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Category Archives: Weddings

Sheva Brachos

During the first days after a Jewish marriage, couples are finally alone, hopefully in their new home. Sheva Brachos (the seven nights of seven blessings) keep us busy during evening hours when the nights are filled with entertainment and company. Sometimes a couple is busy traveling from place to place to accommodate different family members, yet other times the days are left to themselves to do what they please…but how should they spend their first formidable hours together?

Of course, we’ve only been through it once, so I am only close with the circumstances we had in our new marriage. Everyone is different, but we all have similarities just the same. 

Surprise your spouse. Who says you can’t set the breakfast table with your fancy new champagne glasses?

Arrange a special date in- you’ll be spending a lot of time out in the evening, so take advantage of the days to spend time getting acquainted with one another at home. 

Offer something from your skill set:

You’re a master baker or cook? Make it meaningful by making breakfast or lunch when it is least expected. When we were first married, I offered Laibel pancakes for breakfast. He told me that we weren’t going to be able to make pancakes because we didn’t have any pancake mix. I have always loved to bake, and even though I have nothing against pancake mix, I make mine from scratch. “No Laibel, I will make the pancakes. From flour. We don’t need a box for that!” He was of course delighted.

Your house is still empty? Take a trip to the grocery together to plan out how you would like to setup your kitchen. Every kitchen has a necessity of basics, and every kitchen is different. You’ll need to get to know each other’s cooking habits, eating habits and preferences, and more. This is a long journey to healthy and happy eating (around which every house revolves!), so start it off right. 

We “disappear” at Weddings

Ever wonder how a photographer takes photographs under a chuppah of all the important moments of a wedding without invading on the holiest moments of the couples’ life? After working with us, you’ll still be scratching your head. I can’t count the number of times we hear, “We didn’t even know you were there!”

Wedding photographers have become known for making demands of everyone around them, raising their voice, and caring very little about the subjects of their imagery. We strive to break all preconceived notions and provide beautiful imagery that we create while making our couple feel calm and comfortable on an otherwise potentially stressful day.

One of the things that we value most is that you have a pleasant wedding day experience. It is the happiest day of your life so far, and there is nothing that should be preventing it from staying that way. We vouch for no watches, cell phones, people who stress you out, or photographers who bark their directions around to get people to do the things that look pretty. Please don’t expect me to yell at anyone at your wedding. I will not do it unless they are so offensive that I need to ask them to kindly leave. What we do is help people, guide them, offer our emergency kit or guidance. We’ve been at so many weddings, and we value their emotional impact on you. So yes, we get things done. Yes, we take beautiful photographs. But while we do it, we virtually disappear into the walls while you do your thing. 

Wedding Day Schedule | Wedding Tip Tuesday

Wondering what your wedding schedule could look like? Stress-free, that’s for sure. We always setup a timeline with our couples before the wedding to ensure that people arrive dressed and ready to go when they’re needed, that there is enough time to photograph the people and details of the day before the event begins, and most of all, to make sure that it happens in a way that it all gets done without you having to check your watch and be busy with vendors. 

Recently, we had a wedding where one of the mothers was in charge of scheduling with us, not really the couple. (It’s whatever works on your end!) She was very precise, and wanted to move times around 5 minutes here, 10 minutes there, etc. I spent the time to explain to her before the wedding that though we make a schedule, we are not machines, and wedding parties involve a lot of people with a lot of different watches and travel patterns. Our schedule is a little more of a general guideline to keep things on track, but not a commandeer list that means if something changes that it won’t happen. So what happened? We arrived at the wedding venue, ready to get started, but there was no bride to be found. Only the sisters and one mother were there getting ready. The bride had contracted food poisoning the night before, and was in the hospital ER recuperating and rehydrating. She finally arrived around the time she was supposed to start portraits, but that was to just start getting ready with hair, makeup, and her dress. Though she was not feeling well even when she did arrive, thankfully, she perked up when she saw her husband-to-be and was able to start drinking little bits at a time. The moral of the story is that things don’t always go as planned, and we expect that. We always make it work. 

Ps. The photography schedule was executed differently than planned, but we finished everything (looking beautiful of course!), not only in time, but with 15 minutes of breathing time for everyone before the wedding started! 

I know you are all so curious about what a wedding schedule might look like. So keeping in mind that every wedding is different, I’ll share with you a sample schedule so you can get to know us a little better. When you’re ready to plan your wedding schedule with us, we will tailor it specifically to suit your needs and your wedding. Can’t wait!

Schedule with 10 hours & a reveal:

·         12:00PM: Photography crew arrives, unloading and setup.

·         12:15PM: Meet family members to assure them of your arrival and later start times

·         12:20PM: Greet the bride with a breakfast gift and gather details

·         12:30PM: Details of Dress and Ring, and other memorable wedding day items (Watch out for an email from us about what to prepare!)

·         1:00PM: Individual Portraits of the Groom

·         1:30PM:  First look, couples portraits

·         2:15PM: Individual Portraits of the Bride

·         2:45PM: Family Portraits, His/Her Family

·         3:15PM: Groomsmen or Bridesmaids

·         3:30PM: Family Portraits, His/Her Family

·         4:15PM: Groomsmen or Bridesmaids

·         4:30PM: Buffer time, where we suggest the couple takes a break and takes a breath before the wedding begins

·         5:00PM-5:45pm: Reception & Cocktail hour (Kabbalas Punim)

·         5:45-6:00PM: Veiling (Bedeken)

·         6:00-7:00PM: Ceremony (Chuppah)

·         7:00-7:20PM: Private time for the couple (Yichud)

·         7:20-8:00PM: Couple Portraits

·         8:00-10:30PM: Dinner & Dancing, etc.

·         10:30PM: End Photography Coverage & End Wedding



·         This schedule includes 10 hours coverage (12:30-10:30pm)

·         This schedule includes a reveal/first look, which means that we will do all the family portraits before the wedding with both the bride and groom present for each family’s portraits. After the ceremony, we sometimes bring the immediate family back for more family portraits, and sometimes will only photograph the couple at this time.

·         Families (his and hers) are scheduled for who goes first according to the preference of our couple and their families. I always suggest that they take into account how many women they have in their family who are getting hair & makeup done, how far family is traveling to arrive, their tendency to be on time or late, and any considerations about the family’s children’s schedule. 

NEW! Photography Education with Laibel & Chana Schwartz

On June 26th, 2017 we will be teaching our first class at B&H Photo and Video. What better way to spend your Monday? We are super excited to start our journey in education. We want your feedback, so please come join us, and let us know how we do!

Class details: 1-3pm Monday June 26th

Speakers: Laibel & Chana Schwartz

Event Type: Photography

Skill Level: Intermediate

Location: B&H Event Space

Address: Second Floor of B&H NYC SuperStore at 420 9th Avenue, New York NY 10001

Streaming Location: B&H Event Space

The class is titled, The Hall Is Ugly…Now What?

Learn how to shoot great event images in less than desirable environments, coming away with a noteworthy portfolio (and happy customers), despite having to work with tacky backgrounds. When Laibel and Chana started shooting weddings in 2011, they encountered the same struggle that all new photographers face: How do you build a luxury portfolio when your venues and vendors leave you with a lot to be desired? In this presentation, Laibel and Chana will teach you 7 techniques that they use to create beautiful portraiture in any setting.