Recommended by 95%
31 User photos
Vicky Davis · Getting married on 02/07/2021
Absolutely Amazing Photos
We could not be happier with our choice of photography for our wedding. Our photographer Penny did an amazing job. She was very friendly and attentive.. she captured every photo-op that we requested.. She did an amazing job.. our proofs look absolutely stunning.. We definitely made the correct choice.. Thank you Essence for everything..Sent on 10/05/2019
Mary Klockowski · Getting married on 11/21/2020
Amazing and extremely reasonable
Looking for a photographer was a stressful process. I had researched and spoke to a quite few different companies. Majority of the time I felt no connection with the company as I was just emailed a pricing flyer. Then I found Essence. Not only were they quick but brought my fiancé and me in immediately for a consultation. Mike explained the entire process and wanted to get to know us and our story. I felt comfortable and very eager to talk about my fiancé and I’s journey. Choosing Essence was a seamless process. They care so much about making the couple happy and finding the right photographer to do just that. Their pricing is unbeatable. Other companies honestly want to charge so much money for their services. I understand for some couples money isn’t an issue but for us budget conscious brides I didn’t get a sinking feeling in my stomach when we went over prices. I thought they were extremely fair and reasonable for what we choose. I highly recommend scheduling a consultation with Essence.Sent on 09/18/2019
Letisia · Getting married on 09/19/2020
As we are deciding on our wedding photographer for next year, we came across Essence Photo & Video and from the beginning I was in awe in the way they approached our interest. I felt extremely pleased that instead of taking the regular approach that many vendors do when you email them, Mike took that extra step and called me to schedule an appointment. More than anything he made us feel like he wanted to get to know us more than selling his business to us over the phone. When we first walked into the studio we were mesmerized by the beautiful portraits and we became even more mesmerized by the work he continued to showed us. I loved the approach he took with us by asking questions about our relationship and family because that just showed me he cares more about finding someone that will fit our personalities for our special daySent on 10/02/2017
Overall Essence Photo & Video set the bar extremely high and no other vendor has been able to top it. We are definitely looking to book with them.
Luke Stauffer · Getting married on 08/28/2020
Choosing Essence and Engagement Photogrpahy
Our experience with Essence so far has been a good one. Unlike other companies, Chris and the Essence team were responsive to our questions and set up a time to meet within 24 hours of our inquiry.Sent on 09/09/2019
When we met Chris, he explained all the packages that they offered and worked with us to create an experience that fits our budget. Chris did not pressure us to sign with Essence and asked at the end of the meeting what Essence can do to create a better experience for the next couple to inquire about their services.
The Essence portal is great for keeping in contact with them. Kathy is very quick to respond and great in answering questions. We scheduled our engagement photo session and picked our wedding photographer through the portal with ease.
We chose the standard location for our engagement photo session with Dave as our photographer. The standard location was at the Schaumburg Municipal Center, which is close to their Schaumburg office. Dave texted me the day before to confirm that the plans were still on and gave me his cell phone in case we couldn't find each other.
Dave was a great photographer that has more than 13 years of experience. He has taken pictures at that location for years and knows all the good spots for the best pictures. He shot over 100 photos in less than an hour, at more than 5 different locations, around the park/pond. At the end, he made sure that we took all the pictures we wanted. The turnaround on our photos from the session took less than a week and most of the pictures came out the way we wanted them. We were put in a couple awkward poses that we tried out and those pictures did not come out as well as the others, but that was only 6-10 pictures out of 110-120 photos.
We have not had our wedding yet, so I cannot comment on their photography/video for the event. I plan on updating this review once the wedding pictures and videos are in my possession.
Rachael R · Getting married on 02/15/2020
A great company to work with
We had an amazing experience working with Essence Photography. Before going into the first meeting (we booked online several weeks ahead of time), I didn't really know what to expect - my assumption was that we would receive a brief (15 minutes tops) session outlining services and costs and then we'd be on our way. It only took a few minutes meeting with Chris to realize he would completely exceed our initial expectations and then some. The first meeting lasted more than an hour - Chris was extremely thorough and helped us brainstorm the best ways to optimize our photography/videography while maintaining our budget, and all of this was before we even committed to Essence. The fact that he spent so much time working through options with us, and never once made us feel like we were taking up too much time, meant so much to us both personally and as customers. We would absolutely recommend Essence to anyone looking for professional photography, whether it's a wedding or something else - the quality is incredible, the cost is reasonable, and the staff/owners really care about their clients.Sent on 02/10/2019
Andrea · Married on 09/22/2019
Our experience with Chris was awesome! He was the only vendor to take the time to call me immediately after inquiring info and met with us right away.Sent on 10/09/2018
During our meeting, Chris was very transparent and did an excellent job at answering all of our questions. He was not overwhelming and did not make us feel pressured into making our decision right then and there.
We are very impressed with their services and their price for the quality that they provide. - We are excited to work with Essence Photo & Video and would highly recommend them to our friends and family!
Alyssa · Married on 09/14/2019
We met with Chris at Essence last weekend to see if they would be a good fit for our upcoming wedding and the appointment was a breeze.Sent on 05/31/2018
I had submitted a request for pricing on their website and Chris followed up with a phone call to go over all the details and address any of our questions or concerns. He even met with us on a Saturday evening so my fiancé and I could both be at the appointment.
When it came time to discuss which plan worked best for our wedding he offered multiple options an tailered a package to fit all of our needs.
I would highly recommend Essence Photo & Video for your big day, we cannot wait to continue to work with them.
Alyssa · Married on 08/31/2019
Today, my fiancé (Zack) and I had the pleasure of meeting with Mike from Essence photography and videography. Zack and I recently got engaged and have begun the very intimidating process of planning our wedding. Both Zack and I are not the most photogenic people in the world so meeting with photographers was one thing we were a bit nervous about. Approximately five minutes into the meeting, both Zack and I knew we wanted Essence to be our photographer and videographers (as well as providing us with a photobooth!).Sent on 01/17/2018
Walking into this meeting, I expected to meet for about 20 minutes, discuss pricing, wedding information, etc. Instead, the meeting lasted for about an hour and was centered around getting to know Zack and I. Mike asked us about our engagement, how we met, our family, what we were truly looking for in a photographer, and much more. Mike made us feel like he didn’t just want to show up at our wedding and take the “normal” pictures that everyone takes. Instead, he wanted to photograph our wedding day to creatively reflect our relationship and who we truly are, in additional to capturing the “normal”/ “traditional” wedding shots. After really getting to know Zack and I, Mike walked us through the online portal that Essence offers which allows couples to be in constant contact with their photographers. Additionally, we were able to see various wedding albums that displayed some of the amazing work that Essence does, as well as watching an example wedding video.
The one thing that really confirmed my interest in Essence photography was the genuine advice that Mike offered to us. He gave us so much advice that took away some of the stress and “not-knowing” that comes with the beginning steps of planning a wedding. The advice that he offered was very genuine and not in a direction that was pushing us to spend more money. It was very clear that he just wanted us to have the perfect wedding day.
Katie · Married on 08/17/2019
Sent on 08/08/2018
After becoming engaged and booking a majority of our vendors for our wedding, my fiancé and I began the nerve-wracking task of selecting a photographer and videographer for our engagement and wedding photos. After hearing countless horror stories from family and friends about their experiences with photo and video from companies they selected, we knew we wanted to take our time and choose the best company for us that fell within our budget but did not sacrifice on quality. After all, we knew at the end of our wedding all we would have to take with us is our photos and video so we wanted to put a lot of energy and time into this selection.
Essence was the first company we met with after finding them online, and right from the start we could tell what a great fit they were. We met with Chris who was thorough, personable, and went out of his way to understand us as a couple and what our needs were. Our interaction never felt like a sales pitch, but that he truly wanted us to feel comfortable with what Essence had to offer. Their packages were customizable and we were able to add an engagement session, second photographer, and album all without feeling we were breaking the bank. We even had the opportunity to view demos of several photographers they had on staff to make sure their style matched what we wanted. Of course since Essence was the first company we met with, we went to go see two other companies (1 independent and 1 high volume) and at the end we went back to Essence as their package best fit our needs. An added bonus was their video package included a cinematic 3-5 minute trailer that we were unable to match at the other companies. Through their online portal we have already been able to schedule our engagement session with Karen, their wedding coordinator, and I will say we are impressed by the quick response times and like the fact everything is stored in a central location so we don’t have to go back-and-forth over emails.
Devon · Married on 08/03/2019
Essence made our photography process easy and smooth. We also loved our photographer, Ryan, from them! He was fun and exactly what we needed for our day! I would definitely recommend essence to people looking!Sent on 08/08/2019
Maura Culbertson · Married on 07/27/2019
GREAT photographer, customized experience
Allison was our photographer through Essence and she was WONDERFUL! We got to customize our experience with her and received every shot we asked for. She did not stop snapping pictures the entire time she was with us and would pop up at the reception throughout the venue to get tons of shots, too. She was so accommodating and adapted to our style so quickly. Loved her!!Sent on 09/30/2019
Izabella · Married on 06/29/2019
I am writing this review in a reflection of my consultation with Essence Photography.Sent on 01/24/2018
As I began my search for a photographer, I went through probably at least 15-20 companies' portfolios that I had found through WW. Yes, every single photo of each portfolio because I am that picky. I was able to narrow it down to about 8 companies I liked. After that, I looked at reviews and general pricing info that was available on WW. And alas, I found myself with a top 5 that fiancé and I liked, including Essence. We met Essence at a bridal expo, along with 2 other companies from our top 5, and Essence left us feeling the happiest. Mike was professional, informational, and not pushy with sales. We decided to proceed with booking a consultation, and I am VERY glad I did!
We got to meet with Mike again, and rather than him just sitting us down and shoving pricing & sales pitches down our throats, Mike talked with us to get to know us better as a couple. He tried his best to get a general understanding of our personalities, our families, and what we are looking for in a photographer. It was a very laid back experience, laughs were shared, and Mike helped us better understand what we should look for in a photographer. He was really good at explaining things we had never known, and also brought our attention to things we never knew to look for. Of the 4 pages of questions I brought into our consultation (told ya, I'm picky!), there were only 2 that Mike had not touched on.
After the experience we had at Essence, we are canceling a previously set consultation we had made with one of their competitors, as we have realized how much the experience and bond you have with your photographer means, meaning, we do not want a big chain company that's just there to make some $$$.
Thank you, Mike, for such a pleasurable experience and for all your help!
Lisa Seitz · Married on 06/02/2019
We met with Chris to talk about photo and video options for our wedding and had such a positive experience. He thoroughly explained all of the options and the packages that would work best for us. He was friendly, knowledgeable, and really seemed interested about learning about my fiance and I. We were unimpressed with the two consultations we had with other photography companies prior to meeting with Chris so we were not necessarily looking forward to our meeting. However, meeting with him was exactly what we were hoping for. We are very much looking forward to our big day and look forward to working with Essence!Sent on 12/30/2018
VIRGINIA · Married on 06/02/2019
Amazing team of professionals
When my (now) husband and I met with the owner, Mike, we instantly clicked and loved his candor. So, when he mentioned he would not be the photographer for our wedding, I admit I was skeptical, but something about his confidence and the fact that he seemed to "get us", eased my mind. He did not disappoint.Sent on 06/08/2019
I can't say enough great things about Ryan. Within the first minute of our conversation, we knew he was the right fit for us. He communicated with my bridal party and offered guidance without being pushy. He blended in well with our guests and didn't feel invasive. He truly made us feel comfortable and was such a pleasure working with. We strongly recommend Ryan and look forward to seeing all the images captured from our magical day.
Mike you're a match maker! Karen, you are a rock star!
Quisha · Married on 06/01/2019
Our photographer name was Chris and he did an amazing job. We are overly satisfied with how our pictures came out. The photographer was very professional and flexible. We love our pictures and would recommend others to get their wedding pictures done with this company.Sent on 08/04/2019
Kelli · Married on 05/26/2019
So far just have met with Chris but he was awesome. He took the extra time to call me and find out my needs while other places just emailed me. He came in on his day off to meet with my mom and me. I love their online portal to have communication with everyone. They also have back up people in case anything happens which really makes my stress level go down. I will update again later!!Sent on 07/23/2018
Sara Stiegal · Married on 05/26/2019
They are great!
We first met with Chris to talk about different packages, and he helped us decide the package that would best fit our needs. He also recommended getting a photo booth, which I highly recommend because everyone had a blast with it. They have this super cool online portal that you can access any time. They let you view the portfolios of different photographers and pick which one you like best. The portal also allows you to communicate with Karen, who answers any questions you may have. Karen was able to help us pick a great picture location near our venue. About a week before our wedding, our photographer was in an accident and was injured and unable to photograph our wedding. Essence automatically assigned another photographer to our wedding and he was AMAZING. He was super friendly from the beginning, and let me know what was happening every step of the way. Michael was able to recommend a cute place for my husband and I to take our first look pictures. He also was able to deal with our crazy families. He was glued to my side the entire time and was able to get pictures with anyone who asked to take a picture. I was so incredibly happy with everything that Essence was able to do for my husband and I. I would definitely recommend them to everyone.Sent on 06/07/2019
Crystal · Married on 05/18/2019
I went to a Bridal Show and talked to a rep for Essence and looked at there sample books and loved there quality of work right off the bat. We met with Mike for a meeting to discuss budget and options and the meeting went really well. They discussed all the options and packages with sample books and videos which made the decision process even easier for us. Mike explained that we would get an email from them to a website to provide the photographer all the info on pictures that were most important to us and we thought that was pretty cool that they would incorporate what we liked into our special day. As of right now everything has gone great and I would highly recommend Essence Photo & Video for your special day, we cannot wait to continue to work with them.Sent on 06/25/2018
Melissa · Married on 05/18/2019
Great Company to work with!
We first met with Chris during our consultation and he made us feel so comfortable and kindly answered all of our questions (we had a lot haha) We went over the different packages they offered. He showed us photo and video samples and we loved their work! We knew we wanted to work with them as soon as we saw their talent! They provided us with an online portal so if we ever needed help planning or has any questions we can easily login and Karen would answer through the portal! Super easy to use and super convenient! We had Chris as our photographer and Patrick as our Videographer the day of the wedding. Chris was super energetic and outstanding to work with! He was super outgoing and came prepared with a lot of posing ideas for myself, my fiancé, and bridal party. We talked over all the details a few days in advance to make sure we were on the same page. He made everyone feel super confident and comfortable! Patrick was great, friendly, and super professional! He showed up on time and made sure we had enough time to make it to the next location to set up his equipment. I can't wait to see our photos and video soon! Thank you Essence!Sent on 06/15/2019
Jennifer · Married on 05/10/2019
Great Company to work with
I highly recommend Ben for your wedding day. He made me feel so comfortable in front of the camera. He’s very professional and personable. I loved all my pictures and can’t wait to receive my wedding albumSent on 08/06/2019
Rachel · Married on 05/04/2019
If you're not sure where to start with photo/video for your wedding, go with Essence- they know what they are doing. Chris is extremely easy to work with. He did a very good job of putting together a great package for us that was customized to our needs. It was a quick, sit down haggle-free, transparent experience. Plus, you get to pick out your photographer and upload types of pictures you like to the online portal. Price is good too for the quality! We are VERY happy we have chose Essence photography and video. The photos we have seen are beautiful, high quality, and the videography they provide is top notch!Sent on 10/06/2018
Katarina · Married on 03/30/2019
Flawless from start to finish! Amazing experience!
Everything was flawless! From the moment we sat down with Chris Sigl to talk about options, we signed right away. The services, vibe of the company, and pricing made us know it was a done deal. We signed before we even left that appointment. From that day forward, everything fell perfectly into place. We worked with Karen through their portal for any questions that we had and were promptly answered. No matter what we came to them with, nothing was a "problem" and they were so helpful and understanding.Sent on 09/01/2019
Then the day of the wedding quickly came, Chris Caizer was amazing! We could not have dreamed for a better photographer experience for our wedding! We went in with no list of photos we wanted and Chris had a ton of ideas and was super efficient! We never felt rushed or uncomfortable in any poses.
Chris has an awesome eye for anything out of place and quickly adjusts for the perfect photo. I had gotten ready at a hotel and he was able to get those perfect dress hanging in the window pictures with limited space and the room looked spacious. He took really cool shots too of the cathedral veil, from the getting ready to pictures with my husband, he was able to truly capture the beauty of veil.
Lauren was our second photographer and her and Chris worked wonderfully together. She braved the cold day to take photos of my husband and his groomsmen outside on the riverwalk. She captured the fun that they had before the ceremony.
Chris and Lauren seamlessly worked together with David Tikalsky, our amazing videographer. So many people at our wedding commented at their professional, respect (especially during our religious ceremony) and never seemed to get in each others way. I've already watched the video 3 times since we got it a few months ago! David captured our best day perfectly! He went with the flow and captured so much more than we could have ever imagined. I recommend doing the video SO much! There were several parts of the video I didn't even realize what happened with guests or distracted during parts of the ceremony to notice all the details. I now can relive it all whenever I want.
Kathy went above and beyond too! She helped us get our photos and when I was having trouble downloading them, she troubleshooted with me and offered to help another way to get me the photos. I thought it was the sweetest! Even though we had already had our wedding and our photos were ready, Kathy still valued me as a customer and wanted to ensure we were all set.
Everyone should work with this group for their wedding! There was a huge weight taken off our shoulders by working with this company for our photo and video. They truly allowed us to cherish our wedding and capture every moment. I will forever be thankful for their amazing work and dedication in giving us photos and a video of a lifetime!
Jill · Married on 03/02/2019
I worked with Essence as a Maid of Honor in my sister's wedding and our photographer Ben was great to work with. We were facing rain and he was able to fit in all of the photos we wanted while still having a great time with us. We laughed like you wouldn't believe and the photos turned out great. Booking Essence for my own wedding this spring and I was very impressed with their flexibility! Would definitely recommend them!Sent on 08/20/2018
Jacklyn · Married on 01/04/2019
After looking everywhere and not finding anything that I was looking for until I found Essence at a bridal show this past June. I immediately needed to book them for my big day. It was like finding the perfect dress or the perfect venue all over again. I visited the Schaumburg location for my meeting and right there I knew I was going to sign a contract 5 minutes in. The staff is amazing they make you feel like you are part of the family. You're honestly paying for what you're getting and that's amazing photo and video. At amazing prices. This is the place to go. Look no further.Sent on 08/30/2017
Jennifer · Married on 12/08/2018
I met with Essence because i was interested in photography, videography and photobooth for my wedding and a friend recommended them. I had a consultation with Mike and was very impressed with the professionalism and detail he went into. Mike painted a clear picture of how my wedding day would look and even included samples of video so i would know what the video would come out like. Being a detail orientated person, i was very excited to see the portal Essence uses to keep the client and photographer in the "loop" with each other. I am happy to say that i 100% will be booking with this company, and i now have a piece of mind that my wedding day will be captured perfectly!Sent on 01/14/2018