Shift Focus

What is the state of mind of a creative photojournalistic wedding photographer when he is asked to do a wedding where a VVIP is the chief guest to conduct the marriage?

It was rather a very different experience for every one of our team when the Chief Minister of a state was invited to solemnize the wedding recently in a five star hotel. Apart from the elaborate security check (every bit of our equipment was put into task by the personnel who suspect everything in our equipment carrying case), we could feel the entire focus on the wedding was shifted from the couple, family, relatives and friends to the VVIPs of the evening.

The host of the wedding, hotel authorities, photographers, decorators, wedding co-ordinators and every other person involved in the wedding services were expected to dance to the tunes of the security officials. All these were for the very brief presence of the VVIP. The evening looked as if it is yet another official function of CM.

The couple was lost in the attention given to herd of VVIPs. Despite of the huge money spent on the event, there is no celebration, no joy, no natural emotions, and no free interactions among the guests. In a nut shell, the event was remembered as a VVIPs meet and not as a wedding.

For the close relatives, it was an event where they could not really participate (most of them came from abroad and the other part of India)

For the couple, it was not an occasion where they can enjoy the togetherness and exchange the secret sign of love.

For the hosts, it was something they did to satisfy the VVIPs and not to their own kith and kins.

For the guests, it was a very long wait (guests where expected to come atleast an hour earlier to avoid last minute rush in security formalities) to see a very brief activity which lasted just little more than ten minutes. There where disparities in the seating and dinning arrangements as well.

For the photographers, it was just an aim and shoot game. Nothing creative worked out (how can you give creativity when your movement is restricted by security officials of many departments and the shooting angle is decided by people who are not photographers?).

Everything looked rich and posh. But it was the real happiness and cheers that was missing. It looked like an event to show off the contacts and influence the host had with the VVIPs.

As the parents of the couple, why cannot we make the events like weddings very personnel and make it unforgettable by our mutual joy and happiness. May be couple can visit the VVIPs after the wedding, if they are very close to the family.

Above all, the VVIPs and celebrities could politely say no to such invitations to keep the ‘life of wedding celebrations’ alive.