A Pre Wedding Shoot in Ahmedabad
Chanakya Patel and Neha Rajora, wedding photographers from Preach Art tell us about their latest pre-wedding shoot in their home city, Ahmedabad.
“The old city of Ahmedabad has always been close to our heart. From the days when we were studying architecture, we’ve regularly explored the old quarters of the city and they never fail to surprise us. The narrow streets, colourful walls, gracious courtyards, the architecture is truly worthy of being on a world heritage list.
Varun and Madhu wanted a pre-wedding shoot within a historic landscape but wanted to avoid the usual cliché of a couple dressed in traditional attire with a famous monument as backdrop. They wanted something quirky.
We’d been longing to shoot in the old city of Ahmedabad and when we discussed the idea with them, they agreed instantly.
As architects turned wedding photographers, we’ve always viewed these spaces with a different perspective: we love the contrasts where the heritage has been overwritten by modern lifestyles and wanted to capture that in some way. With this pre-wedding shoot, we had the chance to juxtapose the young love of a recently engaged couple against one of the oldest heritage cities in the world. It was pretty challenging but trust us, totally worth it!
We thought it would be easy to start early while the city is still sleeping and the streets are pretty empty. We met at the Swami Narayan temple near Kalupur at sunrise from where the heritage walk starts. Our plan was to follow the heritage walk route and shoot at different locations along the way! When we reached there despite it being early morning, it was already bustling with locals and street vendors. We’ve shot in public all over India and the people and local authorities have been, to put it politely, not very accommodating. But our experience here was totally the opposite.
The people were so enthusiastic! The bike and thela (hand cart) you see the couple riding lent to us by a local vegetable vendor who was about to set up shop but allowed us the use of it for a while. The residents of the homes and courtyards we shot were pretty cool with us shooting there.
The location itself has so much to offer that you feel you never do justice to its potential. We were so mesmerized that we covered merely 500 meters in two hours of shooting.
Varun lives in Australia and had come in only for his sister’s wedding and to get engaged to Madhu. Though he grew up in Ahmedabad, he’d actually never been to the old city so for him, it was as much of a revelation as it was to Madhu. Not to mention the fact that they got to play ‘tourist’ as they spent some quality time together. The couple is fun loving, affectionate and ready to try new things. They have incredible chemistry, which comes through in the photographs.
We truly believe a pre-wedding shoot is actually about spending some time together, having fun, while a photographer captures snapshots of the key ingredients of your relationship: chemistry, humour, love. As the years go by, these photographs are the ones that will resonate with the essence of whom we really are. That’s what we try to capture in every pre-wedding shoot.”
Photography – Chanakya Patel & Neha Rajora, Preach Art
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