ROMANTIC WEDDING IN THE NORTH OF ISRAEL
The wedding of Nikolay and Ortal began in the cozy Hotel Garden Hotel, which is located in Haifa. The hotel seemed very beautiful to us, and we hastened to take a few shots of the hotel itself and, of course, the rings before we went to shoot the morning of the bride and groom! During wedding photo and video shooting, we love to look for non-standard locations and angles so that photos and videos look original. So, for shooting rings, we decided to use a lamp. We placed the box with the rings under the lamp, and experimented a bit ourselves! It turned out a very interesting and unusual picture, right?
After shooting the interior of the hotel and the rings, we went to the bride’s room to capture those very magical moments of preparation. While the bride is still in the hands of a makeup specialist, we have time to show the beauty of the wedding dress. But the question is: where to shoot it? In the room or find a suitable place in the hotel itself? The room was a bit dark, and picking up a dress and carrying it through the entire hotel was not an option at all! And here too there is a place for creativity. What if you put together this heavy curtain and let some sunlight into your room?
The bride is almost ready! We shoot the final touches of makeup and hairstyles.
Girlfriends come to support the bride, which means it’s time to have fun! In just half an hour, we made shots where everyone is having fun, and shots where girlfriends help the bride. It turned out very touching and cute!
We decided to spend the morning of the groom in his own room and in the dark lobby of the hotel to emphasize all the experience and touchingness of this wedding day. Who thinks that the morning of the future husband does not need to be shooted, he is very mistaken. Just look at these emotions! They definitely have a place in the wedding series.
And here he is — the moment of the first meeting. Before we even started filming, we walked around the hotel to look at the places where the first meeting of the young people would take place. Then shared our opinion with the bride and groom, to which they immediately replied: «We trust you!». At wedding shooting, it is very important that groom and bride trust their photographer and videographer. So, we really liked the stairs leading from the hall to the floors with rooms. We figured out how and where the groom would stand, where the bride would come from. Asked the bridesmaids in advance to include a romantic song that the couple would like and put the groom and the bridesmaids in the starting position. Then, we gave Ortal a sign that she could already descend. These first glances at each other — how touching it is!
After the first meeting, we went for a walk. Even before the wedding, we considered with the guys several options for places that were not far from the event hall. Our choice fell on the Nesher suspension bridges in Haifa. We were already there earlier, so after shooting the first meeting we took the groom and bride and immediately went to the place. Everything was perfect: sunset, greenery, bridges, lovers … We had only an hour to make those very cool shots. And we had enough of it! We made long shots, portraits, and details. Even the creative time is left 😁
Parents are already in the restaurant and are ready to meet guests. But why not groom and bride, you ask? At this moment they are resting and preparing for the important ceremony for everyone — CHUPPAH! Let us tell you a little about the wedding in Israel.
The fact is that only Jews in halachah can marry here and only with Jews! Other marriages that were concluded in Israel, the country does not recognize.
By the way, even between Jews there are different weddings. Consider the most basic:
— a secular wedding is characterized by the fact that a religious part is performed to a minimum: blessings, wine, a glass, and then you can go to eat and dance;
— the Haredim (religious) have a more extensive ceremony, after which men with the groom and women with the bride have a meal and dance in separate halls or in one, but behind a fence;
— at the wedding of religious Zionists (knitted bales) in the hall, husbands are not separated from their wives — everyone sits in a family at round tables and communicates with friends, and they gather for dancing in 2 separate circles (sometimes also behind a fence).
And these are just the basic ones! Everyone can still customize the wedding for themselves and will already have their own, original!
It is also interesting that at Israeli weddings, guests do not expect to be entertained. On the contrary, they are ready to invent entertainment for themselves in the form of dancing with the couple, raising them on chairs and more. Also at all weddings in Israel, photographers with magnets are very popular. They take pictures of guests, guests with newlyweds, and after an hour they bring ready-made printed photographs on magnets. It is worth noting that if the wedding is religious, then there should be two photographers with magnets: a boy who will shoot on the male side, and a girl who will be on the female side. The same applies to ordinary photographers with videographers.
In the meantime, while the parents are busy with the guests, we are going to shoot the Ketubah with the groom! This is the part of the Jewish ceremony that both secular Jews and religious people do before the chuppah. Ketubah is a Jewish prenuptial agreement that lists the husband’s responsibilities to his wife, such as the provision of food, clothing, marriage, and the obligation to pay a certain amount of money in the event of a divorce. Ketubah is signed by two witnesses and is usually read aloud by the rabbi under the chuppah.
So the time has come that we all have been waiting for so much — Chuppah. The approximate stages of the ceremony are: covering the bride, Unterfirera and going around the groom.
At Ashkenazi weddings, before entering under the chuppah, the groom covers the bride’s face with a veil. Often a prayer is read for the bride, which is based on the words spoken by Rebecca in Genesis. 24:60.
This is not practiced at Sephardic weddings. Instead, the newlyweds are wrapped in tallit under the chuppah.
In many communities, two fathers lead the bridegroom under the huppah, and two mothers, called the Unterfirers («those who lead under»), lead the bride. Entering the chuppah, according to tradition, the bride walks around the groom three or seven times. Three circles can represent the three virtues of marriage: righteousness, justice, and loving kindness. Seven circles come from the biblical concept that the number seven means perfection or completeness. Sephardic Jews do not perform this ceremony.
Before the betrothal, two blessings are read: the blessing on wine and the wedding blessing indicated in the Talmud. Then the couple takes a couple of sips of wine, the groom gives the bride a ring and solemnly proclaims: «Now, with this ring you are consecrating to me according to the law of Moses and Israel». The groom puts a ring on the bride’s right index finger. It is important to note here that if the groom puts the bride’s ring on the other finger, this does not affect the «result», the marriage is considered valid. During some secular weddings, the bride also presents the ring to the groom.
Sheva Brachot, or seven blessings, is read by a Khazzan, a rabbi, or chosen guests, each of whom is called individually. The bride and groom drink wine over which the blessing was read.
The glass, as a rule (for safety), is wrapped in cloth or foil. The groom smashes him with his right foot, while the guests shout «Mazal Tov» («Happy Fate!»). Sometimes the glass is replaced by an incandescent lamp of a suitable size, which breaks easier due to thinner glass and at the same time produces a louder sound.
A glass is broken in memory of the ongoing mourning for the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple.
After the chuppah, the couple usually retires to a small room for a while. Since it is customary on the wedding day for the young to fast, they can be alone for the first time and eat. Well, dancing! What is the wedding in Israel without them?
At religious weddings after a meal, Birkat Hamazon (Blessing after a meal) is read, followed by Sheva Brahhot (seven blessings). Guests may receive prayer books called benchers. After prayers, a blessing over wine is read, while two glasses of wine merge together into a third glass, which symbolizes the generation of a new life together.
At the wedding of Nikolay and Ortal this was not!
Follow the link to see more photos from this wedding: gotovyy.com/nikolay-ortal
Also, you can watch the video to enjoy the full atmosphere of the wedding day of Nikolay and Ortal!