Cédric Puisney Photography https://cedricpuisney.photography Brussels photographer: Events - Portraits - Architecture - Weddings Fri, 09 Oct 2020 14:38:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://cedricpuisney.photography/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/cropped-cedric-puisney-photography-512px-32x32.gif Cédric Puisney Photography https://cedricpuisney.photography 32 32 10 reasons to hire a pro wedding photographer instead of an amateur https://cedricpuisney.photography/10-reasons-hire-pro-wedding-photographer-vs-amateur/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/10-reasons-hire-pro-wedding-photographer-vs-amateur/#respond Fri, 09 Oct 2020 14:38:19 +0000 http://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1308 The post 10 reasons to hire a pro wedding photographer instead of an amateur appeared first on Cédric Puisney Photography.

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You’re less than a year away from having your wedding? Then it’s time to choose your photographer! And here comes the tricky question:

Should you hire an amateur or a pro photographer?

A wedding is very expensive, therefore it is very tempting to prefer amateurs as they are CHEAPERThis said, saving money on the short term may turn out to be much more expensive in the long run. In other words, hiring an amateur has some cons you may not have thought of.

If you’re hungry to read more, here are 10 reasons to prefer a pro to a casual shooter:

1. A pro is consistent

For sure, amateur photographers might take a couple of great photos of you in a nice location under a beautiful sun. But what happens if it rains or if the party location is very dark?

No matter the circumstances, a pro is always prepared to shoot and deliver consistently good photos all day long.

2. A pro is reliable

Have you ever thought of your photographer losing some or, even worse, all of your wedding photos due to a technical failure? We tend to see photography only through the eyes of creativity. The truth is modern (digital) photography is also a lot of IT. Have you ever thought of the consequences if your photographer’s camera fails, if his/her memory card fails, if his/her computer fails at home?

If I speak for myself, I always shoot weddings with 2 cameras = if one of them dies, I’ll still have one.
On top of this, each of my cameras simultaneously saves every photo on 2 memory cards = if one card fails and accidentally deletes some photos, I’ll still have a copy on the second card.
Last but not least, once I go home, my whole work is saved 3 times : on my computer + an external hard drive + the Cloud.

Obviously, all of this material has a price – which you, the client, will indirectly pay for – but when it comes to preserving your most precious memories, better safe than sorry!

3. A pro is much more than a shooter

Getting married is a complete experience which should be complemented with pro services. For sure, an amateur might be able to take good photos of you. And that’s it!

A pro will always go the extra mile and offer you extra services, like sending you photos in various formats (for printing + for your social media), or creating premium photo albums for you and your loved ones.

4. A pro is a true multi-talent

An amateur may have a solid portfolio made of holiday landscapes and photos of his/her dog. That may be it.

Shooting a wedding is a very versatile exercise which includes shooting a lot of details (objects, food, decoration), venues (ceremony and party buildings, open air areas) and above all people and emotions…

Speaking of emotions, as simple as it looks, pros will probably make better couple photos than amateurs, as they will guide you through different couple poses with confidence and make sure you will feel comfortable and look great.

Pros will also be able to create compelling candid images whereas amateurs will prefer shooting selfies and group pictures on the run. Sure, the latter will reflect your guests having fun, but they will lack any candid emotions.

5. A pro is your secret helper

Sometimes it’s good to trust an “expert”. While amateurs may be asking you all the time what you want during your wedding, pros know what they have to do.
First, because they will meet you before the wedding and discuss all the details.
Second, because they know how to behave on D-day and do their “job”. As such, a pro photographer is an asset which will help you keep on track with your schedule.

6. A pro brings you peace of mind

Sometimes it’s reassuring to know that everything is fixed on a written contract. This paper can really save you in case something extraordinary happens:

    1. in case there’s a legal argument between you and the photographer. Nobody wants this but it’s best to be prepared for the worst case scenario.
    2. in case of an accident. Imagine if your photographer asks you to step back a bit and you accidentally fall down the stairs. Who will pay for your hospitalization?
    3. in case of Force majeure. Imagine if your wedding is planned while there is a Covid-19 pandemic and the photographer won’t accept to pay you back.

When you sign a contract with a pro photographer, you also sign for an insurance which will address all of the above mentioned potential issues.

Again, reliability should not be an option.

7. A pro saves you time

A big difference between a pro and an amateur comes when it’s time to deliver the photos. Most of the amateurs will send you ALL of their photos – good or bad, sharp or blurry, well-exposed or not – and let their client sort them out. When you know you can shoot a couple of thousands photos during a wedding day… Good luck for sorting out the best out of it!

A pro only delivers the BEST shots, sorted out, retouched and ready to be printed on quality paper.

Would you like to sort the best x hundreds pictures among thousands?

8. A pro can’t afford to deliver crap

Being a pro is not just a slogan. If you fail as a pro to deliver good photos, you risk your whole reputation, especially in the age of social media. A bad review on Google Business, Facebook or Yelp can truly harm a business.

If you fail as an amateur, you will just lose potential friends.

9. A pro is like jamón ibérico*

I acknowledge it: the most expensive camera / photographer doesn’t automatically mean the best photos on Earth. Still, I do think that the price point reflects a certain quality.

An expensive jamón ibérico from the local butcher is obviously not in the same league as wet-cured ham from Aldi… In the end, you get what you pay for!

What do you think of so-called pros who shoot a whole wedding day for let’s say 400€? 🙄

* I apologize in advance to all vegans and vegetarians for this comparison

10. A pro is cheaper by all means!

To sum up, even though a pro seems more expensive at first sight, it is eventually way cheaper than an amateur. A pro will not only save you time and stress, (s)he will guarantee you keep quality memories of this unique day for the rest of your life.

Now if you are convinced and you would like to meet me and discuss your future wedding photos, feel free to visit my wedding page & contact me here. 😉

 

Cover photo credit: Jamon Iberico by Ajay Suresh – cc-by-2.0 – from Wikimedia

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Why you need a professional LinkedIn headshot photographer 📸 https://cedricpuisney.photography/why-you-need-linkedin-headshot-pro-photographer/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/why-you-need-linkedin-headshot-pro-photographer/#respond Mon, 22 Jun 2020 16:09:08 +0000 https://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1613 Whether you live in Brussels, Paris or Geneva, you probably have a Linkedin profile including a corporate headshot photo. And you’re right to do so! LinkedIn is indeed the reference platform to develop your business connections, your skills and above all the best place to land a new job. “Your name and your online CV […]

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Whether you live in Brussels, Paris or Geneva, you probably have a Linkedin profile including a corporate headshot photo. And you’re right to do so! LinkedIn is indeed the reference platform to develop your business connections, your skills and above all the best place to land a new job.

“Your name and your online CV are your own brand while your LinkedIn headshot is your own logo”

In other words, LinkedIn is your premier online business hub and your professional digital identity.

You may already know about the 10 golden rules in LinkedIn headshot photography. You may also have a decent photo. But can you assess how professional your LinkedIn photo really is?


DID YOU KNOW IT?

LinkedIn profiles with a photo =
🔎 
21 X more profile views
📥 
36 X more likely to receive messages.

LinkedIn profiles with a professional headshot =
👀 
14 X more views!

Source: LinkedIn blog


Why you should hire a professional headshot photographer for your LinkedIn

Your LinkedIn photo is your personal brand

We live in the age of digital and personal branding. Therefore, your name and your online CV are your own brand while your LinkedIn headshot is your own logo. You can trust me on this, I used to be a marketer…

Simply said, your LinkedIn photo should convey your values and assets and also invite other professionals to meet you. 

Even during these Covid-19 / ‘working from home’ times, we remain humans who, as such, need to meet, greet and feel each other in real life. As a consequence, your profile photo on social media, especially on LinkedIn needs to be reassuring and engaging:

  • Reassuring, while showing you as someone confident and credible.
  • Engaging, while showing you as a bright and approachable person.

Your LinkedIn photo is your business accelerator

A good image is worth a thousand words.

How does your image stand out from the competition? Can it help you get a job interview out of dozens up to a couple of hundreds of applications? Trust your feelings, you know the answer…

Your image should better be convincing when you know that a picture is processed by our brain in a couple of seconds – if not a fraction – and that this image is likely to stick for a looooooong time, even after meeting in-person.

There won’t be a second impression. Take care of the first one!

Your LinkedIn photo should represent your true self

A professional headshot photography shouldn’t simply show how good you look in your business attire. It should show the world who you truly are deep down, as a human being.

You may for example never smile in front of a camera, but deep in your heart you know you’re a very approachable and nice person who even likes to laugh occasionally. How can you fix this?

Simple answer: Hire a professional headshot photographer! Our job is precisely to make you confident, forget about your fears and just shine!

This is something that no selfie or amateur photographer will ever be able to offer you.


4 reasons to hire me as your LinkedIn headshot photographer in Brussels

You know you’re a pro in your area of expertise, so am I. If you choose me as your LinkedIn headshot photographer in Brussels (I also shoot in Belgium or anywhere else on demand), this is what I can bring you:

1. Peace of mind

I know my craft and I know how to consistently leverage the best composition, lighting, posing and post-processing to create the best headshot portrait of you. Feel free to check my portfolio.

2. A moment of fun and human exchanges 

Everyone knows it: Photographers do their job because it makes fun! As a pro, I want my clients to have as much fun as I do. That’s why I guide my clients to get the most natural-looking results. That’s also why I like to exchange ideas and thoughts with you.

In order to make photos that look like and summarize YOU, as a professional and as a human being.

3. Enough time to reach excellence

My shootings last at least 1 hour. It may seem long but time flies when you have fun and you will! I know how intimidating it is to meet someone new, even more in front of a camera!

So why 1 hour? From my experience, it takes you about 30 min to become comfortable and look as natural as on a candid shot! After 1h of shooting, you may even surprise yourself how photogenic you can be under the guidance of a professional photographer. Think about it next time you see an ad for a “15 min headshot session”!

👎 Think twice before hiring a low-cost photographer: Short sessions of 10 to 30 min are just a waste of time & money!


4. Retouching done the right way

Contrary to many other Brussels professional headshot portrait photographers, I retouch all of my photos. This way, I can assure you I will minimize minor skin flaws which may embarrass you and enhance your assets. Keep in mind you want to hire a pro, not an amateur! My job is to create photos with your BEST look. 

Did I convince you to hire a professional portrait photographer? If so, feel free to book your headshot photography shooting in Brussels!

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10 tips for a professional LinkedIn photo https://cedricpuisney.photography/10-tips-professional-linkedin-photographer-brussels/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/10-tips-professional-linkedin-photographer-brussels/#respond Tue, 09 Jun 2020 20:28:18 +0000 https://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1619 The post 10 tips for a professional LinkedIn photo appeared first on Cédric Puisney Photography.

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Don’t judge a book by its cover, so they say… Except that, like most of us, including me, you will probably judge others on social media, based on a single photo!

Maybe your resume rocks. What if your LinkedIn photo sucks? It will harm your digital identity and all of your business efforts, especially if you’re looking for a new job.

Sure, you could keep using what you have on-hand, i.e. that candid photo taken by a friend where you look OK. Better than nothing. But the consequences can be as counterproductive as one of the photos exposed below and give a bad impression of you.

Anyway, if you don’t know where to start, here are 10 tips to get the professional LinkedIn photo you deserve.

NB: All the photos used below are real photos of some of my contacts on Linkedin. Out of respect, I’ve blurred the faces so they cannot be identified.

1. No selfies, no webcam!

Linkedin headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - selfie sdb

This man is not a hairdresser!

LinkedIn is not Tinder, nor Facebook! No head hunter or future boss wants to see your face at the end of your extended arms or from your mirror’s reflection!

And none of them wants to see you through your webcam either.

2. No avatar or WTF item!

LinkedIn-default-avatar

Simply uninspired & tasteless.

You’re a real person. You have taste and personality. Why would you hide behind a cartoon avatar, or worse, behind the tasteless LinkedIn dummy icon by default?

Would you like to contact or hire someone who looks like this?

3. Pose like a pro, get dressed like a pro

Linkedin headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - radiateur

Why does he wear a t-shirt in front of a radiator?

You may like Disney t-shirts, so do I! But, between you and me, let’s keep them in the closet. Recruiters and professionals on LinkedIn prefer standard business attire.

When it comes to clothing, there is no “thinking out of the box”. Unless you are a fashion designer or an artist.

In the same order of ideas, you should prohibit any fashion item unrelated to business: hats, caps, sunglasses, short pants or flip-flops… Keep them for your holiday pictures… on Facebook!

4. Be alone on your photo

Linkedin headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - cutout peopl

Why did this magenta-colored face cut out 2 people from his photo?

This sounds obvious for most of us, but no recruiter would like to hire your pet, your BFF or your wife! It’s all about hiring YOU and not your close ones.

Also, do not use photos of you hinting at other human beings cut out of the frame.

5. A LinkedIn headshot is all about your HEAD!

Linkedin headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - ski background

This is not a professional skier!

You may have a gorgeous body. Good for you, but that’s not LinkedIn’s business. Keep it for your Tinder!

And don’t get your head lost in the frame! A photo for your printed CV or LinkedIn profile is all about your face, well-centered and proportionate. Keep in mind that a LinkedIn photo is about 300 px wide = there won’t be much of you to see if you pose in the middle of a room or landscape…

6. Take care of the background

Linkedin headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - brol background

Who the *** are these people behind???

The same way you shouldn’t pose with others, you shouldn’t pose in front of a crowded background which can shift attention from the main subject: you.

This means for example:

  • No sea! Unless you’re a professional holiday-taker?
  • No golf course or sports club. Unless you’re a professional athlete.
  • And no green plants taking half the space around you: you’re not a gardener, for God’s sake!

7. Look straight into the camera

Linkedin headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - from side

Who is he looking at? Not you obviously!

Have you ever noticed those people who look at anything but your eyes when they shake your hand? Have you ever thought of what this behavior means?

So what do you think of those LinkedIn photos where the subjects look at their feet or a wall nearby? What are they trying to escape? Whatever the reason behind this clumsy, if not rude behavior, this will break any possible connection between you – as a professional and a potential candidate – and the viewer, aka your potential future employer. Is this what you really want?

8. Smile!

LinkedIn headshot photographer Brussels Belgium - No smile

Smile, what’s the use of crying? You’ll find that life is still worthwhile if you just smile…

A smiling face is ALWAYS more attractive than a so-called “serious” one. Period!

Smiling evokes positive energy, trust and approachability. While Americans tend to always smile on their headshots – and for a good reason! – we Europeans, especially the older male managers tend not to smile in order to inspire a so-called seriousness. This situation is in fact so dramatically anchored in our European mindset that women of power tend to copy this and won’t allow themselves to smile. In my opinion, this attitude is unfortunate and stupidly outdated. Yes, you can smile and look like a professional!

Why would you seriously not smile?

9. No blur, no filter, no ugly light!

Linkedin headshot photography Brussels - WTF from below

Why this color, this angle, this pose? WHY?

You think that adding some blur or Instagram filters on your headshot photo will make you some kind of an artist? You couldn’t be more wrong. Or that converting a poor smartphone color photo to black & white will make it and you awesome? You couldn’t be more wrong.

You are free to waste your time and take an average photo… Or you can spend your money wisely and hire a professional photographer who knows his craft, his gear and how to make the best LinkedIn headshot photo for you.

10. An up-to-date LinkedIn photo

Like for an ID card, the point of a good photo for social media is to recognize you at the present time. Sadly, some LinkedIn users do not update their photo as regularly as they should. Either way, these people are not tech-savvy or they do not assume their age.

If you’re part of the 1st category, this tells recruiters a simple message: you cannot be trusted on your IT-knowledge, including social media. How could you be if you can’t even have an up-to-date LinkedIn photo?

If you’re part of the 2nd category, well, just assume who you are: every age range has its benefits! Hiding your age is a dangerous game if you have to meet someone in-person. At best, it will generate a bad surprise; at worst, the wrong impression that you are a liar and that you cannot be trusted as such.

Your Linkedin photographer in Brussels

Did I convince you to upgrade your LinkedIn profile photo and your personal branding? If so, feel free to hire me. I shoot headshots in the Brussels area and everywhere else in Belgium on-demand.

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2 Pro Tips to Better Sell Your House or Flat https://cedricpuisney.photography/2-pro-tips-better-sell-house-apartment-brussels/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/2-pro-tips-better-sell-house-apartment-brussels/#respond Tue, 26 May 2020 15:25:20 +0000 http://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1548 The post 2 Pro Tips to Better Sell Your House or Flat appeared first on Cédric Puisney Photography.

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Like we say in Belgium: “Belgians have a brick in their stomach”. There comes indeed a time in your life when you have to sell your apartment on the Belgian coast or your house in Brussels: quickly and at the best price. But how can you sell quickly and easily without spending too much?

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication” – Leonardo da Vinci.

You got it right: Better selling is due to the concept of “simplicity”, in a noble sense, in its appearances and in its representation. Put simply, you have to reorganize your property to reveal its assets and enhance them with the best quality photos.


1. Home staging : Simplify your property

Whatever your taste, how do you feel when you enter a space overloaded with furniture and objects, with sometimes questionable hygiene, in a dark and old-fashioned atmosphere? You do know the answer… And the solution: home staging! Or the art of getting rid of all the unnecessary things in your home in order to make your potential buyers feel so good that they would immediately call it their future home. And here are his 7 commandments:

1. A clean house, from the garage to the attic

Coffee stains on the table do not give the right impression.

2. An impeccably tidy house

With a clean kitchen, the beds made, the shoes stored in the cupboard, etc. And above all, no packaging lying around!

3. A “neutral” or “depersonalized” house

Difficult for potential buyers to imagine themselves in your house if it is crowded with photos of your loved ones and other “unusual” objects, e.g. a collection of porcelain cats in a display cabinet (#truestory) … You must imperatively free your home from your (too) personal items and clean everything up while thinking of a decoration magazine!

4. A spacious and bright house

Do white walls speak to you? These two words alone summarize this basic trend for several years which aims at amplifying the notions of space and light. Is your wall painting starting to peel? Are your wallpapers from another time? Paint them all white! Another advantage is white walls also make your home more neutral (see point 3).

5. A functional house

If need be, repair any apparent small defaults. Hanging electrical outlets or wires, a leaking tap, large cracks in your wooden floor, etc. The accumulation of all these small defects give a very bad impression of neglect. Even worse, they could suggest hidden flaws …

6. A modern bathroom and kitchen

These two rooms are key to a positive first impression and a higher selling price. If you can’t upgrade them, because they are obsolete, spend some time and money to “refresh” them in some way. As an example, repainting old wall tiles in white, replacing a tap or ugly cupboard handles can change things in a positive way.

7. And the garden too!

Some mowed grass and trees, some land freed from weeds, inspires confidence. Even better, if you can, plant some flowers! In short, take care of appearances before the sale! Keep in mind that the first visit to your home will be decisive: There will be no second impression!

Sell your house in Brussels, Belgium
For sale: Thrift store house in average condition. Work needed. (Source: Boredpanda)

Doll house for sale, Brussels, Belgium
For sale: Doll house in very good condition. No panic, none of them is possessed!
(Source: Boredpanda)

 


2. Ask for professional real estate photography

Now that your home has adopted its best look, you still need to make a snapshot of its new status with great-looking photos.

Warning: Like on a dating site, photos of your house on a real estate website can make or break your sale!

In other words, excellent or poor photos can attract or repel potential buyers. With immediate and often definitive consequences. The photos of your house or apartment should reassure and inspire confidence. They should glorify your property, i.e. display it in its best shape, without being misleading advertising.

A picture is worth a thousand words. Take the test: Click in the middle of the images below and drag the arrow. For your information, on the left the amateur photo; on the right the pro photo…

Living room - Salle à manger - House photographer Brussels - Photographe immobilier Ixelles Bruxelles
Balcony - Amateur photo XL Terrace - Real estate photography Ixelles - Photographie immobilière Ixelles
Kitchen - Amateur Photo Kitchen - Real estate pro photographer Brussels
Chambre Bedroom - Professional real estate photography Brussels
Living room Brussels - real estate amateur photo Real estate + architectural photographer Brussels - Photographe immobilier et d'architecture Bruxelles - Art nouveau living room black & white Ixelles

NB: It is also unfortunately not rare that certain “professional” real estate agents in Belgium take amateurish photos to sell houses… Just browse Immoweb and let yourself be surprised!


Who should you talk to? How should you proceed?

There are 2 ways of looking at this:

  • Either you want absolute tranquility and want to manage nothing, for several 1.000 euros,
  • Or you want to invest a little of your time and a 100 + euros (or a little more, depending on the size of your property) to sell on your own, in less time and for a better price.

Option 1: Contact a real estate agent

Advantages

Using a real estate agency in Belgium is expensive, but it remains a guarantee of serenity. For a fee of 3% of the sale price + VAT, your agent will take care of the sale, from A to Z:

  • Estimated sale price
  • Home staging advice
  • Pictures
  • Advertising and visit management
  • Management of the administrative part.
Disadvantages

The costs of 3% exVAT remain almost invariable, regardless of the seriousness of the agency and the quality of their photos. Which is a pity as these real estate photos are essential since they can make you fall in love with a house in a couple of clicks on Immoweb.

The problem is that Belgium is full of agents who do not all share the same ethics, nor the same quality requirements in terms of real estate photography.

You can blindly trust the seriousness of the bigger names in the real estate industry, serving premium clients (Sotheby’s, Barnes, Engel & Völkers, Immo Vermast, Archybald & co), or mass audiences (Century 21, Trevi, etc.). This said, we have to acknowledge some big differences in the quality of their photos. Everyone has their own priorities! But the devil is in the detail and the overall quality is judged precisely on these small details, especially when it comes to premium.

There remains the question of the least serious agents in all aspects. How can you recognize them? Through some foolproof details:

  • An often amateurish logo which is generally disproportionately displayed on top of their photos (maybe they’re afraid to see their “beautiful” images stolen?)
  • Photos of average or mediocre quality, which are often poorly framed and exposed (too dark or too bright) and, more and more, look “HDR-unnatural”
  • They send you housing ads which rarely match your search criteria

Ultimately, this type of agent rarely lives up to promises.

Professional photographer - Sell your house or appartment in Brussels and Belgium

For sale: Multi-functional wooden staircase (incl. open closet, flower pot and a niche for knick-knacks) in a very good state!
(Source: Website of a true Brussels real estate agency whose name was modified out of respect)

Option 2: Contact a professional photographer

Advantages

Once your house is shiny and tidy, hire a professional photographer specializing in real estate / architectural photography. Leave him/her a few hours in your home, at his/her ease, and you will get two days later photos of your house or apartment, as you have never seen it, and of a quality far superior to any real estate agent, including “premium” agents. Everyone’s got their own vocation…

When you invest a 100 + euros into professional photos, you will immediately raise the perceived value of your house by a few 1000s of euros.

Disadvantages

There are as many photographers as real estate agents… Be savvy, do not be fooled by the myth of professional photographers who know how to photograph everything and anything! A photographer specializing in babies and pregnant women, for example, is certainly not the right person to contact. Nor an event photographer. With some exceptions, of which I am.

The best piece of advice is to take a look at the photographer’s portfolio.

Conclusion

So, which professional will you pick to help you sell your house in Belgium: the real estate agent or the photographer?
If you prefer to sell your home by yourself and hire a professional photographer, feel free to have a look at my portfolio + contact me here!

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20 Best Castle Wedding Venues in Belgium https://cedricpuisney.photography/20-best-wedding-castle-venues-belgium/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/20-best-wedding-castle-venues-belgium/#respond Fri, 22 May 2020 16:53:13 +0000 http://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1487 Are you looking for a unique place, at the same time magical and photogenic, to celebrate your wedding? Let’s get nuts! Experience what it’s like to have your own fairytale royal wedding in a castle for a day! This is an excellent choice which will not only make your wedding day unforgettable but also help […]

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Are you looking for a unique place, at the same time magical and photogenic, to celebrate your wedding? Let’s get nuts! Experience what it’s like to have your own fairytale royal wedding in a castle for a day! This is an excellent choice which will not only make your wedding day unforgettable but also help your photographer create memorable wedding photos for you.

No need to travel abroad! Belgium is full of gems, from Antwerp to the Luxembourg Province, from Hainaut to East-Flanders. And the best part is: you’ll never have to drive more than 2h to reach your castle!

Let yourself be inspired by these 20 royal and unbelievably romantic venues.


Antwerp Province (3)

1. Kasteel den Brandt (Antwerp)

Kasteel den Brandt, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Marc Gemis, Wikimedia

Do not trust its name which evokes a place destroyed by fire. This little castle from the 19th century, in a neo-Louis XVI style, is greener than ever today, surrounded by a 21 ha – park (including a French garden and an English garden), also surrounded by other parks which altogether form the Nachtegalenpark, un landscape ensemble protected since 2005.

In a nutshell:

  • 3 rooms and a terrace
  • Seating for: 56 to 88 people
  • Large free parking
  • Possibility to choose your caterer
  • Hotel proximity by foot: Crown Plaza Antwerp (10 min) and Ramada Plaza Antwerp (20 min).

Reviews on Google: 4,3/5 | Official website (NL)

2. Kasteel van Brasschaat (Brasschaat)

Kasteel van Brasschaat, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Torsade de Pointes, Wikimedia

Take a neo-classical castle from the 19th century, put it in a green setting of 170 ha, add a rose garden to it, a few fountains and ponds and you get this dream place totally worthy of a princess wedding.

A huge terrace with a view on the pond is also available and can be used for a secular and nondenominational wedding ceremony.

Note for the movie lovers: the movie “Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children” was shot in Torenhof Castle, only 2 km away.

In a nutshell:

  • 7 rooms which can host up to 1000 people + even more on the terrace
  • Free 250 parking spots
  • In-house catering imposed
  • No accommodation

Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 | Official website (NL)

3. Wolvenbos (Kapellen)

Wolvenbos, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: wolvenbos.be

Like Corneille wrote in Le Cid: “In souls nobly born, valour does not depend upon age”. There is no question that this “young” neoclassical castle from the 20th century located in the middle of nature, with no house nearby, is a true hidden gem.

Imagine a superb castle in a no less superb park of 42 ha, introduced by a long tree-lined driveway.

The domain is divided in two spaces: the castle and the “secret garden”, with an orchard and a couple of greenhouses, invisible from the outside of the estate, even invisible from the castle itself…

In a nutshell:

  • Possibility to rent the castle and/or the secret garden
  • 100 to 200 seats, even more with the tent in the garden
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Free parking
  • Possibility to choose your caterer
  • Accommodation: 3 suites

Reviews on Google: 4,7/5 – Facebook: 4,8/5 | Official website (NL)


West Flanders (1)

4. Kasteel van Moerkerke (Damme)

Kasteel van Moerkerke, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Marc Ryckaert, Wikimedia

If you enjoy the Middle Ages, this is the place to be! The foundations of this castle are estimated to date back to the 12th century. At the time, it was the keep of the Lord van Moerkerke, surrounded, as it should, with moats. 900 years and a couple of construction works later, this castle has become since the 1960’s a major place for receptions, charming in every way, as much for its opulent interior as its shimmering exterior, including 3 ha of greenery and a pond.

In a nutshell:

  • 6 rooms of variable size (from 20 to 200 seats) + terrace option
  • Accommodation: Hotels in Bruges (10 km away)
  • In-house catering
  • Free parking

Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 | Official website (NL)


East Flanders (1)

5. Kasteel van Leeuwergem (Zottegem)

Kasteel van Leeuwergem, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Wikimedia

Even if the first version of this castle dates back to the 15th century, the current one actually dates back to the 18th century, a period in which the castle was deeply transformed, based upon the ‘château Bellevue’ in Meudon.

Before you reach this castle, you will first have to deserve it and drive through a 700m tree-lined driveway, like a royal convoy…

NB: The park houses a magnificent green open-air theater, surrounded by statues, the last such one in Belgium and the north of France, which makes it the perfect place to celebrate a secular wedding ceremony or to put up a tent for even more guests.

In a nutshell:

  • 3 spaces (castle, pavilion, orangerie)
  • Seating for: 30 to 200 (or even more with a tent)
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Accommodation: 3 bedrooms in the “conciergerie”
  • Free 200 spots parking 

Reviews on Google: 4,3/5 | Official website (FR-NL)


Flemish Brabant (5)

6. Kasteel Terblock (Overijse)

Kasteel Terblock, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: terblock.be

Right in the middle of the Sonian forest (forêt de Soignes), this superb castle from the 19th century, made of bricks and stone, in the style of the Dukes of Brabant, benefits from an easy access from Brussels.

Thanks to its private and classified park of 30 ha, this place is a classic for garden parties, cultural events, team buildings and above all for wedding and engagement parties.

In a nutshell:

  • 6 rooms in the castle + Orangerie as an option
  • Seating for: 20 570
  • No accommodation
  • Possibility to choose your caterer from a list
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Free and private parking with 400 spots

Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 – Facebook 4,7/5 | Official website (FR-NL)

7. Kasteel van Bouchout (Meise)

Château Bouchout, Meise, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Jean-Pol GRANDMONT, Wikimedia

Dating back to the 12th century, this castle was the residence of Charlotte of Belgium, daughter of King Léopold I and Empress of Mexico, before it became this exceptional place of celebration. The castle comes with a unique green scenery in Belgium as it is nested right in the middle of the National Botanic Garden of Belgium, in Meise, in the north-west of Brussels. This means you will get a free access to the whole garden if you organize your wedding there. A real treat for your guests and your photographer, all the more during spring time!

In a nutshell:

  • 3 rooms
  • Seating for: 30, 40 or 100 max
  • No accommodation
  • Possibility to choose your caterer
  • Free parking with 150 spots

Reviews on Google: 4,3/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)

8. Kasteel Groot-Bijgarden (Groot-Bijgarden)

Kasteel Groot-Bijgaarden, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Wikimedia

Located in the west of Brussels, this castle is famous for its annual flower exhibition, “Floralia”, dedicated to tulips laid out across the 14 ha of the estate.

The building of this flemish Renaissance style castle spread across the 12th, 14th and 17th centuries, adding step by step the 30m high keep, the drawbridge, the main building and the chapel. The current modern shape was only adopted in the 20th century after 30 years of intense renovation works.

In a nutshell:
 
  • Seating for: 50 320 + option of gardens and/or Orangerie
  • No accommodation
  • List of caterers imposed
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Hourly limit: Additional costs after 2 am 
  • Free and private parking
Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)

9. Kasteel Gravenhof (Dworp)

Kasteel Gravenhof, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Sally V, Wikimedia

Located in the south-west of Brussels, close to the famous Hallerbos and its enchanting bluebells, Gravenhof is a dream place to celebrate your wedding.

The castle has had a rather tumultuous history. Built in 1649 near a farm dating from the 15th century, it was destroyed in 1684 by the army of Louis XIV. Between the changes of owners, a double world war, and a chronic lack of maintenance, nothing was spared to it! Fortunately, the castle was retaliated in 1988 and renovated from top to bottom to match modern standards of comfort.

With its superb 4-hectare park, including a pond and a playground, the castle will also be a nice playground for children from 7 to 77 years old, including your photographer.

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 240 people
  • Accommodation: 26 bedrooms on site
  • In-house caterer imposed
  • Free and private parking

Reviews on Google: 4,2/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)

10. Hof ten Steen (Linter)

Hof ten Steen, Linter, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Kristien 7373, Wikimedia

Located at the border between the Flemish-Brabant and the Belgian Limburg Province, this farm-castle has a rich history. Being originally a small fortress built in the 13th century, this property has become a real castle in the 17th century. Unfortunately, in 1868, lightning strikes across it and deeply damages the property which will be transformed into a farm. From its medieval past remain however its fortified tower and a pond, as remains of the old moat.

The castle is also famous for hosting on December 2, 1789 the signing of an armistice between General van der Meersch, at the head of the Brabant revolution, and Colonel de Brou, representing the Austrian Netherlands.

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 100 to 300 people
  • Accommodation: Bridal suite included in the price. B&B nearby.
  • In-house caterer imposed
  • Free parking

Reviews on Google: 4,3/5 – Facebook: 4,6/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)


Walloon Brabant (2)

11. Château de la Hulpe (la Hulpe)

Château de la Hulpe, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Michal Osmenda, Wikimedia

Former property of Count Solvay, this magnificent French-inspired castle enjoys a unique park of ​​227 ha, classified as exceptional heritage of Wallonia. Between its French garden, its many hidden corners and its multiple ponds, la Hulpe is pure joy for the bride and groom, their guests and their photographer.

The rental of the castle includes the privatization of the various salons and gardens.

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 10 to 210 people
  • Accommodation: Hotel Dolce (5 min away by car)
  • No in-house caterer. You’re free to choose any.
  • Hourly limit: 3am
  • Free parking

Reviews on Google: 4,6/5 – Facebook: 4,8/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)

12. Château d’Hélécine (Hélécine)

Château d'Hélécine, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: EmDee, Wikimedia

Halfway between Brussels and Liège, this sumptuous neoclassical castle from the 18th century and its 28 ha park will certainly impress your guests.

It is hard to imagine that originally, this building was founded in 1129 as an abbey which has spanned centuries and the wars of religion until 1796, when its canons were expelled by the French revolution.

The abbey is then cut out, in the literal sense (some coming to plunder the beautiful cut stones), as figuratively (sold to several people). It even becomes a textile mill, then a brandy distillery and a sugar factory.

The castle adopted its current appearance in 1870. Under the will of the then owner, the abbey palace was transformed into a residential castle with its park and its outbuildings.

This castle has the advantage of being able to host very large weddings, thanks to two immense and majestic rooms:

  1. The Dome, whose eponymous summit rises to 27 meters, and which can accommodate up to 300 seated guests (600 in cocktail mode)
  2. L’Orangerie which can accommodate up to 500 seated guests (800 in cocktail mode)!

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 70-500 people
  • No accommodation
  • In-house caterer imposed
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Private parking

Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)

 

Hainaut Province (3)

13. Château du Biez (Pecq)

Château du Biez, Pecq, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium
Photo credit: biez-traiteur.com

Located halfway between Kortrijk and Tournai, a stone’s throw from Lille and France, this 17th century castle, in a very medieval style with its moats and drawbridge, is an address of choice for future grooms from Belgium or Lille.

The estate benefits from a 4-hectare park, ideal for your couple and family photos, and an Orangerie in which it is possible to organize a reception or a secular wedding ceremony.

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 20-300 people
  • Accommodation: 5 min walk to the Hôtel Haras des Chartreux (10 bedrooms) 
  • In-house caterer imposed
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Private parking

Reviews on Google: 4,6/5 – Facebook: 4,8/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)

14. Château-Fort De Feluy (Seneffe)

Château fort de Feluy - Wedding ceremony & party castle, BelgiumPhoto credit: traiteur-lmdt.be

Located near Nivelles, within a 1/2h drive from Brussels, this 14th century fortified castle, listed as a historic monument, ticks all the boxes for lovers of the Middle Ages: the keep, the moats crossed by a bridge and the flowery park.

In a nutshell:
 
  • 3 rooms at your disposal
  • Seating for: 150 people max
  • No accommodation
  • No caterer imposed
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Hourly limit: 3am
  • Free parking with 150 spots
Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 – Facebook: 4,6/5 | Official website (FR)

 

15. Château de la Rocq (Arquennes)

Château de la Rocq, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Drongo92 sur Wikimedia

Located 30 min drive south of Brussels, 10 km west of Nivelles.

Even if this castle dates from the 17th century as a whole, the construction of the keep and its tower dates in fact from the end of the 14th century.

Imagine all the modern comfort in a medieval setting, worthy of a film set. Entirely surrounded by a moat, the castle will also offer you 30 hectares of parkland for a beautiful romantic stroll accompanied by an unforgettable photo session.

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 330 people
  • Accommodation: 18 bedrooms
  • In-house caterer imposed
  • Outside swimming-pool
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Free and private parking
Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 | Official website (FR-NL-EN)
 
 

Liège Province (2)

16. Château de Waleffe Saint-Pierre (Faimes)

Château de Waleffe Saint-Pierre, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: Jean-Pol GRANDMONT, Wikimedia

Dating from the 18th century, this Mosan-style castle is part of the major heritage of Wallonia. Do not be fooled by appearances: Behind its rather austere appearance hides in fact an opulent and refined decoration in Louis XIV style.

In a nutshell:

  • 3 spaces : main floor, old kitchens, tower
  • Seating for: 40 300 people, even more in the gardens
  • Accommodation: 3 bedrooms
  • Possibility to choose your caterer
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Hourly limit: 3 am
  • Free and private parking of 500 spots

Reviews on Google: 4,3/5 | Official website (EN)

17. Château de Tinlot (Tinlot)

Château de Tinlot, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: chateaudetinlot.com

This castle dating from 1776, owned by a family of entrepreneurs from Liège, took up residence on the ruins of a first construction dating from the Gallo-Roman era.

Since 2018, the castle has been available for rent. By its size and elegance, the place is ideal for celebrating your engagement or your wedding.

Note that the area also has a chapel of around 50 seats, dating from the 17th. This one, still consecrated to this day, can be used to celebrate a Catholic marriage, subject to the authorization of the local clergy.

In a nutshell:
  • 4 spaces : main hall, salle à manger, serre, grand salon
  • Seating for: 36 200 people, or even more with a tent in the garden
  • Accommodation: 9 bedrooms + a 10-bed dormitory
  • You’re free to choose your caterer
  • Free and private parking
Reviews on Google: 4,5/5 | Official website (FR)
 
 

Luxembourg Province (1)

18. Château de Resteigne (Tellin)

Château de Resteigne, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: chateauderesteigne.be

Located on the edge of the Lesse river, between Brussels and Luxembourg, this 16th century castle – whose first foundations even date back from the 12th – offers you an ideal rural setting for your wedding party.

The estate also has a chapel capable of celebrating Catholic weddings in front of around 100 people.

In a nutshell:
  • 2 rooms: barn + salons
  • Seating for: 350 people (barn) + 250 (salons)
  • Accommodation: 15 bedrooms
  • List of caterers proposed
  • Free parking: 350 spots
Reviews on Google: 4,4/5 | Official website (FR-NL)

 

Namur Province (2)

19. Château Bayard (Éghezée)

Château Bayard, Eghezée, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: chateaubayard.be

Halfway between Louvain-La-Neuve and Namur and only a 1/2 hour drive away from Brussels, this superb castle, built in the 14th century by the Count of Namur, has stood the test of time without aging.

Since 1995, the area has been dedicated exclusively to the organization of events such as professional seminars and weddings. In 2015, the estate was also enriched with an Orangerie, which can accommodate 230 seated people, and which allows you to enjoy a royal view of the surrounding pond and park. The guarantee of an unforgettable wedding!

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 230 people
  • Accommodation: 5 double bedrooms
  • List of caterers imposed
  • Accessible to people with disabilities
  • Hourly limit : 4 am
  • Free parking with 250 spots

Reviews on Google: 4,6/5 | Official website (FR-EN)

 

20. Château de Petit-Leez (Grand-Leez)

Château de Petit-Leez, Wedding ceremony & party castle, Belgium

Photo credit: sambre-orneau.be

Between Brussels and Namur, this 17th century castle-farm is a prime location if you want to give a peaceful and rustic atmosphere to your party. The 5 ha estate, made up of fields and ponds, will also offer you the conditions necessary for a successful wedding photo session.

In addition to being available for rental, the place has been known to art lovers since the 1990s thanks to its exhibitions of contemporary sculptures and African art during week-ends.

In a nutshell:

  • Seating for: 150 people
  • No accommodation
  • Possibility to choose your caterer
  • Free and private parking

Reviews on Google: 4,1/5 – Facebook: 4,5/5 | Official website (FR)

 

PS: If you’re also looking for a wedding photographer, feel free to contact me here. 😉

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No, nobody wants to get unsorted & non-retouched photos! https://cedricpuisney.photography/nobody-wants-unsorted-nonretouched-photos/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/nobody-wants-unsorted-nonretouched-photos/#respond Wed, 06 May 2020 20:15:34 +0000 http://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1412 Over and over, I may be asked by some clients one of these 2 questions: Can you send all the photos you took? Can you send all your photos non-retouched? Over and over, I keep answering: No, I only send a selection of carefully sorted out photos.No, I only send meticulously retouched photos. And no, because all […]

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Over and over, I may be asked by some clients one of these 2 questions:

  • Can you send all the photos you took?
  • Can you send all your photos non-retouched?

Over and over, I keep answering:

No, I only send a selection of carefully sorted out photos.
No, I only send meticulously retouched photos.
And no, because all good things come in threes!

Should I send all my event photos to my client ?

Of course not! Every client deserves to get the best of their event and nothing but the best: without focus errors, useless duplicates and no BS.

With digital technology, the amount of photos has literally exploded, from the take to our hard drives. Even though I’ve barely known the analog photography time, I like to apply its philosophy of scarcity as a precept. In these forgotten times when photo films cost a lot and cameras were far less powerful, photographers knew how to preserve their precious shutter for the benefit of an unmatched concentration and creativity. Few photos, but lots of quality.

Are you rather a paparazzo or a sniper ?

If a picture is worth more than a thousand words, an excellent picture is worth more than a thousand.

This is why I like to focus on capturing the essential, like a sniper who nails it from the first shot. 🎯 This is also why, by extension, I always limit myself to send a selection of the best photos for every single speaker – ideally from different angles – among the dozens and dozens of photos shot during several hours.

By the way, I’m always astonished when I meet “paparazzi-like” photographers who shoot speakers non-stop in continuous shooting mode, just like that! As if they were sportsmen! Can you imagine for one second your speakers running in shorts after a ball while giving a speech? 🤔

I’m even more astonished when I see or hear of photographers who send ALL of their photos = the bad ones (blurry, badly exposed, badly framed, etc.), and the good ones (duplicates, triplets, quadruplets…) which, put altogether, may remind you of the “Groundhog day”.

Which client does really have the time to sort out and select the best photos among hundreds or thousands of more or less identical photos? All of this because of a lazy photographer who thought that sorting out was useless. Do you?

 

Should I send non-retouched photos to my client ?

Of course not! This request, although less common than the first one, merits some attention.

#nofilter, scam of the century!

What if I told that every single photo on Earth is actually retouched in some way?! You may not know it, but when you take a photo with your compact camera or your iPhone, vous save a JPG file…  whose rendering is arbitrarily defined by your device. For this reason, the hashtag #nofilter is probably the biggest scam of our times, because every device brand (or model) automatically applies its own “filter”, which gives a unique look!

If you are interested in this topic, you should have a look at the photos below and read this article on DXOmark.
100% #nofilter guaranteed! 😂

Shot on Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max
 
Shot on Huawei Mate 30

Why then JPG ? Because this file type is a universal standard recognized by all consumer devices (Smartphone, TV, PC, etc.) and professionals (web sites, printers, etc.). And nevermind if your photos seem oversaturated or underexposed here and there!

Like every photographer, I share JPG files with my clients. Except that, like every self-respecting photographer, I shoot in RAW, the digital equivalent of the negative (for those of you who remember the photo films). Why then? Because I do not want my camera to impose its own filter that may induce abnormally saturated colors or badly exposed areas. I truly doubt that my clients would appreciate it.

Yet, like its famous ancestor and piece of black plastic, a RAW file in itself is strictly useless for an end client !

What gives a photo its professional look?

In my opinion, 75% of the quality of a photo is achieved right from the take. Forget about the Photoshop legends: A missed shot right from the shutter release cannot be saved by the magic of any software.

What about the remaining 25%? Here we talk about the processing of the RAW files and more generally about general or local retouching of lights, contrasts and colors to get a correct look, which reflects the “reality”, at least the one perceived by the photographer.

This can also be advanced retouching to get an artistic “look”, which can by the way not necessarily reflect the reality. We photographers often see things, details that many people don’t. Therefore, sending a client a raw, unedited, non-retouched photo is counterproductive, as the result imagined by the photographer when s.he took the shot can only be achieved through a thorough creative retouching process.

In a word, retouching our photos is crucial, as this is what gives photos their “pro” and artistic look, specific to every photographer’s vision.

To complete the circle, this is also at this stage that I transform my negative RAW files into JPG so that my clients can use their precious photos. 

Conclusion

Time is money!

When you afford a professional photographer, you hire an artist and a service provider whose goal is to help you maximize your time and the efficiency of your marketing & communication actions.

The morale is always the same : a pro event deserves a pro photographer!


Photo credit: Wolfgang Eckert on Pixabay

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10 reasons to hire a pro photographer for your events https://cedricpuisney.photography/10-reasons-hire-pro-event-photographer/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/10-reasons-hire-pro-event-photographer/#respond Tue, 28 Apr 2020 14:57:00 +0000 http://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1071 Some say marketing is a waste of time and money. Others say marketing is a necessary evil. As a former marketeer, I couldn’t agree more with the latter proposition. We live indeed in times where every “serious” event needs to be documented in a lasting way on photos and/or videos. By “serious”, I mean for […]

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Some say marketing is a waste of time and money. Others say marketing is a necessary evil. As a former marketeer, I couldn’t agree more with the latter proposition. We live indeed in times where every “serious” event needs to be documented in a lasting way on photos and/or videos. By “serious”, I mean for example:

  • Conferences & seminars
  • Networking / cocktail events
  • Political meetings & congresses
  • Annual General Meetings

So, why pay a pro when you can have free photos done by your employees?

1. A pro event photographer has the right gear

OK, an iPhone Pro makes great pictures, at least when you look at them from far away on a billboard or on your small screen… But let’s be honest for a moment, it cannot compete with a professional DSLR camera. Especially if you want to print them later on for your yearly review, a brochure or a poster? If you don’t believe me, open one DSLR pro photo + one amateur smartphone photo on your computer and look at the details in the faces…

And I’m not even talking about the various lenses and strobes a pro photographer always carries around during an event and which make a huge difference…

2. A pro event photographer has the right expertise

Having pro-grade gear is one thing, being able to leverage it is another one. When you hire a pro, you know why. It’s because you want consistently tack-sharp, well-exposed and well-framed photos, no matter the time of the day and the circumstances. 

3. A pro event photographer has the “eye” for details

OK, your favorite colleague may take a few good photos, but how many times in your professional life have you felt a “WOW” while looking at photos taken by a pro? Maybe it was the angle, the face expressions, the light? Who knows? In any case, it was made by a pro.

4. A pro event photographer aims at excellence, like you

You’ve invested a lot of time and effort in order to make your event great. So will a pro photographer. 

You can ask a team member to do it but can you seriously expect him/her to attend the event, help on various tasks and take photos?

And WHY WOULD YOU LET YOUR COLLEAGUES TAKE AVERAGE SNAPSHOTS WHICH CAN ONLY MAKE YOUR EVENT AND YOUR BRAND LOOK AMATEURISH?

5. A pro event photographer tries to get everyone in the frame

You’ve spent hours polishing your guest list. You obviously want them all to come and all feel like your event is worth it. You also want afterwards to remember and share your event through quality photos. You deserve it. And that’s a good thing because it’s the pro photographer’s duty!

6. A pro event photographer is good at shooting poses

Placing groups at the best spot with no distracting elements, using the best light available (natural or professional flash), making sure everyone smiles and looks into the same direction with all eyes open. All of these small details make a big difference.

7. A pro event photographer is good at making candid shots

In my opinion, this is what truly differentiates a pro from an amateur. People don’t smile or laugh on demand (unless your organization deals with actors?). Relax! Capturing those ephemeral “candid” moments is the perfect playground for a pro photographer.

If I speak for myself, I love it so much that I tend to shoot this genre beyond the end of my shooting contract, trying to capture one more beautiful face expression here and there, and one more, and one more… It’s like eating chocolate cakes over and over again, with no risk of indigestion!

8. A pro event photographer retouches your photos

Not the kind of retouching to make you look like Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie… Sorry! A pro will review every single photo of your event and make sure the exposition, the colors, the contrasts are perfect in every corner of the frame. We’re talking about your corporate image!

9. A pro event photographer secures your photos

I remember once a client of mine asking for photos she had lost after a computer crash. No problem! I always shoot with dual memory cards, which means I always have 2 copies of a same photo on my camera in case one memory card fails. Once I go home, I save all of my client’s photos on my hard drive + an external hard drive + the Cloud. Yes, I want my clients to know they can rely on me! Better be safe than sorry!

10. A pro event photographer saves you money

In the end, you get what you pay for!

Hiring a professional event photographer guarantees that you won’t have to “babysit” a colleague during your event. We know what we have to shoot. It is our job.

It also means that you will get pro-quality photos which will help you promote your organization and strengthen your brand awareness / authority.

You might say: “OK, but my organisation doesn’t have much budget!”.  My advice: always privilege quality over quantity. Sharing average (or bad) photos can only harm your brand image! And trust me, as a former marketeer, I can tell you it’s easier to build up on a neutral image rather than repair a negative brand image based on bad marketing, like amateurish event photos.

What should you do if your budget is limited?

There are always solutions.

You can hire a pro for your most important event(s) only and for the most important time slot(s). Think Return On Investment!

If you can commit to hiring a pro photographer on several events, (s)he might agree to give you a discount. 

Conclusion

Your employer may not be the wealthiest, but I guess you wouldn’t like to work for a company whose branding is considered as amateur? Just for the sake of saving some money.

Did I convince you? If yes, feel free to have a look at my portfolio and contact me!

 

Photo credit: Cédric Puisney

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Mr. Photographer or: How I learned to stop worrying and change my career https://cedricpuisney.photography/mr-photographer-how-stop-worrying-change-career/ https://cedricpuisney.photography/mr-photographer-how-stop-worrying-change-career/#respond Tue, 21 Apr 2020 09:49:00 +0000 http://cedricpuisney.photography/?p=1108 Ever heard of a mid-life crisis? This is exactly what that is all about. Being a marketer for 10+ years, my career has not exactly been made of all the many “ups” that I had imagined when I was a student: looking forward to conquering the world. Being resilient against the insignificance of work Many […]

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Ever heard of a mid-life crisis? This is exactly what that is all about. Being a marketer for 10+ years, my career has not exactly been made of all the many “ups” that I had imagined when I was a student: looking forward to conquering the world.

Being resilient against the insignificance of work

Many of us have already been wondering what happens when your professional life becomes more and more insignificant. In my case, I had been watching myself drifting away for a very long time before I took action.

To what extent can you stay true to yourself when you are asked to act against your values and your work ethics?

Many of us have lived through those kinds of odd situations where you are asked to:

  • fill in meaningless spreadsheets and briefing notes nobody reads anyway
  • complete critical tasks “asap”, which often turn out to be deadlines of variable geometry
  • do tasks in which you feel you are the least competent and efficient
  • do activities with no obvious link with the overall strategy of your employer

More or less willingly, many people can find a way to tolerate this. I couldn’t. But, over time, I found out that photography, especially landscape photography, was a good way to espace these difficulties and remain positive.

If, like me, you are more of a creative person prone to self-doubt and anxiety (the infamous “impostor syndrome” in which you doubt your accomplishments and fear of being exposed as a “fraud”) and are attached to delivering the best work possible, these kinds of situations can make you crazy and, over time, feel pointless.

Year after year, job after job, I tried to fight this insignificance. At some point, my brain failed me – it had run out of creativity, was full of negativity – then my body. Burnt out. Game over. I quit.

From insignificance to meaningfulness 

When you burn out, it often takes you months or years to recover. For me, it was a matter of months, thanks to the help of my loved ones and some good doctors. During this downtime I also realized I had actually started a new path towards a transition a few years earlier with the help of a very precious “coach”. The truth is I couldn’t bear any longer all of this nonsense.

All I wanted was to deliver a meaningful and excellent work. But how?

I was afraid to say so, but I had no other choice than to become a freelancer to make my professional life meaningful again.

Overcoming the impostor syndrome

The positive aspect of the impostor syndrome is you make every effort to feel like you deserve your job and are not that incompetent compared to your colleagues and peers.

Sadly, shiny appearances and “quick & dirty” actions are generally more valued than tedious background work. Being a (naive) marketer, I should have known that communication is rewarded more than action…

The more I turned away from shiny appearances and spreadsheets, the more I found relief in visual arts, especially photography. There came my first thoughts of moving on to something else. 

But how can you switch from an area where you have an academic record and some concrete professional experience to another one where you have… well… nothing? Easy! You leverage your long-time Achilles heel, your impostor syndrome, to work your way up! This sounds easy to say, but looking back in time, when you burn out and reach the bottom, pieces start to come together in your mind. And soon after through a conversation with an old friend from university I discovered my true nature: I was/am also one of those behind the now infamous buzz word: “Asperger”. Like Greta Thunberg, obsessed with climate change, like my friend, obsessed with social and economic questions, I was obsessed too: with photography. And I had something very few people have that Greta beautifully summarized in a word: a “superpower”.

In our modern societies where everything is expected to be uniform, I do think it’s a true gift to be able to observe the world through a different mindset, in a simplistic approach, with simple and clear words. Especially when you know these people have been relentlessly working towards excelling in one area of expertise. Last but not least, being different as an artist is not only an asset, it should be a prerequisite. 

Don’t worry, be happy!

Suddenly, I realized the biggest handicap that had damaged my professional life for 10+ years would become my biggest asset. You might say: “But hey Cédric, making photos is only creating shiny appearances you seem to dislike”. True and false.

Even though it doesn’t look so to the vast majority of people, a good photograph(er) is actually the result of hundreds, if not thousands of hours of patient background work. Little by little, step by step, I’ve worked my way up for a long time towards one direction. Until I realized that, even though I’m still far from my personal goals, I’ve built something bigger than I thought was possible. I didn’t know it yet, I didn’t want to see it yet, but I had become my true self.

That’s when I stopped worrying and embraced my passion as my new career.

I can now aim at excellence with no strings attached and on top of that I’ve found a way to express my sensitivity which – you may not know – is not the first of Asperger’s human qualities… But trust me, we have some too!

I am now convinced and thrilled to enjoy a new life, as an artist, as a photographer.

Photo credit: Pixabay

The post Mr. Photographer or: How I learned to stop worrying and change my career appeared first on Cédric Puisney Photography.

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