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Overseas Wedding Photography is a Snap with this Easy Guide
An increasingly popular trend in Singapore, getting your wedding shots done abroad is a great way for couples to get a holiday in and relax on the job. If you’re looking for something you can’t find locally, say a shot of your veil blowing across a vast expanse of sky and red desert, a shoot abroad could be just the ticket. The climates overseas are usually more conducive to three-piece suits and heavy gowns too.
Of course, that’s not the only reason couples choose to spend extra to get their wedding shots abroad. In the age of globalisation, many sweethearts meet while studying overseas or spending a couple of years working abroad, and a pre-wedding shoot is a meaningful way to capture fond memories forever. Some couples go back to the site of a first holiday together, or simply take advantage of the shoot to enjoy a vacation in a country they’re always wanted to visit. Whatever your reasons are for choosing a wedding shoot overseas, SingaporeBrides helps you out by taking you through the process.
Choosing a location
First of all, think about where you would like to take the photos that mark the beginning of your journey as husband and wife. Did you homesick hearts click while poring over lectures together in a university abroad? Perhaps he surprised you with a trip overseas and proposed against a majestic mountainous skyline. Your wedding shoot will hold a lot of significance if you choose somewhere meaningful to the both of you. If you have a special place you want to shoot at, ask if your photographer can arrange to go there. Yukako of La-Vie Photography advises couples that while they try to accommodate any special requests, they would have to check whether photo-taking is allowed in that location, and that there might be additional access fees or transport fees.
You could also very well take advantage of the shoot to enjoy a holiday with your beloved. Take a break from wedding planning and stay on at your chosen location to see the sights. If you’ve been saving up to tour Europe together, having your wedding shots taken there might be a lovely way to commemorate your vacation.
Do take note of seasons when deciding on your location. If you want to pose while cherry blossoms flutter down behind you in Japan, plan for a shoot in the early months of the year, as they usually bloom in April. Down under, spring comes at the end of the year, so if you’re after beautiful fall colours and romantic vineyards in Australia, go between March and May. Most photographers offer time slots throughout the year to suit your preferences, and for easy scheduling, you can check out upcoming locations through this schedule.
Choosing a photographer
You’ll be flying overseas for your photographs, and you want to make sure you’ve got all the details right before you go. Seasoned photographer John Lim advises couples to give themselves peace of mind by choosing someone who’s familiar with photographing overseas, and who knows the best locations. “The important thing is what kind of experience the photographer can give you,” John says, “and how well he takes care of you during your whole experience.” Look for someone who knows the ropes, and someone you can click with to get the best out of your trip.
To meet the rising popularity of taking wedding photos abroad, photographers and studio nowdays offer a range of packages that make things more convenient. They fly around the world too, so it all depends on what you’d like to capture and what outfits you want to wear. For a 7-hour shoot at four locations in Japan with two changes of outfits, one Western gown and suit and one in traditional Japanese kimonos, La-Vie Photography’s Kenran package includes outfit rentals, a photographer, hair and makeup, accessories, transport to the locations, lunch, interpreter, and even an assistant. Most packages also allow you to bring your own wedding finery. The studio will inform you what else you should bring along, such as your own set of pantyhose, girdle or socks.
For studios like La-Vie Photography, which has staff based in their various locations, you don’t need to worry about separate flight and accommodation costs for your photographer and stylist, so you only need to book your own travel tickets and hotel stay. Some studios offer a complete package where even your flights and accommodation are included. Do remember to check if your package includes travel and stay, and whom they are for. However, choosing to book your own could be more convenient when you’re planning to stay on and holiday after the photo taking session is over. With budget airlines flying everywhere these days, you could score a great deal if you book early as well.
On the shoot
Once you’ve arrived at your shoot destination, your photographer will brief you on the shoot’s itinerary. What locations you visit and what style of shots you capture will depend on your personalities and tastes. “I try to deliver something different for each couple, and their wedding shoots reflect their unique personalities and what they like about the location,” says John Lim. Do discuss with your photographer what you hope to capture to commemorate your love, because the more he gets to know you, the better he can customise the shoot to suit you, and you’ll feel more comfortable and relaxed around him as well.
In fact, prior discussion was crucial for one of John’s overseas shoots, which took place in Tiffany’s, in New York. He briefed the couple on what they were planning to shoot that day, as usual, but what the bride didn’t know was that her groom had previously let John in on his secret proposal plan. “Right in Tiffany’s, he surprised her with a ring! The photographs turned out especially romantic and their love really shone through,” John tells us.
Not all overseas wedding shoots will have such a happy surprise, but each trip is sure to be a fun time with your beloved if you simply relax and enjoy the different surroundings. When all the travel preparations have been made and wedding gear vacuum-packed, remember that you’re going to make some beautiful memories, so whether you soak in the new sights excitedly or wax nostalgic over old haunts, let your love and enjoyment show in the photos!