Malaysian-born photographer (and never-wannabe-accountant) Ben Yew’s portfolio includes moving, beautiful, and sweetly individual shots from weddings around the world. His modus operandi is to capture what he calls “the finest moment” on a couple’s happy day; the smiles, the tears, the anticipation…
Read our interview with this top photographer – who now calls Australia ‘home’, but works all over the world – and find out how he gets couples to relax in front of the camera, and why you don’t need a sunny day to have beautiful photos.
I thought I would be an accountant – not because I wanted to – but because my parents went to see a fortune teller when I was really young, and he said I would be an accountant. I guess his prediction wasn’t really accurate! Being a photographer definitely wasn’t on the list, I guess it all happened gradually, one thing leading to another and I later discovered more about myself and I love photography. It all started as a hobby and went on and became a business.
I love weddings because a wedding is a combination of everything in a fast paced environment. Quick decision making and adrenaline rush. Most importantly, I love capturing real emotions and it’s such an honour to be a part of a wedding.
5 Star Weddings: What is your signature look for photography?
Ben Yew: I capture the finest moment with light and emotion. Its more than just beautiful imagery, I would like the image to mean something and the viewers to feel the couples finest moment. Its the image that portrays emotional and genuine love for each other
5 Star Weddings: What is your source of inspiration?
Ben Yew: Movies and music videos! And not forgetting the awesome work from other creatives from all different industries and inspiring stories that I have read. Its a combination of everything.
5 Star Weddings: How do you get your couples to be comfortable in front of the camera?
Ben Yew: Think about your first date, your first kiss, the proposal and the funniest thing that happened to you just before this session. Keep your mind off the camera by having a conversation with your fiance and the photographer.
5 Star Weddings: What is the best time for photos?
Ben Yew: Best time for photos is 2-3 hours before sunset or anytime on a cloudy day.
5 Star Weddings: Do you have a favourite ceremony and/or reception venue to shoot at?
Ben Yew: My favourite ceremony and reception venue is the venue I have never shot before. Getting the most amazing landscape and light helps, but I am also after something new. I love surprises and jaw dropping moment. Although I have done my research before heading to the new venue, but sometimes it looks so different from the photos on their website.
5 Star Weddings: Do you have any useful tips on how to choose a wedding photographer?
Ben Yew: Besides loving their work, it would be beneficial to find a photographer that really clicks with you, one who can really guide you, ensuring that everyone has a memorable and fun session.
5 Star Weddings: Do you shoot destination weddings?
Ben Yew: Yes, most certainly. We have captured a few weddings and pre-wedding sessions in different countries around the world and its awesome because it brings out the amazing landscape from different country and the different culture.
5 Star Weddings: What photography equipment do you use?
Ben Yew: I use 2 units of Nikon D800’s paired with prime lenses (24-75mm, 35mm, 50mm, 85mm and 70-200mm). 3 Nikon Flashes and 1 LED Light.
5 Star Weddings: What back up / redundancy plan you have on the wedding day.
Ben Yew: For me, I believe in redundancy because you only get one shot at a wedding. I do have many back up batteries, a large amount of memory cards, spare camera on top of the 2 that I use and spare lenses.
5 Star Weddings: In your opinion what makes a 5 star wedding?
Ben Yew: A 5 star wedding is a combination of a group of most talented vendors working together to create the most stunning themed wedding they can create together as a dream team. From the photographer to the caterers, stylist, hair, make up and etc.