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Tasneem Al Sultan: Wedding Photography

Give us a brief about your career and what made you take up photography?
I used to take elective classes in photography while teaching ESL and English Literature in the USA and later in Bahrain, since I enjoyed it as a hobby. After shooting weddings for two years, I finally said goodbye to teaching and decided to focus on my passion for wedding photography. My love for action, romance and drama all intertwined in one night was my reason for choosing this career. It’s the text message from the bride saying “Thank you for joining us” at the end of the wedding that makes it all worth.

In your opinion, what is the most important quality a wedding photographer should have?
The best wedding photographers are always alert and on their toes to capture the best images. I would want my own wedding photographer to be cheerful and helpful. You can’t be yourself around a grumpy person!

Prior the wedding, do you research the culture or get briefed by the family?
I’m lucky to have always met the bride and groom either face to face or via Skype. We talk about how unique their wedding is. Each culture is different, but I find that each wedding is also different than the other regardless of culture. You get to live the moment and see how emotional everyone gets at this happy occasion.

How do you handle family interference?
If it’s interference to do with the bride then as the photographer, I get to be the bad one. When the bride asks me to tell her family to back off, I do. Sometimes I just go with the flow and capture the whole scene. I have to say that I’ve never had negative interference from any family so I’m lucky.

Do you have a pre-wedding shoot?
I always encourage for one before the wedding. Nearly every bride apologizes for not being photogenic, but they then realize that it’s not about the posing or modeling, but about being themselves and having fun.

How do you manage to take great pictures without interfering in the ceremony?
I’m the student that studies for an exam at the last minute. I love the adrenaline rush when you know you only have a few seconds to capture a great moment. I don’t interfere because it’s not about me, it’s about the wedding itself. Like most photographers, I tend to run around, capturing every moment. It’s only after the wedding is over that I realize I’ve been standing for six or nine hours. It’s a grueling job but you hardly notice because it’s always a fun and emotional day.

info@tasneemalsultan.com
www.tasneemalsultan.com

 

Tell us about the most memorable wedding that you have shot.
It’s as if you’re asking me which daughter of mine I love most! Each wedding is a memorable one. If the mother of the bride is emotional and starts crying, or the friends dance excitedly, or the couple share how they met and fell in love, I immediately feel a strong bond and get attached. Luckily my brides choose me because they notice we become friends, and that I genuinely love my job because of that alone.

How do you manage to take great pictures without interfering in the ceremony?
I’m the student that studies for an exam at the last minute. I love the adrenaline rush when you know you only have a few seconds to capture a great moment. I don’t interfere because it’s not about me, it’s about the wedding itself. Like most photographers, I tend to run around, capturing every moment. It’s only after the wedding is over that I realize I’ve been standing for six or nine hours. It’s a grueling job but you hardly notice because it’s always a fun and emotional day.

Tell us about the most memorable wedding that you have shot.
It’s as if you’re asking me which daughter of mine I love most! Each wedding is a memorable one. If the mother of the bride is emotional and starts crying, or the friends dance excitedly, or the couple share how they met and fell in love, I immediately feel a strong bond and get attached. Luckily my brides choose me because they notice we become friends, and that I genuinely love my job because of that alone.

Have you photographed any weddings in Oman?
I’m honored to have had the chance to shoot three weddings in Oman so far. Omanis are very kind and sincerely generous in every way possible. It is humbling to know how much effort they put to make me feel at home.

How do you choose your locations?
Locations choose me! I have many friends who believe in the photo Gods! They say that if you wish for a moment to happen and pray hard enough, it will happen. I guess it’s the same with locations. I just came back from Santorini, after wishing for over a year to have the chance to go visit.

What advice would you give to aspiring wedding photographers?
Push yourself out of your comfort zone; take your ego away, and strip down to just you and your camera. Also get help from other photographers. I started from zero. Had I not had encouragement from other photographers I admired and looked up to, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

 

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