Texas-Dallas and Ft. Worth

McGowan Images

 Welcome to March everyone! 

I noticed a post from earlier today, concerning McGowan Images, which has now been removed (and rightfully so) from this message board. I’d like to add my own opinion about those photographers, because I feel they deserve a different, honest perspective.

 

My fiancé and I were engaged New Year’s Eve, in England. Chelsea was THE first phone call I made when we got home, and the first detail of my wedding that I secured. I picked McGowan Images before I picked a date OR a venue. I’d been following her blog for about a year, and after meeting her at a friend’s wedding, I knew that McGowan Images would be the absolute best choice for my own wedding.

 

Chelsea (who works as a team with her husband, and graphic designer, Mack) is just the right balance of friend and professional. I’ve never met anyone with a bigger work-ethic, or faster turn-around schedule. For example, we had our first engagement session on the 6th of February. A sneak- peek of our pictures was up on her photoblog within 24 hours, with a full preview (20+ fully edited images) in two days. We received copies of all our images, edited and unedited, within two weeks. Not to mention, our pictures are absolutely stunning. Chelsea is so talented, not only as a photographer and editor, but also as a coach. My fiancé is not exactly photogenic, but somehow, Chelsea and Mack were able to make him look like a better version of himself. In short, I couldn’t be happier with my first round of pictures!

 

Chelsea has been more than a photographer for me. She’s been an extra ear in the planning process, always willing to listen, answer a frantic text, email, or phone call. If you’re looking for a photographer who is creative, talented, hard working, and willing to go an extra mile (or 10) to make you feel special/beautiful/photogenic/etc… then Chelsea/McGowan Images is the right choice for you.

 

(Moderator: I know this isn’t exactly a succinct paragraph. I’m so sorry!)

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Re: McGowan Images

  • edited December 2011
    I wholeheartedly agree with you Meagan.  Of all of my fantastic wedding vendors, Chelsea is hands down my favorite. 

    Chelsea was the next choice we made after our venue.  We met with a few others first, but I was already in love with Chelsea's work and meeting with her just sealed the deal. 

    We are getting married in under 3 months so I will be more than happy to share my wedding day details with you then, but right now I can share my experience with McGowan Images thus far.

    We had an awesome engagement session with her in the freezing cold and she was upbeat and working in circles around us the whole time.  Our pictures turned out absolutely beautiful, and were blogged within a handful of days and our discs came even earlier than she told us they would.  

    We also ordered an engagement sign in book last month and Chelsea and Mack designed and ordered it for us and it was in our hands straight from the company within a few weeks.  It was absolutely gorgeous!

    As far as planning, I have emailed her multiple times with the most random questions, most of which have little to do with photography and she responded to me her honest opinions and advice almost immediately.  Her input has been invaluable in our planning process.

    If anyone ever has any questions at all about McGowan Images please feel free to page me, PM me, or email me at [email protected]
  • untsinguntsing member
    100 Comments
    edited December 2011

    As someone who knows absolutely nothing about Chelsea McGowan or the person who posted earlier with her complaints...I will say that I went to that Knottie's bridals on Chelsea's blog, and the tone of her blog was a bit sassy, even to me - someone with no ties to either party.

    The whole "Well I dont' like shooting here, but who am I to tell a bride no" statement (paraphrased) and the "this is why I don't like shooting children" statement held a lot of unnecessary sass in my opinion.  I would've probably been annoyed, too.

    Just playing the other side for a sec.  I'm sure both are lovely people, but this was obviously just the case of a vendor/client not gelling.  It's not the first or last time that will happen.

  • edited December 2011
    Along the lines of untsing, I don't know either indvidiual but the tone of the blog with bridals done on short notice has a different tone. Chelsea does seem slightly negative while the other blogs she posted seem very upbeat.  It could be personalties didn't match or something.  Not sure what happened but I can say the pictures look beautiful.  I don't think vendor bashing is the answer but opinions should be allowed to be voiced.  Maybe a shorten to the point review can be posted by the Knottie regarding McGowan Images. 

    I do think everyone has a right to be heard. My two sense anyways.
  • fallbride1109fallbride1109 member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    I think the bottom line is, not everyone will have a 100% positive experience with every vendor, no matter how glowing other reviews of them are.  It happens.
  • Jay+MarissaJay+Marissa member
    500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    I'm confused--why was the original post deleted? Did it count as vendor bashing?

    I kind of agree with the 2 previous posters--I don't know the photographer or knottie either, but there was a negative tone to the blog post. I don't know the photographer or knottie, either, though I do stalk Chelsea's blog on a regular basis because I love her work!
     
    Either way, I'm sure she is still a great photographer, but I suspect she took on more than she could chew and took it out on the bride. Obviously she is really busy with a baby coming, and to be honest, she wasn't getting all that much $$$ from just a bridal shoot as opposed to an entire wedding, which shouldn't, but could affect a vendors attitude. And if that was the case, I'd kind of like to know if I planned to use her for photography.

    MadiandCindy, maybe you should make a married bio and do vendor reviews--that's a more neutral place to put it.

    Anyway, just my 2 cents.
  • edited December 2011
    The bride got her photos edited and on time as promised.  The bride said herself that the photos were beautiful.  That is the bottom line.

    McGowan Images came through for her at the last minute when apparently no one else would.  I think that stands for itself on what a great job they do.
  • untsinguntsing member
    100 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Not necessarily.  I mean yes, yay for great pictures...but if you're unhappy with how you were treated or how you (and your CHILD) is portrayed on a blog, that's equally valid.
  • edited December 2011
    Tiffany 618 - I'm glad to hear that your experience with Chelsea has been fantastic. However, others might not have the same great relationship with her that you have.  Does that mean their opinion should not be heard? I don't think so.  I think everyone has a right to voice their opinion, good or bad.  I don't think we should censor one's opinion, after all its just that an opinion.  It doesn't mean you have to listen to them.  

    Also let's refrain from bashing the Knottie who felt compelled to share her expereince even though it hasn't matched yours.   We are all different and can offer different perspectives and isn't that what makes this board great..
  • edited December 2011
    I am appauled that this is happening here. I was contacted by Chelsea this morning asking me to change the review saying I was hurtful!  And I will not apologize for being honest. I understand some people have had a pleasant experience with her and I am glad you all did but I did not, and I would never think its ok to treat a client in that manner just because you do good work. Making me feel like crap and treating me with disrespect is wrong and hurtful. The difference here is that I paid for a service and she is the professional and should have acted like one. To this moment her emails have been rude and with the same tone. If you all get to speak so highly of someone why cant I give my honest review and experience? It isnt fair. I am not trying to argue its just not right when things arent fair. I will contact the knot and see to it that it is looked into as I think some moderators here are bias. Yes I was happy with some of my photos but I was not happy with the photos of my daughter as she made her VERY uncomfortable and took very few shots of her. I have tried to be fair and apparently there are many mcgowan cheerleaders, thats awesome however I cannot be one of them. I have indeed left some of the details out in order to try to not "bash" her and still it was a problem??

    Thank you ladies so much and I do wish you the best, you ALL are georgous brides and most have helped so much with your imput and kindness!!
  • edited December 2011
    Also I do NOT appreciate the moderator who made it a point to say I should have kept my review to a few sentences! Are you serious??? That is ridiculous and unfair.
  • edited December 2011
    Tiffany FYI my original photographer had a family emergency and cancelled, after that Chelsea was the first and only photographer I contacted and she agreed so again its your assumption that "no one else" would do my photographs.
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_texas-dallas-ft-worth_mcgowan-images?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:102Discussion:644ed4fe-06d2-424e-9199-bc0006338610Post:217e6d4e-b688-4d45-b103-112762b654ed">Re: McGowan Images</a>:
    [QUOTE]Also I do NOT appreciate the moderator who made it a point to say I should have kept my review to a few sentences! Are you serious??? That is ridiculous and unfair.
    Posted by madiandcindy[/QUOTE]

    Mariah can speak for herself but I don't think she meant that your reviews need to be a few sentences.  What I understood was that if you kept it short about being disappointed rather than going on and on about everything you didn't like you would have been fine.  And as someone else said, if you did vendor reviews in your bio rather than making a post to call her out- there's a little more flexibility. 
  • edited December 2011
    shortgirltx- I understand where you are coming from, however I dont see anyone telling the long positive reviews to be shortened. That is what upsets me. Going on and on about what I didnt like? Thats the whole point of a review.  This post has 5 pargraphs dedicated to defending mcgowan images, I dont see there being a problem there?
  • edited December 2011
    Actually, I never said you shouldn't be able to voice your opinion in either post.  I simply voiced my own opinions.

    I just happen to agree with Mariah in that it is not fair to post something like that in a forum where the vendor is not allowed to post their thoughts on the subject.
  • Jay+MarissaJay+Marissa member
    500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to Re: McGowan Images:
    [QUOTE  This post has 5 pargraphs dedicated to defending mcgowan images, I dont see there being a problem there?
    Posted by madiandcindy[/QUOTE]

    I do have to agree with that.


    Cindy, also it looks like you haven't been around here all that long, and I hope you stay. This board is full of people who have been here forever (I've been here over a year--stupid long engagement--and there are others that have been here quite a bit longer), hence there are a lot of subleties and relationships that it's hard to get as a newbie, and it definitely puts you at a disadvantage. Don't take things too personally--heaven knows I did and spent way too much time getting upset over stupid things.

    It's the nature of the internet--it's so hard to convey emotions/meanings and a lot gets lost in translation. I just wrote my honors thesis about it...
  • edited December 2011
    Really after reading the actual review and all that has been said today as was said before there is two sides to every story. The post has been removed. I think every bride deserves to give an elborate review being good or bad, and if she would of only said a few words not giving the whole story people would be questioning her anyways.
    She had a bad experience that doesn't mean everyone else will, when my mom called Chelsea only to find out she was booked on my date already, she told my mom to call her back if she could be of any help including calling other photographers.
  • untsinguntsing member
    100 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_texas-dallas-ft-worth_mcgowan-images?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local Wedding BoardsForum:102Discussion:644ed4fe-06d2-424e-9199-bc0006338610Post:3147ea55-bab2-4cf5-ae02-54c93dc53a18">Re: McGowan Images</a>:
    [QUOTE]I just happen to agree with Mariah in that it is not fair to post something like that in a forum where the vendor is not allowed to post their thoughts on the subject.
    Posted by Tiffany618[/QUOTE]

    But...don't we kinda do that all the time?  Plus, if it was a client, that vendor can get in touch with the client, which Chelsea did.  I'm just gonna have to side with the original poster here, and echo Marissa's sentiments that I hope this doesn't cause you to never come to the boards again. 

    P.S. your dress freaking rocks my world. LOVE IT.
  • edited December 2011
    Thanks Mandy! (if it was my dress you were talking about, that is?)

    I'm not leaving the boards, it was madiaandcindy that said that. I was around back when there was major drama here, I don't take it personal. =)
  • edited December 2011

    You know, I am just going to let this rest, I guess people will have their own experiences. Thanks to the ladies that are so supportive and mature enough to understand that everyone has a right to offer an opinion just as the girls who are perfectly happy and in love with mcgowan images, I just think I have been treated unfairly and it isnt right.

    Its so weird to hear all the positive reviews as I feel I met a completely different person, I guess it can happen :)

    untsing: thank you so much! I am in love with my gown, I want to wear it everyday lol what is a girl to do right? Only one day in our georgous gowns isnt enough!!



  • edited December 2011
    Oh no I never said I would not come back? Where? When? I didnt say that. I am a big girl, and big girls dont cry ha ha
  • edited December 2011
    Oh sorry, Cindy!  I don't know where I came up with that?
  • edited December 2011
    I don't really understand why a vendor would come on here and defend themselves.You don't see vendor thanking us for good reviews. If they did, the post would probably be deleted as well. It isn't equal and one should be able to say how they feel, good or bad, about their experience. 
  • Jay+MarissaJay+Marissa member
    500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_texas-dallas-ft-worth_mcgowan-images?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:102Discussion:644ed4fe-06d2-424e-9199-bc0006338610Post:90bf8f50-0222-494d-afa7-3a8abb6daa7b">Re: McGowan Images</a>:
    [QUOTE]Oh sorry, Cindy!  I don't know where I came up with that?
    Posted by Tiffany618[/QUOTE]

    Haha, it's because I told her she shouldn't leave due to all the negative vibes. See, I told you the internet causes funky communication!
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_texas-dallas-ft-worth_mcgowan-images?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local Wedding BoardsForum:102Discussion:644ed4fe-06d2-424e-9199-bc0006338610Post:5b06f88d-35d4-44d8-9cc0-d59d68434094">Re: McGowan Images</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: McGowan Images : Haha, it's because I told her she shouldn't leave due to all the negative vibes. See, I told you the internet causes funky communication!
    Posted by Jay+Marissa[/QUOTE]

    I hate internet communication. It seems that if you don't say nothing perfect it just doesn't come off the way it was intended to.
  • btweety04btweety04 member
    500 Comments
    edited December 2011
    I originally was gonna post earlier, but decided to bite my tongue and save it for FFF. But now I will just go ahead and get it over with. I would have to side with the original poster. I don't think it is fair to censor reviews on a forum dedicated to helping brides find vendors and such. If I was a bride considering McGowan Images as a wedding photog then I think I would like to know all the negatives and positves for that vendor. Of course reading that review I would take into consideration that it may have been an isolated incident unless many other reviews proved otherwise.

    Straight to the point though, I think a review should be allowed whether it was good or bad. No one ever removes positive reviews and unless the review is truely vendor bashing then everyones voice should be heard.
  • Niki234Niki234 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I'm usually just a lurker, but I have had experiences with McGowan Images so I wanted to contribute.  First, I will admit that I think Chelsea and Mack are great!  I've had nothing but great experiences with them and will continue to use them in the future.  I also closely follow her blog.  I not only like to look at the pictures but I also like to read it.  (And I want to throw out a big thanks to this board for leading me to McGowan Images!)

    With that said, I will not dismiss the way Cindy felt.  I didn't read her original post, but if she felt as though Chelsea was rude then that's how she felt.  But I do tend to have a hard time believing that Chelsea was truly being rude.  From my experiences, I just don't see it.  I would think its more of an issue of a misunderstanding.  People read people the wrong way all of the time.  Chelsea has admitted on her own blog that meeting with a photographer beforehand is super-important in order to find out if you get along with the photographer's personality. 

    As for the blog post, I read that blog when it was first posted.  I didn't read any rudeness into it at all.  I took the comment about the location as Chelsea's admission that she was wrong to feel that way and that she was reminded of how beautiful the place is.  As for the comment about the little girl (who is super cute!), I took that as Chelsea reminding blog followers that she's not the greatest at child photography because her heart just isn't in it.  We actually discussed the difficulties in photographing children during our session with her.  So I didn't take that as being rude.

    I have tried to be fair in my comments, but I do realize that I have a strong bias in favor of McGowan Images.  I just felt like contributing. 
  • edited December 2011

    Niki thanks for your imput. Honestly I still dont get it, the difficulties photographing children? She took a handful of pictures of my daughter and made her out to seem like a difficult child and that is EXACTLY the opposite. I tell you this being fully aware that all children have different personalities and its ok to choose to not photograph them however this was not the case here. I have a 6 year old son who is very active and could wear anyone out and I have no problem admittinng that as there is nothing wrong with that, most children are very active and require more attention during photography sessions, I have been taking my kids to be photographed since they were born, my daughter however is the exact opposite of this, she loves taking photos, loves to pose and is super gentle and calm, that is why I did not understand all her frustration and rudeness. And I really dont understand why she made it a point to put it in her blog? I feel some people are just short tempered and have no patience for children if that is the case, its fine just dont agree to photograph them and then treat them in a mean way? Even this morning in her email she said again she did me a "favor" knowing that she made me feel uncomfortable by repeating that, and of course it leads me to beleive that I was right in my review as she insists on defending herself and saying rude things to me and on top of that demanding I change my review. 

  • edited December 2011
    Geez, I'm sorry I deleted it.  But I honestly felt that it was vendor bashing.  I wasn't being baised to you, Madi, even if that's how you felt.  I do think that you have always had hard feelings towards me, but that's neither here nor there.  I thought I was doing the right thing-no one is perfect-and I certainly wasn't trying to be mean to you or make you feel like I'm baised. 

    I felt it was vendor bashing at the time but reflecting on it, you're right-you should be able to post your review.  I just think that when posting a negative review, we have no idea what truly happened and unfortunately can't hear the vendor's side of the story. 
  • edited December 2011
    Mariah I appreciate your words, thanks! And I dont have anything against you, I dont know where that came from but honestly your words also seem a bit harsh, sometimes like the girls said "internet communication" is to blame for it :)
  • Niki234Niki234 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I understand that you would be angry over someone being mean to your child.  I don't have children myself, but I can understand anger over something like that.  It's just that, from my conversation with Chelsea about children's photography, I didn't read it as rudeness but as a reminder to other blog followers that she doesn't do child photography on a regular basis. 

    You were right when you said that each child is different.  While a few like to pose for the camera, there are several that hate smiling in front of a camera.  And sometimes they're so young that you have to have the patience to wait for that special moment to capture.  I really didn't read it as rudeness toward your daughter...just a reminder to others that this was a special circumstance.  I say that hoping that you will feel somewhat better about the blog because others weren't reading "problem child" into it. 

    And I understand Chelsea being upset, too.  Especially if it was simply a misunderstanding.  She may have thought everything was great between you two.  Then, to read a negative review calling her out personally probably hurt her feelings.  It would mine...especially if I never meant any ill will towards the person saying negative things. 
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