Fresh, clean photography always catches my eye and that’s just the style that AKA Weddings excels in. Stolen moments, magic moments, tender moments – all make up the wedding day – and indeed life! Working formerly for the BBC, Katja now calls Noosa and the Sunshine Coast home, but she loves travelling to capture your wedding. Approaching your day with a fresh eye, AKA Photography will capture moments that you’ll treasure forever.
Can you please explain the unusual name of your business?
It s a play on my initials Katja Anton hence A KA and as I couldn’t decide on the A (there were so many great adjectives which described my work, I thought it could actually be anything from Absolute Amour, Artistic, Amazing to Adventurous… Anything!
What is your (photography) background?
I have been photographing since an early age and have always been involved in visual arts dabbling in styling, theatre, fashion and then combining my love of travel, adventure and cinematography I went on to work at the BBC in the UK making wildlife documentaries which was fantastic. Throughout all this I continued to photograph anything and everything, in all sorts of environments, I love my camera! I did some formal training too of course in order to keep up with the technical side of things (I loved classic film and playing in the dark room before everything turned digital!) but luckily I seemed blessed with an eye for the visual and creative aspect.
What was the catalyst for starting photography?
It felt like a natural evolution: Since becoming a mother, my photography has evolved from travel journalism and commercial styles (which I still enjoy doing) and also to include portraiture of kids, families, pets and weddings. I now embrace all the special ‘people’ times – I enjoy my work tremendously and weddings are such a joy and an honor to be part of and I have been blessed with the opportunity to capture amazing couples from all over in their ‘I do’s’, so special.
How did it become a business?
I am a big believer in doing what you love and are passionate about… so going pro was a totally natural direction to take for me.
Do you have a mentor or someone you admire in business?
I think everyone must have artistic idols, fellow photographers and philosophers which inspire them – I certainly do… All these influences are so important in developing my work and myself personally which comes out through my imagery as it’s an expression of where I’m at and who I am.
This phrase on your site caught my eye – ‘I try and walk in with a sense of naivety ….’ Can you please explain this philosophy and how it informs your photography style?
I try and see every situation with completely fresh eyes as if for the first time, like a child would capturing the wonder of the situation from that new perspective hence the sense naivety – no two weddings, situations are the same and shouldn’t be treated as such, my wedding photography is not formulaic and repetitive that’s also why I enjoy the craft so much.
What do you love about photographing weddings?
It is quite simply a BIG in honor to be privy and part someone’s special day – its huge and intimate all in one, emotional and I love that… it must be the Italian in me coming through, I adore all things beautiful and passionate and rawJ
How do you remain unobtrusive on the wedding day, so that people are not conscious of you and your camera?
Stemming from my background, my style is mostly documentary coverage, which means letting your day happen naturally with as little prompting from the photographer as possible! I try and not direct people, get too close, I do not control the event and get in the way of how things are naturally unfolding – it’s the opposite: the magic moments are those that one cannot control…
How do you keep your shots looking natural and not obviously posed?
Its all about having fun and getting natural interactions between people – so it is more about setting up a fun, natural situation rather than poses in order to achieve the candid shots. I strongly feel it is the gathering of friends and family plus the unscripted moments and emotions that happen on your wedding day which are the most important and which I strive to capture.
What do you weigh up when composing a shot?
Ah where to start – the mood and interaction between the couple is essential, so again trying to set up natural interactions but ‘placing’ them so that they are comfortable with whatever we are doing in one corner or place rather than another because the light, backdrop etc are better. I really enjoy playing with natural available light and different angels – the same scene can be shot in so many ways… a lot of the creativity is in the eye, mine in this case!
Do you love photographing the little details of the décor, the people and the day, so that the images tell a complete story?
I simply LOVE the details and capture heaps – I relish in composing and creating quirky beautiful images of those details that just ‘make’ the day, they just tie it all together beautifully and its those little details which the couple have spent time & resources creating which reflects the feel of the day, the couples’ signature look.
What advice can you give to brides and grooms?
Find a photographer you feel completely at home with and that you can fully trust – there are so many elements to a wedding it is nice to have the peace of mind of hiring someone who will, whatever happens, come rain shine, a locust plague (!) or whatever know they’ll just be there and take care of it all taking the stress off your shoulders…. and knowing you’ll have a beautiful record of your day for you to enjoy for years to come.
Is it best for you to get to know the bridal couple and let the ideas for their photography flow, or should couples approach you with set ideas?
I am very open & flexible to work with bridal couples in which ever way they feel comfortable – my packages and work flow are not set in stone as every one is so different! Some couples have their own ideas which I happily work with and add to, while others like to be guided more – this business is not just about happy snapping at events, but very much about people… interacting successfully with couples, listening and being sensitive to gauge how to behave and which direction to take to achieve the images you and they are after.
How do you switch off from photography – what do you do to relax and get right away from it?
Ha yes does one ever!! Well I often catch myself looking at things with a view of how I’d like to photograph it (!) however I do think It is also important to put the camera down and enjoy the very big picture with those close to you creating memories and experiences in the flesh and heart – sometimes I put the camera down in order to enjoy the moment and there’s something magical about not capturing it but just experiencing it.
Thank you Katja for sharing your story. To find our more about AKA Wedding visit the website.
Images and headshot by AKA Weddings.