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Today, I received a message from one of my previous staff. She asked me if I was working with this bridal boutique (who I shall not name) because they had claimed their photographers are from Chris Ling.

To clarify, we only do ala-carte packages directly with couples. For packages which include gowns and other services, our exclusive collaborator is Z Wedding. We do not work with other all in one bridal studios, nor do we provide them with our photographers.

Due to the competitive nature of these all in one bridal studios or boutiques, they tend to make any claim just to close the deal. The good thing I see in all these underhanded tactics is that I’m flattered they actually need to name drop my studio to close deals!

I’d like to take this opportunity to highlight that we are popular in the market because of our unique shooting style and our dynamic indoor photography studio. Most importantly, I have established Chris Ling Photography as the effort of not just one photographer (even not just me), but the combination of a whole team. Our stylists, gown designers, photographers, photography consultants, and digital artists work hand in hand like clockwork to complete a concept album. This is the team we took many years to build. I am so proud that we can produce a quality second to none.

For clients and couples who have doubts on whether we are the photographers to your package, please email us at enquiries@chrisling.com to check.

Last but not least, I would like to thank everyone, our clients and our couples, for all your support!

– Chris
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Chris may be known for his wedding photography, but the man may have his sights set on something beyond his known forte ー bridal.

We established ourselves as a high-end wedding photography studio and have been co-operating with a locally renowned bridal design team, led by Joey Ling of Z Wedding, for 10 years and counting. As part of a strategic partnership, Chris offered his photography expertise to a new demographic of customers.

That partnership resulted in the launch of the Z Wedding bridal package, with a professional and innovative combination of gown designers & photographers. This dual combination became one of our strongest selling points.

When our team asked Chris about what else could be expected from the partnership, Chris revealed that when it came to bridal bundle deals, our “more-the-merrier” extras are added value and high quality. It doesn’t mean we will give extra items that, more often then not, customers actually do not need.

“It gets a bit confidential, but I will give you a hint of our future. Just ask yourself this question: Are the current standards offered by other boutiques good enough for you?” Chris says.

From the partnership with Z Wedding, what Chris saw was a revolution in the wedding market.

Where the first bridal revolution saw package items being replaced by quality service from a dedicated team of artistic photographers, the second involved an all inclusive high end studio with professional equipment being adopted as the standard. Chris further explained, “We have set the standard in the wedding industry.”

With that in mind, the next big thing for Chris Ling + Z Wedding could be in a sector in which it doesn’t traditionally operate.

“We are not sure whether the company can do this… But our personal dream is to be a true bridal boutique.” Chris said.

Chris’ definition for his “true bridal boutique” dream: Almost every one-stop bridal shop is selling in-the-moment photography, but this is actually wrong. Chris Ling is about how a couple’s wedding images are carefully planned, crafted, and created. It isn’t just going out and capturing whatever happens; that is haphazard. A lot of planning goes into the images that are natural and graceful.

“I guarantee that if you are not a professional model, and I put you in front of a camera, you will be camera shy. How are we able to achieve candid shots if the couple is nervous and lost?” Chris adds. On top of giving proper directions, we always engage our couples so that they feel comfortable.

Many one stop bridal shop owners do not have the know how to execute indoor photography. You can use money to build the biggest studio, have the most elaborate settings, and the most branded equipment, but money cannot buy over 20 years of dedicated photography expertise and experience. What would be the point of spending so much money if you do not know how to use it properly?

“The modern couples nowadays are no longer looking for the most quantity at the lowest price; they are looking for quality. They want to know who you are, and I will make sure they know me.” Chris concludes!

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I recently went to Hoi An, Vietnam, for a little trip. Managing my studio and its business can be very tiring, and I’ll always try my best to squeeze in trips like this where I can pursue my passion. Hoi An did not disappoint. You won’t believe the brilliance of the city, and it is a brilliance that I can’t describe. Instead, you’d have to see the sites of this fishing village yourself. Located in the Central Coast area of Vietnam, it sits in the Quảng Nam Province. The beautiful yellow shades of the city is fascinating!

Running alongside the Thu Bon River is the beautifully preserved UNESCO site, an ancient town. This is the star attraction for visitors. It is as if time stopped and you are visiting the old Vietnam centuries ago.  With the recent influx of visitors comes modernisation too. Amidst the old narrow streets and hanging lanterns, there are exciting new restaurants and shops. Plenty to explore! All my shots are captured in this town because it is one of the most photogenic places in Vietnam.

The old town architecture sees a mix of French colonial, Chinese, and Japanese that is completely unique to the area. It creates a fascinating atmosphere unique to Asia. There are colonial houses of gold, yellow, and bronze. There are lanterns of red, yellow, and green. There are Chinese influenced motiffs on the roofs of other buildings. These were preserved over the years, showing characteristic signs of wear and tear, and by maintaining its original condition allows the town to take a rustic personality. Old and new, postcard worthy heritage homes come together with alongside the new generation hipster cafes. You get a glimpse of life in the olden days by visiting homes that has been converted into museums.

At night, the river turns into a cascade of black and in stark contrast the colourful lanterns get lit. These lanterns with its intricate details are also what the area is famous for. I encourage you to see it in person, stand by the river and let the colours engulf you!

It speaks to you, and I can hear the town through my lens. No wonder people rave about Hoi An! What I have captured on my lens is just a tasting portion of the city. I had a hard time deciding which images to feature because just a few isn’t enough to showcase Hoi An. I hope my recommendation will encourage you to explore our Asian neighbour. This trip gave me a good break and it refreshed my spirit.

– Chris

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We at Chris Ling never stop creating new concepts for our pre-wedding shoot in Singapore. We want it to be always unique, and we work with our strengths in directing and story telling. While focusing on the couple’s expression and feeling, we want to bring out a natural look when we capture the images. It has become our signature and our selling point.

Recently, while my Chris Ling team was photographing a new concept, I used a “street photography” style to capture moments behind the scenes. Normally, street photography is what I practice when I go overseas to places like Hanoi (Vietnam) or Bagan (Myanmar). It is one of a kind, and through street photography I managed to record moments that couples are not aware of.

This is my personal concept which I would like to apply on pre-wedding photography. A new concept with art in mind!

– Chris

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What is the one thing you would associate immediately with when the word “wedding” is mentioned? More often then not, it would be a wedding gown. The wedding gown sat through different eras and lived through centuries of styles.

Built with any materials ranging from cotton to silk, it can be embellished with pearls or gold, or nothing at all. Like a dream, the wedding dress will be embraced by the bride. She will appreciate the final look and feel when she adorns the dress. When Chris was invited by Z Wedding and Le Grand to be take a first-hand look at the full process of gown making, he finally understood that gown design is as much an artistry as photography. It takes time, hard work, and talent for gown designers to craft their skill.

In this series, Chris records the artists working on their new collection for the Couture Runway show. He transforms these moments behind the scenes into photography art forms. After all, a gown can be a three dimensional realisation of art the bride can wear.

View the full series on our Facebook album linked here.

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Over the years, my wedding photography work allowed me to do extensive globe trotting. I have been to many countries and took the opportunity to research which areas are safe for my couples. The wonderlust never stops, and I don’t intend for it to stop.

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Although my time now heavily involves training and business development for my studio, it does not mean I disregarded the travel bug. In fact, now more so then ever, my camera and I will pack light and fly off to destinations I have not explored yet. Apart from indulging in my passion for street and black & white photography, I also take these travels as research to whether it is also viable to bring wedding couples over.

For overseas wedding photography, these three things are key:

1. Safety – The last thing a happy wedding couple should worry about is whether they are in danger!
2. Convenience – Transportation within the locations should be easily arranged. Especially when heavy equipment and essential belongings are being brought out.
3. Accessibility – The terrain should not be difficult for the bride to navigate in her gown. In addition, whether the gown would get dirty easily have to be considered as well.
4. Comfort – Whether the climate is cool enough for couples, and if there are amenities available.

From the road side cafes in Rome to the tree house residences in Chang Mai, I had managed to fulfill many things on my travel bucket list. The latest adventure I had was in Bagan, an ancient city located in the Mandalay region of Myanmar. There, I traveled around on an electronic bicycle and felt no danger at all. It was a deep cultural experience with warm and welcoming people.

My journey will continue as and when I can take time off. Travel and exploration have always been a passion that I can share with my couples. Feel free to follow me on my Instagram account @chrisling50 for more images, and may you also never stop exploring!

– Chris

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View more photos on our Facebook album (link here).

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In the recent year, I have been holding many talks and workshops sharing the inner workings of the wedding industry. Through these sessions with newlyweds, here is what I hope to achieve:

Sharing Wedding Industry Information

Having been in the wedding trade for many years, I have seen a lot in the industry. By sharing this knowledge, I hope that my wedding couples will be well informed about the many practices and tactics in the wedding market.

Brides and Grooms: Different Focus

Men and women would mostly have different priorities when planning a wedding. During my talks, I will explain which areas each would focus on, and how to find the common ground before signing a package. Design, dollars, and values will all come into play.

Wedding Roadshows: Revealing Tactics

It is easy to take the first step in signing a package on an A4 paper, but the process and final outcome is the most important task. Only a professional team, gown designers and photographers amongst others, can deliver that. Without fully knowing the capabilities of the company behind the contract, many couples make the mistake of trusting the promises promoters make during wedding roadshows. Unfulfilled promises and disappointing products are a common complaint wedding couples often confide to me about, they had signed with an all-in-one boutique and were thinking of switching to my studio.

Pictured: One of the many wedding roadshows that can be found.

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Limited Reliability of Forums

You can find an abundance of advice from various forums. They will share with you the package details and the bargaining power. Yet, hardly anyone discuss how to spot a professional team, or how to find consistency in wedding albums. These are the little details that are very important and shouldn’t be overlooked.

Assuring Quality

Due to the popularity of my collaboration with my partner boutiques, Z Wedding and Le Grand, I have been told from wedding couples that many companies and promoters have been giving us negative reviews. Most of these are sales tactics employed to sway couples into signing packages. Therefore, I would like to prove to wedding couples that my partners and I hold high standards of quality and professionalism.

I hope these points will provide you with a greater understanding of what I do, and why I do them. I hope to see you at my next workshop!

− Chris Ling

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From when Chris first started in 1993, he has come to experience that photography alone is only one part of a newlywed’s wedding planning. Many other aspects come into play, and therefore he started sourcing for the best in the industry.

Our collaboration with Z Wedding was formed in 2006. It was then undergoing a new management, and their performance and customer service vastly improved. New gown designers and makeup artist were also hired. With this team, Z Wedding proved to be a formidable contender in the wedding market not only for gowns, but for an all round service. Therefore, Z Wedding, and thereafter their sister company Le Grand, formed an exclusive partnership with our studio. All Z Wedding and Le Grand couples will be photographed by us, and we will give them our fullest support at the most competitive rates.

Who Makes The Gowns?

What would a wedding day be without your wedding gown? All of us in the industry would like to say that our part of the job is the most important. To be honest, we humbly recognize that such a claim is ludicrous. It takes many hands to come together, and the gowns do make the bride.

At Z Wedding, they have three key designers. They create by taking their inspiration from three areas:

  1. Bride’s sentiments from one to one interactions.
  2. International fashion couture.
  3. Art from the very city we live in.

With a realistic view of what would be best for every bride, they produce a wide range of gowns that would suit many shapes and sizes, and every taste and personality.

The gowns are created and crafted in Singapore by their team of designers and seamstresses.

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The Makeover

Makeup. Hair. Styling. What kind of accessories would go well with a bustier? Which shade of pink would go with the evening gown? Hair up, or hair down? After many shoots, we’ve noticed the worth of a good makeup artist during post-production. The better the makeup, the less the editing!

The Z Wedding/Le Grand stylists are professional and attentive. We will always recommend going as natural as possible when applying colours on your face, and that is what they do. Makeup isn’t overdone, the hairdo goes with the gown, and the styling suits the theme.

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Our Photographers

When all is in place, it is time to immortalize it in photos. Our photographers, already familiar with our partners, know how to capture the moments deserving of your wedding. They are trained to provide you with timeless classics that will not make you cringe when you view your albums again on your 10th anniversary.

With the gown and styling good to go, our photographers will have an easier time and it allows them to focus on you. This saves them the trouble of correcting a fallen eyelash, or adjusting a wayward sash. Which in turn translates to more time focused on you, the newlywed.

Do you know that all the photos that seemed uncontrived and in the moment are directed by our photographers? We fully understand that our couples are not models, and they will need every help they can get in knowing details such as which angle is the most flattering or where to place their hands.

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How Are The Pre-Wedding Albums Made?

The photography process does not stop at a click of the camera. Your selected images are then sent to our graphic designers to be further edited in detail, and laid out in an album format. Again, it takes many years to train a graphic designer on how to naturally touch up an image. Too smooth makes you look like a mannequin, and yet images too raw will be rejected. No one wants a reminder of the pimple you had when you took your wedding photos!

Each image is edited and designed in a page layout. The images have to correspond with each other, so that a fluid story can unfold. We emphasize greatly on matching photos because we want your album to be a smooth transition from one page to the next, not a picture folder of slotted 4R prints that anyone can insert.

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The Perks of an Exclusive Collaboration

In our case, familiarity does not breed contempt. We are very happy to work with trusted partners that did not fail to deliver time after time. Hiccups are bound to occur, but we are happy to notice that they are also quickly resolved. All made possible when individuals with different skill sets work in cohesion; each respecting the other’s creative space as well as understanding their limitations.

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Brand Partnerships With Other Boutiques

We still do continue our good work with our other trusted partners. Though not exclusive, we offer discounted rates to couples that have signed up with Amanda Lee Weddings, Dang Bridal, Divine Couture, and Silhouette the Atelier. These boutiques are our preferred partners, they too have proven to be reputable in the industry.

 

 

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I went on a 3 day trip to Hanoi, Vietnam, and enjoyed the sights tremendously. Countries with the old world charm are a gold mine for photography, there are so many people and places to capture.

My purpose of going to the Old Quarter in Hanoi is to explore, experience, and capture life in the bustling vintage town. Needless to say, I enjoyed myself thoroughly. There is something therapeutic when the eye and the camera meets as the shutter clicks.

I intend to set aside more time to visit other countries and their towns, the places I had very much wanted to go to as a photographer. With complete trust in my team of photographers in my Singapore and Hong Kong galleries, I can now pursue my long awaited adventures without worry.

– Chris

View more photos on our Facebook album: Link here.

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Since my studio turned 20 two years ago, I had decided to retire from wedding photography and place my focus on business development and staff training. That is not to say that my love for photography diminished, and that I have become more money oriented. Quite the opposite actually, my love for photography increased.

The retirement allowed me to travel, shoot, and create more. More of my time is spent researching new gear, or playing around with new techniques. By any means, it isn’t a chore, I enjoy it tremendously. With all the knowledge gained, I can then impart it to my photographers. Taking into consideration the business aspect of sustaining a studio, a photographer can’t slack!

With or without professional gear (nowadays I travel light), I like to create photos. Photos that I keep like a memory stamp, and the same photos that I share with my team and my clients. I still believe in the power of photography.

– Chris

View more photos on our Facebook album: Link here.

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