Professional, experienced wedding photography for State College, Central Pennsylvania and beyond.
Flexible rates to suit your needs and budget, starting at $1800.
You own the rights to your photos and receive all of the full digital files at no extra charge, inlcuding raw files, on a hard disc drive. You can print or share your photos with no restrictions and no watermarks. Consultations in person, by phone or email.
Overnight travel and destination weddings available, photojournalism a specialty.
I am a member of the Professional Photographers of America, and I am passionate about photography. I've been a working professional for more than 20 years, with more than a million photos in my portfolio.
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In terms of philosophy. I believe that the emotional content of a photograph is directly related to how real it is. In other words, photojournalism. This is not to say that I simply take what comes out of the camera, far from it. There's a big difference between how the camera captures a scene and how your eye perceives it, and I bridge that gap. I know my equipment well, and I will capture the real day in real time.
Yes, we'll have plenty of posed portraits, and a lot of fun during the portrait sessions, but the most dynamic and memorable photographs are the ones I take in the moment, and I'm very good at that! You will get, literally, thousands of photos. It has been said that I'm the hardest-working wedding photogapher in the area. I can't speak to that, since I rarely see others in my field, but I can assure you that I will do the absolute best that I can for you, and if that means running, climbing, stooping or working up a sweat, that's what I'll do. I'm old enough to know what I'm doing, but young enough to get it done.
I am often asked about my artistic vision, and while there is certainly an artistic aspect to photography, I consider it a craft. That is, there are certain expectations. Nobody wants weird wedding photos. I take my craft very seriously. I'll find small gestures and special moments, fleeting expressions that elevate a photo into something more than a snapshot. I will include the landscape, the architecture and document the day so you can return to it again and again. In the post-process, I'll crop, dodge, burn and retouch each image you select from proofs to make sure that they capture the moment and trigger emotions.
References are available, but a picture is worth a thousand words! At the bottom of this page are a few samples from my portfolio, or I can bring some along when we meet.
“Thanks again, and great job!
you never took a minute off
and these photos prove it.”
During the ceremony, I will be discrete. I will not intrude on intimate moments. I'll capture the genuine emotions of the day and keep it real, but I won't miss anything, either. I've got the right equipment to let me take close-ups from a good distance. During the portrait session, I'll suggest settings, backdrops and poses, taking cues from your style.
Portrait sessions keep your guests waiting, so I work fast. I use state-or-the-art cameras, so I don't need a tripod or studio equipment for portraits, and I keep each of my lenses on a different camera body so I don't need to switch them out.
Photojournalism is the art of telling stories through photos. A photojournalist captures the day, as opposed to taking static, formal, portraits or imposing an unrealistic vision on the subjects, like a fashion photographer. This makes your photos real. In my opinion, some of the best photos are captured when nobody is looking at the camera.
So what does photojournalism look like? Here's a gallery from a wedding at the Nittany Lion Inn as an example.
The short answer is lots and lots of different photos! You will literally get thousands of photos of all sorts. Most photographers sort through the photos and give you just the ones they like. I give you everything. These include candids, details, wide-angles, close-ups, intimate moments, documentary-style coverage, bridal portraits and formal group photos. I move around a lot, and I get a lot of different looks at everything I see. You don't just get a DVD or a thumb drive with your pictures...you get a real hard drive, because there is usually about 150-180GB of data, and that's a lot.
I am often asked about my style. This is hard for me to answer, since I've done a lot of things in my career, and no two weddings are the same. I have literally taken millions of photos, so if you have a particular style in mind, we can work together to get the look you want. My portfolio should tell you my style, even if I struggle in the description! The same goes for processing. I tend to like warm, saturated colors, but I'm perfectly comfortable with black and white, high-key, low-contrast or muted tones. Leave it to me or micro-manage, it's up to you.
For purposes of comparison, I shoot a mix of photojournalism and contemporary portraiture. I've tried to include a lot of samples here, but feel free to contact me for examples of a whole wedding, or check my Facebook page for samples sets from my most recent weddings.
Over the last 20 years, I've specialized in architecture, portraits, landscapes, still life and every sort of genre. You will get all of that. To see my fine art portfolio and other work, visit my home page at amesphotos.com. I am probably best-known for my Penn State campus photos, and as the leading campus photographer, I can get a lot of locations in, very quickly.
I always shoot using "RAW" format, which allows a wider latitude in post-processing. I will adjust the photos you select for proper exposure, contrast and color. I process all of your photos personally. For more information about how I process your photos, follow this link.
The typical rate for a complete wedding is between $1800 and $2650, depending on your needs. Rates are negotiable for off-season and other special circumstances.
All of the images and digital negatives are yours to keep—you own the copyright. There are no hidden fees, no printing fees, and consultations are always free.
You can print your photos printed yourself, or you can work with one of our partners for museum-quality mounting, matting and framing. I only use the highest quality lenses, so your photos can be enlarged up to 40 inches or more. You will note that there are no "photo credits" listed. This is because I don't hold prints hostage for more money. You own the copyright. If you do purchase prints from one of my partners, it's at my own wholesale cost, for example, an 8x10 is about $2.00.
A typical day will include photos of preparations, details, the ceremony, a formal portrait session and candid photography at your reception. This will include a wide variety of artistic shots, action and candid photos from a number of perspectives. Your requests are also important to me.
Below are some packages with the most common requests. You are always free to customize my services to your needs
Please note: I always give you every picture I take that day, even the "bad" ones. I will sort out truly unsuitable images, such as those that fired by accident, but I do not sort out a few hundred of my favorites, then discard the rest. Certain images may mean something very special to you, and I have no way of judging that. I also give them to you in RAW format, which is the digital equivalent of a film negative. I'm not aware of anybody in the area who does that, but I feel that you should have the maximum flexibility and choice. I learned a long time ago that there isn't a lot of overlap between my selections and my clients' selections, because I judge them on technical and artistic merit, not emotion...so I don't throw them out. Instead, I give them all to you.
Need help with timelines or anything else? I'm happy to share my experience and help you plan.
Click on a package for details…
Have some old family photos that you'd like to restore and display? Photo restoration services will make those old photos look like new!
Please email me at email@example.com if you would like more information or would like to meet and discuss your needs.
Below are just a few samples from my portfolio. Don't see what you're looking for? Just ask! I have thousands more, including some additional links at the bottom of the page.
What can you realistically expect over the whole wedding? Here are about 85 photos from a typical Penn State Arboretum wedding.
Nittany Lion Inn
Nittany Lion Shrine, Penn State
The Penn Stater
If you're planning a Penn State wedding, here are samples from a typical Penn State wedding , a few Penn State arboretum weddings, and a Nittany Lion Inn wedding ...and if you're a really big Penn State fan? Here is a gallery of Beaver Stadium wedding photos.
I use state of the art digital cameras with some of the best lenses money can buy. Click here for details on my equipment.
PO Box 845
State College, PA 16804
Prices and availability subject to change. Standard contract required.
Images are the property of William Ames ©1986–2016
Redistribution, copying or other unauthorized use is prohibited