‘If Zeina & Zak live as heartily as they dance, they will have an incredible and prosperous life,’ I thought to myself, standing on top of a shaking chair, surrounded by dozens of glowing faces and dancing bodies, ducking and squinting away from the humongous goat skin drum by my ear. My chair wasn’t the only thing shaking, it felt as if the energy and love in the room would raise the roof! This was my first time as a wedding photographer at a Lebanese wedding. So let’s back up a little!
Having arrived to Edmonton during the coldest weekend (ever!) to document Zeina & Zak’s wedding, I was so lucky to have my dad driving me and keeping the car warm while I fluttered between Zeina’s and Zak’s ‘getting ready’ locations. I arrived just in time to witness an old Arabic tradition – Zak’s last shave as a bachelor … take a look:
The women danced and proclaimed joyous blessings ‘Ah Weeeee-ha’ and danced around the groom and his barber, who worked with the precision of a surgeon. Soon after, the men joined in, also managing to realize a sly plan to soil Zak’s face with shaving cream just as the barber finished his impeccable job!
Another Lebanese wedding tradition followed, whereby the groom was to get dressed methodically by the men. His suit jacket, tie, watch, belt, and even shoes!
Although Lebanese food deserves it’s own blog post, here is a peek at the irresistible treats… Mmmmm… And the yoghurt dip – a personal favourite of my dad and I 🙂
It was time to rush to the bride, I couldn’t wait to see Zeina! As I walked into the house, I couldn’t help but notice a white creeping cloud of pure -40c accompanying me … Quick, quick, close the door!
Back inside, Zeina’s gorgeous bouquet.
I love this shot of Zeina. She looks like a queen to be, surrounded by her princesses (and one little prince) 🙂
Moments away from seeing each other for the first time, Zak is looking out for his bride! Zaffeh is the traditional Arabic celebration, which symbolizes escorting the bride to her husband.
I was so happy to sneak out to the Aviation Museum with Zeina & Zak for literally a few minutes, right after the traditional family portraits. I was hoping for some daylight photos inside, but the tired December sun went down so quickly! We still managed to get a few shots, and here are my favourites. I like the harsh ambient light and mysterious moodiness…
Zeina looked so beautiful. We got a few moments to spend together before the reception at the Westin Hotel.
The traditional first dance… The videographer and I did just as much dancing around them 🙂
It was so great to have Randy Lim of Limages second-shoot with me. We had so much fun together – here is one of his shots of the dance floor with a wide angle lens:
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