Based in Thailand, Justin Mott of Mott Visuals Wedding Photography is a master at capturing multi-cultural weddings with color, respect and playfulness. His composition is always intriguing and his photos reveal age-old traditions in a fresh and modern light. I recently asked Justin a few questions about his process and he kindly shared some absolutely gorgeous photos from a recent wedding he shot in Bangkok. Enjoy!
Tell me a bit about what Chelsea and Drew were looking for in their wedding photography? I often get booked through email but Drew and Chelsea wanted to have a real talk on Skype. I could tell they wanted our personalities to pair up and we had a fun chat. They chose me for my storytelling and documentary background, they wanted a natural look to their wedding.
How do you prepare for and shoot weddings like this, that incorporate multiple events and cultures? It’s a long day, typically starting at 5am for the Thai ceremony. Loads of coffee and an understanding where everything is happening is essential. We’ve shot so many different cultural weddings so we have a good sense of what’s going to happen.
Your photos together reveal the narrative of the day and yet, each image is solid on its own, revealing its own unique moment. Can you speak to your interest in storytelling and what you envision and hope for your imagery to communicate? I have worked quite a bit for The New York Times over the past 6 years, covering all kinds of stories in numerous countries so I try to bring that approach to my weddings. As the day unfolds I’m building the story in my head and just waiting for moments to happen. In addition to our larger edit we give a tighter “wedding story” for the couple to share online. We spend a lot of time on this edit making sure each images transitions from a story perspective and also aesthetically.
I am amazed by how you are able to capture expressions and emotion while framing them within compelling and creative composition. How do you do it? I like to climb and get on the ground and experiment with different objects to frame through, I’m always looking for different ways to make my frames more intriguing.
I love how you are able to document traditions that have gone on for centuries with both respect and playfulness. Your clean and modern style brings the past into the present. Can you speak about your experience capturing present moments and past traditions together? Mixed cultural weddings are so awesome to capture because moments are happening everywhere. For many of my clients it’s such a rare occasion for their family and friends to meet, as they often live worlds apart. It’s also the first time both cultures are experiencing each others traditions so there is an abundance of moments to capture as the day unfolds. It’s important to understand the meaning of the traditions and it’s important to remember you’re not only shooting for the couple but for their families as well.
Justin, thank you for sharing your beautiful work with us!
Readers, you can see more of Chelsea and Drew’s wedding in Bangkok, Thailand on Mott Visuals Wedding blog.