Photographers


Do you remember the days of amateur websites that were loaded with animated gifs, embedded MIDI files, and text of all sizes, styles, and colors? It was an assault on your eyes.

I hadn’t thought back to those old Angelfire/Geocities web sites for years. Recently, something brought it all back. I have received three snail mail “letters” from David Meltzer Photography. I have to put “letters” in quotes because they are not personal letters. His “letters” have a chain letter feel. The “letter” consists of four pages, each a different color (yellow, orange, green, and white), littered with bolded, italicized, and underlined words. Yes, the formatting is irksome, and when I open his green envelopes, I half expect a MIDI file start play Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring or the Hampster Dance, but it isn’t the repeated mailings or the obnoxious formatting that irritates me the most. It is the fearmongering. The “letter” details wedding disasters and issues “important warnings.” In this letter, David Meltzer shares “some TOP SECRET pointers for you! Pointers you will not hear from anyone else.” Because “nothing can ever make up for your wedding day going horribly! Nothing!”

Well, I’ll save you all the trouble of ever having to read one of his mailings, and let you in on the “4 Secrets Almost No Bride Knows, That You Can Use To Make Certain Your Wedding Dreams Come True!

“Secret” #1: “Before you select a photographer, meet the actual human being who is going to be photographing your wedding. Can you see how important this one person is to the romance, beauty and smoothness of your wedding day?

“Secret” #2: “Surround Yourself With People Who Love What They Do! Because I love what I do, brides just seem to gravitate to me!”

“Secret” #3: “Your wedding can’t be done over. It’s only going to happen once. So it’s crucial that you carefully select people who have very strong guarantees!

“Secret” #4: “This last “Secret” is vital. You will be very dependent on the professionals you select to work with on your wedding day. Be sure you see testimonials from clients! Get referrals and call them if you feel the least bit nervous! Again, your wedding is important to you, and you can’t do it over!”

In his P.P.P.P.P.S. (I swear, I’m not making this up.), he requests that if I’ve already chosen my photographer, then please pass his information to someone I really care about.

At least, he’s not sending me email. He’s paying $0.39 every time he sends out his marketing chain letter.

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Last night, D. and I met with Rodney Mickle of Rodney Mickle Photographer to talk about photography for our wedding. Almost three hours later, we emerged from the meeting really pleased. It is always a bit nerve-wracking meeting vendors for the first time and trying explain the concept of your wedding which is over a year away. I am always afraid of dominating the conversation or being too spastic. Rodney wasn’t condescending, flippant, or cocky about his services.
He arrived with a wide screen laptop, DVDs of his portfolios, and an external hard drive with RAW images. For us techies, that was quite nice. He discussed his photography technique, lessons he’s learned, and not only showed us his best work, but also the not so great shots in between. For example, he showed us a great macro shot of the detail work of a wedding cake. Then he showed us the six other shots he took at different angles and distances. Seeing the RAW files was very helpful. I was able to see his progression and how he evaluates the composition. He also showed us how he can digitally adjust the photos as well. I was impressed. I’m a very process oriented person. I don’t want to just see the end result; I want to know how one got there.
He asked questions about us, how we met, what is the tone of our wedding, what style of images are important to us, trying to get a sense of who we are and how to portray that in our pictures.
We spent the least amount of time talking about the price sheet. Never did we feel any sales pressure. He understood our reasons why we didn’t want an album, why we wanted digital copies of our pictures, and we ended up coming up with a great idea for an artistic photo collage print.
What I like most: I like the fact that he is highly technical, and he is also creative and flexible. I want the pictures from our wedding to capture D.’s and my personality and the liveliness of our families. I definitely believe that Rodney can do that.
The only “disappointing” thing I can say is that I wish that I had more money to spend on his services.

So, yay! We have one aspect of our wedding figured out, only eleventy billion more things to go.