📸 Skai Chan Photography

Bridal Photo Shoot - Khin Thuzar Kyaw

Bridal / Wedding with Khin Thuzar Kyaw at Chinatown Buddha Tooth Relic Temple

Bridal / Wedding with Khin Thuzar Kyaw at Chinatown Buddha Tooth Relic Temple

Bridal / Wedding with Khin Thuzar Kyaw at Chinatown Buddha Tooth Relic Temple

Bridal / Wedding with Khin Thuzar Kyaw at Chinatown Buddha Tooth Relic Temple

Bridal / Wedding with Khin Thuzar Kyaw at Chinatown Buddha Tooth Relic Temple

The challenges were accepted!

When Khin proposed shooting at Chinatown for that Sunday afternoon, I was quick to assure everyone that it wasn't a good idea. However, she was bold and didn't mind what I had described as "photobombs". I decided to take up the challenge.

Since we had two artists working on Khin's face and hair concurrently, the process of makeup and hairstyling was fast.

Upon reaching the venue, I wasn't sure if I should laugh or "cry" because of the massive crowd, including elderly who were dancing, resting around the temple's sides and batches of tourists who were ferried over by coaches. It was good to prove my points but at the same time, it was a bad situation for the shoot.

Since Khin was a lady with great figure that would wow every guy, she got to invite many undesirable attentions from some men who seemed to have not seen cleavage before. Some old men couldn't keep their eyes off her chest.

As I was trying to set up my strobe at the much less crowded side of the temple that was facing the sun, there was a man who came around looking for his car key. A couple of security guards were there and one told me it was prohibited to set up anything within the temple's compound, not even at the sides that were sheltered. I could have just moved my strobe a few steps away, over to the road, but it wasn't a good solution as well. Besides, I didn't like my light to be placed far away and I was using a less powerful strobe (smaller) due to the crowd.

I decided to work on my second idea instead. I got the team to move to the car-free road in between the shophouse and the temple. I wanted to use the busy road as backdrop to give a magnificent feel. It was a big challenge since the sky was cloudless and the sun was shining harshly at us. Many people were staring at us. I took a couple of clicks to test the power of my strobe and was ready to amaze everyone with my work. Suddenly Khin requested me to use only natural light. I decided to take up the new challenge.

I placed all my stuff inside Michael's shop "Enjoy Tea", which was located inside one of the shophouses. Then, we began the shoot using the natural light. Unfortunately, the first location under the shophouses was disastrous at that point of time due to the direction of the sun. Since the white pillars were nearer to the sun, they were brightly lighted while Khin's face was in the shade. For sure, I didn't want to go for an "emo" look.

We were pretty lucky that we got some empty spaces along the side of the temple that was safeguarded from the merciless sun. We used the temple's doors and walls as background, although the angles were limited due to the people resting around.

I also tried to take some shots to capture the full pathway along the temple but the number of passers-by dying to get into the frame, including big groups of tourists wasted lots of our time. Apart from that, since the sunlight came from steep angle from the sky, it cast bad shadows on her face.

After taking up the challenges on this quite unfortunate day, I wasn't very confident of my work because it wasn't my style.

It was actually quite a good experience to shoot without professional lighting. The pros were that I could be more agile and while it took less time to get the right setting for the right exposure, I could focus more on the model.

On the other hand, without using my artificial light, I couldn't be flexible with the spots and angles to shoot at, since it was totally depending on the ambient light - mainly the sun. Moreover, my artificial light could keep my subject's face nicely lighted up with consistent soft light from flattering angles. Lastly, I couldn't create the dramatic light that would make my subject stand out from the background and thus the photographs would turn out to be something which hobbyists could achieve similarly, given luck.

Model: Khin Thuzar Kyaw
Hairstylist: Alicia Lim
Makeup Artist (MUA): Nicole

Wardrobe: Nicole
Credits: The Muses, Michael, Enjoy Tea

Camera: Canon 6D
Lens: Canon 24-70mm F2.8L II

Venue: Chinatown Buddha Tooth Relic Temple
Date: 10 March 2019

Editing: Advanced

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