If you’re looking for a wedding photographer who perfectly blends candid moments with fine art portraiture, say hello to SPLENDID Photos & Video. Today we’re chatting to Jeff Sun, of SPLENDID, about his photography and how he combines an artistic approach with storytelling to produce meaningful, connected images for his couples. We also discuss how his team provides cinematography options and how this complements wedding photography, his favourites parts of the wedding day to capture, what’s changed in the wedding industry during the decade he’s been in it, plus how he makes that oh-so important connection with his clients.
Hi Jeff! Where are you based?
I’m based in Leichhardt, Sydney.
What are your favourite local spots to take wedding photos?
Personally, I love architecture and greenery. My favourite location for wedding photos is Paddington Reservoir, near the Sydney CBD. It has those two elements, architecture and greenery. Most importantly, it always has the best lighting.
How long have you been a wedding photographer?
I’ve been a wedding photographer for over 10 years.
How would you describe your photography style?
My style is a mix of candid and staging. It really depends on the couple and the wedding. For example, if there is a beautiful moment, I just capture it without a word. If the couple need some direction during the location photos, I will certainly direct them and make sure the photos look natural as well.
How has you style and approach to weddings changed since you first started out?
When I started 10 years ago, I believed the best approach to photographing a wedding was to get involved a lot to make sure that lighting, background, setup and even the couple’s poses were perfect. Then a few years later, I started to change to photojournalist approach to capture more true moments of a wedding. Now, my approach to a wedding is combination of the two because today’s couples expect not only natural moment but also some glamour or ‘hero’ shots.
How have weddings changed since then?
Weddings in Sydney have changed a lot compared to 10 years ago, when everything was a bit ‘standard’. But now every single wedding I photographed looks different in some way. I would say more diversified and personalised. Also, I can see a lots of luxury styling. I think such change is mainly because of social media, where everyone finds a lot of inspiration.
What sets you apart from other wedding photographers?
I don’t really compare myself with other photographers because I only focus on what I’m doing and my clients’ satisfaction. But one thing I feel proud of myself is that I always put my couples’ expectations first and my artistic expression second. It is all about what they expect their photos to look like. My photography is to impress the couple, rather than to impress other photographers.
What’s a typical workday look like for you?
Busy but enjoyable.
How early should a couple book you in?
I’m usually booked 10 months early.
Do you do engagement sessions?
How do you make a connection with your couples? Why is it so important?
I like to chat with my couples, hear their love story and share my personal story as well. Also, I really enjoy hearing about their wedding preparation details and ideas. The best way to build up a connection is to have engagement photo sessions. It helps my couples to understand my approach and make sure they feel comfortable in front of my camera.
What are your favourite weddings to shoot?
Big Italian weddings and simple country weddings.
Are there parts of the wedding day that stand out – that you particularly enjoy photographing?
- The moment when the groom sees the bride walking down the aisle
- Location photos with the couple
- Bridal dance
- Father-daughter dance
Splendid also does cinematography. What do you love about this medium?
I love the cinematography work of our studio team. I wish I could be a cinematographer, but it is too hard. Haha. I think cinematography is complementary to photography in regards to storytelling, because it records sound (exchanging vows, emotional speeches) and movement.
Do you offer combined photography and cinematography packages?
We do offer combined photography and cinematography packages, and again I love to work with our cinematography team on the wedding day.
You also offer multiple day wedding packages. What’s involved in these types of weddings?
Multiple day wedding packages are mainly designed for south Asian weddings, which have a lot of traditions on different days, like Sangeet Party, Mehendi, Mandap.
The best thing about shooting and filming weddings is…
After 10 years being a wedding photographer, I still love doing it. There are so many things I love about shooting weddings. The best thing is that I feel privileged to be part of the most important day of two loved ones. I’m so lucky to see so many beautiful and emotional moments every weekend, which inspire me to be a good husband, a good father and to love my family and the people around me. I think that is the best thing for everyone who works in this industry.
Thank you Jeff for sharing the SPLENDID Photos & Video story with us! Your approach and experience is reflected in your beautiful imagery. What a treat. To find out more about SPLENDID Photos & Video, head on over to their website or check them out on the Polka Dot Directory.
Headshot by Jason TU