Matthew Sowa is an internationally renowned, award-winning New York City (NYC) wedding photographer. His Work, Matthew Sowa New York City wedding photographer serving all of New York boroughs– from NYC to Long Island-New York – as well as NJ, CT, and PA.
His passion, creativity, and energy define his unique style and demonstrate his growing popularity among the NYC industry. Over the past 15 years, Matthew has exceeded NYC couples’ expectations by delivering a high caliber of creativity, customized and modern aesthetic photography for a memorable wedding day.
Matthew Sowa combines photographic artistry and classic portraiture with a primarily candied approach to capture the special moments his clients want to remember.
Born in Poland, Matthew earned a degree in photography from the Warsaw School of Photography, and he received additional training at the Institute of Art Photography in Ostrava, Czech Republic.
He has photographed more than 800 weddings, treating each event with meticulous care and creating photographic memories that last a lifetime and can be passed down to generations.
Matthew’s clients desire a fashion editorial look that complements his bold and dramatic style rooted in his photojournalistic approach.
Why Did We Pick Matthew Sowa As The Best Wedding Photographer in New York?
The answer is simple, Matthew’s work made me want to attend those weddings he photographed!
His work is detailed, breathtaking, and unique if you are looking for a photographer who can freeze the happiest moment and sweetest moment in your life.
Looking at his photos would remind you of the most fun and beautiful moments between the new Mr and Mrs, their families and friends.
For sure, Matthew is also a renowned and highly recognized photographer, lets take a look at the awards he gained recently:
Matthew Sowa’s 2020 Accolades & Recognition
- Top 10 Fearless Photographers of 2020
- Top 10 ISPWP Wedding Photographers of 2020
- Top 10 Master Wedding Photographers of North America & Mexico of 2020
- 100 Best Wedding Photographs of the decade 2020 By World’s best wedding
- WPPI Second Place in Photojournalism Division – First Half of 2020
- WPS First Place -Collection 49th by Wedding Photography Excellence Awards 2020
- NYC Wedding Photographer Best of 2020 – by Fearless Photographers.
Interviewing the Best Wedding Photographer in New York – Matthew Sowa
Wedding Photography of Matthew Sowa
Q: You are a very popular wedding photographer in New York, how did you start all these? What makes your work so special and popular?
When I graduated from the college of photography I started working as a photojournalist for different newspapers. It was then easy to transition my experience in documentary photography to wedding photography.
My stylistic approach allows me to express my vision, providing a creative outlet, and has fortunately served me well for over 15 years.
I started my career in 2004 as a New York wedding photographer. Since then, I have taken my creativity and styles to new heights to create completely unique images that captivate the environment’s serenity, and the mood and emotions that flow from the audience’s energy.
My style is based on a combination of my unique approach and strong self-confidence. As a wedding photographer, I’m an art director, photojournalist, fashion photographer, and portrait photographer— capturing every aspect of the day.
I stylize the central focus and pay close attention to the details and background noise of every photo. Each image should be interesting, fresh, and well-composed. I strive to always create pictures that have movement, power of emotion, and encompass modern style.
I graduated from college with a degree in photography and began my career by working as a news and documentary photojournalist. Later I developed an interest in an unobtrusive style in wedding photography, shooting my first wedding for close friends.
Q: Why Do Couples Love Working With You?
There is no question that my focus on relationships represents my clients’ desire to work with me. I like to think that I give my clients a lot of confidence. I do this by consulting them about stylistic photography and set expectations before they book my service to see if we are a good fit.
Trust is everything. Clients trust my ability to consistently deliver my fresh and unique style to every wedding event. I establish strong client relations by remaining completely transparent and demonstrating a dependable and strong work ethic.
I consistently communicate with my clients before, during, and after the shoot to ensure I capture the shared vision we set earlier in the process. I treat each shoot as a journey I take with my clients, and the outcome is a long-standing relationship based on trust in my ability to pour all of my creativity and passion into each project.
I aim to not only satisfy my client’s needs but to inspire for generations to come through artistic images I proudly stand behind.
Q: What Is Your Photography Philosophy?
No matter what you shoot, it is critical to capture an independent moment that represents fullness within the frame. In my photography, there must a fluid movement that showcases the moment’s story in sheer simplicity.
Images should inspire a completely authentic response that evokes a deeper visual meaning of the couple in union through the gesture, light, object to composition, and other surrounding aesthetics.
Q: Can You Describe Some Of The Most Memorable Weddings You’ve photographed? Why?
I never forget one of the destination weddings that I photographed on film roll in Scotland 2004. I did not realize then what a risk I was facing traveling alone to Europe to photograph a wedding without an assistant.
I took with me two Nikon gears 8008s, two lenses, and only 20 rolls of film for a 2-day wedding celebration! Today those frames would have covered only the first part of a wedding “Preparation” :).
Nonetheless, those two days inspire me to this day as I remember the fabulous castle wedding in the middle of nowhere with an international crowd, where people traveled from around the world to celebrate love. I was impressed with the aesthetics of an 18th-century castle.
The bride looked fabulous, dressed in a fancy black wedding gown and participating in all wedding activities like riding the horse and shooting from the hatch. The wedding reception and after-party time combined with the castle vibe allowed me to practice my photography in the most unique of places.
Q: What Would Be The Dream Wedding You Want To Photograph?
The dream wedding I want to photograph… I have never really thought about it. It wouldn’t be in the city since most of my weddings are city-bound. I am an avid traveler.
One of my favorite destinations includes South Asia, where I connect with people, in particular, “The Land of Colors” – Vietnam, Thailand, Burma, Laos, Indonesia, Papua, The Philippines, Cambodia, or Sri Lanka.
My dream wedding may stem from either of these destinations. I love the vibe, the unique cultures, and the energy of the people that make me feel connected in a natural way.
Q: What Do You Like The Most About Wedding Photography?
During a wedding, I am aware of the fact that emotions will be at an all-time high. The joyous occasion presents a unique mix of energy and uplifting aura that inspires me to capture every single detail to commemorate this special day.
I love to work in such an environment filled with happy people joining together to welcome the bride or groom into their family. Every wedding is unique; filled with love, romance, and emotion.
Love has an energy that is shared uniquely by each member of the family. I find myself trying to record these moments in the film, from tears to laughter. This wild spectrum of feelings energizes me and fuels my passion for the art of photography.
I love feeling that I am in people’s lives, creating a lifetime record of possibly the happiest and most important event in the lives of two people who have committed to love and care for each other. When I witness the joy and warmth of this special day, I cannot think of any other profession that is more satisfying.
Matthew Sowa: Wedding Photography Tips
Q: Can you give some tips for the new Mr and Mrs so they can get the perfect set of wedding/ pre-wedding photos?
If I can give one single tip to cast the greatest impact on the wedding day, it would be this. Always plan your mood. I feel that too often the bride and groom find themselves in a frenzy leading up to their wedding vows.
Planning for each part of the logistics, and the special needs of their families and friends, they forget to plan for themselves and especially their moods. Always remember to plan your mood so you remain cognizant of it. An emphasis on mood will help drive those emotions that will define this special day for a lifetime, and help define those moments on film.
Q: Can you give some tips for a beginner wedding photographer who is just starting up?
Today it’s easy to be overwhelmed in the photography industry. The market is drastically saturated with many courses, workshops and technology, advanced equipment and post-production technics like PS presets, special effects, among others.
Here is my suggestion: listen to your heart, you may also find a mentor you like and learn to develop your style and do not try to be somebody else because the industry does not need two of the same photographer. Like Hollywood does not need another Leonardo DiCaprio or Elizabeth Taylor.
Lastly, learn to take risks with your style. Try things that are unorthodox until you find yourself digging deeper to find your voice. While you search for your vision and inspiration, take time to learn techniques to mold your style and present it to the world.
“Don’t be a slave to photography rules…break the rules and take a risk! There’s always a new perspective.”
Q: What are the biggest challenges of being a wedding photographer? Especially in New York? What would be your wedding photographer’s nightmare?
A delayed first part of the wedding (getting ready) will most likely affect the entire day.
Lock of time is the worst thing that may happen on the wedding day for any photographer. Also, being exposed to difficult locations with less than ideal lighting conditions, and other restrictions may affect the aesthetic quality of the images.
Matthew Sowa’s Wedding Photography: Let’s Talk About The Gears
Q: Do you think a mirrorless camera will be good enough to shoot weddings? If not, what sorts of improvement should they make?
Yes, you can. Why not?
That doesn’t mean mirrorless is for every photographer.
A camera is just a tool and largely dependent on personal taste. No camera is perfect and neither is any photographer. It’s about using what fits you and your style. Mirrorless cameras are smaller and lighter, so they can be better for convenience and mobility and fully silent.
Fewer parts mean lower costs. With no mirror, it’s far easier and cheaper to keep clean and at full operational capacity.
Better for wedding videography due to wonderful phase detection.
Mirrorless technology is improving exponentially every year, they’re still not quite at the level of DSLR lens selection. There is already a significant improvement for the mirrorless camera: two memory card slots. improved autofocus, but I think battery life could be still better.
As a DSLR wedding photographer, you can spend anywhere between five and 12 continuously shooting a wedding. I think overall Sony is the leader in mirrorless technology, however, with mirrorless gears, we are still climbing up.
Here are my suggested list of Best Cameras for Wedding Photography:
- Nikon Z6
- Nikon D850
- Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
- Sony a7III
- Sony α7R IV
Q: Do you owe or use a mirrorless camera? If so, what camera is that? Or any mirrorless camera you would like to try out? Why you pick it? People suggested mirrorless would be the future of camera development, what do you think?
Yes, I do own and use my mirrorless Nikon Z6 cameras at the wedding. I use them mostly during the “getting ready, reception, ceremony” of the wedding. When It comes to portraits I still count on my DSR body more than mirrorless, probably only it’s a matter of time I simply got used to photographing portraits with DSLR gears and prime lenses.
I am a Nikon user for over 27 years; therefore, It was the right way to convert to Nikon mirrorless to keep everything simple and capable, however, my first move was towards Sony 7As. Sony has the best mirrorless series in the world, however, working on two different systems was very confusing. I was too slow with the menu and the entire shooting process, so I decided to switch to Nikon as my camera brand of choice.
The new release is always interesting to try: The new Nikon Z 6II and Nikon Z 7II Mirrorless coming soon.
“DSLRs are a dying breed. Mirrorless cameras have many more features, are smaller, and simply put – they are the future!!” Mirrorless systems are getting more and more mature by the day with more lenses, better performance, and better build quality.
Many will say DSLRs are not long for this world as the current pace of technology and innovation continues to produce better and better mirrorless systems. Add to the fact that the BIG TWO (Canon & Nikon) were forced to adapt and release their new models into the mirrorless market this year because SONY forced them to by creating stellar bodies that have been eating up market share.
Q: What camera and lens are you using now? why do you like them? what gears you will bring for shooting a wedding?
Here is my wedding bag:
- 2 Nikon Z6 Nikon with 35mm 1.8s 14-30mm 1.4 24-70mm 2.8
- Nikon D5 body with 85mm 1.4, 105mm 1.4, 70-200 2.8, 105 2.8 macro
Matthew Sowa – Other than Wedding Photography in New York
Q: Can you suggest some great photo spots in New York? For both travelers and couple photography.
As an NYC Wedding Photographer, I would suggest the Central Park Boat House. Central Park has always served as the green oasis among one of the densest cities in the world. The views of the towering skylines from central park evoke a sense of majestic wonder.
The green oasis among the towering skyline provides an iconic environment that is perfectly suited to capture the beginnings of blissful marriage.
A close second great photo spot is the Grand Central Terminal. Another iconic location representing NYC in all its mid-century glory. The urban backdrop and historic legacy of the terminal support entirely stylistic imagery for the couple, one that envisions traditions of old meet the modern urban city life of new.
Q) What do you like about living in New York?
I have called New York for over 25 years. Honestly, there are probably at least 100 reasons to love living in New York City, and it may take me a few days to conjure up a list.
New York, the energy of its inhabitants, its smells, visuals, and artistic skyline and historical beginnings create an awe-inspiring environment for me to practice my talents. The diversity and mix of cultures alone support an environment where I never stop learning about people, creating lasting relationships, all of which drive my passion and inspiration for photography.
Interviewing the Best Wedding Photographer in New York, Matthew Sowa
Talking to matt reminded me of my favorite law professor when I was studying in uni. he was confident, knowledgeable, and fun.
Attending his lecture was like watching a show that cost a 100USD per ticket, and Matthew was just like him. he made you feel like “when I grow up, I want to become someone like him.”
And this is what I felt after interviewing Matthew, I hope you enjoyed this interview like I do and could learn something from it. Cheers!
If you want to check out more about Matt’s photos, kindly visit www.matthewsowaphotography.com