I have a confession to make: I was nervous for this wedding.
You see, the thing about photographing weddings, the thing that gives professional wedding photographers the edge over nonprofessionals is experience. After you have shot, 10, 20, 30, 100 weddings you get a pretty good idea of how they tend to go down. And knowing how they go down gives you the ability to anticipate things before they happen so that you have the right lens, the right camera settings, and you are in the best possible spot to capture them when they do. There is a comfort in this experience that makes you feel like you 'got this', like your skills and experience and wedding know-how will carry you through.
But here's something about weddings:: they're not all the same.
Especially when they are, say, a Sikh wedding ceremony, and you are used to shooting your standard issue 'North American/Christian rooted' event.
So despite the fact that I have shot 110+ weddings, I'd never shot a Sikh ceremony before (Hindu, yes. Thai Buddhist, yes. But never Sikh). And so, I was nervous for Brian and Simrun's.
Prior to their big day, I watched hours and hours of Sikh wedding videos on YouTube. I read countless articles explaining how Sikh weddings go, and what each ceremony means and symbolizes. I scrolled through tons of other photographer's Sikh Wedding photos. I didn't want to miss a single significant moment, or inadvertantly create any major faux pas or taboos. Fortunately for me, Brian and Sim believed in me whole heartedly, and were happy to answer any question I had.
Guess what? The day went off without a hitch!
There are too many significant moments for me to mention here, but I would suggest that if you're interested in learning more about Sikh wedding traditions, you check out this site and this site.
If you ever have the oppurtunity to attend a Sikh wedding (or a wedding of any culture/religion other than your own!) I strongly advise that you Carpe the hell out of that Diem and go. Go with an open mind, ask questions, be polite, be humble, and have fun. Life is so short. Any time that we have an oppurtunity to broaden our horizons and experience something new is a gift.
Thank you to Brian, Sim, and your incredible family and friends for the gift of this experience. I hope we did your day justice.
I'd also like to thank my AMAZING second shooter (and good friend) Shauna, who kicked serious butt (as per-usual) and was such a wonderful help this day. She is responsible for all of the Groom's/Guys getting ready photos that you see below, as well as all of the dance-floor photos. Shauna has a REMARKABLE skill (and passion) for dancing photos and her work truly is spectacular. She is based in Vancouver and her 2019 is filling very quickly.