Sometimes a quirky wedding comes along that is really different from the rest such as my big greek wedding. Don’t get me wrong I love all weddings, from the smallest intimate wedding in an exclusive venue to the biggest brashest loudest weddings known to man. Indian weddings are full of colour and ceremony. Jewish weddings lots of traditions. Greek weddings now these people know how to party!.
Now being a UK wedding photographer, the core of my weddings tend to be traditional Christian and catholic church based weddings. So when a request is made to me to do a Greek wedding, well what could I say, had to do it.
The wedding of Ari & Alex Raftopoulos was going to be a big greek sumptuous affair, The big greek family laughing and jovial, all ready to have a fun day with family and friends and I think this is what makes a greek wedding most enjoyable, everyone is out to enjoy themselves no matter what, the matter what is the pretty dismal weather on the day, Overcast and windy to say the least. From my point of view as the photographer, no crazy sunshine to deal with and even nastier shadows, so minimal flash. Every other day had been glorious untypical sunshine bathed in 30+ degree heat and the 17th June 2016 was the odd one out. But hey let’s have fun!. Bridal prep at Ari’s family house in the morning. Absolutely Beautiful bride in a very stunning wedding dress.
An outside wedding has to be one of the best highlights of anyone’s wedding and even better when you have literally a couple of hundred guests to watch you get married. The long red carpet, the groom looking anxiously over his shoulder waiting for his future wife, the anticipation of the guests. Then finally the bride makes her grand entrance with mum to give her away. With the service lasting well over an hour and seemingly quite detailed with a lot of religious practice but suffice to say the orthodox priest was quite down to earth with a little humor thrown in.
Family and group shots done, individual shots with Ari and Alex themselves, had to do the veil shot with the windy breeze acting as a prop to lift the veil and give that soft romantic feel to the couple. Even the videographer helped out by holding the top of a white plastic table next to the couple to reflect some natural light back into the couple’s faces to create a shadow that was not forthcoming from the sky.
Then the fun really begins. First dance then another dance then another, then everyone’s dancing. The “kalamatiano”, (i looked up that one). The bride and all the ladies dancing and did notice a few men muscling in on that one too. But the highlight of the day has to be the Greek money dance. The couple dancing with the handkerchief, the music tempo becoming more upbeat, everyone getting on the dance floor and the whole atmosphere exploding through the roof as money is pinned and taped onto the bride’s dress. Ari and his twenty pounds top hat and the long reams of cash on the dress, even the kids were getting in on the craze. An absolutely crazy day full of fun and laughter. Oh, how I would love to do that all over again.
My Big Greek wedding