Taking pre-wedding studio photos is a norm in East Asia. It’s quite similar to the concept of taking engagement photos in the America. The purpose of such is to capture more romantic moments in a quieter setting as opposed to photos taken on the actual wedding day which is mostly about putting on a show for guests who participate at a big banquet.
Unlike engagement photos, taking in semi-formal or casual wear, typically the bride-to-be and the groom-to-be will take pre-wedding studio photos in wedding dresses and tuxedos. This is often an opportunity for the soon-to-be-married couple to look at their best, especially since editing is a big part of the photo package. The edited photos will later on be used for decoration for the wedding banquet.
I am not sure why there’s such cultural difference, but I do notice that many Asian couples prefer what I call “celebrity-style” photo shoot. Many of them prefer to be much accessorised and pose in a way that is more likely seen in fashion magazines than in real life. This is rather different from the minimalistic approach of taking photos in simple and intimate setting that is popular in the West.
When my husband and I went to a photo studio to discuss the details of our pre-wedding studio photos, our person in charge had to double-check with every choice that I made since no one wanted to look “clean and simple” in their wedding photos. “Clean and simple” meant elegance to me but shabby in Chinese standard.
We didn’t end up taking our pre-wedding studio photos in Taiwan, but we still needed some studio photos for our debut wedding video, so we found a Swedish photographer to take our photos while we were on vacation in Sweden. Here are a couple of photos of the bouquet I put together from flowers picked from my mother-in-law’s lovely garden to be used for our photo shoot. I just love this kind of pale, muted colour palette.