go about printing our images?

You have full printing rights for all of the images in your final gallery, and you may use whatever printing vendor you’d like. You can also order prints directly from your online gallery using my professional vendors if you’d like.

How long have you been a professional photographer?

I’ve been taking photos professionally since 1995 and started photographing weddings full-time in 2003.

What’s an “unplugged” ceremony?

Some couples choose to rely solely on their professional photographer when it comes to photographing the ceremony. These couples will ask their guests to not take photos and to not use their phone during the ceremony. With an unplugged ceremony, all of your guests will be fully present to share this special moment with you, rather than watching it happen through the screen of their phone. It’s entirely your choice whether or not you want to ask your family and friends to put away their phones and cameras for your ceremony.

What’s a first look?

Weddings these days tend to be less traditional, which allows couples to do their wedding day the way they want! Many couples choose to do a first look, which is a staged moment where the couple gets to see each other all dressed up in their wedding attire before they walk down the aisle. If you are considering a first look, consider trying to find somewhere shady as this is often the harshest time of the day for light. Especially in Northland. Chat to me if this is something you’d like to consider.

Do you provide retouching, colour adjustment, or other corrective services?

Of course! Not a single photo leaves my computer without being fully edited to the extent that you see on my website. This includes tone and white balance adjustment, exposure adjustment, cropping and straightening the images, black and white conversion (when appropriate) and sharpening. Blemish removal will also be done on you and your partner, however, I don’t (by default) edit out moles, freckles, scars, etc.. as they are permanent markings on your face. I don’t outsource my editing, I do it all myself, as I feel it’s an important part of the process and ensures that your photos accurately represent the moments and mood of the day.

* Please note that the retouching process does not include things such as reshaping bodies, removing straplines, removing braces, adding or removing people from a photo, changing the colour of a dress, blemish removal on specific guests, replacing faces, etc.. and that there may be additional fees if extensive editing is requested by the client.

Is sunset the best time for photos?

Sunset, the "Golden hour" is the best time to plan your couple portraits. The hour before the sun goes down (the golden hour) and about half an hour after it goes down (the blue hour) are the absolute best time for photos. You’ll want to leave at least 20 minutes for portraits, keeping in mind that the more time you leave for portraits, the more portraits you’ll get.

Unfortunately during the summer months, this often clashes with your reception times. If you can make it work, plan to do the bridal party photos in the afternoon and then with just the two of you to pop out for 20 minutes during reception just before sunset. It'll be so worth it :)

How will we receive our photos?

Once your photos are ready, you will receive a link to a password protected online gallery. This gallery has an option to batch download all of your images as high-resolution digital files and web-sized files as well. You also have the option to download photos individually, which is a great way to share the images from your wedding with family and friends.
Will you be posting images of our wedding on your website, Facebook, Instagram, etc..?

Yes, I will likely share some of your images online. If this is an issue for you please let me know ahead of time.

Do you mind working with videographers?

Not at all! As long as your videographer respects the visual space (ie. not parking themselves in front of the altar for the entire ceremony) we will be just fine! Just be aware that we will most likely show up in each other's shots from time to time.

Do you travel?

Heck yeah, I love to travel!!! If I can drive to your wedding I charge $1 per/km for anything over 150 km round trip. If your wedding is outside of the Northland region we can talk about travel costs and accommodation. I try to keep these costs to a minimum.

Can we bring our dog?

The answer will always be yes!

Yay...we want to book, how far in advance should we book?

Depending on the month you’re getting married, I’m sometimes booked a year (or more) in advance. I limit the number of weddings that I take on each year to assure that I’ll have ample time to focus on each one individually, so it’s worth reaching out sooner than later to reserve your date. It’s also worth mentioning that February and March are by far, my busiest months so don’t delay if you’ve chosen a peak summer date!

It’s always best to complete your booking as soon as you’re sure I’m the photographer for you. A signed contract and a retainer of $800 are due to reserve your date.



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Jess Burges Photography

New Zealand Wedding, Portrait and Commercial Photographer

Studio One, 3 Homestead Road, Kerikeri, Northland

Contact +64 021 126 8513