Faraz + Nandini
I had a great opportunity to be the candid photographer for a beautiful Muslim wedding. And what was more special was that the groom happens to me a classmate from way back in college. For me it was one of the few Muslim weddings I have photographed and it never ceases to amaze me how our country has such varied beautiful customs and wedding celebration styles.
Besides the numerous hugs, of course the infamous biryani for food and the separate areas for the men and women folks there is more to Muslim weddings than I initially knew. Most Muslim weddings are packed with rituals involving the couple and the guests. College sweethearts Faraz and Nandini planned a simple yet beautiful wedding to celebrate taking their relationship to the next phase.
The wedding celebrations kick starts with Faraz and the men folk offering prayers in the mosque. I’ve lived all my life in the city but never set foot in this mosque before. I must tell you the mosque was simple stunning. I’d even say a candid photographer’s architectural delight and the fact that the skies looked lovely in the background with the happy faces of family only added to the beauty.
Post this, the groom headed back to his bride who looked absolutely ethereal in her gorgeous wedding trousseau. One thing that Muslim Weddings don’t disappoint in, is the food and the elaborately dressed family and friends. The colors of the elegantly dressed guests and the excitement are perfect ingredients to the whole celebration making my photographs come alive.
The final ritual is of course the Valima which is the reception where the guests greet the newly-weds. Usually the conventional approach doesn’t allow the couple to meet or see each other until the reception but this being an inter-caste wedding and a love marriage at that; there was much flexibility and we often caught the groom sneaking in to get a quick peak at his stunning bride.
As their candid photographer, I enjoyed the opportunity to photograph the bride getting ready. Seeing a girl much in love; transform with the help of makeup, heavy clothing and jewelry into a woman taking her big next step in her journey is such a blessing. It’s as if the clothes and accessories reflect the new responsibility that comes from becoming someone’s wife, becoming someone’s daughter in law.
After an equally memorable reception; we joined the couple, their family and friends for dinner. I am calling it nothing but a big feast. The candid photographer in me took time out to relish the delicious food spread. As I write this blog, I’m telling myself ‘time for another Muslim Wedding’- the infectious celebratory energy and of course for the yummy to die for food.
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