雖然我不是一個很傳統的台灣人, 但講到婚禮, 婚紗照這個程序還是不能省略. 外星人一開始表示抗議, 因為他認為不需要拍婚紗, 而且那也不是他們的文化, 再加上一位法國朋友跟外星人分享過他在台灣拍婚紗的經驗, 導致他產生先入為主的觀念和偏見. 不過, 我對他說: "我不管法國人如何籌備婚禮, 因為你要娶的是台灣人. 若要講文化, 拍婚紗也是台灣文化之一, 所以抗議無效!"
我開始上網查詢婚紗公司的資訊, 尋找了兩個禮拜後, 我只能說我沒辦法處理如此繁雜瑣事. 天哪! 怎麼會有那麼多該注意的事項!
不僅讀到許多人都碰到不好的經驗之外, 而且我非常不喜歡婚紗公司的攝影風格 (喜歡的又非常貴!), 顏色好硬, 修片修得像假人, 一點自然的感覺都沒有. 所以在我要放棄的時候, 無意間找到某個部落格上談到婚紗公司與自助婚紗的不同 (我現在去找卻怎麼也找不到, 所以沒辦法在這推薦). 讀完那篇文章後, 我開始搜尋自助婚紗的資料, 從此婚紗公司的繁瑣事項全被我拋在腦後啦!
我個人認為拍婚紗照最重要的是攝影師的拍照風格, 而不是場地設備及其他費用所包含的大小事項, 所以就算要自己準備白紗和禮服也ok. 我花了整整一個禮拜在網路上尋找我喜歡的攝影風格, 就這樣誤打誤撞, 我終於找到了符合我風格的攝影師, 他就是叔康! 之後在台灣奇摩網頁上搜尋叔康, 很多人都建議第一步需要先去叔康老婆米嘉的部落格先留言詢問及互動才有機會可以跟他們合作, 因為他們不是每個客戶都願意接!
我一開始完全不知道叔康與米嘉這對夫妻的背景 (後來才知道米嘉是明星的造型師, 而叔康是台北林莉婚紗公司裡有名的攝影師, 但他們自己也開了工作室接洽婚紗照的案子. 當我知道後便感到莫名的壓力, 還甚至想放棄, 因為跟太忙的人合作會有一些缺點...), 我只對叔康的作品有興趣, 而我就糊里糊塗的寫了第一封訊息給米嘉. 她回信請我先蒐集我們喜歡的照片風格, 這樣米嘉他們才會知道我們的想法是否接近, 因為如果不接近, 他們就會選擇不接. 她說那是他們對作品的堅持, 也希望合作時是開心的... 文章很長一篇, 我在這也不可能全部寫出來, 反正如果你想找他們幫你拍婚紗, 你大概會收到跟我一模一樣的內容, 因為太多客戶詢問了, 所以準備一個制式回覆也是必須的囉~
當初找到叔康的作品時就有種非他不可的心態, 除非價錢太高, 不然不會有變動. 他們的作品偏於西方自然風格, 而我本身就是走自然風的人, 所以我不太擔心我們的風格不合.
我花了大概一個禮拜多蒐集圖片, 加上寫下我跟外星人的個人資料和我們的濃縮愛情故事, 總共花了兩個禮拜的時間完成寄出! 過幾天收到米嘉的回信, 告知我沒問題, 他們願意和我們合作. 我心想: 老娘我花了那麼久的時間準備資料, 死外星人一點忙也沒幫, 要是他們跟我說不願意... 我可能會失去理智氣到掀桌! 我從來沒這麼用功過耶! (自己正在莫名其妙的激動中! 不用理我~)
總之, 他們願意接我們的案子, 但要求更多的圖片. 因為他們需要更詳細更清楚的知道我們喜歡的景和光線之類的, 這樣他們才可以著手尋找當天拍照時需要的地點. ok! 沒問題! 反正我時間多的是! 我每天上網上到眼睛痠澀, 腰痛手痠, 不過我還是繼續找圖片, 繼續偶爾與米嘉信件往返努力用文字溝通... 為的就是僅僅一天的婚紗拍攝 (老實說, 米嘉可能太忙, 在溝通方面都非常簡短. 有時我必須去預設立場, 去猜她的意思才能理解她的答案. 有時甚至會出現雞同鴨講的情況! 我還一度懷疑我的中文理解能力... 應該沒變得那麼差吧!)!
我們所有的細節都是用信件溝通, 因為我人在國外 (其實就算在台灣, 他們也是要求用網路信件溝通的方式). 等我回到台灣時我也沒辦法先跟米嘉他們面對面談, 因為她說不需要, 而且只需要在拍照前幾天面談一次就行了, 其它都是多餘. 不瞞你說, 我當時是很焦慮的, 心想一次哪夠呢? 原本就有溝通上的問題, 只有一次面談時間真的可以了解彼此的立場和需求嗎? 當時心裡有太多問號了, 不過, 既然對方這樣說, 我就相信他們了.
面談當天大家都聊得蠻開心的, 該問的問題也問了, 溝通上也沒問題, 所以的確一次就解決 (事後想想, 我覺得面談次數多一點會比較好!).
現在回想當初的積極, 瘋狂, 執著, 我所有的努力和付出的時間, 再看看已完成的婚紗照片... 我只能說一切都是值得的!
總之, 以下是幾張我們的婚紗照. 另外聲明 - 婚紗照是今年四月初在台北拍的.
P.S. 外星人喜歡故作神秘, 另一方面我也不敢公開嚇人, 所以我在這只能分享遠照及背面的的照片(身高是被相機拉長的, 我本人絕對沒那麼修長喔! 呵呵~). 我們的婚紗照沒有做修片處理, 所有數位檔和傳統照片都是原拍的顏色, 只能說叔康太厲害了! 老實說, 如果有時間修的話 (當初非常趕, 原因以後會解釋...也許吧~), 我會希望修手臂, 因為不管再怎麼瘦, 我手臂還是肉肉的, 本人不喜歡, 但外星人說我想太多!
When it comes to a wedding, the pre-wedding photo shoot is essential for me, although I am not exactly a traditional Taiwanese. Alien protested against the idea at first, because he thought that was unnecessary, and it’s not part of his culture. Moreover, a French friend of his shared a bad experience with him, so he had a preconception about it. However, I said to him: “I don’t care how French people plan their wedding, because you are marrying a Taiwanese, besides, if you want to play the cultural card, the pre-wedding photo is part of my culture… objection overruled!”
He knew that he couldn’t win that fight; therefore, case closed!
I started my research for the pre-wedding photo studios/shops in Taipei and Taichung, but after two weeks, I can only say that I couldn’t handle such an exhausting task! First, there are too many of them, and I don’t know which one I should choose (I have no idea how many they are in total, but seriously, there are way too many!). Second, every shop offers many different packages, and each package includes many things - the gowns, the dresses, the buquets, the invitation cards, the thank-you cards, a large photo of the couple that goes with a large photo frame, a big and heavy photo album of the couple, and two small ones for the mothers…etc. They are all useless in my situation!
The thing is, you have to be cautious when you decide to work with them. Mostly, they are very businesslike; sometimes, it’s quite unpleasant. Of course, I am not talking about all of them, but I have friends who warned me about it. A friend of mine even offered to help; she said she would go with me to the shops, because she was afraid that I might get ripped off (There is no such service outside of Asia, so I am not sure how I should write it. Besides, the idea of pre-wedding photography in western culture is different from the ones in Asia. For you, a pre-wedding shoot is an informal and fun photo shoot. For us, it’s important; we wear our gown for the shoot and there are also few dresses and suits for the couple to change in different settings.)!
There are a lot of women who shared their photo shoot experience online (mostly bad), and there is a website for people to ask questions and discuss about the weddings. It’s quite helpful in some ways. In all, what really put me off were the photography styles from most of the shops I found. I dislike the photo colours and the people look unnatural because they have too much retouching. When I was about to give up on the idea of the photo shoot, luckily (not so lucky for Alien), I found a blog that talked about a second option. It’s called “self-help wedding photo shoot” (There is no English word for it, so I translated them word by word from Chinese). Since then, I put the first option completely behind me!
There I went again, continually doing online research. I knew what kind of style I wanted, so it was easy for me to get rid of what I dislike, but it wasn’t easy to find what I like. Finally, after a week of research, I found a photographer that I love, and it was like love at first sight!
“It has to be him!” I said to Alien. I showed him the photos, and he liked them, too. That’s when I decided to contact his wife. Apparently, you have to write a message on his wife’s blog in order to contact them. I had no idea what kind of background they have, but I later found out that she is a stylist for some celebrities in Taiwan, and he is a wedding photographer who works in a famous wedding studio in Taipei. The couple owns their private wedding studio; she is also a stylist for the clients, and she arranges and manages the business on the side; he takes great photos and deal with other things for the studio!
Anyway, I got in touch with her; she replied and asked me to prepare a PowerPoint file that contains a short story and a few photos of us. Moreover, I need to look for lots of photos online as examples to show them how I want my pre-wedding photo to look like, so that they would know if our styles are similar or not. I know it must sound unclear or weird to you, but it’s complicated to explain. In fact, they choose the clients who have similar taste, and they don’t work with everyone. They insist on that rule, so every client has to prepare their own file in order to work with them.
I spent two weeks to prepare the file; I sent it; she replied and said she would like to work with us. YES! I was happy as hell! To think that I spent that much time to prepare that file, and Alien didn’t even help, if she had said no…I would have been mad for weeks! However, they needed me to look for more photos, and it was the second step…. Honestly, I think there is no need to go through all the details of this process. It's not that interesting.
Basically, there is no package at all (Some of the studios have packages to choose from, but not the one we worked with), so we had to prepare everything. Alien bought one black suit; I bought a gown, a long red dress, a short dress in white, and I rented another dress in Taipei (where the shoot took place). I wore all of them for the photo shoot.
Now, I recalled my persistence and craziness at the time, and with all the efforts and time I have spent...I just can't believe I did all that work! However, when I looked at the result, I think it’s completely worth it!
Those are some photos from our pre-wedding photo collection.
P.S. Our photos didn’t have any retouching or colour changed. The photographer did a great job, and he made us look taller in the photos (Some are way too much, and our bodies look ridicules! There are out of the selection, of course!).