Even though my husband is an artist, and I studied art history and spent years working at an art magazine, when it came to us hiring a wedding photographer, it was actually a question of “If” not “Who.” There was no doubt in our minds that we valued photography as an art form, but at the time I just had no idea what wedding photographers do. I had this idea in my head that they were just… personal paparazzi who would awkwardly walk down the aisle backwards in front of you clicking nonstop, and then later drag you around and pose you wherever there was a point of interest—like a staircase or fountain. It all just sounded like a lot of no fun, for photos that it seemed like ours friends could take?
But then I started actually looking at wedding photographers and wedding photography. And I was only a few portfolios in before I was like, “Ohhhh, there are people making… actual fine art here.” And that idea that I could own beautiful works of art that just happened to have my husband and myself in them, was kind of mind-blowing to me. So when it came to choosing a photographer, I was dead set on someone that took photography seriously as an art form and was fun to be around (because no one wants to be bossed around by their photographer on their wedding day, no matter how artistic their photos are). Someone whose work awed me, but whose rates were still, you know, affordable. Someone like Brooklyn-by-way-of-Europe–based Carole Cohen Photography, who is just so, so good you guys, but whose rates still start at $2,800 in the U.S. and €1,000 in Europe. (I knoooooow.)
And it’s totally not just me who thinks Carole Cohen is the perfect match for people who love art but are maybe a little unsure about being a subject. Because she is a pro at making you feel good on camera—and when you feel good, you look good—fellow artists AND camera-shy types like Marisa and Flora love working with her:
One of the biggest points of contention between us in planning our wedding was whether or not to have a photographer. One of us is extremely camera shy and the other one of us has a master’s degree in photography (marriage is compromise, right? 😉).
We looked at dozens of photographers. As soon as we saw Carole’s work we both finally agreed. Carole is a fantastically talented photographer and a beautiful, creative, calm person to be around on your wedding day. We both really wanted a candid-style photographer. Carole captured all the candid moments with elegantly crafted compositions and her unique energy. Our photos are just stunning, and it’s been so fun for us to see not only the gorgeous shots of us and our venue and friends but all the little bits of the evening we missed. Carole is all kinds of awesome. We are so grateful we found her!
Carole is a self-proclaimed photo nerd (you have to read the sentimental story of her favorite film camera), which is how and why she creates such unique and artistic images:
My style is definitely not cookie-cutter, and I love to experiment and constantly change things around. For example, I have always used really old film cameras as part of the wedding portrait session, in addition to regular digital pictures. This allows me to deliver genuine vintage-looking images that look grainier and less smooth than digital. And recently, I have started using expired or “damaged” film which can add some awesome coloring on those photos.
I am also a big fan of Free-Lensing, which is a technique that consists of holding my lens by hand in front of the my camera to play with focus range. That way I can create images with crazy blurs and focus points that would be impossible to obtain any other way. This all sounds pretty technical, but thinking outside the box is what keeps me going, and what attracts brides and grooms who are looking for a new photographic experience.
But honestly, the amazingness that is Carole Cohen is less about the funky techniques and that sweet, sweet, film grain and more about the fact that every single photo she takes is sooo good. How good all the photos in this post are? Just the tip of the iceberg. I’ve scrolled and scrolled through her blog and each wedding, and each photo within each wedding is better than the last.
Carole Cohen Photography is based in Brooklyn, but as a native of Paris, she also frequently travels to France and the United Kingdom, and she shoots weddings there at no additional travel cost. As she told me, “Come get married in France, in the City of Light or in the lavender fields on the French Riviera!” And I mean… while that’s super tempting… more importantly, we know a bunch of y’all are actually based in the U.K. and France, and could probably use an APW-approved photographer whose work is amazeballs, who’s an utter delight, and whose prices, well, whose prices are not what you’d expect for NYC/London/Paris (in a good way).
Carole Cohen Photography’s U.S. packages start at $2,800 and go up to $4,700, and she also offers a super flexible hourly option at $400 per hour, which is perfect for all those outside-the-box weddings that we New Yorkers come up with when we can’t afford the Plaza. All packages include professional editing, a password-protected gallery for sharing and printing, and all edited images in high resolution; and the more inclusive options include second shooters, engagement sessions, or wedding albums.
Packages in France and Europe range from €1,000 to €2,100, or €180 hourly—and bonus! For APW readers who are getting married anywhere abroad in 2018 or 2019, Carole is happy to add a complimentary album or engagement session!
So if gorgeous photography is your jam—either because you’re an artist yourself, or because it’s the farthest thing from you that you’re in awe of artist types—Carole Cohen will work her artistic magic on your wedding. You know what to do, go follow her Instagram, read what clients have to say, and send Carole an email.
NYC-based Carole Cohen Photography also travels for free to weddings in the United Kingdom and France! CLICK HERE TO GET IN TOUCH.