Hannah and Simon's wedding - Jewish dancing frenzy at Ohariu Farm Wellington


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There are not too many Jewish weddings each year in the Wellington Region so I felt particularly honored to be invited to document Hannah and Simon's big day.

Having spent a significant time living in Jerusalem, Israel, I felt a certain connection and nostalgic air about the whole day. There has to be something said about cultural weddings... relevance. Most weddings I have done that have a strong cultural background has then manifested into a compelling sense of relevance and significance. I guess, what I am talking about is lots of little, and big things that happen that actually mean something.  For example, A traditional Jewish wedding is full of meaningful rituals, symbolizing the beauty of the relationship of husband and wife, as well as their obligations to each other and to the Jewish people.

Take the ceremony itself, this takes place under the "chuppah" (canopy), a symbol of the home that the new couple will build together. It is then custom  that the Bride circles the groom seven times. Just as the world was built in seven days, the Bride is figuratively building the walls of the couple's new world together. The number seven also symbolizes the wholeness and completeness that they cannot attain separately.

I had a great day! I did not get to join in during the energetic dancing, but then... I would have broken my equipment if I had! Thank you Hannah and Simon for the privilege of being part of your moment in time.

Shooting tip - Keep your eyes open - wide open. Look ahead into the crowd and look close in front of your nose. It's often not the big things people miss - its the little things, a quick smile or tear or a quirky pair of shoes or trinket. Try shooting wide open to control depth of field to help draw special attention to your focus.