One of our favorite parts about the Richmond wedding industry is having the opportunity time and time again to work with some of the very best this area has to offer. Hayes & Fisk The Art of Photography, an institution in the Richmond are for twenty-five years, is no exception. We’ve had the pleasure of working with Jamie and Mary many times and have always been impressed by their professionalism as well as their amazing talent.
Today we sat down with Jamie and Mary to talk a bit about their background and tips for brides planning their Big Day this year, as well as the real reason Jamie likes to shoot weddings.
How did you get your start in the wedding industry?
Jamie: I have been a photographer at heart my entire life. When I was a kid growing up in Staunton, Virginia, I would save my mom’s S&H Green Stamps in hopes to one day buy a camera of my own. Well, a bunch of books of stamps later I did! I bought my first camera and it was history from there. I photographed my first wedding at 15 years old and had to get my cousin to give me a ride to the wedding and then pick me up when it was over. I did not want my clients to know that I was not even old enough to drive! I love all types of photography and portraiture but weddings are where I began and I still get excited every single time I walk into the wedding day and get ready to create memories.
Mary: Well, I have always loved photography and taking pictures. I remember running to the local camera shop to get my 110 film printed and developed when I was younger. But time and life took me on a different direction for a bit. In 1993 I married my amazing husband and we hired the BEST photographer in Richmond to photograph my bridal portraits. So, Jamie Hayes photographed my bridal portraits and I really did love them, for the first time I really loved a picture of myself. In 1995 we were blessed with an amazing daughter and I knew immediately I needed to find Jamie Hayes to photograph and document this gorgeous angel’s life. After going to his new studio and working with him for about 6 months we decided that we should work together. And we did. I started out just “running” the studio but I gradually and surprisingly found myself behind the camera and the rest as they say is history.
What question do you find brides asking you the most about wedding photography?
Mary: I meet with and chat with most of the brides for their initial contact and the number one question is always cost? How much are your wedding collections is what I hear first. I understand that this is the only question that our brides and grooms and family members truly know to ask. It is our job as professionals to guide them and educate them not only about our pricing but our expertise, abilities, history and products. I work really hard to chat with these brides and ask questions about their engagement, wedding day and what they are looking for from a wedding photographer. It is my job to make sure that I can fulfill their expectations but more importantly it is my mission to create a relationship with these couples. Photographing someone’s wedding day is an amazing opportunity to give a visual history to a couple and future generations so I always consider it an honor when chosen.
What’s the best thing about working in the wedding industry?
Jamie: Cake. Hahaha. Wedding cake every week-end, what a great way to work. But seriously one of the best things for us is that we are now working with the families of so many of our couples. I mean how awesome is that. We photograph their wedding and then their babies and families. Wedding photography allows us to create relationships with these people forever and we give them portraits and wedding day candids that they will cherish and share with many generations to come.
Any tips you’d like to share with our 2012 brides?
Mary: My number one tip for all brides any year is love and trust your vendors. Let’s face it there are a lot of wedding vendors in our area. When choosing your vendors look at their websites, Facebook page, etc and ask around to friends and family members for a great recommendation. If you love their style and creations that is step one. Next step is to make sure that they are within your wedding budget. And the most important step is to meet them in person and make sure that you not only like them but love them. Weddings need to be joyous and fabulous, the last thing you want to do is be stressing over any of your wedding vendors or even worse not particularly like them. So follow your heart and celebrate your day.
See You Soon,
~Paula & Martin Ramirez
Paula and Martin Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion, a wedding resort and bed and breakfast just minutes from Downtown Richmond. They enjoy new restaurant finds, Virginia wines and discovering fun events and activities throughout the area for their guests.