{review} Gary’s Lens Photography

Gary’s Lens Photography comes to you with unlimited shooting hours and a list of past brides who love their wedding photosRequest more pricing, details and info from this vendor!

When we started our research on Gary Scott, Owner and Principal Photographer of Gary’s Lens Photography in Elmira, it was his past couples who really confirmed that this was a photographer who needed to be reviewed in The Ring. His past couples love him. Early into our interviews, we heard that Gary is “THE only photographer to consider…”, that he offers “quality and value is unlike any other” and that hiring him was “the best wedding decision I made!”

And so with unlimited hours of shooting, budget friendly pricing, a loud, loving fan base, and a relaxed approach that had even the shyest brides feeling comfortable on camera, we knew we had to find out more about this Southwestern Ontario photographer…

Personally Speaking…

Gary’s Lens Photography has been an evolution. He actually started out shooting stock photography and says that this was his first line of income from photography.

Gary explains, “Technology and photography have been key loves in my life since I was very young. Photography is a way for me to get out from behind the desk and become involved with people. It is a way for me to be creative and express that creativity in a way that brings joy to others.”

Gary started a small photography group in Cambridge, which continued to encourage and inspire him in his work. He also enrolled in the New York Institute of Photography’s Pro course to further hone his skills and became a member of the Professional Photographers of America. All the while, he was shooting weddings.

And in 2010, Gary felt ready to pursue photography on his own, officially opening Gary’s Lens Photography. Over the past few years, Gary has steadily grown his client list and continues to develop his craft through workshops, courses and real wedding experience.

After so many weddings, what keeps Gary inspired? He told The Ring, “Photography for me is more than a job. It’s a way to meet people, to express my creativity, to find new places and try new things. It’s a lifestyle, and even though it can be exhausting at times, it is also very satisfying. I am inspired by brides themselves, by their creativity in arranging their weddings, by the people around me, by the venues and by the work of other photographers.”

Amanda Fraser says she would, without a doubt, hire Gary all over again to shoot her wedding day. “I like the fact that Gary can do candid, fun shots, but also the typical wedding and engagement poses. Gary is able to catch some amazing moments; ones that you barely remember happening because the day flies by. I loved that he made us feel totally comfortable with each other and him – it’s always awkward to get in front of a camera, but Gary really helped us to relax and enjoy the moments instead of wondering how we looked or if we were smiling the right way!”

Working with Gary…

While Gary has several second shooters available for weddings, he generally works alone and handles your photos from start to finish – from your initial meeting and booking, to shooting the photos, edits and delivery.

“As the lead photographer, I ensure that I am the one taking the main photos. I stick with the bride for the day, and do my level best to be exactly where I need to be at any given moment.” When Gary works with an assistant. The second shooter will usually capture the “big picture” – the broader context of the wedding, some creative background shots (Gary covers this as well), and they usually spend time shooting the groom as he gets ready.

Bride Carly says “Gary really encouraged us to just enjoying the moment, whether it was our engagement shoot or the big day, he really wanted us to just enjoy each other and the moment and I really liked that. He also was just really flexible with some of our on-the-fly suggestions and just letting me, my husband, and our family and friends just be ourselves and do our thing.”

Brides Love…

Gary says photography is much more than a job and he is truly committed to giving his couples the best possible experience on their wedding day (and in turn, through their wedding photos). Gary explains, “I am there for you and engaged in what is happening at your wedding. I am there from the moment you want me there and will stay until you have wrapped things up so that your whole day is covered.”

Jeremiah and Rebecca Burnhauser have fond memories of Gary’s Lens Photography, “He understood our style. If you are not used to being the center of attention and having millions of photos taken of you, Gary is amazing in the fact that he helps you relax, keeps you upbeat and encourages you along the way. He has some amazing photos and the book we received at the end blew our minds! You get so much value with Gary… and he captured every precious moment.”

Gary adds that he has immense respect for the wedding ceremony and has had the opportunity to play many different roles on many wedding days. “I appreciate what the ceremony represents and do my best to capture every moment without being an annoyance or an interruption to the occasion.”

A casual and flexible approach lends itself to a stress-free, fun and memorable wedding day. Therefore, Gary says he is open to ideas from his couples and constantly works to make sure that each couple he works with gets exactly what they want. “I am not stuck in a particular pattern or even style of photography. While I come with a tool kit of ideas ready to go, I am always open to suggestions from the bride and groom – they are your images after all, and you want to remember the wedding the way you made it, not just the way I see it as the photographer.”

Past bride Carly Bauman told The Ring about her favourite memory of working with Gary, “Gary is very professional and fits into whatever atmosphere and crowd he’s put into. He really tries to be a fly on the wall to capture your day that way which I could appreciate. He was a real life saver when he came up with an impromptu location for our wedding photos to be done as I didn’t really come up with a rain plan (for a winter wedding).”

Pricing and Packages…

Gary’s Lens Photography offers a variety of packages ranging from $1032 to $1785 for couples to choose from and all of Gary’s add-on products and services can be purchased à la carte as well.

The “Essentials” Package ($1032) includes 6 hours of coverage, an initial consultation, engagement session, unlimited locations, online viewing (of proofing galleries) for a minimum of six months and all of your full resolution digital images rights-free.

The “Start to Finish” Package ($1290) includes all of these but extends your coverage to include the full day – literally from start to finish.

The “Extra Coverage” Package ($1785) adds a second photographer for eight hours to ensure absolutely everything is covered.

You can add to these packages with a wide selection of add-on products at reasonable prices; from simple prints to framed canvas’, fully customized thank-you cards, custom 11” x 8” table top books, 8” x 6” parents “Brag” books, or photo booths (studio style with a photographer or automated).

Past bride and groom Jeremiah and Rebecca Burnhauser say Gary’s expertise was well worth the price and would recommend him to any other couple looking for a wedding photographer, “He took the time to get great poses but was still able to get a lot of photos in a small amount of time. He was able to work well with my large wedding party. There was great value for the dollar…he exceeded my expectations.”

Engagement sessions are included in every package and Gary encourages couple to always take advantage of them. “It is an opportunity to work together before the wedding day.” says Gary, “That way you feel more comfortable in front of the camera on the big day and you already know some of the tips I share to improve your posing and your photos.”

Photo booths are also a great idea and Gary is happy to include one if requested. “They add some fun to the reception and not only provide the couple with some hilarious photos of the people they have invited, but give the family and friends an opportunity to get creative and send the couple a fun message.”

Among Gary’s list of products and packages, he says his coffee table album is a popular pick with brides. This album tells your story in images from beginning to end (usually including 200 plus images on thirty plus pages). Gary told The Ring, “It’s beautifully arranged and bound in a personalized hard cover book. You could do this yourself, but you will save yourself a great deal of time having Gary’s Lens produce it for you, and it will become a treasured heirloom just weeks after your wedding.”

A casual approach…

Couples that book Gary’s Lens Photography are usually very easy going, outgoing and friendly. Gary has shot couples with a wide range of budgets, styles and personalities. Says Gary, “They want their wedding to look great, but not necessarily extravagant. They usually put a lot of personal touches into the day – and want those details captured in their images. They are serious about the commitment they are making but have a lot of fun with their partner as well.”

This fits perfectly with Gary’s own style, which his describes as casual yet flexible. “I am not ‘off-the-wall” but enjoy participating and capturing the fun of those who sometimes are! I am open to just about any bride. I am equipped to deal with most situations and locations and can bring assistants and second photographers in as needed.”

Paul and Brenda Taylor say Gary handled every obstacle that came along on their wedding day seamlessly, “The fire alarm went off in the middle of our dinner. It was horrible at the time but makes quite the memory now. Gary just kept doing his thing, and now we have a bunch of candid shots of how everyone grouped together during a frustrating moment, and who could forget the picture of the fire alarm he included to make us laugh. Honestly, you had to be there… but that’s ‘the tell’ of a great photographer… nothing phased him, he just kept going.”

Details, details, details…

• The average bride spends between $1350 and $3000 with Gary’s Lens Photography. There are plenty of à la carte options to choose from to create a custom package.
• Although Gary retains copyright of images for ownership and promotional purposes, the bride and groom are given full usage rights for personal use of the photos.
• A 25% deposit books your date with Gary’s Lens Photography, an additional 25% confirms the booking one month before the wedding, and the remaining half is due on delivery after the wedding.
• Typically photos are posted on the proofing site within one to two weeks and images are ready within two to four weeks. Some items, such as personalized photo books may take longer.
• Months to book ahead is dependent on availability only. You can book up to two weeks before the wedding date if the date is available.
• Gary’s Lens Photography has yet to have a wedding cancellation, however, the deposit and confirmation amounts are non-refundable at the points at which they are collected.

Contacting Gary’s Lens Photography

To learn more about Gary’s Lens Photography, contact Gary directly by email using the form below. 🙂 You can also visit Gary’s Lens Photography online at www.garyslens.com.