the accidental photographer

I never meant to do this. Sometimes I look back at a decade as a successful photographer and wonder - how the heck did I get here? I was going to be a newspaper reporter. I WAS a newspaper reporter. What happened?

Life happened, as it usually does. I loved journalism, but the schedule and stress were punishing. And something was nagging me - was I really supposed to be here? Then something happened that happens to a lot of my clients. I fell in love. And eventually, that love was enough to pull me away from the career I'd dreamed about since high school. I pursued a second career as a writer for a small university. On my second day on the job, they handed me a camera - I had more photography experience than anyone else on staff, they said, so I was suddenly the unofficial campus photographer. And I fell in love again. 

Many years later, I mulled over the idea of launching a photography business, but I was stuck on two things: 1. My full-time job and family already took up all my spare time, and 2. If I did have a business, what would I call it? Than one day I found out my job had been cut to part-time. I was pretty upset about this and called a friend to complain. I'll never forget her words: "OK, you just got handed a bunch of lemons. What are you going to do?"

And Lemonade Photography was born, on the phone, while I was feeling sorry for myself.

I never expected to fall for photography. But I did. There's a beauty in capturing what your eyes see that nobody else can. There is joy in spotting the little moments that make up a wedding day, a family, a LIFE, and freezing them for eternity. I love my job, truly. 

I love to laugh, and to make my clients laugh along with me. I'm a lifelong Washingtonian and native Seattleite, a wife (that guy I fell in love with? Totally married him), a mom to two amazing boys, parent of a special needs child, a nature lover, a proud geek and quite possibly the biggest Harry Potter fan you'll ever meet. I love British cooking shows and audiobooks and shoes. Most of all, though, I love that I get to make money doing my favorite thing in the whole world. 

Photo © 2020 Holly Cordial, Cordial Photos



Where are you located and how far do you travel? I'm in Bremerton, just across the water from Seattle. I regularly shoot weddings throughout Western Washington from Bellingham to Vancouver, Wa. Further travel is a little more challenging because I have a child with special needs,, but I'm willing to consider extended travel for the right clients - just ask! 

How can I find out if you’re available on my wedding day? Check my availability calendar! It's updated in real-time. 

Do you accept LGBTQ+ clients? I wish you didn't have to ask this question - but YES! Lemonade Photography welcomes all kinds of families and supports all kinds of love. 

How far in advance should I book with you? For weddings, I recommend booking at least 9 months in advance, before my calendar fills up, especially if you’re getting married on a summer Friday or Saturday. However, I usually have a handful of dates open for last-minute bookings; check my availability calendar for your date! I accept bookings up to 2 years in advance. You must have a date and venue locked in to book with me. 

How do I start my booking? Get in touch: start your wedding booking here and your family portrait booking here. Or call me at 360-286-4394. 

What are your prices? Standard package prices are always available on my pricing page

What are your payment terms? For weddings, I require a non-refundable 30% retainer toward your package price. Your balance can be paid in installments or in one payment; the final payment is due by 10 days before your wedding. For family and portrait sessions, I require a non-refundable 50% retainer, with the balance due 24 hours before your session. 

What comes with my wedding package? All wedding packages include edited high-resolution digital images, transferred online, and a signed release giving you full printing and distribution rights. Prints, photo books and wall art are available for an additional cost. 

What comes with my family package? Family packages include your session fee and a limited number of high-resolution, edited digital images with a print release. Additional digital images will be available for purchase from your gallery. 

Will there be any surprise costs after the wedding? Nope! You get everything you need to print your own photos, however and wherever you want. You may purchase print products through Lemonade Photography, but it's not required. 

How many photos will I get? For weddings, it depends on a number of factors: The length of the wedding, the location and lighting, how many different activities are packed into an event, etc. A very general estimate if you’re hiring Lemonade for a wedding or event: Expect at least 50 images per hour of shooting. I frequently send clients way more than that, but it’s a good place to start. Family packages include a set amount of downloaded digital images. 

But you must take way more photos than that. How come I don’t get every picture you shoot? Like any photographer, I take many more photos than my clients will ever see and hunt through thousands of images looking for the best ones so you don't have to.. What you don't get are duplicates, photos with people blinking or making awkward faces or poses, missed focus (it happens!), and other photos that don't meet my standard for quality.  

What kind of editing do you do? For most photos, I use Adobe Lightroom and/or Photoshop to make minor adjustments to brightness, color, contrast and tone in order to provide you with clear, vivid, beautiful images. My preference is to send clients bright, warm, colorful images that represent their event as accurately as possible. I keep an eye out for major blemishes, stains, unsightly hairs out of place etc - but for the most part, I want your photos to look like YOU and not a photoshopped version of yourself. I do accept special Photoshop requests for an additional fee 

How do I get my photos? You will receive a link to an online gallery with edited, downloadable images. Please read your gallery email carefully and follow the directions to download your full-size images. Your gallery link is shareable, but the full-size images are reserved only for you; guests to your gallery can download low-resolution, watermarked images suitable for sharing on social media. 

How long do I have to download my photos? Galleries are available for 2 months; after that, they are archived. If you need access to your gallery after it is archived, I charge a $30 fee to reinstate your gallery for 2 weeks. 

Do you save all the images from my session? I save all raw files from your session for one year, and edited files forever. 

I want to put prints on my wall! Can you help? Of course! You can purchase standard prints, fine art prints, canvases and metal prints directly from your gallery. These cost a little more, but they come from a reputable professional printing lab and are guaranteed to have true colors and resist fading. Your digital download also includes a print release, so you are free to take your images to your photo lab of choice for printing. However, I cannot guarantee quality of prints from outside sources. 

What equipment do you bring to a wedding? I shoot with two Nikons (a D750 and a D850) and a range of prime and zoom lenses - I also have a third camera on hand as backup, just in case. While I prefer to shoot with natural light when possible, I always bring battery-operated, remotely-triggered flashes to set up on stands around the room, just in case the ambient light isn’t enough. I’m also prepared to shoot outdoors in the rain with a couple of clear umbrellas and rain covers for my cameras. 

What happens if your gear fails? Well, first I might cry a little (that stuff's expensive). But since I always shoot with two cameras and have a third available as backup, I'm usually able to adjust quickly and keep shooting - most couples will never even know I'm having a problem! Well, except for the crying. 

How do you protect my photos after the wedding or session? Lost/corrupted images are a big concern for me (I have nightmares about it) so I do everything I can to make sure that never happens! I shoot on dual memory cards, so every photo is recorded to two different cards in case one card becomes corrupted or is damaged before I can upload the photos. After I get home from a session, I immediately upload your photos to a network-attached storage array that protects files in case of hard drive failure. Photos are also backed up to cloud storage and an additional external drive. 

Do you have insurance? Yes! I am covered for property damage, bodily injury, medical expenses, damage to my camera equipment and more. I'm happy to share a Certificate of Insurance if you'd like a copy for your records.