India is a cultural hotspot, with at least nine recognized religions and 22 officially recognized languages with 100 other major languages and 1599 other languages.
It boasts of cultural traditions that date back to the time of the Indus Valley Civilization and Sanskrit which is an ancient Indian language has a 3,500-year-old history.
Being that as it may, the country has several traditions and cultures in the confines of its border. Weddings, which are an auspicious occasion, are no exception to these traditions.
While some traditions related to marriage, divorce and so on like the Satidaha Pratha have long been done away with. Certain traditions that are objectionable, such as the Kanyadaan, still exist.
In this article, however, we will talk about the traditions that are fun, colorful and are great for photography! So, let’s begin.
Sangeet is a tradition of fun and frolic. It is observed among Gujarati, Marwari, Maharashtrians, Punjabis and so on. It is sometimes merged with another tradition called Mehendi which we will discuss later in the article.
In this tradition, the families of the bride and groom sing and dance to music and in certain villages, they sing songs using Dholaks and other percussion instruments. In cities, these days, songs from popular Bollywood and Hollywood movies and albums are played.
The Sangeet dance preparations start months ahead of the wedding and are usually done in groups on stage. These make for beautiful and fun images because of the colorful lights used during the performances and the colorful clothes worn.
Photographs of the elders dancing to modern Bollywood tunes are a sight to behold!
Mehendi is a ceremony that happens a day before the wedding day. It is a long-standing tradition where the women of the household sing songs while a Mehendi artist applies Henna. It is a temporary brown colored liquid, on the hands of the women in intricate and beautiful designs.
The beautiful designs, much like temporary tattoos, stay on the hands for a few weeks. In Muslim weddings, the groom also applies Mehendi. The designs that are made on the arms are fascinating and can be great subjects for photographs.
Each design is different from the other and they hold special significance to everyone getting them!
#3 Haldi Ceremony
The Haldi ceremony is held on the morning of the wedding. This tradition includes both sides of the family applying a mixture of water, oil and turmeric powder on the bride and groom’s face, hands and feet.
The bride and groom also apply Haldi to their family members. The yellow color, along with the traditional song and merriment is a definite must-shoot moment at weddings!
The candid photos that one can come out with are amazing and can look great in any photographer’s portfolio!
#4 Laja Homa
This tradition involves the bride’s sacrifice of parched grain to the gods. While spilling grains on the bride’s hand. Later the grains are spilled on the fire by the bride. The frame of the hands spilling grains of rice and the fire makes for picturesque photographs.
#5 Mala Bodol (Garland exchange)
Mala Bodol or garland exchange is a big part of Indian weddings. Bengali weddings involve this ceremony where the bride and groom, exchange flower garlands at the time of the wedding ceremony. It signifies their ties to each other and is an amazing moment to capture with the best camera.
#6 Shubho Drishti
Shubho Drishti is another Bengali tradition that makes for breathtaking photos. Since the bride and groom are not allowed to see each other before the wedding, this tradition marks the first time they lay eyes on each other during the wedding.
The bride uses betel leaves to cover her face and gently parts them to reveal her face and look at the groom. The photographs of this tradition are awe-inspiring and are a must-have in any Bengali photo album!
#7 Mangni and Ring Ceremony
Mangni in Muslim weddings and Ring ceremony for Hindu weddings is another tradition that can produce quirky and candid moments. The Ring ceremony is a fun event where the bride and the groom exchange ring in front of the entire family.
Some families have a small gathering while many families have a separate event for the same. Make sure you position yourself close to the couple during the ceremony and use a wide lens when doing so as the family members will gather around them during the same.
Try and capture the family’s reactions in your frame as well and try out different angles!
#8 Saat Phere (Saptapadi)
This is one of the most important traditions for Hindu weddings where the couple take seven rounds around a sacred fire which completes the wedding ceremony.
The rounds taken, along with spiritual chants signify promises and vows made to each other in the presence of Agnideva (God of fire). The groom’s dupatta or dhoti is tied to the bride’s sari or dupatta to signify togetherness.
The photographs of this ceremony are what makes the heart of a photo album as this tradition is considered to be the actual ‘wedding’ amongst all the other traditions. It is a must shoot tradition for any Hindu wedding!
Each culture contributes it’s own attributes to wedding customs. Finding out about various wedding customs from around the globe is an incredible method to comprehend the ways of life. Unique conventions of different societies and even to more readily comprehend your own.
Indian weddings have numerous novel traditions so particularly on the off chance that you plan on going to one or tossing your own. It is an extraordinary thought to increase a decent comprehension of what’s in store.