It was a beautiful beach day with just the right amount of sunlight filtering through the sky. The sky was clear, the light is great for some amazing Insta-worthy pictures and there were hardly 5 people sunning themselves on the sand. It was just another regular day on the beach. Only, for two people, it wasn’t. For two people in love, Akanksha and Manoranjan, it was a day they knew they’d never forget - it was their big fat wedding day with no guests except for an enthusiastic pandit, a minimalistic mandap and me, the wedding photographer who needs to capture these precious moments.


What was it that made these two lovebirds do this all on their lonesome, you ask? Circumstances and love. But these Bravehearts knew how to navigate difficulties, an occasional snag and got to work on their relationship. Even though there was no big fat family attending it, these two managed to have a big wedding in their hearts - it’s always the thought that counts and theirs was a larger-than-life, bigger than their dreams.


So off we went to Havelock Island, Andamans, a unique place for a destination wedding. The simple set-up was put up at the  Munjoh Ocean Resort with panditji giving them oodles of gyan and lots of advice, much to the chagrin of the onlookers. A pastel pink mandap stood beautifully at a distance, almost calling out their names, adorned sweetly by the hotel staff with marigolds - bright yellow, festive and auspicious.


The bride wore an unusual lehenga - a grey and peach concoction that gave out island feels while the groom walked in with a muted gold kurta and a silky dupatta coiled around his neck. Both of them wore a smile as large as their hearts. And you know, what makes a wedding your own? Having the courage to do something hatke. The bride walked in with a bunch of wildflowers in her hands and boy, was it a sight. It’s the details that make this wedding, most worthy of our time. As the sun hit the high notes, we hurried up with our rituals. Panditji said all that he could, gave his blessings, performed the rituals and smiled as he gave his blessings. The couple were immersed in the rituals, smiled coyly at each other and closed their eyes in prayer. It was a sight like no other - so much purity, devotion and love in one frame.

The truth is, this wedding wasn’t just a wedding for these two - it was their 5th wedding anniversary. They had done their court marriage on the same day five years back. It was an inter-caste love marriage, which was definitely not acceptable in the beginning to both their families. Soon, families accepted them but there were still some tiny conflicts among families, so a real wedding could never take place. That’s when the bride came up with this idea - a 'Just Us' wedding in Havelock where they had come a month before their court marriage 5 years back. That was the foundation and Havelock, once again became the stage for their new beginnings. “We are very happy that everything happened so smoothly that day and the day was so beautiful with the presence of people like you, panditji and others. We were sad a while ago that we did not get to have that regular wedding like everyone else, but we have this moment now and happy to have each other as life partners,” explains Akanksha.

And as photographers, we couldn’t ask for a more authentic story, an intimate setting to pave the way and an interesting anecdote to tell our grandkids. Soon, it was high noon and the rituals ended - it was at that moment, under the mangrove shade that we watched the couple become one - a ceremony that bonded them in a big way. That’s why, it’s a big fat wedding, for us as it is for them.

A Father's day Tribute

Wedding days are all about emotional moments and that’s what I love most about being a wedding photographer. I get to witness and capture them all.  I’m always a sucker for father-daughter moments, myself . Whether walking down the aisle arm in arm, or a father-daughter dance, it’s those moments that take us over the edge into a full-on sobfest.

If your dad is anything like most dads, you're aware that, well, he's one of a kind. 

On this Father's day , as a tribute to all the fathers out there, I have compiled my favourite pics from the weddings to get you right in the feels.

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for not holding back your tears and letting me know

for not holding back your tears and letting me know

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6 things to make your Mehendi pictures, with spouse-to- be, stand apart!

If one has to choose the filmiest event in the list of wedding functions, then it has to be Mehendi Ki Raat. Plus, it's impossible to deny that the pre-wedding scenes are something which we keep coming back to, long after we've tied the knot! And undoubtedly, the Mehendi ceremony photographs have the most candid moments captured!
Here are some ways to make those photographs with your Dulhan or Dulhe Raja exciting enough. After all, coming back to the box of memories should always leave a smile on your face!

1. Vintage car
What could be better than having a photograph with a Vintage Car to mark your promise of growing old together and travelling in the car of life?

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2. Umbrella
Long time back, it was Raj Kapoor and Nargis who made Umbrella look like an emblem of love and Romance. Add a modern twist to revive the sentiment and make your photograph look better than ever!

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3. Photo-booth
Looking back at quirky and funny photographs will never fail to make you smile. So get the most funky props and pose with your spouse-to- be!

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4. The one where he makes you eat!
Undoubtedly, like every film, every mehendi ceremony is complete when the groom comes to make her bride eat something. Make sure your photographer captures while you plunge into the beauty of this moment!

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5. Swings
To show that you'll be there when its high and even in the lows of life, what possible object could be found if not swings? Make it stand in your photograph and get clicked!

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6. Candids
Perhaps, Mehendi ceremony is that one time to be free and easy and the only event to get the maximum candid photographs! So, let yourself be and let the photographer take over!

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Beautiful Wedding Venues in Bangalore

The wedding venue is an important part of your wedding day and will add colour and character to how you remember it.

Luckily, Bangalore has some of the most beautiful wedding venues.  From old houses converted to Mantapas to Hotels designed like bungalows , there are many charming options.

Below are some of the most beautiful wedding halls that I have shot in.

1. The Tamarind tree
The Tamarind Tree is a charming wedding destination. A lush boutique hotel, its stone construction adds a regal look. Home to an eclectic collection of antiques, the space is a journey into India’s vast heritage.

2. Ganjam Mantapa

I’ve covered a couple of wedding at the Ganjam Mantapa and it is an elegant wedding venue. The venue is a home converted to a wedding hall due to which a certain old world charm pervades the Mantapa. When my brides have a wedding here, I often feel I am shooting at their home and the venue is intimate, warm and due to its relative size chaotic in a nice way. 


3. Temple Tree

Earthy in appeal and wonderfully ambient, Temple Tree Leisure is a perfect blend of modern comforts within a rustic setting.


4.  Panchavati, The Pavilion
Panchavati, is a contemporary space on Kanakapura Road, Bangalore. Spread across a vast open space, nature and modern architecture have come together to produce a multifaceted venue. Semi-open pavilions, open-air courtyards and an amphitheatre, surrounded by trees, beautiful landscaped lawns and paved boulevards leading to tranquil waters, make Panchavati a private and understated, yet exquisite location for the Big Fat Indian Wedding.

5. Elements
A uniquely themed open air banquet hall with a romantic mandap and a garden. This Nestled beauty haswide open spaces that blend in with nature. The banquet lawns at Elements are perfect for any celebration.

8 Bangalore Couple Shoot Locations you can't afford to skip!

The Wedding day is undeniably one of the most significant days in a person’s life, and so is the journey leading up to it. This journey must be captured and cherished, wouldn’t you agree? Sometimes, all you need is simply some tucked-away locations and a sprinkle of magic with the camera. Over the years I’ve uncovered locations that are gems where you should seriously consider getting your Couple Shoot done.

Let us show you some pretty locations for a photo-shoot, where maybe you will fall in love, all over again.

1.  Sommer House
With the perfectly peaceful surroundings and a vintage setting, this one is for those wanting to try out something exotic. Sommer House, Bangalore, is the snug place you would want to check out. With vintage cars and decorations and that elegantly beautiful bungalow, this adds that gorgeous old world charm to your shoot.

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2. Windsor Manor
Do you want your pictures to scream of grandeur and elegance? Windsor Manor, a 5 Star Hotel, is your place for a luxurious pre-wedding photo-shoot. With you and your photographer exploring the glamour of the beautifully constructed place, this might just create some of the best souvenirs for you and your lover.

3. Good Ol' Lalbagh
Who says you can’t have an atypical fairytale photoshoot? Think of scenic views and exquisite flowers, lush greenery, large expansive lakes as well as a relaxing ambience. Lalbagh or Lalbagh Botanical Gardens, offers exactly this and oozes of romance.

4. Bhoga Nandeeshwara Temple
Linger at and explore a historical or religious place while your photographer captures some masterpieces. Bhoga Nandeeshwara Temple, dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva, offers for a pious environment and hence a good start for your journey ahead. A pre-wedding shoot which gives off this vibe, interests one and all. Located at the base of Nandi Hills, it is evidently very picturesque.


5.  Elements Resort
A gorgeous place outside the chaos of the city, which provides with greenery, starlit halls and amazing customisable décor. They make for a riveting stay and also provide for a perfect backdrop for your pre-wedding photographs. Elements Resort's beauty is synonymous with the description of heaven, with unique designs to offer for weddings and photoshoots.

6. Satori
The possibilities are essentially limitless, but a place that is secluded and untouched, AND with you being comfortable with each other, will give you a chance for some epic photos. Satori, a farmhouse in Whitefield, offers you things which makes your shoot extraordinary. Landscaped gardens, with being close to nature, and the vast open space, result in mesmerising photographs which you will look at ten years from now and adore.


7. Bricklane Grill

A cozy place that truly reflects everything you are and how you love, is the best location for a photoshoot, according to us. How about that Café where you first met? Relive those memories, smile like you did when you first realized they are the one, and create a perfect photo album. Bricklane Grill provides the perfect ambiance and everything about it is just so personalized, genuine, and beautiful.


8. A Makalidurga trek
For the couples who are nature lovers or adrenaline junkies, nothing could be better than a trek route. The route, in a way resonates with their journey to their wedding as well. Makalidurga is a perfect location, situated just 60 kilometres on the outskirts of Bangalore. The lake surrounding it, the railway track passing through the base of the hill and the enchanting view of the sunset from the top - all provide respite to the adventurous couples and also are a photographer's dream come true.

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Wonderfully capture the journey to your wedding in locations which resonate with you. These photographs would take you back to the beautiful days of your lives and make them stay with you forever.

What is it Like to be a Candid Wedding Photographer

I get this question a lot and I decided to answer it on Quora. I never expected the post to get over 9000 views in just a week. Must be a popular question. :)

So here is my answer below. The original post by me can be found at Quora here.

The short answer - It is a lot of fun!

The long answer -

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Background - I took up full time professional photography after 6 years in the corporate world. It was a seamless transition for me as I've been shooting fashion, wedding and jewellery photography for many years before I took the plunge.

Since then the following have happened -

1. I meet different people

My clients include a diverse range of people. I've shot -

  • doctors from the US looking to get married on the sands of Jaipur
  • A groom who runs his own mobile gaming startup
  • A super smart politician who wears a Fitbit
  • A graphic artist + Art Director
  • A Hindustani classical singer who performs and teaches
  • An anchor of a Bollywood talk show!
  • An MBA grad who has started a social venture

This has expanded my world view and since I meet them and capture their special moments during their wedding we form a good bond. I now have friends from a more varied set than I have had before, especially via work. They represent more geographies, nationalities and occupations than I have ever encountered before.

I also work an an amazingly talented bunch of make- up artists, fellow photographers, event planners, venue owners etc. A healthy mix of ages, nationalities and perspectives!

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2. I've been exposed to new cultures

There are a dozen clichés floating around Punjabi weddings and destination weddings and Marwari weddings and so on. Some are true and a lot are not. I've had the fortune of being exposed to various ceremonies and styles due to which I've come to believe India is a nation of nations.

Within a linguistic state's wedding the sheer complexity of style blows your mind. There are often various levels of practices/ceremonies/rituals -

  • That of the religion
  • That of the language
  • That of the region/state
  • That of the family.

This is simultaneously enriching and bewildering. :)

3. I get to design how I spend my time

No more morning commute!

I'm much more in control of my schedule now that I run my own wedding photography service. I've had more time to indulge in hobbies. I've tried to -

  • Start a Garden (ok only the cactus and the money plant survived, but i tried!)
  • Practice Visual storytelling via Instagram
  • Learn some Art - I gave making Kerala Mural Paintings a shot! Have a look -
  • Reading! (discovered the Harry Potter & Anne of Green Gables series)
  • Explored other forms of photography like food photography (even managed to hit 500px's most popular section a couple of times)
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4. I can see the impact of my work

Corporate work is great. You get structure, a steady income and relatively low amount of uncertainty compared to running your own business. But in most corporate jobs it is difficult to see your impact.

In my daily work I can gauge my impact. There are brides who call tearfully (from the US forgetting that it's 3 AM in India!) to talk about how much they loved their pictures. There are men who arrange couple shoots on the sly for their fiancé and often the shoot is the first time they both have met in the absence of their parents!

At one wedding I was the point of cultural translation between the bride and the groom's families who were from different states. Another time I remember a bed ridden grandmother who could attend for a short duration. I did not know about her condition and captured her throwing flowers in the ceremony. Months later I got a call from the family saying that this was one of the few images of her where she is so happy and in the rush and bustle of the wedding no one thought of capturing it.

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5. I've learnt the importance of a 'No'

I've learnt to be more disciplined. I've learnt to say No more often.

I say No to clients who might pay a lot but may not get what I do or appreciate how I do it.

I say No to good clients often, as I don't want to stress myself and my team with back to back weddings during peak wedding seasons. Both creativity and the health get hit.

I've learnt to say No to a dozen small things that come in between my client's requirements and my ability to deliver great images to them. These include cheaper equipment and doing my own taxes ( now this is outsourced :) ).

Saying No helps me focus. :)

6. I've started travelling better

I've had the fortune of travelling for photography the past few years. I never expected to shoot in a resort at Jim Corbett.

There are a dozen other places I've shot weddings in.

But I mean over and above wedding/photography related travel I've started doing extended travels. I did a trip to Turkey where I spent over 7 days in Istanbul only. I could do this as I chose to forgo business. I could rejuvenate in a foreign land and by doing street photography in Istanbul, learn and cross learn photographic skills. I could amble down various streets at leisure.


Overall its been a wonderful and personally enriching journey.


Source: https://www.quora.com/What-is-it-like-to-b...