Monday, August 3, 2009

Wedding Vendor of the Week

As one of Texas' largest cities it comes as no surprise that San Antonio has a plethora of wedding professionals to suit every bride and groom. So, to help soon-to-be newlyweds plan their big day, we want to present some of the best.

This week's wedding vendor is Mark Thomas of Mark Thomas Pro Photo & Video. Check out some of his work below.

1. How did you start out?

I began shooting weddings in 2001. Videography was my main focus when I began my business. I quickly learned that most couples were looking for photography and video services from the same vendor so I decided to get back into photography as well. Story telling is the key to a great photographer and videographer. I found early on that I had a talent for telling a complete and beautiful story through my video edits.

Finding a way to tell the complete story through photos was a little more challenging. In 2003 I began offering custom designed coffee table albums. Designing these albums helped me to quickly learn what types of shots were important to tell the complete story of the wedding day. My goal is to build a book that tells the story through photos so anyone can pick up an album and re-live the event completely. I learned that there are many different components that are needed to tell a great story.

The location: Location shots are important to the setting of your story. I take a variety of shots of the church or event facility to set up the story.

The details: Detail shots are some of the most important shots in a wedding album. Detail shots add personality to the album. These are shots of the decorations, flowers, rings, candles, dresses, shoes, etc... Basically all the choices that the bride made to make her wedding special.

The prep: these shots are great at setting the tone leading up to the ceremony. Expectation, excitement, happiness, friendship, and personality are some of the messages I try to capture during the prep.

The people: A wedding is made up of more than just a bride and groom. The people that the bride and groom choose to share their day with are a large part of the story. I focus equally on the different guests so they can help drive the story forward. I believe that most couples want to see more photos of their guests enjoying themselves throughout the day.

The couple: The story is about the bride and groom so it is important to tell the story of the couple. Great shots of the ceremony drive the story forward. The smile on his face as she is coming down the aisle, the tear in her eye as he is saying the vows, the joy as they exchange rings, the pride in the parents eyes, and the excitement as the couple exit the church are only a few of the shots needed to tell the story of the ceremony.

The family & friends: Traditional group shots are an important part of wedding day photography. This is a chance to get the family and friends together for nice group shots. It is also important to the story because it introduces all the main characters.

The reception: this part of the story begins with location and detail shots. The rest of the story is mainly journalistic and candid shots of guests, dances, cake cutting, bouquet toss, toasts,

emotions,and the exit.

2. What services do you offer?

I offer a range of services. Photography, videography, album design, photo editing, online viewing and print fulfillment.

3. What is your approach to taking pictures/video of a wedding?

Story telling is the inspiration behind my work. I approach every wedding as a story waiting to be told. I ask myself am I telling a story or just shooting what I see. There is a big difference in telling a story. To tell a story sometimes you have to see things from a different perspective. Sometimes the story may come from something behind you or from someone other than the bride and groom.

4. What is the best part of the job?

The best part of my job is interacting with my subjects and bringing out the best in my subjects. Many times people tend to get very stiff when a camera is pointed at them and they don't know what to do. I enjoy joking around and getting people to loosen up. The comment I hear most from clients that view my work is that all the people look like they are having fun throughout the day. I take this as a great compliment because I work hard to capture the best in everyone.

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