Seattle Wedding & Portrait Photographer

Hi, I'm Mandev, I live in Seattle :) I create photos with a natural & authentic style, and I love the way a single moment can reveal the most compelling emotions- a smile, the happiness of an engagement, a wedding celebration, a love story. Here is a glimpse into some of these beautiful stories.

October 20, 2011
|  Category: Wedding

Mick and Karen’s traditional Sikh wedding in Fresno, CA, was absolutely beautiful! Surrounded by acres of almond fields, fruit trees, and rolling hills, the area provided the perfect backdrop for a wedding. Palm trees lined the road as we drove through fields and fields of fruits and vegetables.

Palm trees against a blue sky

We spent 3 days in Fresno, capturing the memories and traditional festivities of the Sikh wedding. As we photographed the many cultural traditions and events, it felt as though we were part of the family. Everybody opened themselves up to us, showing love, and that truly made our job memorable.

Over the past 8 months, I’ve witnessed the kindness and friendliness of Mick and Karen. Throughout the entire wedding, they placed a lot of trust in us, opened themselves up to creativity, and were extremely cooperative. From the day we took engagement photos in downtown Seattle, I knew Mick and Karen were going to be pure delight! They make a perfect couple together- Karen has a funny personality and an extremely warm heart and Mick is hilarious and always understanding. There’s a sense of calm and peace in their relationship that I can only imagine was developed through their years of long-distance. They’ve established a trust and understanding with each other stemming from communication and openness. After spending time with their families, I can see the source of these wonderful qualities!

 

Mehndi (Henna)

Mick and Karen’s wedding was comprised of several Sikh traditions, each of which, was performed with happiness, huge smiles, and love. Sikh weddings often occur over the span of several days, traditionally beginning with the application of Mehndi (henna).

Sikh Wedding Mehndi on Hands

For both sides of the family, the mehndi is carefully and artistically applied onto the women’s hands. The bride’s mehndi is applied delicately and intricately to both hands and feet. Mehndi serves a decorative purpose, as well as the traditional signification of an upcoming wedding. In India, the mehndi was prepared by the groom’s mother, and sent to the bride a month before the wedding. The preparation is a long and tedious process where leaves of the Mehndi tree are hand-ground into a paste. The more thoroughly the leaves are ground, the darker the resulting henna will appear. The resulting paste is then left to sit allowing it to become usable.

 

Indian Bride Mehndi

Karen is getting her Mehndi applied to both hands, arms, and both feet. This is very traditional and special for Indian brides. I love the picture of her and her father laughing together in the top left picture. The henna artist, and bride, must be patient as this process can take hours.

 

Grooms family mehndi

These two lovebirds are surrounded by caring family and friends. Every wedding we photograph has its own unique charm, and for Mick and Karen, the family’s happiness and love shined through. The excitement from both families really showed- you could feel it. Joy radiated from the faces of parents, aunts, uncles, and the many close friends who traveled to Fresno.

Sikh-Wedding-Mehndi

 

Sikh-Wedding-Roses

 

Another tradition is for the grooms family to visit the bride’s family with gifts. During this ceremony, the groom’s mother (bride’s mother-in-law) places a chunni (scarf) over the brides head. This is a sign of respect from the mother-in-law and signifies a lifelong of protection and care from their family. Mick’s family brought gifts and sweets to the Karen’s home. These following are just a couple (of many) pictures we captured for them.

 

Sikh Bride Chunni

Groom's family brought gifts to the brides house for the Chunni ceremony.

 

Bride's house

 

Happy Sikh Bride and Groom

The happy, cheery, smiling bride and groom!! They look so good!

 

Bride and Groom Portrait in an Almond Orchard

California is known for many things- oranges, avocados, wine and… almonds. This year produced a record crop, with over 2 billion pounds of almonds harvested!! The Gurdwara (temple) where Mick and Karen got married is located among acres of almond orchards. Despite the 100+degree temperature, we took advantage of these beautiful trees. I absolutely love these pictures of Mick and Karen walking through the orchard. In the photograph above, you can see the almonds, still in their shell! I didn't know that almonds grew like that.

 

Mick and Karen make such a beautiful couple. These pictures in the orchard are some of my favorite. Even in the 100 degree weather, these two were troopers. Here are a few of the pictures…

Almond Orchard in Fresno Wedding

 

Bride and Groom standing in an orchard

 

Groom kissing the bride in the orchard

 

Traditional Sikh Bride and Groom in orchard

 

Traditional Sikh Bride and Groom

 

Vintage photo of Sikh bride

Vintage Bride and Groom

This is one of my favorite pictures. It reminds me of a traditional Indian Raj and Rani on their wedding day. To me, this is a very powerful picture. Mick looks very regal in the way he wears a turban- he wears it well. Karen’s lehenga is so, so, beautiful. It’s a traditional Anarkali style and coordinates with Mick very well. You can see that a lot of thought was put into their outfits for this wedding. Thy looked so good- perfect, actually.

 

Thank you, Mick and Karen, for allowing me to photograph your beautiful Sikh wedding!

 

 

When leaving a comment below, your email is required, but will not be published or saved.