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Vassia and Aris are a couple who reached me from Athens, Greece. Since the origins of Aris’s family are from Istanbul, they found it appropriate to marry here and to have a wedding party in Athens. When they reached me Vassia made the following comment: “We were looking for something different from typical wedding photos and you came across, so we decided to write you.” Here is a couple that knows what they are looking for, exactly as I want! Of course I was very excited.
You can read the whole story at the bottom of the page…Wedding Ceremony Photos in Patriarchate Church Istanbul
Bond with Istanbul
Aris’s parents were born in Istanbul. Grandparents and grandmothers are still in Istanbul, in Buyukada. Aris was still spending his summers in Istanbul, so it was very important for them to marry in the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Istanbul. First of all, in Istanbul they decided to organize a wedding ceremony in the church in front of a group of 45 people from their close environment. Thereafter they decided to give a wedding party in Athens. Happily for me, we came to an agreement with respect of the events in these two cities.
Wedding Day Starting at Sofa Hotel
On the wedding day, we started shooting with my photographer friend Gokhan in two rooms of Istanbul Nisantasi Sofa Hotel, reserved for the bride and groom. My old friend hair designer and make-up artist Cevahir was also there for Vassia and did great things again.
The gray walls of Sofa Hotel are a great backdrop for photography, The daylight coming through large windows isn’t that great? In these rooms, there are really ideal conditions for preparation of photo shots. There were great moments during the preparation in both rooms. I witnessed very emotional and funny moments with family members.
Wedding in the Patriarchate
Istanbul Greek Orthodox Patriarchate or Ecumenical Patriarchate, also called St. The George Cathedral in Fener is an impressive architecture . It is also seen as the representative and religious center of 300 million Orthodox Christians around the world. Being at a meaningful and imposing structure is really a great experience.
We came to the Cathedral with the groom and the guests before the bride came for the wedding. We set up and tested our light set ups together with Gökhan, whereafter we met our bride. Vassia holding his father’s arm entered the courtyard and met Aris at the gate of the church. Thereafter they started to walk in through the corridors of the church accompanied by the priests. Other invitees walked behind the couple.
The atmosphere of the cathedral was really impressive. It is one of the most beautiful examples of the Orthodox architecture and has been preserved wonderfully. We had the chance to take hundreds of photos during the 45-minute religious ceremony in this magnificent building.
Ask for Permission
No matter what religion, sect or country there is in religious ceremonies, I definitely ask the clergy to see if there are any restrictions on photography. I do not want to do anything wrong and do not disturb them. In general, when I ask this kind of question, they see it as politeness and give me a wide area. This time it was so.They said you can almost do whatever you want. Of course, I pushed the limits as much as I could. Many thanks to all the patriarchate officers and clergymen for their understanding.
Our couple, who left the church after the wedding, went through the rice thrown by the guests and went out. Throwing rice is available in many national and sectarian traditions. This action generally represents abundance and fertility. It is also very fun to take pictures and watch them visually.
Ulus 29 Wedding Dinner
After the Fener Patriarchate Wedding Photograph shooting, we went to Ulus 29, a classic place in Istanbul for cocktails and dinner. The guests spent the day under the sunset on the terrace while watching the unique Bosphorus view. Thereafter, food service started in the private hall reserved for us. I would be really sorry if my time with these wonderful people ended here. Luckily, our next stop would be Athens three weeks later, and we were going to spend a lot of time together.
Dear Vassia and Aris, you’re really a great couple. I have witnessed a wonderful relationship and bond, both amongst you and with your family and friends. You are very lucky and you know the value of it. I am very happy to know you. Sincerely.
Wedding Ceremony Photos in Patriarchate Church Istanbul by Ufuk Sarisen