So listen carefully to the following advice brought to you by this current bridezilla; those who choose to tread the matrimonial path-- your wedding is not just a milestone in your life (also applicable to those who plan on becoming repeat offenders) and thus, the importance of photographs to preserve those fleeting moments of wedding bliss can, and should never be doubted.
HOW TO PICK?
Research is your one and true saviour when it comes to wedding photography, and there is no excuse to procrastinate on it. After all, the Bangladeshi wedding photography sector has not just seen quite the drastic boom in the last few years, but as weddings become grander, proportionately, the number of wedding photographers has also increased.
WHO TO PICK?
Firstly, get a relaxing head massage before you sit down with the “best friend” turned “life partner” of yours' to figure out what style of photography you both like, and make a short list of potential photographers you would like to hire. The options are countless. Follow that up with a few rounds of meetings with the wedding photographers to figure out cost, availability of dates and the sort of services and packages they offer. Last, but not the least, discuss all of this with your respective folks especially if they are the ones footing the bill for the photography services before you make the final pick.
For this week, LS showcases a top trio of photographers, and their styles and suggestions to help you and your better half save time, energy and the last few strands of hair you have left, to figure out the do's and don'ts of wedding photography.
'Don't become cheap. You are selling art so don't sell yourself short,” -- Tanvir Ali, Wedding Moments.
For many, the name Wedding Moments is synonymous to Tanvir Ali.
People know the man because of the consistency and quality of wedding photographs and cinematography he usually delivers. But his journey is one of modest beginnings. His first photo, to win praise from his peers, was back during his university days, as he pursued a business degree, and in 2009, bought his first professional camera with his own money, and spent the entirety of the night tinkering with it and watching YouTube videos. “No one ever taught me how to take photos. It was something that I just picked up on very quickly. I even learnt editing photos on my own as well,” Tanvir said. Although he started off with street photography, Tanvir candidly said, “It was biye barir kacchi that made me want to become a wedding photographer in 2009.” The first wedding he ever covered was on request from a cousin of his, “Here I was, both nervous and excited at the same time. I became a true convert when I saw the smile on my cousin's face when I delivered the photos to her. All I felt I had done was just capture the entire event though my eyes using a camera,” Tanvir said.
For Tanvir, he simply turned his love for photography into a full-fledged business that he heads himself, “Doing what I love for a living at my own accords is the best decision I ever took,” he said. Tanvir's style of photography is one that he claims in simple words, “his own perspective and ever evolving” that people have not only come to love, but as social media endorses, led to an over 700, 000 followers till date, “I don't do edgy. I like my compositions to look natural and free-flowing. I loved natural lighting when I started snapping photos at weddings, but I think I do a play of both using artificial and natural now, I think that has changed my style a lot.” Aside from that, Tanvir also emphasised the importance of the service and responsibility that photographers owe to the bride and groom. “I run a client-based-service business, meaning, not only do I owe them my entire focus and expertise during the events, but also honesty, and consistency in the quality of the photos I take,” he said. Regardless of whether it is an individual, couple, or family shots, Tanvir usually just lets the bride and groom be and interact amongst themselves. “Some of my best work has been a result of just engaging the bride or groom, or both in random conversation,” he said.
Tanvir also talks about how the sort of clients he has had has changed over the years. “Brides and grooms are more aware and invested in the details of how they want their photos to turn out now—starting from the clothes they wear to the décor of their events,” Tanvir remarks.
The next year marks a decade of his journey, yet Tanvir claims that it still is the encouragement and praise from his clients that keeps him grounded and motivated.
REELS & STORIES
“We are a group of engineers waiting to tell your story”- Kazi Mushfiq Hossain.
Recent additions to the ever-growing pool of photographers is Kazi Mushfiq Hossain and Navid Kabir; brothers and founding members of 'Reels & Stories,' who have created a fair bit of noise in the wedding photography industry because of the level of experimentation and variation that they have chosen to bring into their wedding photography forte. Their team, including themselves, is made up of members who are all graduated engineers of different fields.
While Navid works behind the scenes, it is mostly Mushfiq that potential clients meet during scheduled appointments. What will set you aback could be just how young he is, or the fact that it has been two years since he graduated. But don't let that fool you. Within less than six years, they already have over 100,000 followers, as well as international and national accolades from participating in photography competitions under their belt.
For Mushfiq, photography started with the streets, but it was not until he sold his camera in 2014 that his love for the art was realised. “I didn't know what composition in a photo was or learnt it from anyone, but I was told early on that I had an eye for it,” Mushfiq says. He covered his first wedding in 2013, comparing the experience to “the first day of school. I wasn't really nervous because I knew the clients from before,” Mushfiq said.
According to Navid, the combined style of their work focuses on being able to tell a story through the portraits they snap. “We love to experiment, and 'Reels & Stories' is all about trying to build on stories not by just focusing on the bride and groom, but trying to sum up the entire day. Our clients will never be aware of us unless we ask them to pose for portraits. We become invisible and are on the constant look out for that one moment of unbridled emotion that will generally not surface if the family is aware of our presence,” Navid says.
When asked about the changing styles in photography, the partners had the same thing to say that people in the past would have limited ideas about wedding photography, but at present, photographers actually have to make separate schedules for candids, family portraits, and couple shots.
Their real expertise lies in their ability to capture and translate raw emotions onto their photos. They are always open to new photography challenges, and pride themselves in being able to convert their clients' brief into something almost tangibly emotion-evoking.
K.NASIF PHOTOGRAPHY: WEDDING & EVENTS
“Perseverance, commitment and the right intent will always get you what you want”- K. Nasif
An innocent hobby of taking photos quickly turned into a life-altering affair in 2009 when a relative gifted Nasif his first professional camera. “I never planned to be a photographer. I just loved taking photos. Everyone would tell me that I took good photos, but that was it to be honest,” he said. He started off with documenting the lifestyle and landscapes around the country.
The following year, while attending a cousin's wedding, he took a few random photos of the bride and posted them on social media; it led to him being approached by his first client to cover her wedding as a professional wedding photographer. Realising the gravity of the task, Nasif started working with other wedding photographers in preparation for his first big gig.
As he pursued his Electrical and Electronic Engineering degree, Nasif continued working as a photographer and developing his own style and brand in wedding photography. “When I graduated, I had a choice of sticking to engineering, but it never felt right to give up on something I loved and had invested my time and effort into. I had already made a name for myself in an industry that was swiftly expanding in terms of demand,” Nasif said.
Posed photos do dominate Nasif's style of photography, but his compositions are all about the flair, drama and panache of not just the events, but what also includes the bride and groom's respective attires and accessories. He defines his style of photography as one which is the perfect union between candids and posed, with a special focus on details of the wedding. He is infamous for either establishing the new standard of luxury in photography or catering to those very demands of his clients. “My clientele is very targeted, and the reason for that is my unwillingness to sacrifice on quality,” he concludes.
K.Nasif Photography will always be a polyamorous affair between decadence, extravagance and photography. The brand he has made for himself caters to clients in search for a more high-end, niche service.
These photographers unanimously felt that regardless the scale of grandiosity of the event itself, people are more open to spending on everything else but photography without realising that it is the only form of memorabilia you will be left with. As this bridezillla awaits her next umpteenth meltdown, remember; photography, let alone a more refined category of it, is not for the faint hearted. For these individuals, the knack for it was surely a natural and passionate one turned into sustainable careers. So, be respectful and don't skim when it comes to investments of a lifetime!
Photo: Wedding Moments by Tanvir Ali,
K. Nasif Photography: Wedding & Events,
Reels & Stories by Kazi Mushfiq Hossain and Navid Kabir