Catharina and Robin came all the way from Germany to celebrate their nuptials at San Francisco City Hall. We had a wonderful time photographing their wedding and tried to capture their fun demeanor and great sense of humor. They were interested in us capturing the architecture and beauty of city hall in their wedding photos so we made a special effort to do that for them. We really enjoy it when we work with international couples because it helps us understand their culture better and makes the wedding a learning experience. Perhaps we asked them too many questions about Germany, but they were more than willing to discuss. Apparently it can get quite cold there and not just in the winter! Perhaps San Francisco fog isn't so bad! Definitely one of our best wedding photography sessions with an international couple in recent years. We have photographed dozens of couples from the UK and also China. Australia was also very big for a while. Recently, we photographed a Couple From Italy and then Mexico. Obviously the Pandemic restrictions have slowed down international bookings temporarily, but we hope they will return soon when it is safe to do so.
After booking our City Hall PLUS package, we spent a considerable amount of time helping them with planning their wedding day from overseas. This included determining the best way to cover their ceremony. We often help our international clients with wedding planning so they can benefit from our knowledge of the whole city hall marriage process. We are happy to include this free service as part of our normal coverage. We understand that it can be challenging to make these plans from a different country, especially if there is a slight language barrier. With Catharina and Robin, we probably ended up exchanging over 50 emails with the goal of making their wedding fun and stress free. Much better to get this type of detail out of the way in advance which allows a more relaxed photography atmosphere when it comes time for the actual nuptials. More important, however, is that the couple feels happy and not stressed about the planning. They thanked us very much for making their day stress free and fun. We also benefit from this because the couple was not distracted by worrying about all of these little details which made them even more photogenic.
As you can see from the photo above, Catharina had a little surprise in store for all of us, red running shoes! She put them on towards the end of the photo shoot and we did a few more fun poses with the shoes. Great idea by her and it really enhanced the final photos. Often times our wedding clients come up with some of the best ideas to personalize their pictures. We are more than happy to help them accomplish this! They were so happy with the photos, they ordered one of our beautiful custom 8X11 inch wedding albums. We put together a very nice album design for them and then showed them a PDF proof. Once we made a few small changes, the wedding book becomes published and shipped to the client. It was a bit pricey shipping it to Germany, but the couple loved it and we helped with the shipping costs. We will do just about anything to convince our couples to purchase our optional wedding album. Why? No, it is not just to make more money. In fact, given the labor and materials needed to produce a city hall wedding album, there is very little profit (if any). The main reason is that we know for a fact that the vast majority of newlyweds that only receive digital image files do very little with them. They may end up getting posted on Facebook or Instagram and then that's about it. The image files spend the rest of their lives on some hard drive somewhere. I do think that most couples have good intentions. Many of them let me know that they plan to make their own album, but how many really do? From my own unofficial surveys, I would put it below 10%. We are also keenly aware that one of our wedding albums being looked at by friends and relatives of the couple is great advertising for us! We have booked many weddings from clients who saw one of our books in a former bride's hands.