This is a real life interview with a groom from the Philadelphia area and why he  and his wife did an Philadelphia Encore Wedding Photography Session with me.  What is an Encore Wedding Photography Session?  It is a session after the wedding where the bride and groom get dressed again after their wedding, and get amazing images at locations of their choice, because of various ” circumstances” that happened on their wedding day.  Read on to see what actually happened!  Their names and real images were kept out of this article at the couple’s request.


bride and groom at the Merriam theater

Let’s face it, most guys do not get it when it comes to wedding photography.  “You want to spend how much for pictures?”  Seriously ?  Well read on! There’s no denying that money is an important aspect of any wedding. And I was a typical groom – “hun, that’s a little too much.  Can’t we cut corners here?  This photographer is good enough and I know people who used him.”   Yeah that was meAfter all pictures are pictures right ?  WRONG  – DEAD Wrong!

How did you first hear about Gerard Tomko Photography

My wife was in a few weddings that he did and plus all the pictures that everybody shares.   I knew she really wanted him,  but of course being a guy I was more concerned about the budget.  I heard from many his price and I had budget concerns.

Ahh the magic word budget  – it seems that is a “Groom Thing”

Lol  yeah it is!   Let’s face it for most guys,  they are just pictures,  and seriously how many times do we look at them.   With everything that has to be taken care of for a wedding,  I had to draw the line somewhere!

Ok well…………did you contact Jerry to talk to him?

Yes my fiancé called him on the phone and inquired about his availability and about his well-known fine art images!   That’s what she wanted but of course I had given her the dollar figure that I was willing to go with for a photographer.   Unfortunately Jerry told her there was no way he could give her everything she wanted for that price. ( and the price I thought a photographer should be) !

So what did you do?

So after inquiring with a few friends,  we found the photographer that “claimed”  he could do the pictures my wife wanted,  for the price that I thought was fair.   After the wedding we found out that was not the case.

Why what happened?

Well we had no time for pictures,  and the places my wife wanted to go we never made it to.   We had  an absolutely beautiful wedding,  going with the best ( we thought)  for every vendor we had.   Once we saw the pictures,  my wife burst into tears and not just once!   With the incredible wedding we had, the pictures just did not show it!

bride and groom portrait under the rain with umbrellas

Did you communicate with what you wanted with the other photographer?

Yes we did, but as we could see later on,  our suggestions or comments were not well taken.   One thing Jerry is noted for, it is his masterful planning on a wedding day,  no rush,  no stress,  getting to locations that the couples want to go to,  and still making the cocktail hour.   We made our entire cocktail hour,  however the pictures were sacrificed and they were not good quality.

In this day and age of digital photography it is hard to take a bad picture right?

You would think,  but when we got our pictures back,  they were all blown out,  we look washed out,  they looked cloudy, it was improper skin tones,  it seemed like nothing was done right.

So did you reach out to Jerry then?

No we did not right away.  However as a matter fact,  I was the one that actually saw the difference in what Jerry does versus others.   But of course when I’m paying for it. it  seemed like everything was the same for any photographer we looked at.  So after seeing how upset my wife was, and what our pictures were like,  I decided to reach out to Jerry on my own and explain to him what happened to see if he would redo our pictures.  He was, as I expected,  a true gentleman and professional when we talked –  he completely understood on where I was coming from.

bride and groom night portraits in Philadelphia

So you got dressed again?

Yes I re-rented a tux,  my wife got hair and makeup done all over again,  she had her dress cleaned  and Jerry spent 3 hours  around the city to give us the pictures that we should have had in the first place.   I have to say,  even though I had to pay twice,  the experience was so much different than what our first photographer gave us.   And coming from a guy,  that means something!

So have you seen the images yet?

Jerry shared a few sneak peeks with my wife and I of some of his artistic edits,  and to be honest with you I could not believe what I was looking at!   My wife texted me right away from work and I think she broke the exclamation point  on her cell phone –  she was that  excited!   Even I  replied to her text by saying “and these are just a few how are we ever going to pick?”

broad street wedding photo

So now your wife is happy,  what do YOU have to say?

Well-like they say –“Happy wife happy life!”   My wife is a very understanding individual,  and she never hounded me about our wedding pictures.   But I knew deep down inside how disappointed she was, and to be honest,  I was too!  I saw the difference and I got it – but it was too late and after the wedding was over!  In the end these were `   So if  I could say anything to any groom out there,  if it comes down to a matter of going over budget for a few hundred dollars more – do it!   The peace of mind you will have of having someone like Jerry, with all his experience handle your wedding day,  is definitely worth the investment – the  aggravation,  and disappointment you may have by saving some money is not worth it in the long run!  What Jerry does is more than pictures and anyone who tells you they can do the same – it is not and you will see, however it may be too late!