*This is a paid post from an APW Sponsor*
APW sponsors aren’t like other wedding vendors. When not working at APW weddings, most APW sponsors can be found spending their free time doing totally rad not-at-all-wedding-related things like volunteering with Boy Scouts or kicking ass at roller derby. But then there are sponsors like Lisa Wiseman Weddings in San Francisco. If you drive along the highway, you might see a billboard done by Lisa. That’s right, I said billboard. You know those ever-present yellow AAA billboards? (“OK baker. Fabulous cruse planner.“) Lisa shot those. In short, Lisa eats, sleeps, and breathes photography. So if you’re in the Bay Area, and wedding photography is the at the very tippy top of your priorities list, Lisa Wiseman Weddings is probably the photographer for you.
So what’s the deal with the billboards? Well, it turns out that Lisa Wiseman Weddings is actually an extension of Lisa Wiseman Photography, and Lisa is a super successful editorial photographer in her own right. Weddings happen to be her passion, and she can’t live without them, so a few times a year Lisa takes a break from editorial work to hang out with APWers for a weekend and capture their love. Lisa explained to me, “Photography is my full time job. I shoot primarily editorial and advertising portraiture, but I literally can’t not shoot weddings. (I actually did try that for a while but I just couldn’t do it!) Since my core belief as a human is that love is all there is—both in the romantic sense and in the sense that love is what makes children and friendships and just every day human interactions—spending my time surrounded by people’s happiness and love is a true gift. I spend every wedding grinning from ear to ear and nearly frolicking in all the happy vibes!”
Lisa found APW because she loves weddings, but kind of hates the wedding industry. (Uh, raise your hand if you’re in the same boat?) And since then, has discovered that APWers are totally her people. She told me, “The wedding industry feels to me like a constant game of one-upmanship… rather than focusing on your relationship, the industry celebrates aesthetic perfection over realness. So much of it is ‘Keeping up with the Jones’ instead of staying true to yourself. I love to work with couples who are more interested in celebrating their relationship rather than comparing it to other people’s.”
But lucky for you, as much as Lisa kind of hates the wedding industry, she loves photography. When we spoke on the phone the other week, Lisa talked to me about how she brings her editorial experience to weddings. She said, “My world is shooting portraiture with authenticity and intimacy. I really just adore people, talking to them, learning about them and making portraits. I look for fleeting moments of perfect realness. Someone said to me recently, ‘You capture the inside of the person,’ which I take as the highest compliment. I see your friends and family as the fantastic real people they are, not as accessories to your wedding. I thrive when running a big advertising job, so family dynamics are easy for me! Nothing feels chaotic to me. In spending my time negotiating big productions and pleasing all types of clients, I’ve become attuned to making my business truly full service. Nothing is worse than leaving a shoot feeling displeased in some way, so I bend over backward on every job—both wedding and advertising—to make the experience a pleasure and the images stellar.”
And damn does Lisa Wiseman ever deliver on that mission. Lisa’s photos are exactly the kind of stuff that you’ll want to plaster on a billboard: honest, straightforward portraiture with a really huge heart. Which means that when tasked with the job of photographing your wedding, Lisa is going to turn around and give you a gallery full of photos that look like your friends and family as you know and love them, in their truest form.
Lisa shoots a very limited number of weddings each year (around five or six), and her full-day wedding coverage starts at $3,900. But Lisa also loves to work with couples who have varied budgets, so don’t be afraid to contact her for your city hall weddings, weekday affairs, and elopements.
Plus, when you hire Lisa Wiseman, then you get to point at the billboards and brag to all your friends, “My wedding photographer took that.” And that, y’all, is priceless.