How special is a trip to a foreign land with your mother? Jepsen is a lucky little man, that’s for sure. Elyzabeth and he visited Seoul together last November and we set out for a family photography session together during their visit.
As they were visiting during autumn, we decided to make the most of something they don’t get back home, autumn leaves. We booked on a morning session that would include both the leaves and some Korean architecture and spent a little over an hour together making portraits of their loving relationship. Elyzabeth clearly gives her all to Jepsen and he just loves playing with his mum as well. They tossed leaves at each other, shared their collection of pine cones, and watched the ants crawl along the pavement together. This is the biggest joy in family photography – watching the love between family members.
We mixed the session between my direction and Jepsen’s desire to explore and collect pine cones, which resulted in a collection that had a great mix of candid moments and moments that I had drawn out. Elyzabeth’s sister also joined us that day and Jepsen loved the opportunity to have a swing with his aunt as well. Jepsen even mistook the autumn leaves for snow and made himself a leaf-snow-angel, coming up with a face covered in leaves and a grin from ear to ear.
Thanks for joining me on this adventure with Elyzabeth and Jepsen. Please get in touch to enquire about your own family photography session in Seoul or anywhere in Korea.
Today, we’re going to take a look at one of the most beautiful weddings I have ever been a part of. I shared a quick couple of images in last year’s “Year in Review” post, but today I’ll be sharing a larger set. On a clear June afternoon last year, Hugo and Gayoon made their marriage official at a stunning ceremony in Namyangju, South Korea. With guests from both the Korean and Australian sides joining the festivities, there was plenty of fun to be had and many emotional moments as the two families became one. It was an honour to be there as their wedding photographer for this lovely day.
Let’s start this with the venue. Choeundang is a stunning Hanok set on a hillside above the Bukhangang River in Namyangju just outside of Seoul. When you set up an aisle and arch, an outdoor dining area, and invite close friends and family for a late afternoon wedding, it’s bound to be beautiful. Everything at the venue had Hugo and Gayoon’s touch added to it. From the flowers and table decorations to the specially designed menus, everything had been personalised and the result was breathtaking.
On top of that, the ceremony and reception were both Australian and Korean in style, but neither at the same time, reflecting the couple’s origins and their future. The simple yet meaningful ceremony was culminated with emotional and entertaining vows by the couple before being showered with fresh flower petals as they exited to get ready for the reception.
The reception itself was filled with songs performed by Gayoon’s parents, brother, and a close friend – including a spontaneous dance by the couple. A course meal was served and then the cake cut, winding up the official section of the main wedding. One of the great things about being a wedding photographer is being able to appreciate the work that goes on behind the scenes to make an event like this happen. So many people are involved to make everything just right, and everyone gave their all for this wedding.
After lots of emotional goodbyes and the departure of the guest bus, the immediate families gathered for Pyebaek, a part of a traditional Korean wedding. During this ceremony, cash is given as a gift to the new couple, and participants are given the chance to throw jujube and chestnuts onto the bride’s hanbok, representing the number of children they will have.
Myself and my second shooter for the day, Marco from Marco Devon Photography, certainly had our work cut out for us. It was such a beautiful wedding with so many scenes that just begged to be captured. We shot non-stop for almost 8 hours and came away with several thousand frames to choose from. Below is a selection from the day.
Having a wedding in Seoul or Korea? I’d love to work with you. Get in touch above!
Andie and Jason were on their way back to Seoul to take custody of Khi when they reached out to me. It was the beginning of summer and Seoul had just finished coming back to life. Everything was green and the weather wasn’t too hot yet. It was going to be the perfect time for some fun family photography.
Unfortunately, the other two Emmett children wouldn’t be joining this trip, but Andie and Jason wanted to take the opportunity to get some pictures with just the three of them before going home. We decided on Gyeongbokgung as it was right near their hotel and we weren’t sure how Khi would be with travel. Starting from the back gate put us well away from the big crowds and we were able to find some nooks and crannies without raucous tour groups.
Khi was an extremely loving and energetic little man to work with, and that meant we could move all about the palace and get some great variety in our shots. The palaces are gorgeous, but they’re also quite large for little people to walk around. Especially, Gyeongbokgung. Khi was up for it, however, so we covered the entire back section of the palace before taking the front gate out to get some shots under the columns as the crowds left.
Andie had seen my family photography session with the Grijalva family and loved the roofing and colours of the palace. I made sure to make good use of this, because that’s what really separates Gyeongbokgung from the other palaces of Seoul – there are some long awnings that make for beautiful photos.
Thanks again to the Emmett family for a fun day out in the palace. I had a blast capturing all those little smiles. To enquire about having your own family photography session in Seoul, please get in touch!
Here we are, back with the Ramsey family. This time, I spent almost thirteen hours with them documenting one of their first days together as a family. From the moment Gage woke up in the morning to just as he was getting ready to go down for the night, I documented the highs, the lows, and the fun times in between.
My Day-in-the-Life sessions are the longest sessions that I offer. Rather than being a lifestyle session when I take control of where we are and guide the posing of the session, these focus on capturing your day as it unfolds. Family photography in long sessions like this gives me a larger window into the life you lead and results in an honest representation of all the things that happen during your day. We had quite a day with the Ramsey family, and I’m excited to share it with you.
Gage started his day like most of us do, a little groggy and still trying to figure out his surroundings. He wandered from room to room as his parents got ready for the day, playing with anyone and everything as he did. Still suffering from his cold, and not really being a morning person (as we would soon see), Gage took things at his own pace and only nibbled at the edges of his breakfast.
When we got back to the room, it was time for medicine. Following the laughter and games with the doctor a few days prior, I was expecting that we’d see similar behaviour when taking medicine. It would seem that these two things are mutually exclusive for Gage, as he absolutely hated the medicine (both rounds)!
Moments later, though, he was back to himself and ready to head out. Alisa and Beau had decided to visit one of Seoul’s palaces with Gage for the first time, so we got a taxi outside the hotel. We had a few moments of laughter and fun, but then the medicine kicked in and Gage fell asleep in his stroller.
When he woke up, he wasn’t really in the mood for exploring the palace and wanted to stay in his stroller. So, we decided to head for lunch at this point. Although we enjoyed our pizza, Gage was much more interested in the packet of puffs that he’d seen in the bag and proceeded to eat to his heart’s content. Equally as fun, of course, was tipping the puffs off his plate onto the table. Once he was done, he discovered a new joy in pretend-slapping his father to get an over-the-top reaction.
A street festival stopped us from getting our next cab up to Seoul Tower, so we took the opportunity to walk down Daehakro together and enjoy the beautiful weather. Seoul Tower is a favourite amongst visitors, but it gets really crowded and it can be tough to make images up there. We got our obligatory lock shot and then it was time for ice-cream.
It was at this point that our up-until-now quite docile and relaxed Gage became quite involved in the world around him. He loved the ice-cream. He really loved it. So much so that he got it all over his face. He dug so deep that it fell off the cone. This was when the world came crumbling down. Gage’s attachment to that ice-cream was very real, you see. However, since it had fallen on the ground, Dad decided it would be best if Gage did not reattach it to the cone and continue eating. Let’s just say, Gage did not agree.
The tears wore him out again and young Gage took another nap. By now, it was afternoon and he was feeling a lot better. Our time back at the hotel was spent playing, running, snacking, laughing, and evening being okay with taking the medicine (well, almost) this time. Some of our favourite games during this time were locking dad in the kitchen, opening and closing the bin, and of course, sharing a lollipop. All was well with the world until we decided to brush teeth in preparation for bed.
We’ll leave it there for the story of the Ramsey family. I had a great time documenting their day and getting to know them a little better. Please get in touch if you’re interested in having your own family documentary session. It can be a lot of fun!
Of all the work I do, custody photography sessions with families are still the ones that give me the most trepidation beforehand. There is so much to capture, so many emotions, and so little that can be predicted or prepared for. Nothing is as difficult to photograph or as easy to immerse myself in than one of these sessions. Working with the Ramseys for their custody day was a really rewarding experience.
Poor Gage had a bad cold and his little nose would not stop running for the whole day, but that wasn’t going to stop us from having a great time. Alisa and Beau worked hard to make sure Gage was happy and ready for his transition. This little guy was just fearless. He explored everything and played with everyone. He even loved his doctor’s visit and chomped down on the tongue depressor as she put it into his mouth, refusing to release it! He insisted on carrying his own medicine after the prescription was filled and riding in the plastic car until everyone had worked up a sweat. He showed so much love for his family and his foster family the whole time we were there, constantly jumping back and forth to play with everyone.
On the way home, a short few tears were followed by a deep sleep that got us the rest of the way to the hotel. There we explored our new surroundings and played with drums and trumpets as the family got to know each other in their new surroundings. Watching Gage’s parents work so hard to make his transition as easy as possible was special to be a part of, and we had a day-in-the-life session to come that would be an extension of this.
Thanks for stopping by to meet the Ramsey family. Join me next week for the other half of their story. Please enquire about having your own family photography session with me above.
What a fun session! There’s nothing quite like the challenge of getting a couple of cold children to have some serious fun. Alice had contacted me when the weather was lovely and warm and was aiming for an Autumn session. We got together and I spent an hour or so playing with their children, Antoine and Clemence, so we could start off on the right foot at our session. By the end of that, I had a good idea of the people I’d be working with, but nobody could have predicted the weather. We had an extremely sudden cold snap during Autumn this year, but that wasn’t going to stop us getting out and having fun in the beautiful Autumn light.
We started our session as I do with every family photography hour, simple and fun. A quick walk together and then some playing in the leaves served to get everyone started and kept us under the shade as the sun was still quite high. We stuck around one of the only trees with full Autumn colour left in the palace and used it as our staging ground. We got such a variety of beautiful moments as we got “warmed up” in the freezing cold!
Slowly, we made our way around the palace to a nice spot for the sunset. Autumn gives us long sunsets with a beautiful warmth to the light that we don’t get at any other time of year, so I wanted to make the most of that later in the session. In between multiple snack stops and plenty of jumping and running to keep ourselves warm, we made some of my favourite frames of the year.
Welcome back to the fourth and final installation in this year’s “Year in Review.” Part’s one, two, and three have taken us through Korea’s winter, a visit to Laos for Tattoos of Asia, spring, summer, more Tattoos of Asia in India, and back to Korea ready for autumn. Today we’ll wind up the series with some session in that beautiful season, then take a quick trip to Yangon for an exhibition before coming back to Korea’s icy winter for one final session to end the year.
October – Family Photographer
Let’s start this quarter with a fun custody day with the Sarracino family. Young Jaden may have had a fairly nasty cold, but that wasn’t going to stop him from having a great time. We had all sorts of capers with puffs and clothing straps, but those will have to wait for the full blog early next year! That very same afternoon, I met up with the Armstrong family to do some portraits before they left Korea the following morning. It was a lot of fun sneaking in moments from two children who were just getting to know one another.
There’s nothing quite like the first few moments a new family is together.
Joy is easy to be found where love is, that is for sure.
The train conductor letting us know where we need to go.
When you’re this cute, you can get away with anything!
Getting these two lively personalities to stay together long enough to get a shot of them was tough, but worth every second!
Next up was a session with the Broderick family. Hailey, Ross, and Sarang arrived and we took a short walk through the palace together as Sarang was feeling a little overwhelmed. We tried a few things together, but in the end, she put herself to sleep and we finished up the session with her that way. So, what is it that you do when one-third of your family is asleep? Thankfully it was the smallest and lightest third, so we still managed a few frames, as you’ll see below!
Peace and love. Everything that a mother should bring.
Those little piggy-tails were too cute!
Sleeping peacefully in dad’s arms.
After this were back-to-back sessions with the Bovee and Sarracino families. As is often the case with adopted children, Max had one thing that was his safe place and that was his blanket. We kept it in the pictures for two reasons, it represented him at the time and it would have caused additional stress on Max at the time. With two very different energy levels, it took us some time, but we got some shots of the boys.
The safe place.
Following this, I walked over to my next session with the Sarracino family. Jaden’s cold had improved and he was feeling a lot better. That freed us up to play in the autumn leaves and make the best of the beautiful afternoon light. We took our time and used a few different locations within the palace. This gave us a lot of variety and a chance to enjoy our surroundings.
Jaden with a traditional palace door in the background.
Autumn light, the time when Seoul is truly beautiful.
A quick frame of Jaden before we wrapped the session.
Following this trend of family shoots for the month, I spent some time with June Gupta as she took custody of her son. Unfortunately, her husband and daughters would not be able to make it, and she wanted to gift them with the moments that they could not share together.
You better believe Grandma is a favourite!
Arriving back in the hotel. Notice that the bus is still present.
This is what happens when you take that bus away!
Another double session on October 29th would round out the month nicely. A quick one-hour session with Milo for his first birthday in the backstreets of Seoul that his parents love so much was a great way to start the day. We shot fast and furious to keep up with Milo’s smiles and love. His energy was abundant, and although he couldn’t yet walk by himself, you could feel it coming. Much more of this fun session to come in the new year. Keep a look out for it! Following this, I quickly made my way over to join the Pottier family for an afternoon in the sun. It was getting chilly, and both children were a little tired, but we had a lot of fun and came away with some fun images. The full blog is coming, but here’s a taste of the afternoon.
Milo and his dad.
Who doesn’t like to aeroplane?
Milo and his mum.
The pottier family at play.
There’s always time to jump.
Beautiful autumn light in Seoul.
November – Family and Event Photographer
Starting off November was a fun family session with a fantastic little fellow called Alexander. We spent just over an hour of running, laughing, and, of course, snacking together and came away with a few frames that I am really happy with. Enjoy them below and keep your eyes on the blog next year for the full session.
Exploring together as a family.
On a mission. This is Alexander’s natural state. He loves to explore.
Alexander and mum at Changdeokgung.
Before heading out with Elyzabeth and her son for a short session at Changgyeonggung during their visit, I had the chance to work with ANZA again on their Melbourne Cup event in Seoul. Who says you can’t make fun photos at a corporate event? The next morning, though, we headed out into the wild to shoot some portraits for Elyzabeth and her son as they were traveling together. It’s always a pleasure working with people who value their time together so much. We explored the palace grounds, picked up pinecones, tossed leaves, made a leaf-snow-angel, and had plenty of laughs.
When I saw the twitter logo apear, I just knew this was going to be gold!
First time together in autumn leaves.
Love for Korean palaces.
Note the pinecone. We collected a few!
Another custody day, this time with the Blackshear family would wrap up November for me. While the parents were trying madly to pack their remaining luggage to move hotels, the three Blackshear kids made it clear that they were going to have fun.
Why not dance?
If you get dad involved, packing takes a while and you can play longer!
The next couple of months would be dedicated to exhibitions. First, the Asia Culture Institute in Gwangju opened their exhibition “Tattooed Asia.” They had asked to use several of my images in both the exhibition and the catalogue. I was honoured when I heard that the director wanted to use one of my photographs for the exhibition poster, but I didn’t realise just how big it would be until I got there. It’s a great exhibition overall, and worth the trip down to Gwangju if you’re interested in tattoos.
That is a very large photograph.
The entrance to the Tattooed Asia exhibition.
A slightly smaller version of the image, but great to see nonetheless.
December – Solo Exhibition in Myanmar
Something I had been organising for months was my solo exhibition in Yangon, Myanmar. Who would have thought that remotely organising a venue, printing, framing, and a troupe of 10 musicians from a tribal region would take so long? It all came together, though. Axiao from Pansuriya was an absolute gentleman in offering his space for the show. He made everything a breeze to organise. If you’re in town, stop by for some really good local foods and the coldest beers in town. My friend, guide, and translator, Htwe Kyi, and I also coordinated to have some of his people come to Yangon and perform. We had initially discussed doing a few traditional songs, an introduction to the project, and then a session with their home-made rice liquor, Yu. However, once we all got to Yangon, it was clear that wasn’t going to happen. The Lai Tu group had prepared every song and dance for a traditional wedding, and so we decided to let them take the stage.
The exhibition at Pansuriya in Yangon.
It was great to not only be visited by my friends from Rakhine State, but to have my whole family there as well.
Our feature on DVB in Myanmar! As soon as I get a hold of the Skynet feature, I’ll share that as well. Follow Dylan Goldby on Facebook to get the notification.
The exhibition ran for 18 days, and I was able to explore a lot of Yangon downtown during that time as well. There’s something special about the mix of peoples, religions, and times that play out in Yangon. It’s a special city of extreme contrasts, and one that everyone should visit.
Fewer and fewer trishaws are to be found in Yangon as the number of taxis increases.
Yet another thinning tradition in the big city, Thanaka.
He knows where it’s at.
Contrasts. That’s what makes Yangon so special.
Once the exhibition was wrapped, I had a chance to catch up with my old friend Zack as he made his way through Myanmar for the first time. Then, I was headed back to Seoul and the freezing winter and a family session with the Fu Family out at Nami Island. Luckily, it had been snowing over the past week and managed to find a little powder to play in. The very next day, it rained and washed everything away! That’s the end of 2017 from me. Thank you to everyone who has participated in my life this year. It’s been a wonderful one, and now it’s time to take a few days off!
Welcome back! The third section of this Year in Review series will take us from July to September this year and will cover both Korea and India. There is a mix of personal and commissioned work here along with a few images from my Tattoos of Asia project extension to Northeast India. Surrounding this, I worked with several families, photographed some more of Seoul, and shot a beautiful wedding with Anders and Mina in Seoul. Enjoy the images below!
July – Seoul Photographer
To start off the month, Marco Devon and I headed out for a fun day in Jongno to search out the gentlemen of the area before the weather got too hot. My favourite from the session was this couple who had just wound up their dance session for the day. I also got the chance to do another session involving Gyeongbokgung. Since it was a monsoon day, I took the opportunity to snag a shot of the palace with some drama around. With the monsoon continuing, there wasn’t much to shoot but gloom, so the following shot is from a quick trip Jeehe and I took to the sauna.
A continuation of the “Gentlemen of Jongno” series.
Gyeongbokgung on a monsoon day.
For my upcoming project in Northeast India, Fujifilm had offered to lend me their medium-format GFX 50s for a month. In order to get used to this form of shooting, I was given access to the body and lenses a week in advance. So, the end of July and beginning of August were filled with experimentation and testing the capabilities of the GFX. My thoughts on using it as a travel camera and also as a portrait camera can be found on Fstoppers. In short, it’s a phenomenal camera and I’d eventually love to own one.
Who says you can’t shoot candid street shots with medium format?
This guy may have more megapixles in his phone than I do in my camera, but they’re nowhere near as deep.
Lotte’s eyesore photographed with a medium format camera looks much the same.
August – Travel Photographer
Next up, it was off to India in search of the Konyak Naga and Apatani peoples for Tattoos of Asia. True to India, we were thwarted the day we arrived by floods blocking our road up to the hills of Mon District. However, in true Indian style, we had a great time with some great people to get us through the day. A random invite in for tea in Sonari town led to the knowledge that the house owner had a friend who could get us through private tea fields and allow our journey to continue. Over the next four weeks, Jonne and I would weather just about everything India could throw at us and come up smiling. Let’s just say, rebel groups closing roads was the only thing that actually managed to put a dent in our plans. the full stories will be up on Tattoos of Asia soon, so keep checking back there. In the meantime, please enjoy the photographs.
A Konyak hunter with his monkey-skull covered basket.
A former Konyak headhunter displays his tattoos.
The Apatani tattoos are a symbol of beauty and coming-of-age.
Even now, the Apatani practice shamanistic rituals.
Textures are why I love India. The people, the places, the food. They’re all about textures.
September – Event, Wedding, and Family Photographer
If India was a wild ride, September in Korea was going to be even crazier. The moment I touched down, I was off to work with Forno Bonomi for their two-day Italian cooking workshop in Seoul. Not only was it a lot of fun to photograph, but as someone who loves to cook, it was great to pick up tips from a chef like Fabio Tacchella. Then it was off to shoot my good friends’ David and Sojeong’s wedding. We had a beautiful (if slightly rushed, true to form) afternoon in Seoul for the wedding and it was great to see them up there. Two days later, I met up with the Ramsey family for their custody session. The full blog is coming in January, but let’s just say that it was a fun filled morning.
Forno Bonomi teamed up with Fabio Tacchella for a great Italian cooking workshop in Seoul.
David and Sojeong had a beautiful traditional wedding at Nakseongdae Park.
Part and parcel of being a Ramsey.
No speeding fines here.
No tears, even in the doctor’s office! At least here…!
Next was the Porter family, who were featured on the blog a couple of months ago. Will’s infectious laughter led the way in this session and we had a lot of fun together. Following this was the annual German Innovation Awards, which had the best light of any event I’ve ever photographed. Huge windows and timing allowed for an event with plenty of atmosphere, which made the photography really rewarding. The next day, I reconnected with the Ramsey family for a Day-in-the-Life documentary session that would be an absolute riot. From the tears at medicine time to dropping an ice-cream and then running amok and filling the room with laughter, the day just did not stop. Look out for the full blog post in January as well.
Non-stop smiles from Will.
Backlight can be beautiful, even at corporate events.
Unhappy about medicine time, but wait until he drops an ice-cream.
One would be forgiven for thinking this was the arrival of the end-times, but it was simply the demise of an ice-cream.
It wasn’t all tears, though. There were plenty of sweet moments as well.
Not only that, but smiles that could melt the iciest of hearts.
To finally wrap up this quarter, I’d like to share a simple image from the wedding of Anders and Mina. Their small, intimate wedding consisted of family and some close friends, their puppy, and some homebrew to share with the guests. It doesn’t get much better than that! See you next week!
It’s April now and we’re finally out of winter. Not quite into warm weather yet, but the thick coats are away and the world is starting to wake up around us. This is a great time of the year for photoshoots. If you’re looking for a family photographer or pre-wedding photographer, make sure to book well in advance; it’s a popular time of year. I love this time of year, but you’ll see in part four of this series, that Autumn is my favourite season in Korea. But, we’re not there just yet, so let’s enjoy Spring.
April – Family and Proposal Photographer
Just before the season wound up and things got super busy, I had the chance to get a couple of days in the Korean countryside with my wife, Jeehe. Seoul is a fun city to live in, but sometimes it can be too much and getting out to a slower-paced region is a great way to refresh. We headed over to Sokcho for the first time in a few years to enjoy some fresh prawns and ocean breezes. Coming back into Seoul, I met up with my good friends, the Orths, to pay a visit to their boys’ foster families while they were in Korea. We had a great afternoon in Seoul visiting, hanging out the side of the taxi, playing grown up, and then having one of the best pork barbeques in the city.
A small house in Sokcho. Sublime textures created by years of ocean winds.
The turbulence of the incoming tide.
The Orth boys strutting their stuff.
Davis, the Power Man. Gotta love this boy’s zest for life.
The Orths and I then went down to Jeju Island. We’d decided to shake things up with their family session this time around and headed for the beach! After the wind got to be a little too much, we explored some random patches of flowers on the side of the road and headed up to Sunrise Peak for sunset. That’s how we roll! Here are a couple of my favourites from the session, but do click the link above and check out the full session! Drop me a line if you’d like to have your next family session down on Jeju; it won’t disappoint!
Sunset at Sunrise Peak with Hallasan and the Oreums in the background.
Davis showing dad just how to get back to the car the most difficult way.
After a quick flight back up to Seoul, I dashed out to check on the cherry blossoms. Wyatt was hoping to propose to Allison under a canopy of blossoms, but we’d had some sudden rain (not too uncommon at this time of year) which would knock all the blossoms off the trees. It turns out that every single blossom at Seoul Forest was gone and we had to quickly find somewhere else. We decided to go for something traditional and unique to Korea and chose Changgyeonggung for the privacy. I arrived a little early and found that one tree in this complex had been sheltered from the rain and still had quite a few blooms on it. With no time to change and replan, I decided that I’d throw it out as an option after the proposal. Allison loved the idea and we made a quick few frames before letting the couple go to enjoy their day. Check out the rest of this proposal photography session on the blog.
The moment Allison said yes.
A quick shoot with the one remaining tree of blossoms to cap off the session.
After three consecutive years of working with the Elbrachts for their family photography in Seoul, the time for them to leave had finally come. We booked one last session to celebrate their time here and had a great afternoon out in Changdeokgung. Sad to see you guys go, but happy that you’re moving on to new and exciting things! Thank you for the time we’ve had together.
These three have grown so much during their stay in Korea.
The columns at Seoul’s palaces always work well!
Then came the question of just what one does when the BBC calls. There is a simple answer to that. One panics. A nerve calming beverage or two later, one answers the call. That’s about the first 24 hours, give or take. The assignment was large, but interesting and would take me all over in search of people excelling at what they do. From solo publishers to owners of dog cafes and balance artists, this was possibly the most varied assignment I’ve shot to date. The brief was quite strict in formatting, which forced me to produce a similar shot for each and every person regardless of time of day or location. This had to be strict because some of the shots would be done by other photographers in other countries. The final result can be seen on the BBC Worldwide website and a few other shots below.
All in all, this set of shoots took around a week of planning and two weeks to execute. During that time, I had a few other shoots scattered throughout. First up, I got to share some very special moments with the Love family. The kiss below was just after custody as we arrived back in the hotel. Some days, your heart melts! Next up was an old favourite, the Italian Food Festival opening. For this one, all the restaurants participating in the festival gather and prepare one dish each to share. It’s a great event with fantastic food. Then, I met with the Wiesner family. This may have been the most full-on family session I have done. Parker was full of love and energy. There was just no stopping him. We got some great shots, as you can see in the full session on the blog.
That first sweet moment as we got back to the hotel.
13 chefs and their dishes in 20 minutes. That’s how this event goes!
The Wiesner family on a perfect late-spring day.
Parker being Parker. Unlimimted laughs and good times to be found here.
ANZA, the Australia New Zealand Association, are known for throwing the best parties that Seoul has to offer. This dedicated group of volunteers come together in full-force twice a year to create shindigs that are not to be missed. This year’s ANZA Ball was no exception. Not only is the entertainment first rate, but the silent auction donates thousands of dollars to charities every single year. I’ve got a few images below to give you a taste of this year’s event. It was a lot of fun to photograph, that’s for sure!
ANZA’s entertainment never fails to satisfy.
My partner in crime for this event, Marco Devon, sharing in the entertainment.
Even the light tests look good at ANZA.
It wouldn’t be the same event without free-flow bubbly.
Yep. That’s right. 100% Kylie in Seoul. Aussies will be Aussies.
May – Pre-Wedding and Family Photographer
Finally, it was time to take a few days off. The first week of May here was a string of different holidays, which meant that I could get to shooting some of the additional work for the New Seoul Hotel and take a few walks around the city. Below are some shots of the city for the hotel and then one of my favourites from possibly the cleanest day I have seen in Seoul during my 12 years here.
Every year, Seoul’s Lantern Festival draws millions of visitors to the city centre.
Possibly THE landmark in Seoul: Gwanghwamun.
A popular pass-time now: getting your Hanbok on.
Gyeongbokgung at sunset.
With the lowest levels of PM10 I think I’ve ever witnessed here in Seoul, this gent decided he’d stop for a smoke right next to the metro line. Why not enjoy the clean air?
Thankfully, I still had some sessions to go in May, as it was some of the nicest May weather I’ve ever seen in Korea. We just had beautiful clean day after beautiful clean day. Starting with a few more family sessions and then some additional work for the New Seoul Hotel, this month would absolutely fly by. An early morning slot at the park with the Commerford family was a great way to start this run of sessions. Next up would be an afternoon session with the Strydom family. I love the challenge of a post-custody session. It’s all about discovery for myself and for the family. It results in images and memories that will last a lifetime. I had a couple more of those with the Dorsey and Stamets families, which were both beautiful days out in the spring weather as well. Then it was back into the New Seoul Hotel to finish off their new promotional work. A few of the new rooms had been completed and the dining area needed a shot or two. I also got a chance to get up above Seoullo Bridge and get a shot for them before all the rooftops got locked up. A lovely May sky didn’t hurt!
The Commerford family on a beautiful spring morning.
Hyeok and Nicole Strydom at the beginning of our session together.
The Dorsey family enjoying a beautiful morning at Changgyeonggung.
There’s nothing quite like the laughter of a child.
Seoullo 7017 as seen from up high.
The breakfast room for the New Seoul Hotel.
The New Seoul Hotel’s new rooms are simplistic and stylish, and they’re right in the middle of the city.
Moving into June, I had a few more sessions before the heat of summer set in. My good friends David and Sojeong were getting ready to tie the knot, so we started with a few fun shots around Seoul for their pre-wedding photography. We spent the better part of the afternoon mixing it up between the gritty backstreets of downtown and the beautiful afternoon light in Seoul Forest. Their session will go live on the blog early next year, but here are a few sneak-peeks. I also had a great family session with the Cho Son family as they took custody of their son. The first few moments after a family returns home together are always full of discovery and an outpouring of love. These are some of my favourite times to photograph.
David and Sojeong in the mean-streets.
Beautiful evening light at Seoul Forest.
First moments with the Cho Son family.
June – Wedding, Event, and Family Photographer
I also shot one of the most beautiful weddings I have ever shot in Hugo and Gayoon’s wedding in June. They went all out in making a gorgeous fusion of western and Korean in both the location and execution of their wedding. My good pal, Marco Devon, came along to second shoot for me, and between us we managed to shoot just on 8,000 frames. It was hard to stop at this wedding. Overlooking the Han River from a Hanok was just the start of things. The love shown not only by the couple, but by all their guests, culminated in a spectacular afternoon. Check out a couple of images below and join me back here in February for a full blog of the whole wedding.
A spontaneous dance to a friend’s song.
The wedding venue. It doesn’t get much better than this.
I talked earlier about the nicest day I have seen in my 12 years here. The second nicest was just a few weeks later. The EU Delegation to Korea held an event focusing on getting to know Europe and how we can focus more on green living that spanned the entire length of the Seoullo 7017 Bridge. They got really lucky with the two days of the event. A clear blue sky filled with nothing but puffy white clouds drove their message home. If the EU is holding an event in Seoul, do your best to get out to it. They do a fantastic job of spreading knowledge and making it fun every single time. The full event will go live next year, so check back for a complete set of images from the two days we spent on Seoullo.
EU Ambassador to Korea, Dr Michael Reiterer, and Seoul Mayor, Park Won-Soon, exchange greetings as they prepare to open the event.