Thursday, December 6, 2012

The untraditional traditional

I would like to make a statement right here, right now: I still don't claim to be a wedding photographer. I enjoy doing it when I'm asked by people who know me and trust me enough to put this huge responsibility in my hands, but I still feel I have a lot to learn. Now about the latest wedding I documented... It's been a long, long time for me without attending to a Hungarian wedding, then I visited my home town and was invited to one. Oh. My. God! Is there anything better than a Hungarian wedding? Drinking palinka shots and dance till the morning? I truly miss that from home. Before I went home I was already booked to shoot my friends wedding in Sydney's gorgeous harbour, with beautiful views of the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge. Perfect setting for a successful shoot, right? Yes. And no. No matter how gorgeous the setting is looking at it with a non-photographer's eyes, it all comes down to available light and to be able to work with it. I tried my best and here is the result. Enjoy and feel free to leave comments/suggestions for my next attempt (which is in February) My gorgeous friends, Csaba&Aniko moved to Sydney a few years ago and decided to have a small wedding here (with only 30 people). Out of all I think 27 were Hungarians. And let me tell you: when it's a Hungarian wedding, there's dancing until the venue kicks the wedding party out :)
Aniko&Csaba had their wedding in Sydney's The Rocks district with some beautiful old buildings and lovely atmosphere. It was my second time shooting in the Italian Village and I loved it!
The best part in this area that there's so many lovely spots to photograph the couple. Being Europeans, we all love a bit of history to reflect from buildings and streets. Well, we could get this close to it. :)
Oh and those details.... Aniko did an amazing job with all the details that she picked herself, some were sourced by her as well.
And there's nothing like a good Hungarian wedding reception which we call "lagzi". I just wish there would be venues in Sydney where you can party till the sun comes up! :)
There was only one thing missing from making it a bit more traditional: palinka... But we danced till they kicked us out. And it was a fantastic day with my friends on their Big Day! :)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Losing it...

It's been a while since I last wrote about what's happening at my end of the World - thankfully not because I have nothing to report but because I've been busy. What's happened to me last night is something we (photographers) all fear of, so I want to share my story because while the photo on the bottom is pretty; I treasure it even more because of the story around it.

Being a real estate photographer from Monday to Friday in Sydney's Northern Beaches gives me plenty of beautiful views, but it's not often that the time and light is just right, we have dramatic clouds, some lightning, some sparkle... Well, I've had it all last night and my heart skipped a beat when I was able to catch the lightning behind the city skyline which created an amazing backdrop light on the clouds. My client was just as excited as me, she even shouted me dinner! I thought I better take the card out before i go to the restaurant and put it in a safe place because if someone will break into the car it will happen tonight; when I took the perfect shot. Great idea, right?

Now, imagine how I felt when I was about to download and back up my files and couldn't find the memory card... Yes. My heart skipped more than one beat! Let me tell you; it's no fun to scoot around with a tiny torch in and around the car and on the streets at 11pm. All my efforts seemed pointless because the card was nowhere to be found. I didn't sleep much last night. It was one of those moments that wedding photographers must feel often: if I don't get it right now, it's a moment never to come back.

The mad rush for finding the card continued in the morning and I'm glad to say that it appeared from the bottom of my laptop sleeve (don't ask me why I put it there the first place.. I must have thought there's less of a chance someone will steal my laptop than the camera??? Smart.)

All in all, I look back and can't help but laugh at it all, I guess looking at this shot makes you understand why. :)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Reka&David's Special Day - The Sydney Harbour Wedding

When you travel 16,000km to explore a new country, a new life, and only plan to stay for 6 months; there are a lot of things on your to-do list - well, falling in love is probably not one of them.

Sometimes however you need to travel far to find love. And as unexpected as it was that is exactly what's happened to Reka who is originally from Hungary. Even after meeting David at a party in Sydney she didn't think it will end up saying "I do" in the Italian Village ;) After a lot of travelling and challanges, these two people realized that tieing the knot is what would make their love a whole.

Then my phone rang. Reka casually asked how I'm doing and if I'm still doing photography - me still not expecting what came next. Yes, she asked me if I'd photographed her special day... As much of an honour as it is for me when someone trust me enough to give me this important task; I said no. I don't claim to be a wedding photographer - and that's exactly what I told her too. (When you are a fan of Jasmine Star's as much as I am then you can understand why I wasn't sure if I am capable of shooting this wedding.) Shortly after the phone call I felt guilty because one of the reasons she wanted me to shoot the day was our mutual background - we are both Hungarians - and she felt she'd be more comfortable front of my camera than anyone elses. So I took the job.

And I couldn't be happier that I did, because as nerve wrecking as it was (eventho this wasn't my first wedding I photographed as a main photographer) it was just as exciting too because I knew that I'll be shooting in some gorgeous spots, mid-week, and the couple is gorgeous - it felt like first day in school, when you are so hungry for knowledge but still don't know how you'll perform.

Shooting in a hotel suite was a dream. It was big enough for the bride and groom to get ready seperately yet at the same place so I could shoot them both at the same time.

And the details... Oh those details and the fantastic light..

My favourite part of every wedding is the preparation - the very beginning of the day no guests see or be part of. I always feel honoured for being part of such a unique time with the couple. Oh, and cheering with champagne, laughing at silly jokes and seeing the beautiful bride glow.

Shooting in the Quay at The Rocks was a dream come true! So many pretty backdrops, and fantastic view of the Sydney Opera House incorporeted with the city skysrapers.

Thanks to Reka and David going aganist all traditions and wanting to have part of the location shoot before the ceremony, on the beach (on the other side of town) they happily agreed to the "First Look". This may be something that makes most people roll their eyes but I saw a lot of images from this kind of shoot from Jasmine Star and wanted to try it badly. To be honest if I'll ever get married, I will definitely request this option from my photographer. Seeing your partner the first time, all glammed up for you, on your Special Day, without distractions of all the guests... It is a magical moment to witness.

When we first discussed the wedding timeline I explained Reka that shooting in midday sun, on the beach would be the worst situation and we were both praying for an overcast day. Well, our prayers must have been lost in translation because the day turned out to be a gorgeous, clear sunny day. Life would be boring without challanges so after asking for advice from photographers who I believe to be much much better than me we went for it - afterall you can't just change the wedding timeline in last minute..

Then a few quick ones at The Rocks and in the gorgeous Sydney Harbour. (Love that location!!!)

And because David is Italian where else they would have had their ceremony if not in the Italian Village in the Rocks :) Great rustic setting for photos!

After all the formal photos, the reception kicked off in the restaurant upstairs - Oh, and the food... If anything could make me love Italian food any more than I already do, then it's this restaurant!

Ok, this blog post is way too long already so I will finish off with these. I left the best bit to the last because it was our 3rd location and as much as I was dreaming of photographing the couple at night front of the lit Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge; I knew I can't really do it without an assistant holding a video light. My prayer might have been unheard regarding the weather during the day but I was getting something so much more awesome: the video crew and their video light! My absolute favourite shots are definitely these ones :) A giant thank you to Louis Freris and his team!