Jump to content

Photo

Moon Palace Photography!


  • Please log in to reply
39 replies to this topic

#11 Maura

Maura

    VIP Member

  • VIP Member
  • 5,752 posts
  • Wedding Location:Westin Los Cabos

Posted 04 March 2010 - 02:08 AM

Thanks, Trisha, for letting me know you mentioned me on this thread.

I'm a moderator here at BDW (I was a DW bride in Aug. 2008 - got married at the Westin Los Cabos) as well as a professional photographer. I recently shot a destination wedding at the Moon Palace in November 2009. I am based in Chicago, but traveled to Cancun to shoot the wedding. There were no issues whatsoever made by the Moon Palace with my couple hiring an outside photographer; my bride booked me as a guest with the hotel for 3 nights. The hotel does not stipulate that a photographer needs to stay for 3 nights; that was part of my contract with my client. So long as you book your photographer as a guest for at least one night, you should not have any difficulty whatsoever with bringing an outside photographer. I do not know what their policy is regarding only purchasing a one-day pass for an outside photographer. I arrived on a Monday afternoon, the wedding was Tuesday, we did a trash the dress type shoot on Wednesday and I flew back home on Thursday morning. My bride booked my travel through her travel agent.

The resort photographer & videographer that were part of my client's package still showed up on the day of the wedding, but they stayed out of my way as much as humanly possible.

I know that some photographers no longer accept bookings at certain hotels in the Riviera Maya area due to stringent outside photographer policies. Some of those photographers are well known in the area and prefer to not work with certain venues, some work with certain venues only on a case by case basis. I personally did not have any problem shooting my client's wedding at the Moon Palace and had a good experience there with the venue and the staff.

I will say that the first comment my bride made to me via email when she returned from Mexico and received her teaser photos from me was that while the resort photographer quality was OK for someone without a discerning eye who may not care so much about the photos, she was VERY happy they hired an outside photographer because "the resort photographer's photos did not even compare to the teasers" she received from me. She did not purchase any of the resort photographer's photos because they were expensive and she was not thrilled with the quality of the photos they took. I personally did not see the resort photog's work on my client's wedding, so I cannot comment to the quality myself, I can only share with you what my client told me regarding the photos she did not purchase.

I am happy to answer any questions you may have about my experience as an outside photographer having shot a client's wedding at this particular resort. I also shot a wedding at Dreams Tulum in January and had no issues whatsoever as an outside vendor and found the staff to be very pleasant and accommodating.

Here are two little photo collages I made from the November wedding at the Moon Palace (since I know the cardinal rule of BDW is to post photos whenever possible ):
Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

#12 Janelley100

Janelley100
  • Jr. Member
  • 297 posts

    Posted 04 March 2010 - 10:51 AM

    Wow...your photography is incredible. :) Beautiful shots!

    I think I posted this somewhere else on this forum, but don't remember where. I have friends who got married at MP about 2 years ago and they purchased the large package with photography and video...so I have seen the Palace Resort wedding video and her album. My impression....well, I am bringing a photographer with me...put it that way. The video is fairly short and choppy. It does not carry through the entire process....they cut and paste specific tid bits and music together with a stock palace resorts background for intro. The shots fade between.

    She has about 36 photos in her album and a cd. There seems to be no work with lighting involved and the poses are very staged, stiff and unfortunately cheesy. I would say there are about 3-4 good pics of them after the wedding...the rest I could have taken with my digital and no other tools!

    Now....I don't know who they got assigned as photographer....but I have heard, like everyone else, that David Pena is the one to ask for. And I have seen some photos that are great on this forum from MP photographers. So it may be a hit or miss thing.

    ***Also, I know I saw a website in my digging for David Pena at some point on this forum. I will keep looking because I know there is one out there! But you can't find it in google.

    #13 Maura

    Maura

      VIP Member

    • VIP Member
    • 5,752 posts
    • Wedding Location:Westin Los Cabos

    Posted 04 March 2010 - 01:14 PM

    Janelley, David is the resort photog that took photos on the resort's behalf for my client. He also worked with an assistant, unfortunately whose name I can't remember. There are some examples of David's work floating around the forum somewhere in an older Moon Palace thread (might have been in a 2008 or 2009 one) because I know I've seen it before. Actually, before I shot the wedding there, I did research to get a feel for the property and what kinds of photo opportunities would be available at the resort by looking at what other photographers had done there, and I stumbled across someone's photos from the MP that David did in 2008. So it shouldn't be too hard to locate them if anyone else wants to go searching.

    If I can help answer any further questions about my experience as an outside vendor there, please feel free to ask here or shoot me a PM.

    #14 Janelley100

    Janelley100
    • Jr. Member
    • 297 posts

      Posted 04 March 2010 - 02:22 PM

      Yes, I've seen the photos on several reviews....but what I was referring to is a website for him. I know I saw an actualy website featuring the MP photographers on this forum....I just can't for the life of me remember where I found it. And of course I didn't bookmark it when I looked at it. I'll keep looking though! :)

      Thanks!

      #15 gemmalou

      gemmalou
      • Newbie
      • 14 posts

        Posted 04 March 2010 - 04:39 PM

        oh god im really worried now, im a UK bride and was planning on having the photos with the resort photographer. i was going to take to some samples of how we want some of the photos so he could do them for us etc, i just hope they turn out ok now, we cant afford an outside photographer and harder to book one being in the UK

        #16 CeeCee76

        CeeCee76
        • Jr. Member
        • 235 posts

          Posted 04 March 2010 - 05:15 PM

          Now that I've read this I'm definitely going to consider an outside photographer. My budget is still low, so I'm hoping I can find someone to work within it.
          ~January 11, 2011~ Sun Palace, Cancun, Mexico~Our wedding review

          #17 Janelley100

          Janelley100
          • Jr. Member
          • 297 posts

            Posted 04 March 2010 - 06:06 PM

            Keep in mind that what I wrote was my opinion of the photos. I am very particular when it comes to photography....my friends are more laid back and love what they have. :) As I said above....I think it is hit or miss, because I have seen some really good shots from MP photographers on some of the reviews on BDW. As well, there are many brides on here that love the photos and video's they got. Being as critical of this particular point as I am, I am just choosing to take my own photographer with me instead. Hope that made sense. Good luck everyone!

            #18 TATrisha

            TATrisha

              VIP Member

            • VIP Member
            • 12,377 posts
            • Wedding Date:April 11, 2008
            • Wedding Location:Gran Bahia Principle Akumal
            • LocationWisconsin

            Posted 04 March 2010 - 06:07 PM

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by gemmalou
            oh god im really worried now, im a UK bride and was planning on having the photos with the resort photographer. i was going to take to some samples of how we want some of the photos so he could do them for us etc, i just hope they turn out ok now, we cant afford an outside photographer and harder to book one being in the UK
            I certainly don't want to scare you, however bringing photos of what you like doesn't mean you'll get photos like that. That is why people hire photographers from the states and fly them in. Basically, you find a photographer that shoots your STYLE and fly them in. A photographer can't change their artistic eye or their post processing skills. They can "try" to, but their style is their style.
            Now, you can always show them some posing ideas and things like that, but sometimes photographers don't do well with certain poses if it isn't their typical style of photographing.

            So what I would suggest is do a ton of research. Price everything out. Perhaps it's cheaper than you think to fly someone in? Perhaps you can find a bride who's wedding date is very close to yours and you can split the cost of a photographer?

            good luck!

            ~Trisha~

            Destination Wedding Photographer & Travel Agent
            www.faberphotography.com - My latest destination wedding photos can be found HERE

            Disney Specialist  /  Bride & Groom Fly FREE Promotion

             
            Looking for a travel agent that KNOWS DISNEY?  We are an award winning travel agency and you can read our reviews here.
             
            Awards and recognition: 
            Palace Resorts Winner "Top Travel Agent", "Top Homebased Travel Agency" PRO Platinum Agency (Top Award)   |  AMResorts Master Agent & Top Agency  |  Karisma Hotels Diamond Level 5 (highest production), Top 10 Azul Weddings, Top Wedding Coordinator | Wright Travel & Karisma GIVC Benefits | Travel Impressions Best of the Best Globe Winner   |   Apple Vacations Golden Apple Winner  
            sml_gallery_206696_17612_13451.pnggallery_206696_17572_8409.jpg    sml_gallery_206696_17572_1003.jpg
            Vendor rules are HERE! Please read!  If you are a vendor and looking to advertise your business, please email ads@bestdestinationwedding.com.


            #19 Maura

            Maura

              VIP Member

            • VIP Member
            • 5,752 posts
            • Wedding Location:Westin Los Cabos

            Posted 05 March 2010 - 10:32 PM

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Janelley100
            Yes, I've seen the photos on several reviews....but what I was referring to is a website for him. I know I saw an actualy website featuring the MP photographers on this forum....I just can't for the life of me remember where I found it. And of course I didn't bookmark it when I looked at it. I'll keep looking though! :)

            Thanks!
            Sorry, I misunderstood. I did some searching both in English and Spanish using the correct spelling of his name (with an ±) and couldn't find a website, so my guess would be he probably doesn't have his own site given that I think he is contracted full-time by the MP.

            I've never seen a spot on this forum that linked to a website featuring the MP photographers that are contracted directly by MP - if you find it, please do post as I'm sure it would be helpful to other MP brides. Perhaps was it a thread that listed examples of photos taken at MP that included in-house and outside vendors?

            Quote:
            Originally Posted by gemmalou
            oh god im really worried now, im a UK bride and was planning on having the photos with the resort photographer. i was going to take to some samples of how we want some of the photos so he could do them for us etc, i just hope they turn out ok now, we cant afford an outside photographer and harder to book one being in the UK
            Quote:
            Originally Posted by Tlseege
            I certainly don't want to scare you, however bringing photos of what you like doesn't mean you'll get photos like that. That is why people hire photographers from the states and fly them in. Basically, you find a photographer that shoots your STYLE and fly them in. A photographer can't change their artistic eye or their post processing skills. They can "try" to, but their style is their style.
            Now, you can always show them some posing ideas and things like that, but sometimes photographers don't do well with certain poses if it isn't their typical style of photographing.

            So what I would suggest is do a ton of research. Price everything out. Perhaps it's cheaper than you think to fly someone in? Perhaps you can find a bride who's wedding date is very close to yours and you can split the cost of a photographer?

            good luck!
            I have to 100% agree with Trisha here; not only with the issue of not being able to get the resort photographer to do much different with their style (because that is something that makes each photographer individual and they can certainly try to mimic someone else's style but you aren't guaranteed and if you don't know the photographer's skill range, I wouldn't get my hopes up that the photographer will able to successfully copycat a specific style). The other thing is that the resort photographers (in my experience from the majority of what I have seen –*because not all "resort photographers" are actual resort photogs, sometimes the hotel just contracts an outside vendor or is a preferred vendor of the hotel because they have a working relationship) do not typically do much post-processing. So if the style you like is heavily-based on post-processing (application of filters, color editing for achieving specific things like vintage looks or black & white photos with partial color, very vivid color, airbrushing, retouching, etc) then there is nothing that bringing the photos examples you like with you to show the photographer will do... if they don't post-process much and your photo examples are heavily processed, you risk not being happy with the end result. Remember that resort photographers often turn your photos around before you leave the resort or shortly thereafter. I can't speak for Trisha, but it takes me significantly longer than one week to edit a wedding. The shooting of the wedding is the easy, relatively quick part–it is the editing that takes time and care.

            Also, specific to MP, I want to let you know that my client had no contact with the resort photographer in advance of arriving in Mexico OR before the actual wedding day when they showed up to the ceremony. The first time she saw the resort photographer was literally when she was already being walked down the aisle by her parents for the ceremony.

            My advice and Trisha's advice are not meant to scare anyone; but these are things to consider when deciding on your wedding photography. With an outside vendor, you have a lot more decision and control of what the end product will look like and an opportunity to voice your expectations and special requests with a photographer. This is because you research in advance and find someone who fits your style, whose vision and eye/ideas and creativity you admire. If photography is something that is REALLY important to you, then I would suggest hiring an outside vendor for the most ideal experience. If you are typically critical and choosy and want to have a very specific style of photos, a resort photographer is probably not going to be the right choice for you.

            This is not at all to say that resort photographers cannot do good work, because I have seen some excellent work done by resort photographers in the past; it is simply to say that you cannot always count on a resort photographer, who often does several weddings per week, to give you the same kind of personal attention and listen to your post-processing requests the way an outside vendor typically would. Often if you do enough research you can find an outside vendor who fits both your vision for style and your budget. Some photographers are even willing to create custom packages based on a budget if you just ask. There are lots of local Riviera Maya photographers to choose from that do excellent work that will not bankrupt your wedding budget and there are even more endless possibilities when you consider flying in a photographer from the states. In fact, sometimes even with the cost of the flight and hotel, it can be cheaper than someone local and having to buy them a day pass. You just have to do your research and find what fits your situation best.

            Good luck!

            #20 TonyandTricia

            TonyandTricia
            • Jr. Member
            • 426 posts

              Posted 06 March 2010 - 02:53 AM

              Hi ladies,

              I just got married last week at MP. I had David Pena and my pics just arrived in the mail today. I am very happy with them. Could you get better by bringing your own person? Probably...everyone has their opinion of what they want their pictures to look like. For me...I am very happy and wouldn't change a thing. He gave me his card and this is his website...

              Flickr: davidpenaphotography's Photostream

              It's just a flickr site, but still shows his work. I was pleased!




              0 user(s) are reading this topic

              0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users