About

www.dearheartphotos.com

Me

Hello! I’m Tabitha (pronounced “Ta-bee-ta”) but you can call me Tabs :) I am a Wedding Photographer based in Cape Town, South Africa, and I absolutely LOVE what I do!

A few facts about me:

  • I am a highly visual person- I have such a deep appreciation for beautiful things, both natural and manmade. When I manage to create something I consider beautiful, it makes me truly happy.
  • It took me quite a few years and some false starts to get me to figure out that Photography could be my profession. I started studying Psychology, then Visual Art, then back to Psychology. Throw in a bunch of language courses, a year of teacher training and a variety of part-time jobs, followed by two years as a primary school Art teacher and here I am now as a full-time photographer.
  • I revel in good, meaningful conversation. I’m not big on small-talk.
  • I absolutely love being in nature and shooting in nature is my favourite!
  • My favourite thing to do on a Friday night is to sit on the couch with my husband, cover myself in a blanket and watch a foreign film. If there’s chocolate, that’s of course a bonus!
  • I love hearing stories, finding out about different cultures and I am always trying to learn new languages.
  • I feel very deeply and this reflects in much of my personality and the way I do things.
  • My greatest pursuit in life is to live a life that glorifies the One who created me. My greater aim in taking photos will thus always be to illuminate His beauty in the people I photograph and to hopefully bring joy while doing so.
  • I come alive in summer.
  • The story of my life has given me the opportunity to visit a variety of different places around the world. This includes spending the first 5 years of my life in the Netherlands; many months (spread over years) in Germany where the majority of my extended family lives; bouts of time in rural communities in the Eastern Cape; and a three-month stint in Nepal. All of these experiences have played a role in shaping who I am today.
  • I am eternally grateful for my husband, Michael and my gorgeous little boy, Mason.

My style

Defining my photographic style has always been something I’ve struggled with. If I really had to categorize it, I’d say it probably fits in somewhere between Fine Art photography and Documentary style Photography.

I like to take photos that both tell a story and are aesthestically pleasing at the same time. My aim is always to take photos naturally, making use of light well and capturing the essence and emotion of the subject.

When it comes to shooting weddings, I try to be as unobtrusive as possible. To me, an honest moment captured well is worth so much more than a posed or contrived one! I am however not shy to say if I think the light is bad in a particular spot, and might gently ask you to reposition yourselves to maximize on the awesomeness of the captured moments ;)

I also love to set up some really beautiful shots during the portrait sessions, where I take on more of a directive approach. I LOVE to work with light in interesting and beautiful ways and am always looking for ways to push myself creatively. I get REALLY excited when I manage to capture a beautiful and natural moment, in a beautiful and natural way.

Sometimes, to get that shot, you’ll find me lying on the ground getting my back full of dirt, or you’ll see me climbing up a tree, or maybe my entire leg gets swallowed by a puddle of mud. I might even land up with my foot (plus shoe!) slipping into a flowing stream. Yes, all of the above have actually happened to me. And while I am not your clean-cut, perfectly manicured wedding photographer, I think that sometimes my relaxed and clumsy nature makes me quite easy to be comfortable around… Or so I’ve been told :)

 

Are you happy to travel to shoot my wedding?

Absolutely! I shoot in Europe regularly, and have shot weddings all over Southern Africa. Please note that all travel and accommodation costs for both my second shooter and I will however need to be provided unless a personal agreement has been made. Oh and if it means anything to you, I also speak fluent German and conversational Dutch :)

Are your packages customisable?

Yes, absolutely! It is super important to me that you feel that you are getting what suits your needs, so I am happy to work out a unique quote based on your needs. Please note however, that I do not do less than 8 hours of coverage on Saturdays, unless it is a last minute booking and I am still able to accommodate you into my schedule.

Besides weddings and couple shoots, what other photography do you do?

When I am able to slot them into my schedule, I also enjoy doing documentary-style family or newborn shoots. These can however not be booked more than 2 months in advance.

Can I make a provisional booking with you?

If you have made the decision to use my services for your wedding, I am happy to make a provisional booking for a maximum of 1 week or until another enquiry for the same date comes in. Should this be the case I will notify you and it is your responsibility to secure your booking within 48 hours.

Do you do albums?

Yes, my all-inclusive wedding package includes a beautiful linen covered coffee-table book, but you may also add this to your chosen package if it is not included. I like to keep the layout clean and classic.

How do I know if you are the right Photographer for me?

It is important that you choose your photographer thoughtfully. Not only are they the ones responsible for capturing a very special day in your life, but they will be with you for the majority of the day. The last thing you want is to spend your big day with someone you don’t quite feel comfortable around.

I meet with all my couples a few weeks before the wedding to talk through some of the finer details, but I am also happy to meet you for a quick cup of coffee before you make your decision.

Giving the “about me” section on my website a little read will also give you a good indication of my personality and shooting style and hopefully that will help you to see if I’m a good match for you :)

What do you charge for a wedding?

Please head over to the “contact me” section at the top of the page and fill out the required form. I will then send you rates and availability accordingly. If you do not yet have a set date but would like to get a general idea of the cost involved in using my services, feel free to contact me directly at tabithamee@gmail.com

What equipment do you use?

While I really think experience, skill and style are what you want to look for in a photographer rather than good equipment, I’ve been fortunate to accumulate some great tools over the years:

Canon 5D mark 3 (The machine)

Sigma 35mm f1.4 USM (The thing that’s usually on the machine)

Canon 50mm f1.2 L lens

Canon 85mm f1.8 lens

 

I also keep these guys in my bag, but I use them only when necessary:

Canon 6D

Canon 100mm f2.8 L Macro lens

Canon 16-35 f2.8

600EX Speedlite 

Phottix Strato ii triggers

What if the weather is bad?

There’s a way to work around most weather conditions, but heavy rain can be tricky!

In that case, it is really helpful if the venue has some sort of undercover area where some photos can be taken, but this is not always the case.

Umbrellas are totally a possibility, and worst case scenario is that you get back into your wedding outfits a few weeks later and do a little after-wedding shoot.

For engagement or portrait shoots, we will normally be in communication leading up to the day, and depending on the forecast, we may re-schedule depending on everyone’s availability.

What parts of the wedding do you cover?

This depends on your chosen package. I like the photos to tell the full story of your wedding day, from the getting ready to the crazy moves on the dance floor, so a minimum of 8 hour coverage is recommended.

What should we wear for our engagement shoot?

Well firstly, I am so glad you asked. There are SO many factors that effect what the outcome of your pictures will be like, and wardrobe is definitely one of them! Here are some little suggestions:

1. Choose clothes you feel comfortable in that suit your personality and chosen location (Heels probably won’t work on the mountain!)

2. Textured fabrics or subtle patterns are great, but please avoid big print or bold patterns on clothes as this distracts from your faces.

3. Make sure the two of you don’t clash in what you wear. You don’t have to wear matching clothes or anything, but it works really well if you’re both wearing say earthy colours, or autumn colours or whatever other colour scheme you can think of. Slightly more muted colours tend to work better with my style of photography rather than very bright and poppy ones. Light generally always work well in a summery outdoorsy setting such as a beach. Darker colours work well for a more moody, wintry feel. Try to avoid all black if possible.

4. Accessories work well – If one of you wears a headpiece/hat/beanie for some of the pics, it will add interest (if that’s your vibe, of course). Also scarves, rings, bracelets etc can look great for a few of the pics. Layering works well :)

5. I advise that you wear more Make-up than you would usually. Photography always tones this down a bit so rather go a little bit over rather than under. You might even like to consider popping in at Woolies or Mac and letting them do some Make-up for you. They normally require you buy some products from them in return.

 

When will I get to see my wedding photos?

This depends very much on what time of the year you get married in, and how many other shoots I am working on simultaneously. I do put a lot of time and care into editing my pictures, and the process can thus take some time. While it can take up to ten weeks in high season, I do always make a point of sending out some sneak peeks beforehand so you won’t have to wait around twiddling your thumbs for too long! Smaller shoots such as engagements or Portrait shoot can take up to three weeks.

Who will be your second shooter and what is their role?

This depends strongly on the availability of my second shooters. All of my second shooters are full-time photographers themselves, and thus I am only able to confirm about 2-3 weeks before the wedding who will be available to co-photograph your big day. I only use second shooters with plenty of experience under their belt.

The role of my second shooter is to help me tell a fuller story of your special day. I really believe their alternative angle adds a lot of value to the final product. They are usually also given the task of photographing the groom getting ready so that I can spend plenty of time with the bride before the wedding.

 

I have been lucky enough to have had some of my shoots featured on some rad wedding blogs! Click on the links below to have a look at some of my favourite features.

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