What happens to your photos after your wedding day? My post-wedding workflow and processes

The dress is back on its hanger, with your flowers at the base, and the grooms suit and shirt is probably scrunched up in a heap on the floor somewhere. So, what happens next?

This page is to set some expectations as to what you will receive, when you will receive it, and why it takes so long, by sharing my post-wedding workflow and processes.

For me, the post-wedding process starts before I even hit the hay after a mammoth day. Once I am finished for the day, I will then spend the next hour downloading all my memory cards to my MacBook (or iMac if I’m shooting close to my studio). Once they are all downloaded, they still stay on the original cards. At this stage your photos are now backed-up to an external hard drive, so there are now three copies of the photos, and no chance of them being lost. Now I can sleep.

I try to leave it at least a day before looking through the photos with an open mind, but often find myself too excited to wait to look at them (there isn’t much time during the day to look at them all). I’ll have a quick scan through them, pulling aside 10-20 images that jump out at me. I then quickly edit these, nothing too fancy, just a quick spruce up. To keep you sane, I then share these photos with you. I’m happy for you to share them with friends and family, I’d rather you share a couple of photos from me that have had all the tender love and care put into them, than Uncle Joe’s iPhone photo he took of you, blinking. Seems only fair those that couldn’t be there on your big day see you at your finest.

From there, the process is split into two. The first stage is going through every single photo, and deleting any double-ups. This can take up to a day. When I take photos of people (especially ones with groups) I take a burst of photos, nearly every aspect of the photos are identical, except if someone is blinking. So often I end up with 100’s of photos 100% identical, in which case there isn’t much point editing and supplying both, it will only saturate your experience when you come to view the photos for the first time. If there are photos that are similar, but a little bit different, I always supply both copies. I can look at a photo with my photographer’s-eye and have a preference for one or the other, but you may look at both images, and prefer how you look in another. I’d rather give you this opportunity to view both, than to remove it, and for you to never have known that photo even existed. At the end of the day, you’re going to end up with a DVD of all the images, so if you decide not to ever print or display a photo, that’s no problem.

Once I’ve gone through and culled all the images, I then leave it for a couple of days. There’s nothing worse than sinking my head into my Aperture Library for days back-to-back culling, editing, and delivering the images, only to look back later with a fresh eye and be disappointed.

I then go through every selected photo individually and edit a number of things. There isn’t a set rule, or a batch tool I use to work magic over the whole album, each photo needs it’s own attention. While I am editing them, I try and make them look amazing, while still keeping an accurate record of the day in terms of colouring. While it might be nice to have a few photos with nice washed out vintage tones, if the whole album was of this style, you wouldn’t have any photos that accurately depicted the day. I supply a mixture of dramatically edited photos, with some that are much more natural and vibrant. Often if there’s one particular photo I really love, I will edit the photo several times, and supply you with multiple copies of that one photo.

Once the photos are edited, I then batch rename them. For me the experience starts from the moment you receive your DVD, and to open a folder with 100’s of files named IMG_3434, in no particular order isn’t good enough. Your files end up being called 001, 002, 003, etc – from the start of the day till the end.

Within 10 days of your wedding I will email you a secure link to view all the images, in a medium-resolution format. If you want, I can also upload a bulk of the images to an album on my own website for you to share with friends and family (either with open access or a password of your choosing). If you need any high-resolution photos before receiving the DVDs, maybe for printing photo or ‘Thank-You’ cards, I can easily supply these too.

The full-resolution photos are then burnt to a DVD, which is then put through my fancy printer putting a photo and text directly onto the disc. I then design a DVD case to house the DVD, often with a photo wrapped around the entire DVD case, and often including one photo of the entire wedding party. I use the word ‘often’ here a bit, as no two weddings are the same, and I always edit and present things uniquely for each client.

You’re then supplied the DVD, packaged up nicely and couriered (or hand-delivered by me). If you have bought my Premium package, you will receive 5 copies in total. Often is the case that one is for yourselves, one for each set of parents, and one for Best Man & Maid of Honour. If you require extra DVD’s these are only $35ea, as is often the case if parents are separated, or if someone close just wants to get their own copies of the photos.

Before I burn the remainder of the DVDs, I let you go through your own photos first. I supply you with all the images, even if you might not particularly like something about the image, maybe you’re crying, or eating food, or something else funny. I would rather you see these images, they don’t end up anywhere else other than on your DVD. Once you’ve viewed all your images, I get you to let me know if there were any you want removed before burning the rest of the guests DVDs. These are then burnt off and couriered to you.

Once everything is done, I like to put a handful of the best photos on my wedding portfolio, I would also ask that you write a small testimonial that I can display with the photos, for future wedding clients to hear and see how positive your experience was with Brady Dyer Photography.