Tag Archives: cultural center of india

Day two was a busy one! I met up with Shalin and his family around 8am to photograph his Ghari Puja and Pithi ceremony. This took place at the home of one of Shalin’s friends, just a few miles from the hotel that Jason and I were staying at and the Cultural Center of India.

Blessings and gift offerings took place outside as well.

Not wanting to mess up his ceremonial clothing, Shalin decided to change his clothes before having the turmeric paste applied. Don’t forget to get behind the ears!

Meanwhile, Jason, along with the talents of photographer Kristin Moore and cinematographers of Shaking Hands Productions documented Hema’s Ghari Puja ceremony at the Cultural Center.

The priest ties a red bracelet around Hema’s wrist which cannot be removed until she and Shalin are married. Shalin wears a similar bracelet.

Kristin took this beautiful and sweet photo of Hema and her sister. The bond of this family is immeasurable.

When the ceremonies concluded, a vegetarian lunch was served at the Cultural Center. Afterwards, everyone had a little time to relax before getting ready for the Garba and Raas celebrations. Jason and I met up with Shalin and Hema at the Marriott where Shalin was staying for a few portraits beforehand.

The Garba-Raas began around 7pm. This a very festive time, full of toasts, dancing and high energy music. Lots of smiles, lots of laughs. Both Garba and Raas are traditional folk dances, Garba being a circular dance and Raas a line dance with sticks.  Much of the decor was provided by Partyland Flowers and Event Decor.

Shalin’s father dancing!

Hema had told me that she had never seen her father (second from left) dance in her whole life until the night of the Garba. I just had to include this photo of Shalin and Hema dancing with their dads.

Day THREE will continue with Shalin and Hema’s wedding ceremony!

  • Dev Sheth - hey guys, the pictures look great, good luck to the happy couple.

    Dev2011/09/17 – 22:36ReplyCancel

Shalin and Hema must have amazing frequent flier miles… Living in San Francisco, Shalin took a train and a flight into Richmond for one day to visit his beloved Hema, and so that Jason and I could make a portrait of them together. Later that afternoon, he would have to take a flight and train ride back home… the travel time lasting longer than his time with Hema. This will all change dramatically this upcoming week when the two of them get married! Hema will get to move in with Shalin back in San Fran! I’m so excited for them! Planning a wedding between India and Richmond, and not to mention having a fiancee living on the other side of the country has to have its challenges. After the wedding, they can release a blissful sigh and settle into a new chapter of their lives.

Speaking of weddings, Jason and I couldn’t me more excited to be a part of theirs! A 3 day celebration will commence this Friday with the Ganesh Puja and Mehendi. It’s going to be phenomenal weekend!

  • Katy - P.S. Can’t wait to see the rest of the wedding, it’s going to be spectacular!2011/06/02 – 22:13ReplyCancel

  • Katy - I love the water reflection… They are such a fun couple!2011/06/02 – 22:12ReplyCancel

  • priya - simply amazing!!!2011/05/23 – 22:56ReplyCancel