Vietnamese Weddings

Wedding at the Temple of Literature. The location of the wedding shoot makes a strong statement:
Văn Miếu (the 1,000 year old Temple of Literature) reeks of
history and opulence
Just as in India, in Vietnam the biggest event in most people's lives is their wedding. The two families go to enormous lengths to make the occasion live up to that expectation. While nothing in Vietnam is outwardly unpleasant, there is great familial pressure on young people to be married by their late 20s. From a western point of view, weddings are long drawn-out secular affairs. The process starts with the wedding photographs. These are taken a few weeks before the wedding and preferably in a dramatic, romantic, or memorable location - ideally all three. Wedding on railway bridge. A shoot with a kitsch edge: this is on Hà Nội's main railway bridge with passing trains Wedding by memorial. A serious shoot: the memorial, in central Hà Nội, reads "Volunteering to die for the survival of our country" Wedding by Hoan Kiem Lake. And probably the favourite of all wedding locations for the Vietnamese. By Hoàn Kiếm Lake in central Hà Nội with the Tháp Ràu monument as background - romantic and memorable Bride's family. Here the groom hovers in the background at his partner's house, waiting to take her from her family, to the ceremony at his family's house Set photo of bride's family. The collection of the bride allows for a set piece photograph Multiple generations of bride's family. These group photos comprise four or five generations Finishing touches to bride's dress. Finishing touches to the bride's dress as she is trying to walk out the door; the groom waits tensely Final photos as the old home. The final photograph at her old family's house, as she leaves to start a new life often with her partner's family Conventional wedding car. The wedding car, in which the groom collects the bride, is decorated with flowers. This is a conventional wedding car, the next picture has a less conventional one - our American Jeep... Jeep as wedding car. ...a choice for adults, and the delight of children Wedding procession. The procession, back to the groom's family house, can be a very large affair,
50 or more accompanying bikes are normal

The temporary marquee, for the days of wedding parties, is erected, either on the family's ground or often on neighbouring vacant plots, such as the one shown in the following sequence: Marquee site. The site for the marquee Marquee framework. The framework is dumped Marquee roof constructed. The roof arranged at ground level Marquee roofs in place. Then the roofs are hoisted up Marquee ceiling in place. A decorative ceiling is added Marquee with its curtain walls. Followed by the curtained walls Marquee staff relaxing after set-up. Staff are all set-up, and ready to go Marquee with guests. The guests in place Marquee after the wedding. The desolate air of the post wedding marquee is quickly removed. Recyclable materials are soon gone - nearly everything in Vietnam has value. The marquee will soon be dismantled ready for its next venue Assembled guests. Guests are entertained by the singing of professionals and friends. However, friends may well, as here, be more interested in seeing who is joining the party A guest singing. Singers from the audience show off their skills which in Vietnam are always considerable Couple greeting guests. The bride greets guests as they arrive. A door or gate is a universal necessity in the Far East Couple leading in the food. Bride and groom leading in the food procession Food arriving at the tables. The food arrives Guest in expectation of the food. Guests waiting for the food Weddings usually last for four days. Three days of partying allow for: a large general gathering of a wide circle, then there is the family members party, and on the night before usually a dance party for contemporaries of the couple. Finally on the morning of the wedding there is another meal. Grooms are often so hung-over by the end, that they barely appear to know who they are marrying - maybe that is the intension Couple presenting the food to the guests. The couple present the food to the guests. Cakes are not common, but alcohol is Champaign being poured. Champaign poured into a precarious pyramid of frosted glasses - nervous grooms may need that steadying hand Friends line up. And finally the group photograph with special friends. Vietnamese photography is very formal... Final photographs. last the well oiled heads can let the faces relax, and the lines grow ragged Bride and groom. It is difficult to resist the word radiant for this bride The next page is about food presentation in Vietnam. The part that food plays in Vietnamese culture cannot be understated. Wedding feasts show it in mass form, but the presentation of dishes is an art almost justifying the photographs heaped on them by current fashion. Carrot on display. line
Saturday 22nd April 2017 Murphy on duty

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