Deon and Reni are a South African and Dutch couple based between Australia and Europe. The documentary photographer duo are spending time between Portugal and Italy during the summer of 2023 and will be traveling to South Africa in 2024. Deon and Reni focus on capturing timeless moments at weddings worldwide.
Tell us about your business!
Hello - my name is Reni and I’ve been photographing weddings together with my partner Deon for 11 years now. We work together on bigger celebrations however, I capture most intimate weddings by myself. Deon is from South Africa and I am from The Netherlands.
Where are you based?
We moved to Australia in 2019 and are based in Europe during the summer season.
Do you travel for weddings?
We do. We are lucky having multiple bases around the world, so we travel a lot. In fact, we travel for almost all weddings.
How would you describe your style?
I would say documentary. We feel very much like a street photographer while we shoot, we don’t direct but rather visually order what is already in front of our lens.
What is your most memorable career moment?
Setting up Counterpart Photos. It is a global collective of documentary wedding photographers. I founded it because I thought the wedding industry could do with a place which just focused on the documentary aspect. Besides hosting other photographers it’s also a platform where we share our knowledge via Instagram Takeovers, as well as a gallery highlighting some wedding imagery from the past. My aim is for it to be inspirational for fellow (wedding) photographers, couples getting married as well as people interested in art.
What inspires you?
So many things. What I love about photography is the heightened sense of noticing things and a way to experience life. So I always like to be curious and be surprised in different ways.I often find inspiration in the LIFE magazine photo archive, and love looking at the classic Magnum Photographers. Recently I picked up a book from the second hand book shop called Viva Picasso with David Douglas Duncan’s photographs, it’s beautiful to get a glimpse of the artist in his studio. And, you can always find a Joel Meyerowitz book on my desk.
Besides photography I find cooking very inspirational, I love using cook books and trying out new recipes. Brazilian music (bossa nova) is my music of choice and surfing a way to feel free. I try to find inspiration wherever I go.
What motivates you to do what you do?
I have been photographing since I was a child and photography is part of who I am. But my aim in wedding photography is to capture timeless moments and preserve those. I like the idea of freezing a small, yet very important part of history and being a part of that.
Do you shoot digitally, on film or both?
We shoot both digital and film. I still use my grandmother’s old Hasselblad. She was the photographer in the family.
What is a favourite product or service that you offer and why?
Just being there for our couples, getting to know them and understanding what is important.
As for products- prints. Photos need to be printed, held and cherished. I love paging through old family albums and seeing wedding photos on the wall, it’s something we mustn’t lose.
What is your advice to couples getting married?
Start with sitting together and decide what is most important to both of you, make it all very personal and just follow your heart.