Feature Friday: Echard Wheeler Photography
How long have you been a photographer?
I started way back in 1998, where I was originally a film photographer! It’s crazy to have seen all the changes and trends throughout the years but it also hits home the importance of not allowing them to influence your work too much. From day one, it’s always been about documentary wedding photography, shooting those real moments to guarantee your wedding story is timeless.
How would you describe your style of photography?
I call myself a wedding photo-journalist. I definitely shoot all the beautiful portraiture and details but I am also intent on telling your wedding day story in the most natural way possible and capture how it feels because in the long run when you look through your wedding day gallery, that’s what I want you to remember.
What details do you believe make the best photographs?
I love those in-between moments. I think those fleeting, honest snippets really tell the story of the day. Most of the time my most ecstatic reactions from clients are over these special, forgotten moments when they didn’t even know I was watching.
What is your favorite thing about working in the wedding industry?
You know, it’s all good. Being in it for 20 years, I’ve seen it grow from a tight knit group to this expansive crowd now. And though I may not know as many of the people in it, as it’s exploded, we’re still a pretty solid community overall and enjoy working together every weekend. There’s this easy camaraderie we all have with each other working towards making the day as perfect as possible. We’re a pretty lucky group to share in one of the happiest days of a family’s life.
What is the most difficult thing about photography and what is the most rewarding when it comes to weddings?
Hmmm, I don’t know about difficult but with pinterest and instagram there may be more managing of expectations. A lot of images that might be initially desired are actually created under super unique and controlled circumstances. But I swear, the couples I seem to click with are literally just the best and luckily we always seem completely in sync by the time the wedding day rolls around! With such a crowded field, I never lose sight of the fact that it’s an honor that they chose me – trusted me – to document their day, so I really take that seriously and feel rewarded by that.
What’s one piece of advice you’d like to give couples who are looking for a photographer?
Really research your photographer. Explore their portfolio to make sure it fits your vision. Is their style consistent and compelling? Dive deep, ask to see reception photos. Make sure you hire a professional that knows how to handle the rhythm and pace of a sometimes hectic and challenging day because experience matters. Schedule a phone call or in person meeting to make sure your personalities are compatible – you’re going to spend the majority of the day together so you’ll want to make sure the comfort level is perfect!