This Is How To Get Dream Wedding Photos On An Ordinary Budget

Just because Julie Pepin takes jawdropping photos doesn't mean you can't afford her: rates start at $2500 and she travels for free!

Lots of wedding photographers can capture your day as it happened, showing you exactly what every moment and detail looked like. But it takes an especially skilled artist to capture a moment in time that looks exactly how you experienced and felt it. And Northern California’s Julie Pepin Photography is one of those few. Plus with packages starting at $2,500 (and free travel throughout the continental US for APW readers), Julie Pepin is a true artist that you can actually afford.

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a small boy in a a yamaka, suspenders, black pants, and a bow tie, helps up a flower girl in a poufy white dress and flower crown from the ground in the aisle, as another flower girl and and ring bearer smile behind and another ring bearer looks on, and as guests watch from the sides of the aisle, smiling

Julie Pepin regularly makes her couples look like they’re living in a dream world. In the wrong hands, that can be a recipe for cheesy photos. But Julie manages to mix epic imagery with candid moments in a way that straddles fantasy and reality (kind of like… weddings). The result is a totally unique style that’s part reality, part editorial, and part Tim Burton movie still. Basically, the more I look at Julie’s photos, the more I find myself thinking, “Is this real life?” Photos like this:

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a bride sits in a grassy field, holding a glass of champagne, next to two dinner plates. A small black dog eats from one of the dinner plates, and the bride reaches toward the dog. The groom stands nearby, holding a bottle of champgane.

And this:

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a wedding couple. A groom wears a blue suit and tie, and a bride is in a white gown with a lace illustion neckline and a dark pink and yellow flower crown and bouquet.

Julie explains:

The naked eye is pretty magical, but it can’t see everything at once. There are little things that might go unnoticed in the flurry of a moment, but the reason that I love photography so much is because the camera picks up where your eyes leave off. I photograph not only to capture a feeling, but to elicit one as well. I want you (and your mom) to laugh and cry when you look at your photos. So much is happening on a wedding day, it’s difficult to take it all in and process it all in the moment. It’s my job to capture that electricity, to take all the emotions and all the stories and to put it in a bottle and keep it there for you for always. Raw. Intimate. Handcrafted. Imaginative. Explosions of happiness and color all over your memories. My work focuses on the fundamentals: artistic composition, great lighting, and most of all, making you happy.

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a bride with shoulder length dark hair and bangs laughing into her hands, standing next to a groom in a black tux and bow tie, also laughing
What always impresses me about APW wedding photographers is that they are able to create this art, without turning your wedding into something it’s not (aka a photo shoot). That’s how Julie operates. She told me:

I don’t look at weddings like a moneymaking factory. For me, this is my life, and I plan on it being my life for a while. So on a selfish level I want to experience things I haven’t experienced. I want every wedding to be an adventure that I go on only once with each couple. Each wedding is as big and beautiful to me as it is for the people whose day it is. It’s not just “another” wedding. It’s the only wedding.

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a groom helping a bride with a long train up a rock on a cloudy day in front of a huge tree

It turns out, Julie Pepin is also one of those photographers who means it when she says she wants to work with your photography budget, no matter where it falls. She’d rather be flexible than miss out on an awesome wedding. Julie’s prices prices start at $2,500 for 6 hours of coverage, because, as she says, “Not everyone can afford $4,000 wedding photography.” (Preach.) She explains:

I like to keep a range of prices because not everyone can afford a $4,000 wedding package, and maybe a wedding that I would really enjoy photographing is one with a budget on the lower end. I am willing to work with whoever is interested in booking me to create a package that would fit their needs the best. I’ve shot six hundred–person weddings and two-person weddings. I’ve shot on a mountain in the English Countryside and in a living room in Glendale, California. I don’t care where your wedding is taking place. I only care that I get to be there with the couple and get to experience a day that will never happen again. My packages start at $2,100 and go up to $5,000. All packages include me as a photographer, the images artistically edited, and the images in an online gallery that my clients can easily share with friends and family.

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a couple opening a bottle of champagne on grassy dunes. The champagne is shooting out of the bottle and the couple laughsA Julie Pepin photo depicting a double exposed image with a woman leaning on a man as they are back to back. The man looks away and the woman looks at you. The second exposure is of a sunset over water
While Julie is physically based in the Bay Area, travel to anywhere in the continental United States is included at no extra cost to you. And for those of you eloping in the Bay, Monday through Thursday elopements and city hall weddings are just $500 through Spring 2019.

Plus, since Julie loves APW readers the most, she is offering $300 off of any package and a free engagement session to any APW couples booking 2019 Northern California (including the Bay Area, Sacramento, and Tahoe area) weddings before December 31st (just mention you found her through APW).

A Julie Pepin photo depicting a bride and groom laughing at a toast

So if you’ve been on the hunt for a wedding photographer whose style is really, truly different; who will create stunning visual art from your wedding without turning it into a three-ring circus; and who will do all that starting at $2,500, then Julie Pepin Photography shouldn’t just go on your short list—she is the list. So go browse her amazing portfolio today, and then book her before December is up and you miss out on the chance to get Julie and a discount and an engagement session. You know how we’re always saying that amazing unicorn vendor deals exist in the wedding industry if only you have the patience to wait until one reveals itself? Well this is your unicorn. Hop on. 🦄

Julie is offering $300 off of any package, plus a free California engagement session to NORTHERN CALIFORNIA couples who book her by the end of DECEMBER. Just mention this sponsored post when you contact her!


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