Phoenix and Michael
Another week, another opportunity to capture a joyful occasion. This time, it was Phoenix and Michael who were looking for wedding photography in Hong Kong and chose me to take pictures of their special day.
I am often asked if wedding day photography starts feeling dull after you’ve done it a couple of times, and I always say that is an impossibility. There’s always something unique and interesting about every event, and the chance to be a part of someone’s happiness is gratifying every time.
The first time I saw Phoenix smile, I knew that she would need no guidance on posing. All she would need to do is flash her sweet smile, and voila we would have a great photo! Not to take away from Michael – whose has a charming smile too, but I must admit that the bride’s delicate beauty and relaxed body language shone through every photo, conveying her emotions perfectly on her big day.
Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel
Award-winning five-star hotel, Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel, hosted the wedding banquet. Offering spectacular views of Victoria Habor and the city’s skyline, Kowloon Shangri-La has a luxurious, inviting and romantic ambiance. My job as a Hong Kong wedding photographer requires me to adapt to any indoor or outdoor space quickly. Needless to say, I was impressed with Kowloon Shangri-La and found my comfort zone instantly.
Phoenix was a lovely bride in the traditional hung kwa. You can see her flashing her dazzling grin in each photo. After she was ready and moments away from becoming wife to the man she loved, Phoenix was overcome with emotion, smiling through her tears and remaining poised before meeting her near and dear ones.
Phoenix and Michael followed the traditional Chinese wedding ceremony, which is marked by an exchange of rings and the ritual of the groom picking his bride up and together traveling to their reception. The ceremony is attended by close family while other guests are a part of the banquet held later.
I was able to get a few photos of the wedding chaperone holding a red umbrella over the bride. When the bride bids adieu to her maternal home, her father has to open a red umbrella and escort her out. Some rice is also thrown on the umbrella.
According to ancient legend, a mythical bird will attack a bride upon seeing her in a red wedding dress. The umbrella is used to shield the bride so it cannot see her, and the rice serves as distraction for the bird, which pecks on the grains and leaves the bride alone! Once the bride arrives at the groom’s house, the chaperone takes over umbrella duties.
Loving moments between bride and groom
Phoenix got a rousing welcome at her wedding ceremony, with Michael helping her out of the car and leading her in to claps and cheers from close family and friends. The ceremony had its serious and humorous moments, enveloped by mirth, joy and whole lot of love. Michael carried Phoenix in his arms, while their respective parents showered their affections on the couple and allowed me many opportunities to capture a variety of snaps.
Bridesmaids and groomsmen
Phoenix spent a few moments in the company of her best friends, all looking lovely in sage colored gowns. They had the balloons ready, and surrounded Phoenix in them, hugging her and sharing in her happiness. I am always moved by the bond between the bride and her bridesmaids. The bridal party is often an intimate part of the pre-ceremony planning, keeping the bride sane during the emotional rollercoaster of organizing the details of her wedding.
Michael’s groomsmen were also an enthusiastic bunch – you could see how excited they were for their guy to enter matrimony. I stood at a safe distance to capture their camaraderie – if you see the photos, you will notice how animated the couple’s friends were.
As the best Hong Kong wedding photographers would say, the most engaging photos are those where the subjects are genuinely having fun or disclosing their emotions. There was enough gaiety to last a whole roll of photos, but my job was to capture the most poignant interactions.
Exquisite wedding bracelets
Phoenix looked resplendent in her red and yellow hung kwa, but as anyone in the room will attest, her bracelets grabbed eyeballs. Substantial in girth and intricate in design, the bracelets were inspected and admired by Michael’s parents. I made sure to highlight the stunning jewelry work in a few photos. If you’re looking to custom order wedding jewelry, Phoenix’s bracelets will inspire you.
Wedding day photography requirements vary from client to client. Some want to emphasize the traditional wedding ceremony and customs, some want a focus on the reception banquet, and others prefer an event split between the two.
Phoenix and Michael had two amazing ceremonies. They were interested in candid moments and portraits from the traditional ceremony, and opted for pre-banquet wedding portrait sessions and fewer snaps of the actual ceremony.
Cost is also a factor in planning your wedding day photography. I try to accommodate different types of requests at a reasonable price. If you’re looking for Hong Kong wedding photographers who charge fair prices and promise top quality, contact me today.
Wedding portrait photoshoots
I love shooting wedding portraits because this is a chance for a 1-on-1 with my subject, and there are always some interesting interactions. Some clients’ and their loved ones are pros at posing and a natural in front of the camera. Others need a bit of direction and once they settle in, getting great snaps is much easier.
Phoenix’s dad posed confidently, the look of a man who is proud of his daughter and her choices. Michael’s dad posed up a storm, looking aristocratic and dapper in his suit. Phoenix struck a few shy poses as a happy, bashful bride, her smile radiating through her eyes. She looked incredible in her white wedding gown and minimal accessories, which set off her dewy, natural beauty perfectly.
Michael smoldered in front of the camera, perhaps pretending it was a GQ photoshoot of the luckiest groom ever! As always, bride and groom looked ethereal when they came together, lost in each other’s eyes, wrapping their arms around each other with her opulent rings in full focus, and kissing against the backdrop of the harbor.
Like what you see?
I, Daniel Tam, hope to be your wedding photographer and freeze wonderful moments from your special day that you, yours and future generations can keep returning to. Here is a quick 30 second slideshow of Phoenix and Michael’s wedding day. If you like my style, please drop me a line.