A normal weekend usually starts off on Saturday, for me it was a rush all the way from Friday till early Sunday morning. It all began with my department dinner being held on the same night I was to drive down to Muar to shoot a wedding the very next day. Things started to become hectic when I left work at 4.30pm (the managers literally chased everyone out so that they wouldnâ€™t be late for dinner) and rushed back home to pack. I had to pack all of my gear including my laptop for on the fly video editing as well as my clothes for the night in Muar.
One problem I faced was that I had to shoot the same dinner event as well but thank God that I wasnâ€™t the main photographer but one of the backup and runners.
The night beforeâ€¦
Client: â€œHey Mark, can you be one of the photographers for the dinner event tomorrow night?â€
Me (attending the wedding photography workshop busy toying with my camera): â€œEr, yeah, sure thing!â€
Moral of the story, pay attention to calls to avoid jamming up your time and session. Anyway, back to the story.
Dinner was held that the KL Hilton which is one of the craziest places to get parking. Because KL Hilton shares the same basement as Le Meridien, it is practically impossible to find a space and after going around for 30minutes, I finally decide to park via valet parking which costs a bomb but also split 4 ways since I had three passengers with me.
Dinner was fun and interesting especially since the organizing committee hired in JJ and Rudy, two local DJs from the Hitz.fm morning crew to be the nightâ€™s emcee. It was interesting to actually see them in person but most of the time I hear their voices in the morning, especially the â€œgotchaâ€ prank calls. Many fun things occurred throughout the night including several impromptu performances where I had to play the guitar for Ramon and also for the 2nd placed winning team for the Jingle Shell caroling competition.
Sadly because of the photoshoot the next morning, I had to leave the dinner early and rushed down to Muar. By the time I arrived at Muar, it was already 1.30am and I was totally worn out. By the time I actually laid down on the bed, it was already past 2.00am!
The next morning started extremely early, I was bunking in with the other photographer, Daryl, and there was a loud knock and scream at the door at 5.45am asking us to get ready! Dragging myself out of bed, I got up, packed my gear and began preparing for the shoot. This time it was a little different than the usual shoots because none of the photographers could be at the brideâ€™s house so both of us started off at the groomâ€™s place. We left Muar at 6.30am to arrive in Malacca by 7.00am.
Of course the usual course of events of a typical Chinese wedding occurred and I was busy shooting away. After picking up the bride from Malacca, the entourages made their way back to Muar in time for the church wedding. In fact, everything went so smoothly that the group of us arrived too early (30mins to be exact)! The bride had to make a detour and wait while everyone could prepare the church and usher guests into the hall.
It was a Chinese speaking church so being an absolute banana didnâ€™t help. Was totally lost and I had to rely on the program to find my cues of when to take the â€œspecial momentsâ€ photos. Interestingly enough, the ring bearer who brought the two rings before the pastor blessed it was a remote control car. Totally different!
By the time church was done, everyone made headed for lunch at a local Chinese restaurant. At that time I was already looking at the time and made sure that I had enough time to prepare the morningâ€™s pictures to be put into a slideshow, which will be shown on the night itself.
Of course with every Windows OS, you get Windows Movie Maker, which definitely was my main tool, but it kept on crashing! After many hours of frustrations and redo, I realized that the stupid audio codecs were crashing the software and I had to uninstall all of them to get Windows Movie Maker to work properly.
By 5pm, the slideshow was ready and completed and tested. I took a quick 30minute nap and headed to the dinner place and started taking photos. The dinner itself was held at a school hall (Chung Hwa) but this is no ordinary school hall. It was huge, much like the Octagon Hall at where I studied back in my university days and of course, air-conditioned.
The biggest challenge for me was shooting in such low light conditions as I have limited gear and I really had to make do with what I had, shooting away at ISO 800 â€“ ISO 1000. The night was definitely exciting and fun, even the food tasted superbly great! One of the best suckling pigs I ate in my life, honestly!
At the end, the event ended at about 11pm where people slowly started going home. I decided to drive back that night so I drank a couple of tins of Nescafe and headed up to KL, leaving Muar at about 11.45pm. By the time I reached home, the only thing on my mind was sleep.
Coming soon, photos of the event (that is if I can balance my time to post process the photos!)
Edit: Corrections made!