Malaysian Wedding Photographer
As an award-winning Malaysian wedding photographer, I’m lucky enough to frequently capture Malaysian wedding photography. Malaysian weddings have their own distinct traditions rooted in customs derived from a range of rich cultural sources. Personal, intimate and colourful, Malaysian weddings really suit my creative and storytelling style of wedding photography.
For modern Malaysian weddings couples often pick and choose which customs to uphold and include in their wedding. Wedding photography is about capturing all the emotions of a wedding alongside the traditions, rituals and stunning location of your chosen destination and blending them to tell the story of your wedding adventure with beautiful and timeless images. I will talk about some of these traditions below.
Creative Malaysian Wedding Photography
There are several traditions that happen before the wedding some of which don’t make it into modern Malaysian weddings. Though the tradition of ‘Adat Berinai’ where the hands and feet of the bride and her bridal party are decorated with henna to ward off bad luck is still practised. Some couples choose to skip this step whilst others embrace it as a sort of hen party a couple of days before the wedding. As an experienced Malaysian wedding photographer, I love capturing images of henna art work, it really suits my storytelling style of documentary wedding photography.
The wedding itself is traditionally divided into two sections. The first is the official wedding ceremony known as the ‘akad nikah’ or solemnisation ceremony which is held in the parents’ home or a local mosque and is only witnessed in front of family and close friends.
The groom is required to present the bride with gifts to enter her family home. The tradition varies from region to region but essentially the groom must pass a few obstacles to reach his bride. Gifts play a big role in traditional Malaysian weddings and can range from everything from food through to luxuries such as laptops.
It’s all about the feeling you leave your clients with.
"Jacob Gordon is an amazing wedding photographer. He was able to make sure we were 100% comfortable during the photo shoot. Jacob is extremely professional with the end result turning out better than we could have hoped for. I would definitely recommend Jacob as your go to Malaysian wedding photographer."
In the actual ceremony, which is officiated by a mosque leader, or imam, or a kadi (Islamic official), religious oaths are recited and the groom is informed of his duties as a husband. The groom is then required to repeat the oath after the imam or kadi in one breath. Following that, the marriage is declared solemn and the bride and groom sign the marriage contract. Modern Malaysian weddings often go straight to the actual ceremony as that’s the official part.
The wedding reception is known as the ‘majlis bersanding’ and is a much larger party that traditionally was held in the afternoon with no fixed itinerary allowing guests to pop in as they wish to bless the couple and leave presents. The bride and groom are seated like a king and queen for guests to come and give them a blessing by throwing ‘bunga rampai’ (finely cut aromantic pandan leaf sprayed with perfume) over them. Other things that are thrown at the bride and groom as blessings are liquid rice flour and rose water. These things are laid out on a tray and guest who bless the couple are offered ‘bunga telur’ which are like wedding favours, given out as a symbol of fertility and are usually scented soaps, sweets or chocolates.
In modern Malaysian weddings this is often followed with a sit-down meal in a restaurant or a hotel ballroom. These rooms are often dressed ornately with beautiful flower decorations, drapes and ambient lighting.
Family and rituals play a very important role in Malaysian weddings and it is my job to capture these intimate moments and I do this as unobtrusively as possible. I always familiarise myself with the best places to sit, crouch or stand so that I can capture all the special moments without anybody much noticing that I’m there.
After the wedding, my couples often marvel at how I managed to capture such intimate images full of emotion so unobtrusively and often comment that they weren’t even aware the moment had been photographed.
This is because I move around weddings as unobtrusively as I can telling the story of wedding days naturally as they unfold with high quality and timeless, documentary style images.
If you’re thinking of having a Malaysian wedding, I hope this blog has been useful. Have fun planning your Malaysian wedding and if you find a perfect location for your special day, you’ll be looking for an experienced Malaysian wedding photographer. Feel free to get in touch.
I’d love to hear about your wedding plans…