The Creative Light Studio

Below is a list of commonly asked questions. If you have a question not addressed, please feel free to contact us directly.

Where are you located? Do you travel?
Our home office is based out of West Chester, OH. We travel throughout the Cincinnati area at no charge to our clients. Additionally we will travel further distances for weddings for a small travel fee. Fees are quoted on a per wedding basis.

Do you shoot with an assistant?
For weddings I shoot with an assistant for most package options. The basic package does not include an assistant but can be added. For all other shoots I do not shoot with an assistant. 

What type of camera do you use? 
I shoot on Canon DSLR cameras which are digital. I use two camera bodies in case one of my cameras were to malfunction during an event. 

Do you carry insurance?
Yes, we hold a liability insurance policy through the Hartford.

How do I book my date? How early can I book? 
I have had clients book as early as 2 years ahead of their date and as late as a few weeks before their date. You can book your date whenever you’d like. Keep in mind that there is only one of me so the earlier you inquire about your date the more likely I am available. 

For weddings, your date is reserved with us once we receive your retainer. The balance is due one month before your wedding. Special consideration for payment plans will be addressed on a case by case basis. 

Please note that retainers and balances do not apply for all other areas of photography (ie family, food, sports, etc). To reserve your date contact us for availability. Payment in full is due the day of the session. We accept various methods of payment including check, credit card and cash.

Can I choose my location?
We are open to shooting in a location you may already have in mind. If the location is too far from our Mason office (over 30 miles away) a travel fee may be assessed. This will be discussed on a case by case basis and agreed upon prior to the shoot.

I like a location that needs a photography permit? Do you have it?
All permits are acquired per session and are the financial responsibility of the client.

What if we want specific photos?
We can work with your shot list if you have a few ideas in mind. We encourage our clients to keep requests short so we can provide our own element of creativity for your session.

What time of day is best for photos?
Photographers like to refer to what we call the ‘golden hours’ of photography. The golden hours are an hour after sunrise and two hours before sunset. The only time window that we prefer to avoid is high noon as the sun is at its harshest then. Even so, we can make those times work if need be.

What should we wear?
We are big proponents of saturated colors because they photograph really well. Bright colors are also a good option. Stay away from busy patterns because they become too distracting. Matching a large group in all one color is also something we tend to steer people away from (ie all white tops and khaki or black tops and jeans). Instead, pick a tonal range and match within that range for a more dynamic look.

How long is a session? Can we do multiple locations and multiple outfits?
Sessions last one hour and are typically shot in one location that has multiple settings within a walkable distance. If you would like to shoot in multiple locations with multiple outfits that is certainly an option, but remember that you have our photographer for an hour including travel and changing time. We often recommend that if you want to change outfits it be something fairly simple (ie putting a Reds jersey on). Additionally, if you want another location we often recommend that it be only 5 to 10 minutes away.

What if we need to reschedule due to client conflict or weather?
We understand, life happens... and so does rain. If we need to reschedule due to a conflict that is not a problem. There is no rescheduling fee. If you are changing the date on a wedding that already has a deposit down we will do our best to accommodate your new date. If we are already booked for the new date, though, we cannot honor your date change request and your retainer will be nonrefundable.

How much does a session cost? Are there hidden fees?
Session fees are listed on the investment page. There are no hidden fees. With your session you get your final photos as high resolution on cd with full rights to print them. Any products you wish to purchase would be an additional fee per occurrence.

How long will it take before we can see our images?
You will see a few teasers on our Facebook page a day or two after your session/wedding. Typically sessions take about two weeks to post to a password protected online gallery and will be sent via mail on CD or dropboxed after that. Weddings take longer since there are more photos to edit. Weddings take up to two months to post to your online gallery and are sent via mail on CD or flash drive after that.

How many images will I receive? Do I get every image you take?
A typical one hour session receives 20 photos and 30 minute sessions receive 8 photos. There is an option to purchase the rest of the images as native files on cd. Weddings vary depending on length of time we are photographing but typically are between 400-700 photos. We edit out the photos we don’t feel are high quality enough for the final presentation.

Do we receive the high resolution images with our event?
Sessions include the final high resolution images for no additional fee. We also include a print release so you can print your photos whenever and wherever you’d like. The only exception to this standard is in our sports photography sessions when the client opts not to choose the hourly rate.

Can I copy my photos to another storage device?
Not only can you, but we highly recommend it. We recommend that once you receive your images, you create two more copies of it; one to keep on location and the other to store off-site in case of fire. Additionally, media can become corrupt over time. Having multiple copies helps protect against an only copy going bad. We also recommend creating new copies after 5-10 years. We keep our own back up files at our office but do not guarantee our backup will be available should your copy be lost or destroyed.

Are the images edited or retouched?
The images you receive are high resolution JPEGS. Each image is retouched for color and saturation. Some images require more retouching (ie acne), which we will provide at our discretion. If you require more involved retouching (such as removing braces) this will be quoted on a per session basis.

Do you shoot in color and black and white? Can I get a black and white photo in color?
I shoot both color and black and white. If a photo is black and white you can ask for the color version if preferred. In most cases that will be available to the client.

What happens if you can’t make it to the event?
I would do everything in my power to photograph your event, but if something were to prevent me from photographing I would inform the client as soon as possible and find a comparable replacement.

Do you backup your images? What if you lose our images?
My camera comes equipped with a dual memory card slot so I can back up my images as I shoot. Additionally, I shoot on memory cards that I replace every so often before they get too old so I can avoid equipment failure at all costs. Your images are loaded on my computer immediately after the event. Those photos are automatically backed up on an external hard drive. Additionally, we have an online backup system that the photos load to so your photos will be saved in three places as I work on them. If something were to go wrong after all those safety precautions, we will provide a full refund.

How long do you keep our digital files?
We keep backups of all our events both on-site and off-site after we deliver the final presentation to our client. After delivery, we do not guarantee we will maintain copies of your event, but will do keep our archives in good shape in case you should contact us at a later date for another copy or prints. Please be advised that there is an additional charge for a second copy of your images. We recommend that all our clients immediately back up their images twice: once for storage on-site and once for storage in a second location.

If I need my photos to be printed for a specific event (ie Birthday Party), how far in advance does the session need to be held? How quickly should I order prints?
If you plan on using prints from your session for an event you are holding after the session then the session should take place at least a month before the event. This allows me time to edit and post your photos and you time to select your photos for printing. If you are ordering your prints through us, please allow up to a week for fulfillment.

How will my family and friends find my photos? Can they order prints from you? 
We send you a link with password information for your gallery. This information can be forwarded to your friends and family. All of our products and prints are located on the online gallery for your loved ones to order directly from the gallery. Weddings receive 30 free generic cards explaining for their guests where to find their photos. We can offer these cards for non wedding events as well.

How do we place a print/product order?
Products and prints can be ordered directly from your password protected gallery. Additionally, they can be ordered through the photographer directly. Once your gallery is posted online there are a series of discounts for ordering your products within the first few weeks the gallery is posted. Take advantage of these discounts for the best price possible.

What is the difference between your prints and local convenience store prints? 
Our prints are real photographic prints rated to last 100 years. Many local drug mart locations print lower quality photos that can degrade over time and often have color variances in the print.

How long are my images online on my gallery?
Galleries are online for 90 days. If your gallery has expired or you would like to extend the time allotted please contact us.

Can I purchase prints from you after my gallery is offline?
You can purchase prints as late as you’d like. If you know the photo number you have in mind you can email us with the number, size and quantity. If you need the gallery to be re-posted to review the images we can do that instead. 

What products do you offer and how can I purchase them?
A brief overview of our products can be found on our products page. We offer a wide variety of products that can all be found on your online gallery. Additionally you can email us directly for a pdf of the complete list and pricing.

What if I can’t find a product I had in mind?
If you can’t find what you are looking for, just ask... chances are we can get it.

Do you offer any discounts or specials?
Occasionally we offer group day sessions. Please see our investment page or like our Facebook page for more information to stay up-to-date on current sales and promotions.


Wedding specific questions

What comes in your wedding packages? Can I purchase a la carte?
Our packages are built with a slight price break versus buying everything separately. We offer both packages and a la carte options should you only need a few hours of photography. Products can also be purchased a la carte.

What if our ceremony has restrictions on photography?
Most places we shoot at have some sort of limitation on photography. Not using flash and standing in certain locations are requests we often receive. If there is something more specific that you are concerned about feel free to email us.

How much time will I need to allot for photography? Can you help me with a timeline? 
A typical wedding timeline is 8 hours from start to finish, which typically includes getting ready photos all the way to the reception. We don’t leave you to figure this out on your own. Each of our brides receives an information sheet to fill out ahead of time. From there we create a timeline that makes sense for your wedding day. Some brides want less photography and we can accommodate that as well with a 6 hour timeline.

Do I need to provide a meal for the photographer?
Yes, you must provide a meal for the photographer and the assistant.

I have a tight budget and don’t need a lot of photography. Do I need to get a package? 
We understand tight budgets. For this reason, our packages start at $1,250 and go up from there. To cut a little more you could go with an all a la carte option and just do a couple hours of photography.

What kind of family and formal shots are recommended?
This is one of the only areas we leave completely to the bride and groom. For some couples, lots of formals are desired, while others just like a few. Remember to get photos of not only you and your family but you and your groom with your family. Sibling photos are also very popular. Think of it this way... certain family members (ie moms and grandmas) will most likely want to order your formal photos. Who would that family member want to see in the photo?

What are some locations you have photographed?
Below is an alphabetical list of some of the locations (ceremony and reception) that we have photographed previously. This does not include every location we have shot.

20th Century Theater
Beckett Ridge Country Club
Belle Event Center
Carnegie Event Center
The Cincinnati Observatory
Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden
Crossroads Community Church
Courtyard Marriott (Covington)
Drees Pavilion
Forest Chapel (Sharon Rd)
Fort Thomas Mess Hall
Glendale Lyceum
Heritage Club
Hyatt Regency (Downtown Cincinnati)
Lake Lyndsay
Longworth Hall
The Madison (including Madison South)
The Manor House (including the Carriage House)
Miami Township Community Center
Mount Airy Forest
Mulhauser Barn
Newport Aquarium
Pattison Park Lodge
The Phoenix
Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park
Receptions Erlanger
Receptions Fairfield
Receptions Loveland
Saint Henry Church
Saint Louis Church (Downtown Cincinnati)
Saint John-Neumann
Saint Martin of Tours
Saint Mary's Church (Alexandria, KY)
Saint Monica-Saint George (Clifton)
Saint Rose (Eastern Ave)
Saint Thomas Church (Terrace Park)
Staybridge Suites
Southgate Community Center (Newport)
The Syndicate
Unaversalist Church (Olde Montgomery)
Zion UCC (Norwood)


If you have any other questions for us feel free to contact us directly.


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