Monday, April 6, 2009

Photographer Spotlight :: Beth Kukucka Photography

Over the next several weeks we'll be featuring some of our favorite wedding vendors around the city, and this week is photography week! As a wedding planner, I feel that it's extremely important to refer brides to quality vendors who they can count on. While there are tons of very talented wedding photographers here in Pittsburgh, there are some that I feel need to be showcased this week! None of the vendors in our spotlight series (or any of the vendors we refer for that matter) have paid anything to be featured. We simply refer vendors based on previous experience with them, or they come highly recommended by other vendors in the area.

Our first photographer is Beth Kukucka of Beth Kukucka Photography. While Beth is relatively new to the Pittsburgh area, she's definitely no stranger to the industry. Beth has been photographing weddings for nearly 20 years! Beth was kind enough to sit down with us recently and give us a little more insight into her life.

1. First off, tell us a little about yourself:

I have been photographing weddings for nearly twenty years, and full time for the past eight years. Before doing weddings, I did freelance photography for a variety of publications and organizations, including Time Magazine, Rolling Stone, USA Today and Warner Brothers Records. I decided to relocate to my hometown of Pittsburgh in December, to be closer to my family. Before moving back, I had a successful wedding photography business in the Boston area for four years – and before that, Los Angeles for 15 years.

2. How did you get started in photography?

My mother was always taking pictures, and so I grew up looking at photographs my whole life. I was intrigued at an early age with the idea that time could be preserved with a camera. People come and go, and moments change all the time, and no matter how much time is spent planning an event, it passes quickly – but a photograph is a permanent preservation of time.

3. Describe your wedding photography approach and style.

Because of my background in photojournalism, I feel passionate about photographing the moment as it naturally unfolds, rather than manipulating it to look how I think it should look, or worse yet, stopping to pose it! I do incorporate family “formals” into my coverage of an event, but my style is very relaxed and playful. It feels important to me that my clients enjoy the group photo time as much as they enjoy the rest of the day, so I keep it simple and relaxed. I like to tell clients that I will photograph their event with my heart as well as my professional expertise!

4. What do you like best about your job?

I especially love doing weddings and events because I love witnessing the great moments happening all around, all the time. I always say that Grandma doesn’t have to be dancing on a table at midnight for there to be a lot to photograph! There are tender, fun, and touching moments happening all around – especially at a wedding. And I love to know that the couple will see everything that was happening at their event without their awareness – which is why I’m there – to preserve an important and sacred day in their lives, just as it happened, moment by moment.

5. If you weren’t a photographer, what would you be?

I would be a writer who loves to take pictures.

6. What is one thing you absolutely cannot live without?

Trust and Faith – which are one in the same.

7. If you could photograph a wedding for anyone, who would it be?

I would love to go back in time and photograph my parents wedding, over 60 years ago. It would be remarkable to be able to photograph the faces of relatives and loved ones that I have known all my life – most of all, the faces of my young parents on the day when our family began.

Please share a few of your favorite wedding moments that you've captured on film:

To view more of Beth's work and for information about pricing + booking, head on over to her website and blog.

Thanks for chatting with us, Beth! We look forward to seeing more of your work as you establish your business here in Pittsburgh. Welcome back home! :)

All images courtesy of Beth Kukucka Photography.

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