There is no question about it- Maui is a treasure trove for photographers. The island’s bounty of beauty has lured professional photographers worldwide to its shores and has inspired heaps of local talent.
Maui evokes inspiration and emotion that even the least camera savvy feel compelled to capture.
We’ve all seen GoPros sticking out of a rental convertible on the way to Hana, and if you say you haven’t pulled off the highway to capture the vibrant rainbow hanging in the east with your iPhone, you’re clearly lying. But, despite the likely hundreds of beautiful Maui photos taking up storage on your phone, we can all agree the professionals have a way of capturing the island that elicits pure awe in the way fine art sucks you in.
Within the realm of photography on Maui exists a myriad of different niches. There are a handful of photographers that make a living solely off capturing the ocean. The surf photography troupe is one example- you’ll often find them nestled on the cliffs at Peʻahi or Honolua Bay. There are also a handful of professional underwater photographers that accompany most snorkel and kayak tours. On the other hand, shots of Maui’s breathtaking landscape usually grace gallery walls, like long exposure shots of ribboning waterfalls cascading down green peaks or palm tree-studded sunsets. If you’re a budding or professional photographer, you could easily spend your entire time on Maui on a photo adventure, exploring the crimson sands at Haleakala to the turquoise blue waters at La Perouse.
With the arrival of humpback whales in December comes a slew of new photography options, and each year savvy photographers hope to capture an elusive whale breach, a photo to cherish forever. These gentle giants are big enough to be spotted from the sky, and a reputable helicopter company will host a “doors-off” photography session for photographers hoping to capture some unique aerial whale photos.
Despite the many beautiful subjects the island has to offer, the most lucrative areas of the photography market on Maui are portrait photography and wedding photography.
Thanks to the island’s array of jaw-dropping venues and resorts, Maui is easily one of the most popular wedding destinations in the United States, if not the world. Naturally, there is no shortage of wedding photographers in Maui. Finding the right photographer for your special day can be intimidating, to say the least. After all, not only are they going to be accompanying you all day come wedding day, but they are also in charge of capturing some of the most memorable moments of your life. It’s an important task, so picking out the perfect photographer is vital.
So, what should you be looking for in a wedding photographer? First and foremost, their photos! Style, talent, and attention to detail are all significant factors. You likely already have a vision of what you want your wedding photos to look like, and if you don’t particularly like the looks of their portfolio, you probably won’t be happy with your end result.
Secondly, personality is key. If you don’t get a good vibe from the photographer initially, it might be a good idea to keep shopping around. Remember, this person will be interacting with you, the wedding party, and your guests for the entirety of the wedding day, so it’s essential that you get along with your photographer.
Last but not least, experience shooting on Maui is paramount. Whether you’re opting for a beach wedding or at a venue like Hui Noʻeau or Haiku Mill, the clouds and lighting are constantly changing. It can be challenging for a photographer that is new to Maui to keep up. Be sure that your potential photographer has previously shot at least a few weddings on Maui and has the hang of battling the elements.
Maui Wedding Photographers
Detail, style, and elegance are the hallmarks of Anna Kim’s photography. Anna has been a wedding photographer on Maui for a decade but has been passionate about photography for much longer. In addition to being an expert on Maui weddings, Anna is adept at making her clients comfortable and capturing their natural personalities through fun prompts and direction.
After moving to Maui from Seattle in 2006, Karma started her wedding photography business. It quickly grew, and now she employs a cultivated team of professional photographers. Karma Hill is one of the few photography companies in Hawaii that boasts a full-time expert editor. This means that each image is professionally reviewed before it is sent to you to ensure top-notch quality!
Originally from Cape Town, Deelia Nelson has been capturing Maui weddings since she moved here 12 years ago. Not only an expert in photography, but she is also well-versed in making clients feel comfortable behind the camera and snapping candid, intimate moments. Deelia tries to utilize the natural, warm lighting that Maui so often provides in her photo sessions, and she has captured everything from intimate beach elopements to large festive celebrations.
Natalie has been one of the best wedding photographers in Maui for 14 years, and her portfolio boasts professional experience at countless venues and beaches around this beautiful island. Accomplished in both large and intimate weddings, Natalie prides herself on attention to detail and the use of natural light. Her photos and rave reviews speak for themselves.
Portrait photography is also an established market on Maui. Who doesn’t want to remember an epic, once-in-a-lifetime vacation?! Whether you’re interested in solo, couple, school, or family portraits, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more breathtaking backdrop and more seasoned professionals than on Maui.
With a professional photographer, portrait shoots feel more like a fun adventure. Maui is home to a diverse assortment of backdrops that resemble fine art, like golden beaches, lush mountains, lava deserts, and dazzling sea cliffs. Depending on what you and your photographer collectively have in mind, you might be whisked off to a part of the island you’ve never seen before. The variety of climates, scenery, and color on Maui provides an endless creative potential for family portrait photography.
Personality is also the name of the game when it comes to portrait photography. The right photographer will be able to coax a smile out of even the most sultry teenager who would rather be doing anything else than family portraits or the shy couple who’s never had their photo taken professionally. Here are some of our favorite Maui portrait photographers.
Maui Portrait Photographers
Karma Hill utilizes a team of polished, professional photographers and editors. Using the stunning Maui scenery as a backdrop, Karma Hill’s photographers are experts at capturing cherished moments in time. In addition, all of Karma Hill’s packages come complete with a custom-proofing website that is easily shareable with family and friends.
From successfully capturing rambunctious little ones to maternity photography, Anna Kim has documented countless special family moments. Anna’s portrait sessions come with location suggestions, edited high-resolution digital files, and an online gallery for downloading. There is also an additional option for a custom photo album.
Inspired by Maui’s raw natural beauty, Deelia scouts unique locations around the island for her portrait sessions. Understanding that comfortability is imperative during portrait shoots, Deelia’s easy-going nature never fails to make her clients happy and relaxed and bring out glimpses of their personalities.
Poʻolenalena Beach (South Maui)
Poʻolenalena Beach in South Maui is the perfect place to have a photo shoot. Located south of White Rock and North of Makena Landing, this beach is known for its stunning, unblemished sand and mellow waters. Whether you’re an amateur or professional photographer, you’ll be able to capture some amazing shots here.
The beach offers plenty of great features for photography: beautiful palm trees, lush greenery, and an exotic tropical ambiance. Plus, the sunsets over the ocean for some truly great photos. You can also explore the beaches nearby for different photo opportunities – from secluded coves with hidden trails to rock formations along the coastline offering epic ocean views.
Baby Beach (West Maui)
Baby Beach in west Maui is a stunning location for any photographer looking to take the perfect shot. Located on the shoreline just north of Lahaina’s main Front Street area, it has unparalleled views of the crystal blue waters and neighboring islands. With the perfect angle for sunsets, Baby Beach makes an ideal backdrop for amazing images with dramatic skies and calm waves.
Some FAQs for Maui Photographers:
What is the best time for lighting and avoiding crowds?
First, pick the right beach or location for your photo shoot. A spot not commonly overcrowded. For this reason, stay away from spots like Makena Cove. The hour before sunset is usually the best time to shoot. But early morning is great too.
How many people can join my photoshoot?
That’s up to you and the photographer. Some Maui photographers will charge more for larger groups when shooting portraits because you’ll want to do many different groupings, which will result in more time and more shots.
How do I hire a surprise proposal photographer?
Some Maui photographers specialize in surprise engagement shoots. With skills in hiding behind bushes, or even hiring pretend models to do fake portrait shoots near you, capturing a surprise proposal is a great idea.