Before I start I need to remind myself if I ever shoot a Chinese Wedding Banquet again a) I insist I get fed on location or b) I insist I get fed on location…YUM YUM!!
Johnny and Jue were actually married last September in Shanghai but unfortunately not all Johnny’s family could make it so they decided to have another Wedding celebration for his side of the family to celebrate and share in the occasion. Palace Garden, in Newcastle’s Chinatown was the venue, somewhere I’d never been before and the prospect of shooting in Chinatown really got me excited. After meeting with them initially I was chuffed when they got in touch and told me they wanted to hire me.
Now this was no traditional wedding affair, bearing in mind they were already married, and the bulk of the time I was there they were tucking into the most beautiful looking and smelling food I’ve come across. My brief, to capture some relaxed images of the arrivals, some formal group shots and a few Chinese traditions. The first of these traditions being the newly weds offering tea to the senior members of their family, which I captured very discreetly. As a general rule I don’t photograph people eating, that’s a bit disrespectful in my eyes so after capturing the arrivals, group shots and tea offering I then set about capturing some candids of the guests using my 70-200. Soon after the banquet begun, some guests took it in turn to break into Karaoke, which was really good fun, and Johnny’s Mum got up and did her piece as well.
I was conscious with about an hour left to shoot that I was lacking opportunities to capture many couple shots, Jue is beautiful and I really wanted to spend a little time with her and Johnny, but due to the nature of the day it was difficult. However, towards the end, my half hour window arrived, (talk about pressure!). I’d already scouted the venue days beforehand so I knew what I wanted to do so it was a case of all hands on deck. Thanks to my assistant Nicola “daft jock” Cairns for being my extra set of hands. We ventured out into Stowell Street and did our thing, firstly using good old natural light then back inside where we introduced some magic light of our own.
Here’s a selection of my favourites from the day.
Here tea was offered to the elders….
And another image of this here…
I love this fun group shot…
And finally, we got to play outside…..!
Then it was back inside for a few more…..
Then time for one last tradition, Johnny’s parents thanking each table of family and guests individually, lots of toasting!!
I love my job! Please if you’re a bride to be and you like what you see or you know a bride to be please pass my details on or get in touch. I also cover the north east of England.