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Chinese Couple Experience Mixed Culture through Wedding Photo Shoot in NY

Popularity 1Viewed 436 times 2017-4-10 16:45 |System category:News

One of Han's works featuring three bridesmaids []


Resonance Vision, a New York-based photography studio established by a Chinese couple, claimed the Silver Figure Prize at WPPI (Wedding Photo Association) in 2015 and has captured the wedding moments of some 100 couples from more than 20 countries around the world.

The studio's works were also named as the Best 10 Wedding Photos and Videos in New York by Thumbtack in 2015.

The couple, 31-year-old Han Wenjie from east China's Zhejiang and his wife Wang Xiao from east China's Shandong, spoke about the idea of establishing this studio, which came from the wedding of themselves: on that day, they felt extremely worn out after a day's celebration with family and friends.

"I didn't feel like I was marrying for myself, but putting on a show," Wang reminisced. "I was either changing dresses or repeatedly redoing my make-up and I didn't even know what dishes my guests had had."

"Yes, the weddings in China are always like a Spring Festival Gala," further joked Han.

Hence, they came up with the idea of shooting wedding photos in America, to see if there is any difference. In late 2014, they established Resonance Vision.  

At first as there weren't any businesses, they had to advertise themselves by shooting photos for free. The money they earned each day was scarcely enough for their room and board. Gradually, costumers found their consistency and chase for beauty, and the studio became better and better.

Han's works have a style of reality without an overly embellished effect. From his perspective, whatever the form is, the nature of photography is a process of exploring the idealized scene in the participants' imagination.

"Wedding photos in domestic circles are usually compiled into albums with several selected ones zoomed in on and put pride of place in people's homes. Several months later, they will end up in their closets," commented Han.

"The wedding photography at home is kind of like, couples take wedding photos very formally weeks ahead of their wedding ceremony, and people in the photos should be (or polished to be) extremely beautiful. I think that's good, but may have nothing to do with their wedding, as this form can be easily modeled. "

"Being dedicated for years at the Central Academy of Fine Arts, we are trained to be picky on the appreciation of beauty and we don't want to do routine things," he added.

"Weddings vary from one to another. But the common thing about Western weddings is that bridegrooms are not supposed to see brides' wedding dresses before their wedding day, otherwise it is ominous. Therefore, all American wedding photos are shot on the wedding day, which enhances its ceremonial sense. Many bridegrooms are so moved after seeing their brides in their wedding dresses," stated Wang.

"Lately, more Westerners like to have a 'first look' before their ceremonies: the bridegrooms will take a look at their brides in their wedding dresses before their ceremonies, but that is still on the wedding day," added Wang.

Han has shot overseas Chinese, American, and even mixed marriages such as an Indian and Dutch couple, a Polish and Scottish American couple, a Beijinger and African, and a South Korean and Filipino.

Various culture shocks are witnessed in Han's camera length.

"Indian weddings often take a few days of preparation. Once an Indian wedding ceremony lasted two days, as the couple's parents came all the way from India, and held traditional beliefs that they could not drink wine on the wedding day. The couple, who were born and raised in America, decided to have an American ceremony again the next day. Usually, mixed weddings would more or less combine American elements with the customs of their own countries in terms of culture and religion," Han introduced.

Given cultural differences, Han couldn't summarize the weddings into one or two types. "Even local Americans' weddings vary. So we don't deliberately make any arrangements ahead, for almost every wedding has its own unique elements," said Wang.

"Until now, we still feel excited and nervous before weddings, because you'll never know what is going to happen," said Han, who is often moved and impressed by the specific and real sentiments brought about by the wedding atmosphere and the connection of the new couple.

In Han's eyes, beauty-appreciation has become the biggest difference between Chinese and foreign weddings. Though everybody wants to show their best side on that day, Americans value reality as much as beauty, for they think their weddings are personal to themselves and they want to enjoy the process. He often finds American brides dancing until they are sweaty, ruining their make-up, which is rarely seen in domestic weddings.

Now the studio has all appointments booked until next year and is still only run by the duo. Han doesn't want to enlarge his studio, as he thinks nothing can compare to the relationship and understanding he has with his wife. Just like their name, Resonance Vision, also a token of the "deep resonance" of themselves.

One of Han's works []

One of Han's works []

A bride celebrates her wedding happily with her families and friends []

One of his works featuring the 'first look' before a wedding ceremony []

One of his works featuring the 'first look' before a wedding ceremony []

One of his works featuring the 'first look' before a wedding ceremony []

One of Han's works at an Indian wedding []

The hands of an Indian bride []

One of Han's works at an Indian wedding []

One of Han's works featuring a couple []

One of his works featuring the 'first look' before a wedding ceremony []

One of his works featuring a bridegroom dancing happily at his wedding  []


(Source: and edited by Women of China)

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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