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Women in Wedding Photography

Wedding photography, traditionally a male bastion is now seeing more women. This year, Kodak presents Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year (WPOY) 2010, received many entries from women photographers. Not surprising, since a wedding is a lot about the bride, the emotions, minute details and so many candid moments!

Suchita Sitani, Naina Redhu

Richa Kashelkar, Deepa Netto

‘Easier Access to the Bride’
Says Gurgaon-based Naina Redhu who participated in WPOY 2010: “Difficult to generalise what advantages or disadvantages women photographers have but sometimes it’s easier when the other photographers don’t come in your way.” When Redhu has a free moment between the shots, she loves observing the flowers and decor, and jewellery that everyone is wearing. “And mingling with the guests is great fun”, she quips. Richa Kashelkar, a qualified architect who started photographing weddings by a chance event, and now pursues it as a full-time career says: “As a woman you have easier access to the bride and women guests, so you can click some really nice ‘getting ready’ moments.” Navi Mumbai based Deepa Netto, states: “At the end of the day it makes no difference whether you’re a man or woman—because every client requires quality work for the money they have spent.”

Financially Rewarding and Emotionally Satisfying
Suchita Sitani who graduated from Ooty Light and Life Academy last year, participated in the Bridal Portraiture category for WPOY 2010. “I specialised in Fashion Photography, and while initially I was interested in Portraitures only, I’m now keen to capture the wedding ceremony too” says Sitani. “Of course there are a host of challenges there—different and sometimes tough lighting conditions, the need to be perfect with timing and not miss a single opportunity. But from what I hear, it’s financially rewarding and emotionally satisfying.”

Photographs by Deepa Netto

“At a wedding—in wet and mud stained jeans”.
Says Naina Redhu: “I love dressing up for weddings, so if I’m going as a guest, I enjoy figuring out the what-to wear bit and spend an hour at the salon. But on the job, I have to run around, and kneel and lie down quite a bit, so my dress is highly functional. I try to put on minimal makeup so I don’t stick out like an eye-sore. Deepa Netto adds: “I ensure I wear comfortable footwear since I have to stand upto 10 hours. At one weddng I fell down on a mucky football ground and then I had shoot the entire wedding in wet and mud stained jeans– since then I always carry an extra set of clothes.”

And then there’s the new decision-maker on wedding photography—the bride. Web evangelist and gadget geek Madhulika Mathur explains: “Unlike earlier, when families chose the wedding photographer, today the bride plays an important role in deciding who should click the wedding ceremonies; and she wants to be photographed by someone she is comfortable with. I’m not a professional photographer but interestingly, at some family and friends weddings, I’ve had the bride tell me to get click-happy since she’s confident I’ll do a good job with capturing those candid and ‘getting ready’ moments.”

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