A martini is a terrible thing to waste.

Wedding photographer.


Jul 21, 2010 32 Comments

A wedding.  One of the most overrated parties to attend.

Besides the fact that there’s usually Open Bar (and I say “usually” because sometimes there’s not an Open Bar.  In which case you and your cheap fiance should postpone the wedding another year, each get a second job, and then save up enough money so that you can have Open Bar at your wedding.  A “Cash Bar” at a wedding is inexcusable.  I’d rather see the bride give birth while walking down the isle, than hear the bartender at the reception say “that will be five dollars please.”

At my wedding there’s gonna be a barn involved, a BBQ, Open Bar, a bunch of perfectly rolled joints, some cocaine meticulously laid out on a Tiffany’s Governor cut corner tray (mind you, I’ve never done coke a day in my life.  But from what I gather, it’s really fun to have at a party).  And I will probably end up DJing my own wedding.  I’m that much of a control freak.  And good music at a wedding is absolutely crucial.   It’s the 2nd most important thing.   The most important thing being (I just told you a minute ago).

Another really important thing for a wedding is a great photographer.

I’m not sure if you’ve ever heard of the local artist named Tomas Malave?   If not, you should meet him.  Friendly, impossibly sexy, and one of the greatest photographers I know (alongside Pete Corcoran and Mary Spinelli).

Tomas is recently back in the Albany, NY area on summer break from the Rhode Island School of Design, and he is currently available (until September 10th) to photograph your wedding. (or special event, or commercial event, or whatever event you need a kick ass photographer for.)

So if you are in the market for said photographer, you should email him.  His email address is brightworks@mac.com and his name is Tomas Malave.

Or call Pete, he’s great, too :)  ThePeteMonster@gmail.com

p.s.  If you need a DJ for your wedding, I will do it for $5,000 cash.  No less.  But the music will be perfection.  And I get to dip into the Open Bar a little.  A lot, actually.   but I refuse to play “Shout“.  or “Brick House“.   I really hate those songs.


  • Pete
    Jul 21, 2010 at 2:36 am

    I think Mary would agree… Tomas is a super photographer and one of the nicest guys you will meet. That means he might say hello and share a breakfast before taking pictures. Also, Tomas has a good grasp on digital photography. Mary Spinelli and myself are lovers of old school film and stinky chemicals!

  • DB
    Jul 21, 2010 at 7:15 am

    my wedding (which I will never have one) would be an all karaoke music event. People must sing their hearts out.

  • Hopeful
    Jul 21, 2010 at 8:02 am

    I love the sly look in the bride’s eyes. Poor girl.

  • Jeff
    Jul 21, 2010 at 8:22 am

    The only thing more overrated than a wedding is getting married.

  • bugman
    Jul 21, 2010 at 8:42 am

    now there’s the matt we know and love!

  • Christy Douglas
    Jul 21, 2010 at 9:18 am

    this sums you up to a tee. and tomas is a uniquely talented photographer.

    also, you forgot to mention that you will also be DJ’ing your funeral. matt’s greatest hits is currently in the process of compilation.

    in no way am i equating marriage with death.

  • KLW
    Jul 21, 2010 at 9:33 am

    Does he want to do an engagement shoot? how much does he charge? I suppose you are going to tell me to email him and not leave a stupid comment asking questions that only he can answer…

  • jp
    Jul 21, 2010 at 11:11 am

    what’s his website? surely any “great” should have a website. I’m not saying your buddies not good but you should back this post up with a website if not one of his great wedding photos. you’re really giving no props here to us local photographers who make a living shooting weddings. I’m sure my comment won’t be approved since you never do when I leave comments. And what’s up with my dog lexie the queen of Friday puppy not winning a treat. Throw me a bone matt.

  • Matt Baumgartner
    Jul 21, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    @ KLW..why don’t you just email him and stop leaving stupid comments in which you ask questions that only he can answer.

  • Elisabeth
    Jul 21, 2010 at 12:46 pm

    Damn, player! You’re doggin’ nuptials on FP! I guess I would think weddings are overrated, too, if I lived, owned businesses and paid taxes in a state that didn’t allow me to legally marry. Hopefully that changes soon and you can DJ your own rustic barn BBQ wedding!

    Does Tomas have a web site where we can see his work? Or can you post some pics?

  • Katelyn
    Jul 21, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    Matt, if you are doing a post about great local wedding photographers, it is complete garbage unless you are mentioning JP Elario. I don’t even know this dude but his wedding shots are AMAZING and he does some really cool things with video/blog/local vendors.

    From the past month that I have been stalking his blog… I have learned that he is a super gracious and proud Cap Region photographer who is constantly giving shout outs to all the local vendors who also take part in his client’s wedding day.

    I legit dare you to check out his blog and not respond back to me that it is some of the best photography you have ever seen and that you do not want to hang out with this guy and become his BFF because he seems that cool.


  • Katelyn
    Jul 21, 2010 at 12:58 pm

    P.S. I still love you and will continue to stalk your blog. But I just had to give JP a shout out because I equally love/stalk his blog also.

  • Katelyn
    Jul 21, 2010 at 1:04 pm

    Matt, if you are doing an entry on great local wedding photographers, you’re crazy not to mention JP Elario. I have been loving him/stalking his blog much in the same way that I love/stalk your blog. His work is gorgeous and he seems like the funnest/coolest guy ever. He does some amazing stuff with video on his blog as well.


    I legit dare you to check it out and not tell us that you don’t think he is one of the best photographers and coolest guys ever.

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  • JV
    Jul 21, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    Thanks for the tip Matt. I e-mailed you a while back about venues but this certainly helps as well. My fiance and I went to high school with Tomas and his work was great then. Friendly, Impossibly sexy is an excellent description!

  • C
    Jul 22, 2010 at 10:24 am

    I found this post sort of hurtful. Weddings are expensive and young people struggle to afford them. In our case, we have no help from our parents. Still, we want to get married and it’s important to our families to have an actual wedding. We are planning a limited open bar and even that will cost us, two people who hardly drink, $1500-$2000 – and our wedding isn’t big. Anyway, calling people cheap and advising them to get a second job so that their friends and relatives can get wasted on free liquor is a pretty crappy attitude to take. I think someone who would consider postponing their wedding because they are too ashamed that they can’t afford to get their friends loaded needs new friends, not a new wedding day.

  • Matt Baumgartner
    Jul 22, 2010 at 11:48 am

    @ jp… get off my back jack. for starters, your comments go to my SPAM because your website is on there and for some reason WordPress thinks you’re spamming me. Secondly, this isn’t WeddingPlanning.com. I’m simply referring a LOCAL photographer who does great work and is a nice guy. He didn’t ask me to. geez.

    I’m sure you’re an amazing photographer and a good guy. Actually, I’m not sure. I have no idea who you are. But maybe some day we’ll meet, have some beers, and I’ll throw you that bone you asked for. ;)

  • jp
    Jul 22, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    heres my beef. when you write a post called “wedding photographer” the person should at the very least be a “wedding photographer”. its truly a different type of photography than fine art. i know you have a lot of pull on your blog and its kind of misleading to your readers that tomas is a college student on break looking to commission some jobs. i’m just trying to show some love and protect us local full timers who make a living off what we do. not only that, i take my career serious as do the other local peeps.

    hopefully in the future you’ll get my comments now. i’ve been leaving them for a long time player. lexie and i will take you up for that beer. oh and according to my wordpress stats, i hope you enjoyed all the traffic i send your way man.. as katelyn said i’m always giving shout outs ;)

  • Matt Baumgartner
    Jul 22, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    @ jp… how do you know he’s NOT a wedding photographer? I think when you meet him you’re realize why I mentioned him.

    Do you do dog photography? Maybe we can give away a photoshoot for a Puppy Prize one day?

  • Christy Douglas
    Jul 22, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    he just called you a player.

  • Miss SJ Albany
    Jul 22, 2010 at 12:36 pm

    LOL @ Christy

  • jp
    Jul 22, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    matt, you’re right i don’t know if he’s a “wedding photographer” or not. it would just would be nice to see a website and or business name or something other than an apple email address. or even some of his work man! come on at the very least one image… does he pay ny state sales tax like you and i and all the other legitimate businesses?? whats his business name registered as? the fact that he’ll only be available until sept 10 for work doesn’t help me believe that tomas operates as a legitimate wedding photography studio. my professional relationships start well in a years advance with most my brides and grooms and often last into a year after the wedding. thats my beef. its just not fair to all of us. i have a legit gripe man.

    yes i do photograph dogs. many of my images of past friday puppies have made the pages of this blog. if you’re serious about a puppy prize send me an email.

  • Luke Walker
    Jul 22, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    I can jive with what JP is saying here Matt, Albany may be known as “Smallbany” but there are some really good things happening here. Both his studio and our own have really tried to raise the bar and put out the kind of work that rivals anyone in the US. We try and support the local scene as much as we can, give our business to local business people, make sure we’re always linking people and giving local recommendations, etc. So it can be tough to have someone blog about a college dude with no website (no website?! WTF?!) when you have local pros who’ve worked their butts off while also trying to keep the local people supported. Looks like you have a heavy following on your blog and we do as well, and we always try and give a million links and give credit to people who have things rolling. Just something to think about. Count me in for a drink if you two are setting up a date :)

  • Stuyvesant Girl
    Jul 23, 2010 at 9:01 am

    Any post titled wedding photographer is not complete without mentioning Joe Elario Photography, http://www.joeelariophotography.com , regardless of how good your friend might be. I think that reputation, success, artistry, the ability to capture any and every important moment, professionalism, a work ethic beyond compare, incredible creativity and a love of their profession trumps anyone else in their profession, and most certainly, someone who is trying to test the waters in

  • Cathy Gatta
    Jul 23, 2010 at 9:51 am

    Wow Matt – I bet you had no idea all this was going to happen. Just trying to let people know about your friend, and then holy moley. So, I thought I’d put in my 2 cents. First – I just love Tomas. He did some work for me taking food and room pics at 677 Prime and Glen Sanders Mansion. He did a great job and was very easy to work with. I use his shots a lot on our web site and brochures. I must admit, I didn’t know he did weddings as well. Also – I’ve worked with JP & Luke for many many many weddings at all of our locations. Their work is unbelievable, as is many other local photographers in the area. Last – if there’s going to be a Matt + Tomas + JP + Luke get together, count me in. How about 677??!!!

  • Matt K
    Jul 23, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    Wow, maybe in the interest of Matt’s physical safety we should change the topic here from wedding photographers to something a little less controversial – religion? politics? how long should LiLo stay in jail? or maybe we should talk about pie again… mmm, pie…

  • Pete
    Jul 23, 2010 at 6:15 pm

    I’m sure there are some reputable chefs out there who don’t have a website. They may even know how to cook for weddings.

  • Stuyvesant Girl
    Jul 24, 2010 at 8:59 am

    why didn’t you print my comment?

  • Matt Baumgartner
    Jul 24, 2010 at 10:15 am

    @Stuyvesant Girl… Because it went into the spam folder. Anytime you include links in the post, it ups the chances that WordPress thinks it’s spam. But seriously, are we still talking about wedding photography?

  • Emma
    Jul 24, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    As someone planning a wedding this year, I appreciate Matt’s post. JP’s work is nothing short of beautiful. He can make anyone look like a supermodel on their special day. But, its not exactly in us common folks’ budget. Its reassuring to know that there are other good, affordable options for us too.

  • Emma#2
    Jul 24, 2010 at 7:11 pm

    This is my first post on theknot.com..=)……I find it to be lacking a little class to come on and worry about your post as a favor to a buddy for some extra cash..I doubt JP will lose any money because of this so does he bother to worry.

    I don recall Lia, Fuccillo, or any car dealers contacting you when you posted about the beetle for sale…

  • Erin
    Jul 26, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    Who cares!

    Oh, my wedding is next August. DJ MY WEDDING! It’s open bar and my dad is paying for it. Drink yourself dead!

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