6 Advantages Of A Tropical Beach Wedding Over A Wedding At Home

Who wouldn’t want a tropical beach wedding? The warmth of the sun on your bare shoulders, the gentle sound of waves lapping at the shoreline nearby, guitarists serenading you as you walk towards an archway festooned with hibiscus flowers, your gorgeous white dress standing out magnificently against the turquoise lagoon… If you’re not already convinced, here are five great reasons why you’re much better off booking a tropical beach wedding package in Rarotonga than thinking about any of the venues closer to home.

1. It’s close to home if you are from New Zealand. From Auckland to the Cook Islands it is an easy 4 hour flight.

2. With stunning lagoon surroundings (including Titikaveka and Muri) – Rarotonga is known for its gorgeous beaches, warm temperatures (averaging between 22 and 30 degrees Celsius), lush foliage, crystal clear lagoons and sunsets that take your breath away. It’s guaranteed to start your married life off in the most romantic way possible. Note the weather is generally the best from May to October.

3. Stress free – When you decide on a tropical beach wedding package in Rarotonga, you decide on a stress free path to your most special day. Resorts usually have their own dedicated wedding co-ordinators and there are several other experienced freelance wedding planners working on the island. They know how to pull off your big day with ease and you can leave it to them to make sure that you have the most relaxing wedding day you could ever dream of.

4. Quality time with friends and family – Marrying among friends and family on a tropical beach in the South Pacific isn’t like the normal wedding experience where you don’t really have time to mix with your friends and family before rushing off for your honeymoon. Your tropical beach wedding package can include a small number of your closest friends and family, or more if you prefer. Because they’ll be travelling to the island and probably taking some holiday time there as well, you’ll be able to enjoy their company after the wedding in the relaxed environment that Rarotonga provides. You’ll each have your own private spaces, as well as the opportunity to get together whenever you feel like it. It’s a great way to introduce new family members to each other in a low stress environment and you’ll be able to share hours of long happy memories with those closest to you for the lifetime ahead.

5. It’s a photographer’s dream – You will cherish your amazing wedding photos featuring an idyllic beach setting where you are surrounded by glorious colours, perfect light and tropical treasures. Given that Rarotonga is only 32km in circumference, your photographer can drive you to many spectacular locations without worrying about the time.

6. Surprisingly affordable – When you think about the amount of money most people spend on a wedding at home followed by an overseas honeymoon, it’s well worth comparing the cost of a tropical beach wedding package in Rarotonga. You will probably invite fewer guests to a tropical beach wedding, which will reduce costs for a start. You won’t have to travel to your honeymoon destination – because you will already be there. A package deal means the flights; accommodation, meals and other options can be booked together to achieve substantial discounts. Many people who’ve done the numbers have opted for what they thought was an impossible dream – a wedding in paradise!

Headshot Advice for Actors

Weekly I receive phone calls from actors looking for dirt cheap headshots. In most cases, dirt cheap headshots from amateur or novice photographers are exactly that… cheap and not usable to market yourself.

The truth, actors who spend the time and money to have acting coaches, active training, invest in continual growth and great headshots are the successful actors.

Here are some facts you need to know for great headshots:

1) Meet and Greet the Photographer

If a photographer is not willing to actually meet and talk with you, run away. This person generally does not care about you or your career. This photographer is more interested in lining his or her pockets by acquiring as many clients as possible. At the very least, a photographer should be willing to conduct a phone interview. There is no way a photographer is too busy to meet with a prospective client. Ask yourself – ‘How will they capture my personality if they have no idea who I am? There are THOUSANDS of actors in Los Angeles (NYC as well) and thousands more arriving every month. What separates you from these actors? A headshot of another pretty face? I don’t think so. Do casting directors hire an actor on a picture alone? No – why on earth would you?

Meeting with the photographer to confirm your compatibility is very important. This cannot be stressed enough. Take the time to meet the photographer. This allows you both to get a sense of one another.

Feeling good about your choice will go a long way in producing those headshots that will get you auditions. The rest will be up to you.

2) Does Experience Matter

This is a tough subject. There are many talented beginners out there. They usually charge a lot less than highly experienced photographers. But they lack experience, therefore they do not always deliver the best product. How can you tell if the photographer you’re looking at is as experienced and as talented as they claim? It’s simple. When you go to meet with the photographer, ask to see printed work. A quality headshot will not lie on paper. That you can be sure of. I recall a magazine I interviewed with asking for a printed portfolio. They loved my work online, but they knew that a print is 1000% truth of quality. Did I get the job, YES!

What an experienced professional can give you is consistency. Someone who takes great pictures every day. The truth is that anyone can take a few decent pictures to promote themselves. But you have to get it right time and time again to have agents, managers, and others in the film and TV community refer people to you consistently. A photographer who specializes in working with actors can help you relax and express yourself. This will translate in capturing an authentic look in your new photos.

“No. 1 headshot photographer in town”, run away from this claim. It’s just a gimmick designed to manipulate you. Plain and Simple.

3) The Headshot Factory

Headshot photography is a business and every photographer wants to make a good living. Quantity, Quantity, Quantity… Shooting as many people as a photographer can fit in a day does nobody any good. Shooting as many people as possible in a day is certainly very rewarding for the photographer. But what about you, the client? Shouldn’t the session be about you and giving you a great product? How can anyone provide a high quality product when they are rushing between clients? Simply put, they can’t. Most top photographers do not take more than two headshot appointments per day.

Ford has it right… “Quality is Job #1″. This should be the motto of every headshot photographer.

4) Post Production

The ability to instantly review pictures on the back of the camera makes it easier for anyone to shoot. But the care that goes into each step in photography has been lost by many photographers. In this world of digital technology, there is a perception that you take a picture and it’s done. But just as with film, digital files represent the original captured image with numerous steps to go.

Post production is not the same as retouching. With film, an experienced photo printer would go into the darkroom and make the best possible print from a negative. The printer would adjust the brightness, contrast, and sharpness of the image, to include dodging and burning areas of the picture. This is also necessary with digital “negatives”, this is referred to as image processing. Image processing is necessary to make adjustments to the overall picture. Retouching on the other hand, is eliminating stray hairs and blemishes on the skin. When a photographer starts with a great file up front, then post processing is used to fine-tune color, contrast and skin tone.

You should not work with a photographer who is not willing to post produce and retouch their work.

Amazing headshots start with a quality image from the get go, not quantity.

Searching for a great headshot photographer can be a lot of work and should be valued with the same importance you place on your career.

Amazing quality headshots will pay you back many times over.

Fundraiser Auction Entertainment Ideas – Portrait Photos and Boothomatic

Three of my auction fundraisers this past year have had professional portraits offered on-site. The photo offers guests a remembrance of your benefit auction. Portrait photography works especially well for charity auctions which tend to have co-workers attending, such as corporate and hospital foundations. Guests look spiffy, so the photos show employees in their best light (all the better, considering those photos may show up on the company intranet).

This auction idea works for four reasons:

– The activity allows company departments and smaller teams of co-workers to have their photo taken together, which is a nice touch.

– A photo with a traditional background seems more professional with your co-workers than, for instance, a backdrop of Las Vegas.

– The photos allow for more flexibility later, such as if the company’s foundation wanted to include a photo of the work team in an issue of the company newsletter, or even in a proposal for a prospective client.

– When individuals have a portrait taken, the finished headshot can be used for business cards or on the external company website.

Near the entrance to the silent auction is usually the best location for the photography station. The photographer will show guests where to stand and offer basic instructions to capture the best angle and shot. For group photos, the photographer often takes a hands-on approach to ensuring everyone is in the photograph. Guests are given a photo, often housed in a cardstock black frame.

The developed photos are displayed on a table near the check-out area so guests can take their photo as they leave. Photos with groups of people are developed multiple times so each person in the photo can take a copy home.

In short, this is a good activity for fundraising auctions. The big perk is that you can use those photos in a multi-purpose way long after the event is finished.

A second photo option for charity auctions

I read an article from BizBash’s newsletter entitled “The Photo Booth That Can Capture the Whole Party.” http://www.bizbash.com/newyork/content/editorial/16574_a_photo_booth_that_can_capture_the_whole_party.php It talks about a new portable photo-booth AKA, the Boothomatic which rolls around the party, enabling guests to take photos wherever they might be.

After reading the short article and checking out the photo, here are my immediate thoughts as to whether the Boothomatic would work in a benefit auction environment.

My immediate thought is that this is something for a younger crowd. I can see as where Generation Y or Generation Z would totally get into this! But I don’t envision most of the guests at my benefit auction (age 40+) comfortably jumping in front of the booth without encouragement from an outgoing photographer.

I’m still unclear after reading the article as to whether a photographer supervises the booth. If he does and if that photographer is a gregarious type who can comfortably corral guests for photos this would work. But if the booth is not supervised, my crowds would ignore it.

In many hotels, the Boothmatic would work fine. But if the auction is to be held in an unusual facility such as a historic home or even an outdoor garden, I’d consider alternative forms of entertainment. You’ll want a venue (and a floor!) that allows the booth to roll unencumbered.

I love that photographs of the event are available for download from a website! They also offer customized packages. My only concern is that once again some of my less savvy older guests won’t understand how to download photos from a site. Those same guests *would* take home a photo of themselves if it’s printed onsite, but they would be less likely to check a website in the days following the gala.

The price in New York is apparently $2500 for a 4-hour rental. I don’t know NYC rates well enough to gauge if this is in-line with other forms of photo entertainment or not. But given that there are no printed photographs available to guests onsite, I would hope that the Boothomatic would be less in price than something, say, like portrait photography.

Copyright (c) 2010 Red Apple Auctions LLC