work with indie Bird

indie Bird is a husband-and-wife photography duo based in Chapel Hill, NC capturing weddings and portraits all over Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and the Triangle

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indie Bird

What questions should I ask my wedding photographer?

Below are are ten of the most common questions we receive as wedding photographers during consultations with couples, along with our answers. You can bring these and any other questions you have to your consultations with wedding photographers, us included!

1. How long have you been photographing weddings?

We started indie Bird in 2021. At the time, we lived in Charlotte, NC, and we relocated to Chapel Hill, NC in December of that year. As of the beginning of 2024, we’ve been honored to help 45 couples (and dozens of families and graduates) document some of life’s most exciting milestones.

2. Can we see some of your past work?

Absolutely. Galleries that represent our work are available on our website here. When you inquire, we’re also happy to share full wedding galleries with you so that you can see what the finished product looks like from start to finish.

3. Have you ever photographed a wedding at our venue before?

Some of our favorite venues in the Triangle area are: Carolina Grove, Duke Gardens, Whitaker & Atlantic, The Rickhouse, Caffe Luna, Oakland Farm, UNC Botanical Garden, JC Raulston Arboretum, Trinity United Methodist Church, and the North Carolina Museum of Art.

We’ve also loved traveling to The Inn on Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC, Rockwood Lodge in Highlands, NC, and The Battery in Charleston, SC.

In 2024 and 2025, we’ll be photographing weddings at The Merrimon-Wynne House, Duke Chapel, The Dorsett House, WinMock at Kenderton, The Honeysuckle Tea House, Hope Valley Country Club, St. Mark’s Chapel at Mordecai Historic Park, a private beachfront residence, and more, so stay tuned for blog posts and galleries from those venues as well.

4. How long after the wedding will we receive the photographs?

We provide sneak peeks of your wedding gallery (typically around 30 photos) within 48 hours of your wedding date, and deliver fully edited galleries within 6 weeks of your wedding date. We deliver galleries via a link that you can share with family, friends, and loved ones.

5. Can we order prints directly from you?

You can! We don’t charge extra for full-resolution digital downloads, but you can purchase prints, cards, and wall art directly through the link we’ll use to deliver your gallery. You can also work with us to create a custom heirloom album to commemorate your wedding day.

6. Do you photograph digitally, with film, or both?

Both! We’ve always used film as an anchor for our editing process, matching digital photos as closely as possible to film stocks. How many rolls of film we shoot at each wedding depends on factors such as the weather, venue, and lighting.

7. How would you describe the way you work?

“Unfussy,” “unobtrusive,” “grounding.” It’s our job to be in the moment with you without disrupting it. We’re constantly looking for the best light, the artful angle, and observing small moments and exchanges that often go overlooked. Direct and reassuring, Nate is typically the first to step in and offer guidance and direction if needed. Nate’s work is driven by storytelling; at weddings, you’ll find him capturing candid interactions during cocktail hour and intimate moments on the dance floor. A calming presence, Emma is quick to offer gentle encouragement. Detail-oriented and observant, you’ll find her crafting flat lays, making sure everyone can be seen in large family photos, and capturing guest reactions to reception speeches.

In short, we’re two photographers with two perspectives that work seamlessly together.

8. What are your views on marriage?

As a married couple ourselves (our wedding was on October 14, 2017) we’re big fans of marriage! We’ve experienced firsthand how a healthy marriage empowers, uplifts, and supports both partners. We also love and celebrate all types of marriages – love is love, friends.

We’ve also found that our marriage is something that sets us apart as wedding photographers. We’ve been in your shoes – planning a wedding, hiring vendors, budgeting, and prioritizing what’s most important to us about our wedding day. We’ve also had the time and space to reflect on our own wedding and can now help couples ask questions that we didn’t know to ask ourselves. And on wedding days when we’re photographing together, we know each other well enough to work seamlessly from two perspectives. We’re not a primary photographer and a second shooter who may never have met or worked together before: We’re partners who understand one another, anticipate each other’s needs, and bring two perspectives together to capture everything from the big moments to the tiny details.

9. What is the backup plan if you cannot photograph my wedding for an unexpected reason?

We’ll start by saying this (knock on wood): We’ve never missed a wedding or a photography session.

In the case that a personal emergency arises for us, we’re connected to a network of photographers who we could ask to step in on our behalf. Part of the benefit of being a photography duo is that there are two of us, so if one of us were to get sick, we could tap our network to find a second photographer. We would, of course, be in communication with the couple affected for their final approval of the alternate photographer, and refund the entire cost of the wedding if we couldn’t reach an agreement.

10. What is your backup plan if your camera equipment or file backups fail?

We have redundancies in place to ensure that we are always able to deliver full wedding galleries to our couples. This starts with equipment redundancies and extends to the way we store digital files. We carry 3 digital and 4 film cameras with us on wedding days, at least 8 lenses, and several backup memory cards. Our digital cameras record photos to two memory cards at a time, and we ensure that we have both digital and film perspectives on all the important moments throughout a wedding day. Once we leave a wedding, we immediately back up all of our digital files to an external hard drive, and we keep duplicate backups on an additional drive.

Bonus! We also think it’s important to ask yourself a few questions before talking with your potential wedding photographer, including:

What is my vision for my wedding photographs? What are some words I would use to describe the photos I’m looking for?

How many hours of wedding photography coverage would I like to have on my wedding day? What about prior to my wedding day (for my rehearsal dinner, welcome party, etc.)?

What is my wedding photography budget (typically between 10 and 15% of the overall wedding budget)?

Would I like to have a “first look” with my spouse before walking down the aisle?