Phocus On Relationship with Phocus Photography
My most recent podcast recording with Tim, Phocus Photography, reminded me of how I strive to make the client experience with Highlight Weddings & Events personal. I’ve always felt that working with couples was much more enjoyable if I got to understand who they are. Getting to know them better also helped me to provide suggestions to make their day truly their own. That can be a challenge when your clients are primarily destination couples who may come to the area once after they book me as their DJ/MC. However, that doesn’t mean that it can’t be done.
I always make a point to get to know a couple before we even discuss booking any services for their wedding. That way, we can first decide if we will mesh well personality-wise before we discuss services that will align with the vision of how they want their day to be.
During my conversation with Tim, it became obvious that relationship played a major role in how he is able to capture his clients as he is photographing them. Since Phocus Photography is a husband and wife team, I was interested to find out how his and Audrey’s styles worked together during a shoot. We’ll pick up our conversation there with Tim’s response
Phocus Photography: Two Styles Combined
Tim: While we do have different styles, we understand each other’s style and we keep in mind what the other is responsible for throughout a shoot. We try to create this entree, if you will, where it’s not just one thing or another. Our styles may differ but that makes the finished product well-rounded. I’ve always felt that was a benefit when we work together.
Because of the strength that having two different perspectives provides, my wife and I always strive and battle to maintain that. We absolutely love going for those high-fashion, wow shots but those kinds of shots don’t really require you to know the client. Whereas when you’re aiming for raw, candid, unfiltered, and unposed moments, knowing the couple is a must. We love both kinds of shots equally, so we really drive to capture them both.
As we’ve grown in our ability, we’ve learned how to set up the moment and then let it happen on its own. I always tell my couples it’s not something that we manufacture. And we definitely don’t want to! It’s just us capturing our couples for who they truly are. Some couples thrive in that high fashion realm. But on the other end, some couples are just super intimate with each other. In an intimate setting, we don’t want the couple to even know that we’re there when we’re capturing those moments.
It all comes down to showing our couples genuinely for who they are. A lot of our couples are not experienced in having photos done. It’s a great feeling to be able to showcase who they are in those photos.
More Than “Just Another Wedding”
Josh: That’s a really cool posture to have when being part of someone’s big day. I think specifically as a photographer it can help make that wedding more special and not “just another wedding”. That philosophy forces you to be more flexible and keeps you on your toes. It allows you to infuse or experience more variety with the different events you’re a part of because each couple is going to have their own distinct style and personality so it becomes less about you the photographer creating something and more capturing the moment.
Tim: Absolutely. Every couple we work with at Phocus Photography has a different way they met. They had different struggles getting to their wedding day. They’ll have to overcome different things in their lives after the wedding. Because of how beautiful that is, we want our role to be more than just showing up, shooting, and delivering photos. From the day that we meet, I want to understand who they are, why they love each other, and where they want to go in their life. I get the privilege to watch each couple start “We’re getting married. We love each other but we don’t know what we’re doing.” Then they get to see their wedding photos. And, having built that relationship with them, I got to watch them blossom as a couple. It’s really incredible and very rewarding.
Josh: That would make it extremely authentic to the couple. I like to adopt a similar philosophy as the DJ/MC. I want their wedding to be a time where the couple can tell their story about who they are. The ceremony and reception should take their guests on the journey of how they’ve come to this point in their lives. The reception is both a celebration of the couple and a gift to their guests.
Phocus Photography’s Ideal Client
What would be some of the characteristics of the ideal client that would fit with Phocus Photography?
Tim: For us, our picture-perfect client is not a specific look or location they’re shooting in it really comes down to a couple of things.
Being Mad Crazy In Love
The first thing is being mad crazy in love with each other. You’d be surprised at what a difference it makes for us as photographers when a couple has natural chemistry and they’re just crazy about each other. They have no idea what they’re doing for photo purposes.
But at the end of the day when they have that natural chemistry, it makes our job so incredibly easy. Because a lot of times you’ll just set them there and they just lovey-dovey on each other. I’ll think, “Dang, I don’t have to do anything for them but capture these moments!” No one wants to look back on photos and see this one awkward pose and remember standing there for 10 minutes while the photographer got their shot. They want to look back and be able to see the chemistry they had with each other. They want to remember the moments as they actually happened. That way they correlate the moment and the photo together to create that full kind of experience.
Valuing The Memories
The second quality that makes an ideal client would be couples that understand the value of what we’re doing. And not just us as Phocus but wedding vendors in general. They see what we’re providing them and what will come of it later after the wedding day is gone. What they will be left with. When we have those couples that know what they’re paying for is totally worth it. That’s something that is really beautiful for us because we know that we’re giving something to them that they value. And, then 10 years or 20 years down the road they have these amazing memories to cherish. The ideal client for us is a couple who is crazy about each other and knows the value behind what we’re doing.
Wrapping It Up With Phocus Photography
Tim, it was a PLEASURE chatting with you. Thanks for taking the time to get on the podcast as well as being such an easy wedding professional to work with! If you’d like to find out more information about Phocus Photography, go to their website. On it, you’ll find their portfolio and where to find them on social media as well.
Stay tuned for updates on when I will be releasing the podcasts I’ve recorded. There is so much more from each of the episodes that just couldn’t make it in blog format. If you have a favorite wedding pro, I’d love the opportunity to chat with them about how they can make future couples’ weddings a highlight!
Check out how Tim has adapted to the coronavirus in last week’s COVID-19 Update.
Last week’s blog was a venue highlight of The Majestic Oaks.