Welcome to Xenia Helix's FAQ & Experience

Here I've gathered all the answers to your burning questions and shared a bit about what it's like to work with me. But first, let's talk about YOUR XPERIENCE – get it? Xenia + Experience = Xperience. Pretty cool, huh? Now, let's dive into the process and make sure you have all the info you need to feel confident and excited about your photography experience with me.



Exchanging emails or scheduling a Zoom call - whatever you prefer. Ensuring a connection between us!
I'll delve into your vision and plans, address any questions you might have, and assist you in selecting the perfect wedding package.



I am all yours for the day! Your wedding date is secured with a signed contract and a retainer fee. No need to stress if you haven't finalized the exact event times yet—I won't schedule anything else for that day and am completely flexible to accommodate your needs.


Engagement session

It's entirely your choice whether you want to have one or not! However, I would be delighted to capture moments of the two of you. Whether you plan to use these pictures for "save the dates" or to enhance your venue decor, I'll provide guidance on all the details and assist with outfit and location choices.


Staying in touch

You won't be left alone! We'll stay in constant communication leading up to the wedding day. I'll collect all the necessary details and send a few questionnaires your way. Together, we will craft the timeline design, rain plan, and family photo groupings blueprint.


The Big Day

You're having a blast! My assistant and I will be by your side every step of the way. From navigating family formals and directing bridal party to fluffing your gowns, shielding you from the burning sun, offering an umbrella, or even holding your drinks. All while capturing your unique love story with inclusivity, warmth, and an unwavering commitment to family bonds.


Pictures are ready

The wait is finally over! The most anticipated moment post-wedding – an email from me in eight weeks announcing that your pictures are ready! Each image is hand-edited and carefully selected, waiting for you in your online gallery. The gallery comes with a personal print shop, making all your favorites just one click away from becoming stunning canvases on your walls.

Embracing Love in Every Shade, Every Form, Every shape, Every Faith, Every Identity.

Your TRUE SELF, Captured with Inclusivity and Dedication

The Most Important Question


Consider me your Wedding Fairy Godmother, your biggest cheerleader, and advocate. My mission is to ensure your day is smooth, filled with love and laughter, and that all your wedding dreams come true. From the early planning stages, many months before the big day, I'll share my wealth of knowledge with you.

Whether it's creating a detailed timeline, making decisions about locations and lighting, or assisting with any other aspect, I'm here for you.

Together, we'll strategize for unpredictable weather, plan family formals, and capture that hero shot. I value your privacy and choose my lenses specifically so I won't be in your face all day.

Ensuring you and your loved ones feel at ease in front of my camera is my top priority on a wedding day. Many of my clients express feeling as if they've spent the entire day with an old friend, rather than awkwardly posing for a stranger. At times, it seems like I'm marrying into the whole family, given how close-knit we become by the end of the day.

My unique life experiences have given me an inside-out understanding of weddings:

  • I've worked as a wedding banquet waitress.
  • I've managed restaurants.
  • I've mastered the art of professional makeup and hairstyles.
  • I've been a bride myself.
  • I owned a wedding planning agency.
  • I've worked as a wedding planner.
  • I've served as a day-off wedding coordinator.
  • I've consistently photographed weddings for the past 14 years, capturing hundreds of love stories.

Having witnessed every facet of weddings, I've gathered valuable experience. Whether you need advice on seating charts, table sizes, or the best spot for a sweetheart table, I've got you covered. If your veil is swept away by the wind, I'll expertly secure it into your updo. If the day isn't going as planned, take a deep breath, and together, we'll brainstorm and find a solution. Curious about when, where, and how long you need for pictures? I have all the answers.

Beyond practical skills, I'll be your eyes, capturing the unseen love around you. The wedding day is bustling, filled with excitement and customs, leaving little time to take it all in. But rest assured, those moments you might have missed will be beautifully preserved in your pictures—moments you can now touch and relive.

Frequently Asked Questions | Weddings | Part I

Booking, payments, scheduling, wedding coverage specifics


Are you LGBTQ+ friendly photographer?

Absolutely! Love is love, and I wholeheartedly support and celebrate couples of all orientations and identities. Whether you're LGBTQ+ or an ally, I am here to capture your unique love story with authenticity, respect, and joy. Your happiness and comfort are my top priorities, and I am committed to creating a safe and inclusive space where you can be your true selves. Let's create beautiful memories together!

Are you comfortable photograping cultural weddings?

Yes, yes and yes! I embrace the rich diversity of cultural weddings and consider it an honor to document the traditions, customs, and celebrations that make each wedding unique. Whether it's a vibrant Indian ceremony, a heartfelt Jewish wedding, or any other cultural celebration, I approach each event with respect, curiosity, and enthusiasm. Your cultural heritage is an integral part of your love story, and I am committed to capturing every moment with authenticity and reverence. Let's work together to create timeless memories that honor your traditions and reflect the beauty of your cultural heritage.

How do we book you?

Excited to work with you!
To secure your date, kindly complete the contact form on this site. I'll promptly reach out to you. We can touch base via a few emails and/or arrange a Zoom video call for a virtual meet-up (totally cool if calls aren't your thing!). Once we all feel good about moving forward and you're ready to lock in your date, I'll send over an online contract for your signature. Following that, a non-refundable retainer fee of 25%, based on the package price, will be due.
Looking forward to making some magic together!

When should we book you?

When you know we are a good match!
Secure your wedding date as soon as you can, typically right after booking your venue. Dates with unique numbers, such as 02/24/2024, or popular summer and fall Saturdays tend to fill up quickly.

We booked our date, now what?

Congratulations, I am all yours!
Now, it's time to consider whether you'd like to have an engagement session. Additionally, determine the level of assistance you desire from me. If you prefer none and would rather see me next on the wedding day, that's absolutely fine. I'll send you a few questionnaires and check in on you periodically regardless.

What is the payment schedule?

The remaining balance, after paying the 25% retainer fee, is divided in half. The first half is due 90 days before the wedding date, and the second half is to be paid 30 days before the wedding. In cases of short-notice bookings where the wedding is approaching within 90 days, a customized payment schedule will be arranged.

Payments cannot be made on the wedding day or after the wedding, except for overtime and printables.

Do you work with a second photographer?

Adding a second photographer to any of your packages is an option, available for a fee of $150 per hour.

Not every wedding needs a second photographer, I will gladly advice you on this matter.

Do you provide video services?

I appreciate your question, but I made a deliberate choice long ago to avoid spreading myself thin and instead concentrate on my expertise. Unfortunately, I cannot simply press the "video" button for a minute during the ceremony, despite having this feature on my camera. Creating quality video requires expertise beyond what may seem straightforward.

However, I'd be more than happy to offer recommendations for talented videographers who specialize in capturing the essence of your special moments.

Do you include an engagement session in your packages?

That's a great question!
While many of my colleagues include engagement sessions in their packages, I've chosen to offer it as an add-on option.
I understand that not everyone wishes to have an engagement session, and making it obligatory may not align with everyone's schedule, desires,and preferences.
Additionally, even if included, the session is not free; it is factored into the overall cost of the wedding packages.
I prefer to photograph engagement sessions for clients who genuinely value and prioritize this additional service.

Do you help to create a timeline of the day?

Absolutely, a million times over—count me in!
I'm genuinely the first one eager to discuss and align your timeline. A well-planned timeline ensures a smoothly running day, allowing us to capture all the pictures you desire without any stress. Picture it: your happy, relaxed faces throughout the day!

Do you have insurance?

Yes, I do!
And I am ready to provide a certificate of insurance to your venue whenever needed.

What if need you for more hours on the day of the wedding?

I don't schedule anything else on the day of your wedding, so if you find that you need additional hours of coverage, I am entirely at your service. Overtime can be charged in 20-minute increments and will be billed after the wedding day

Do we need to feed you?

Great question!
Without a doubt, I'll need to eat if the event spans more than 5 hours. Whether the food is provided or I'm informed in advance to bring my own sandwich. I don't require a fancy three-course meal. An entree is more than sufficient, or vendor meal options provided by the venue work well.

The crucial aspect is that I need to eat when you do; otherwise, there won't be time afterward. The only time I'm not photographing is when people are eating.

What if you will get sick or die?

Fair enough!

Fortunately, neither situation has occurred for me, and I haven't missed a single wedding. Nevertheless, one can never be too prepared. In the event of severe sickness (where I'm unable to communicate) or death, my assistant, who possesses all the wedding information, will contact you with available options. These may include arranging for an emergency photographer from my network or offering a refund if you prefer to handle the situation independently.

In the case of an emergency photographer, if I'm still able, I will personally edit your pictures to ensure the style meets all your expectations.

We need to change our date! What to do?

I completely understand—life happens!

In the event of such a situation, please reach out to me right away. If your new date is available in my schedule, I'm all yours. The retainer fee paid for the initial booking is non-refundable as the date is lost for my business. Booking a new date will involve the standard process, including a new retainer fee.

If the new date is not available in my schedule, all payments made up to this point are non-refundable.

If the new date is flexible and pending, contingent on venue availability, let's stay in touch. We can communicate back and forth as much as needed to ensure you are happily settled with the new arrangements.

We need to cancel our wedding! What to do?

It's likely the last thing you anticipated when making your plans, and I am sincerely sorry for the situation. Despite my understanding, all payments made up to this point remain non-refundable, as the date was reserved and taken out of my schedule.
Reach out to me as soon as you know, so that no new payments occur in the meantime.

Frequently Asked Questions | Weddings | Part II

Style, editing, wedding day approach, photo gallery


What is your photography style?

I receive this question frequently, and I understand that it can be interpreted in various ways. Some inquire if I lean more towards a journalistic style, preferring candid shots over posed ones. Others seek insights into how I handle light, darkness, vividness, or muted tones during the editing process. I'll provide a comprehensive response to address everyone's queries.

I describe my style as "vivid and real," meaning I don't apply a fixed set of camera settings that render every client's pictures identical, regardless of the weather or venue. Whether it's a sunny outdoor wedding in a tent, a candle-lit mansion, or a modern venue with glass walls, each wedding is unique, and I aim to capture that individuality.

My goal is for your wedding pictures to transport you back to the exact time and place of your special day. I want your grandmother, unable to attend, to receive her album and feel as if she was there, rather than questioning why the grass appeared grayish and pale at your summer wedding in Massachusetts.

The majority of my work is done in-camera, utilizing the available light, landscape, and your chosen location. I adapt to the mood of the day and capture reality—lush greens, delicate magnolia petals, or the bold and sharp tropical flowers in your bouquet. The burgundy red of bridesmaids' dresses stays true, and the skin tones of every guest remain authentic.

While I do edit pictures to enhance reality, I refrain from altering it. When you browse through my portfolio, you won't feel like you're seeing photos from the same wedding (unless you scrutinize closely and notice the different faces). Instead, you'll sense the uniqueness of each couple and their story, unified by consistent quality of light, true skin tones, the richness of nature, and a tribute to the unique light of each day.

What does editorial mean?

While my personal style, described as 'vivid and real,' may not align with a commonly used label, it closely resembles an editorial style. However, due to the inherent customs and necessities of a wedding day, such as camera-aware poses and family formals, it doesn't strictly adhere to the editorial genre, but I add it to the mix pretty generously.

Editorial wedding photography style draws inspiration from editorial features found in magazines. It often involves capturing moments in a storytelling manner, emphasizing details, emotions, and the overall narrative of the wedding day. This style goes beyond traditional, posed shots and seeks to document the event in a candid and documentary fashion, often incorporating artistic and creative elements. Editorial wedding photographers aim to tell a compelling visual story that reflects the unique personalities and atmosphere of the wedding. This style is characterized by its focus on aesthetics, composition, and a journalistic approach to capturing the essence of the event.

Can you take light and airy pictures?

Can I capture light and airy pictures? Absolutely! Will I do it for every wedding? No. I'll capture light and airy shots when it's suitable—when the day, the light, and the location call for it. If the surroundings are naturally light and airy, that's the result you'll get because it reflects the reality of the moment.

To address your inquiry about wanting your wedding pictures to have a light and airy feel—it will depend on numerous factors and cannot be guaranteed in advance.

Will you edit our pictures?

Yes! Each picture undergoes individual attention from me. I meticulously hand-edit each of them without using any batch processor. While I enhance the reality, I refrain from altering it. However, you can expect small inconveniences like blemishes that appear on a wedding morning (ugh!), or that blue recycling bin that suddenly jumped into our shot, to be removed.

What is your editing style?

My primary focus is on creating timeless images that won't lose their relevance even after 100 years. I preserve true skin tones and don't sacrifice other colors for temporary trends and aesthetics. I respect your choice of a specific color scheme (which, I am sure, you chose for a good reason) for your wedding day – dusty blue will stay dusty blue, and bright red won't become orange.

Can you photograph interracial or dark skin couples?

Typically, I receive this question from clients who have had previous negative experiences with their photos. They mention issues such as everyone's skin tones appearing the same, regardless of ethnicity, or darker-skinned people looking orange. I believe these problems arise during the editing process of other photographers. In my work, I am confident in capturing a diverse range of skin tones in any combination, ensuring that you will never appear orange or overly processed in my pictures.

What is your approach on a wedding day?

Typically, I ease into the day smoothly during the getting-ready part. I begin by capturing details, allowing everyone in the room to acclimate to another person being there with a camera. While I embrace a photojournalistic approach, making people uncomfortable or capturing unflattering moments is a definite no. I'm highly conscious and observant of body language. For instance, if I notice a mom sighing in front of the mirror and pulling a shrug over her arms, I'll never force her to take it off for pictures. Similarly, I avoid overly posing or re-posing someone, especially in front of others, to ensure they don't feel uncomfortable about their body.

During parts of the day when my direction is needed, I'll be right there, guiding you on what to do. Throughout the ceremony, I'm respectful of the guests' experience and make every effort not to obstruct anyone's view or become a third person at the altar.

Come reception time, I'll be in ninja mode – you'll barely see me, but rest assured, the pictures are being taken! Enjoy your night, and don't worry about a single thing.

Do you take family formal pictures?

Of course! Not only do I consider it important, but I believe it's an integral part of the day. Before the wedding day, I'll assist you in planning a proper timeline for the number of people in your families, and we'll create a list for group shots to ensure we don't miss anyone. I'll help you navigate and organize people. If time allows, I'd also like to capture extra pictures of your relatives, such as all cousins together or your parents in a loving pose recreating their wedding kiss.

Do you help with posing?

I definitely do, especially if you feel like you need my help. Some clients express that they are terrified of the camera and don't enjoy being photographed, and that they are conscious about looking 'stupid' in pictures, so they seek my precise guidance to ensure they look good. On the flip side, some prefer not to see the camera much, opting for candid shots and trusting my judgment. Others are natural models and enjoy posing themselves.

I assist in posing group shots and the hero shot (something planned, like a nighttime back-lit rain picture). During the couple's portrait session, I typically place clients in a certain light and give them a task, such as walking towards me, allowing the rest to unfold naturally. Here's a secret: candid moments often happen between posed pictures, so I may trick you into a pose while anticipating what will happen next

Can we follow a shot list from pinterest?

Well, the thing about Pinterest is that it's a great place to gather inspiration, but it can also be overwhelming and make you feel like you 'must' get certain pictures even if they truly don't resonate with you.

I would encourage you to share your wedding inspiration Pinterest board with me (if you have one) just to understand the overall vibe and aesthetics that appeal to you, providing another way to get to know you better.

On your wedding day, our focus will be on creating a photo story that is unique to you rather than strictly adhering to someone else's list of shots.

What if it rains?

Cool, I like rain!

Seriously, nothing to worry about because we have a rain plan (that you like as much as the original plan), right?

I and my gear are rain-ready. I have a poncho for my camera and covers for the flashlights. I promise, we will get the most exciting pictures out of this wet situation.

What gear do you use?

I use a professional DSLR Canon camera along with a selection of lenses to capture a diverse range of shots, from detailed macro shots of the rings to uninterrupted portraits during the ceremony.
Additionally, I incorporate a number of flashlights to work with artificial light sources when necessary.

When will we get our pictures?

Expect to get your pictures in eight weeks from your wedding day.
Occaisionaly, in the mids of busy season delivery times can vary, you will find all specifics in your wedding photography contract.

How many pictures will we get?

I prioritize quality over quantity. The number of pictures you receive depends on the hours of coverage, the flow of the day, any unforeseen situations, and changes of plan. Rest assured that all the pictures you receive will tell a comprehensive story of your day. I don't delete pictures just for the sake of it; I'll eliminate test shots, identical copies, closed eyes, and insignificant duplicates.

If you're looking for a rough estimate, expect anywhere from 30 to 100 pictures per hour of coverage.

How will we get our pictures?

You will receive all of your edited pictures in a beautiful online gallery. The pictures are immediately available for downloading, and they come in various sizes for your convenience. Your gallery is shareable with your friends and family, allowing them to download pictures as well!

Will we get a print release?

Yes, absolutely! All pictures are yours to download with the right to print them anywhere you want. Copyright is still mine, meaning I am the creator of those pictures, so, for example, you can't sell those pictures to a magazine without my permission.

However, your gallery comes with a personal print shop that is connected to a professional photo laboratory, ensuring the most pristine printing results. You and your guests are welcome to use this feature, but it is not obligatory.

Can we have RAW files?

You can purchase RAW files separately, although this is not a common occurrence unless you are a photo professional yourself and intend to edit those pictures.

Do we have to print an album?

You don't have to, but I encourage you to! Having your love story printed on museum-grade archival paper with a guarantee of more than 100 years for preserving pictures offers a completely different feeling than scrolling through your wedding pictures on a screen. There is something magical about touching album pages, as I say, 'memories you can hold.'

Can we order prints, albums, after the wedding?

Yes, you are more than welcome to decide on your printables after seeing your pictures. The difference with ordering an album as part of a package is that it comes with a discount.

Frequently Asked Questions | Engagements & Portraits | Part III


What is engagement session?

Engagement photosession typically takes place after the engagement is announced and before the wedding day. The purpose of an engagement photo session is to celebrate the couple's commitment, showcase their personalities, and provide them with high-quality images that can be used for various purposes, such as save-the-date cards, wedding invitations, or personal keepsakes.

Do we have to book engagement session if we are getting married?

You're not obligated to have an engagement session!
Not everyone wants an engagement session, and that's perfectly fine.
I don't include engagement sessions in my wedding packages, but they are always available as an à la carte option.

We are in love but not engaged, can we still have an egagement session?

The term 'engagement' session is just a title (or perhaps for marketing?). I photograph couples in love, regardless of marital status, surprise proposals, romantic picnics, private vow renewals, and any other ideas you can think of.

I am planning a surprise proposal, can you hide in the bush and take pictures?

Oh yes, I will! You can count on me! Whether it's a bush, a pile of sand, a snowman... you name it, and I will hide there, capturing your magical moment. Or I can pretend to be a tourist with a camera on a busy street, or keep your secret and play along during a 'regular' scheduled photo session.
If you're feeling lost and don't know where to start with such a campaign, I'll be your partner in crime, and we can make a plan together.

What is a portrait session?

Some people mistakenly think that a portrait is only a photograph of the face, confusing it with a headshot photo.

Portrait sessions can vary in style, ranging from formal and posed portraits to candid and lifestyle shots, depending on the preferences and goals of the subjects. This photography session is focused on capturing individual or group portraits, which could include close-ups and full-body portraits.

That said, I invite you for family portraits, couples' portraits, maternity and solo photosessions! No reason other then celebrating yourselves needed :)

Do you have a photo studio where I can come?

I don't own a photo studio; the majority of my photosessions happen on location, whether outdoors or at the client's house. However, there are many photo studios and interesting spots available for hourly rent (on peerspace for example). If it's something you may be interested in, we can search for the perfect place for your session together.

Do I get all the pictures? Do I need to buy any?

You will receive all your culled down, hand-edited images in a beautiful online gallery. The pictures are the final product and ready to be downloaded, with no hidden fees or need to pay for downloading.

Your gallery will come with a personal print shop directly connected to a printing lab. You will only be responsible for paying for physical prints if you choose to order through your gallery.

Can I print my pictures or use for the holiday cards?

Printing rights for the pictures are yours, meaning you can download them and print them anywhere you wish. However, for your convenience and quality guarantee, your gallery has a personal print shop that is connected to a professional printing lab. You can even create holiday cards using a simple design constructor.

Do you help to choose outfits and style?

Yes! Before the photo session, we will discuss your goals and vision, and I will share any impactful information that I have. Whether you want a romantic spring photo session at Boston Public Garden or nighttime portraits by the Christmas market, I've got you covered. We will nail down your outfits, wardrobe changes, props if any, locations, and ways to stay comfy and on top of time.

Do you provide hair and make-up services?

Even though I've taken professional classes on make-up and hairstyle, I don't provide those services myself. However I will confidently fix your hairdo or smudged mascara if ever needed.
I can gladly connect you with make-up and hair professionals that I've worked with.

Can I bring my pet to the session?

Yes, please! Pleeease! I love pets of any shape and form, from a hamster to a Saint Bernard. We will be best friends and I'll make sure to bring a treat with me.

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