Long Island, New York,
I was recently hired to photograph a baby shower. The client was the father of a little girl whose portrait I had taken at nursery school.
When he first contacted me and asked if I would be interested in photographing a baby shower, I of course said yes. I had my own preconceived notion of what it would be like...a gathering of ladies who would be sitting in a semi-circle around a very pregnant woman; a little lunch, a little cake and some presents. Easy-peasy. But the client wanted to meet with me beforehand and discuss the event. I wasn't sure why, I mean, it was just a simple baby shower--right?
We had difficulties setting up an appointment, between his work schedule and a virus that knocked me out for a couple of weeks, it took some time before we finally had our meeting. When he arrived at my house, he had a large photo book with him. It was a photobook he had made with photos from his own baby shower. He wanted me to see it so I would know what to expect. Not having been exposed to Indian traditions before, my jaw dropped as I looked through this book.
This was not going to be the kind of ho-hum showers I have attended. This was going to be a real celebration! Ceremonies, games, entertainment, dancing, food, colorful saris, men, women, children, cake...this was more than most weddings i have attended! What have I gotten myself into?
On the day of the event, I arrived early to set up my equipment and lighting. I had researched Antun's Catering online and saw the room so I had an idea of the space, but when I got there, I was pleasantly surprised at the size of the room. It was enormous. There would be lots of room to move around--which is nice. So many events I have been to have been very tight with the maximum number of people are crowded the space. My own wedding was like that! But this space was lovely, and large.
As the guests started to arrive, I started taking portraits in front of a beautifully carved feature out in the hallway. But it wasn't long before the festivities started and I was off! There were several ceremonies to document, and luckily my client prepared me for what to expect with his photobook. I knew what shots they wanted and what was important. At one point he even became my second shooter to be sure we didn't miss anything in one of the ceremonies.
Despite a few technical difficulties and a moment of nerves, I photographed the event and considering I never captured such fast moving event before, I think it came out well. I learned a lot from the experience...and have much more to learn...but I certainly gained some confidence from it! Afterwards, I felt like I could now shoot just about anything!
I loved sharing in the jubilance of their celebration, observing the traditions of another culture and their excitement over the blessing of new life. I hope to capture many more Indian baby showers in the future!
Long Island, New York,