Burnaby Ismaili Centre Jamatkhana wedding
How to photograph an epic Indian wedding celebration part 1
If you are about to ask me why the second heading mentions Part 1 for a wedding blog post my answer is right at the beginning. These guys were celebration for 7 days their wedding. First three days were here in Vancouver and another week of celebration with me around them for 5 days was in Mexico at Hard Rock hotel at Puerto Vallarta this August. So that is why. This first part is about the ceremonies which took place here in Vancouver. Alnoor and Zaheeda had their engagement session at the False Creek earlier this year. It was my pleasure to photograph them there and since all of us were very easy going through the shoot I knew their wedding celebrations are going to be a joy to capture. And I was right 🙂
Celebrations started with Mehndi the Henna ceremony for Zaheeda and since Alnoor was not there here is couple portraits of Zaheeda from it 🙂
The next day this Indian wedding continued at Aria Banquet Hall in Surrey. The bride and groom had a chance to meet each other and of course their families. The family congratulations are left for their private gallery viewing yet you can get the idea how the party started by looking at these photographs from the night.
When it comes to weddings then the most colourful are without a doubt Indian ones. The saris, make ups, jewellery … loved the variety and styling you can see under one roof. The evening then followed by guests congratulating the engaged couple and after couple speeches the entertainment could start with 3 performed dances. Well, welcome to Bollywood zone. Amazing dancing and guests enjoying watching it.
And then once everyone had a delicious dinner with traditional Butter Chicken, Masala, Samosas and you name it the real party could start for the first time. And since I saw these guys and watched their friends and family jump on the dance-floor I knew I Was about to experience another great wedding celebration in the Mexico with them in couple days.
And then the Friday came with the main ceremony. Couple was getting ready at the Sheraton Wall Centre hotel in Vancouver. Alnoor could for the first time see Zaheeda in her white wedding ceremony Saris. Bridal party could have their first selfies taken with iPhones :). The big day was on.
There was a light rain in the air when we drove from the hotel to the Burnaby Ismaili Centre Jamatkhana wedding location. Well, this is Vancouver. The ceremony was indoor so this was just a nice refreshment for us. The hot summer days this year were surreal for this city. Beautiful traditional Ismaili wedding ceremony with some 300 plus guests watching it. Love to photograph at this venue. Really unusual architecture, dark places with lots of dramatic scenes for great candid portraiture. And the most important part for me, no restrictions during the ceremony. That means free to move and create the way I like it to do for my clients.
This is it. Ladies and gentleman here comes the bride and groom, a married couple. Before the families could congratulate them they still had to do one more traditional ceremony, breaking the clay plates with their feet. The winner takes it all is the saying, isn’t it. Well guess who was first in her Mischka wedding shoes :).
Then after a long family formals session we had a chance to grab some yummy Indian food and was able to take the newlyweds for couple creative portraits around the Jamatkhana.
It has been an amazing day. The very next day couple with their families flew to Puerto Vallarta Hard Rock hotel to continue their celebration. I had a wedding in Squamish during that day so I had to catch the first morning flight following day to catch up with them. But that is going to be another chapter of the story. These guys brought the Hard Rock down like it was not even hard 🙂 I loved it you will too… stay tuned coming in the next post.