Hanboks, Korea and a Surprise Proposal

Ok – where to begin? When Jimmy asked me to shoot his proposal to Cara in Seoul, South Korea, I immediately said yes! (As if he proposed to me!) It was definitely something I only imagined of doing. Korea was high on my list so when this opportunity came, how could I pass it up? 

Planning this proposal with Jimmy was a bit intricate – since I have not been to Seoul and it’s been a while since he last went. As we booked our flights, I’ve done what I normally do with destination weddings booked it a few days earlier. It allows me to get acclimatized, scout, adjust to the timezone and make sure I have everything I needed. I mean, it’s a huge deal and I wanted to get it right.

South Korea was beautiful. It had a mix of new and old.. reminded me a bit of Taiwan: Modern yet they maintained their traditions and culture. I walked around the city, ate and visited the Gyeongbokgung Palace where he wanted to propose at a few times. I’ve come back to this place more than usual because its a tourist attraction that I wanted to make sure I understood the density of tourists in the area. The last thing I’d want is to have a photo of them lost by a crowd of tourists!

On the day of the proposal, I had asked Jimmy to send me a pic of themselves. Since they rented Hanboks (Korean traditional dress) I wanted to be able spot them out from the others that also had Hanboks. Jimmy and I shared locations to stay updated and as soon as I saw them approaching, I started pressing the shutter. Not sure why but as I watched the proposal unfold, I was getting nervous! Luckily my camera was stabilized because my hands were shaking like crazy. I don’t know why but watching Cara’s ecstatic reaction to his proposal gave me goosebumps. The moment was so genuine and authentic. Nothing in the world had mattered to Cara except for Jimmy that she didn’t even notice me capturing their moment until I was no more than 3 meters away.

Talk about living in the moment!

We set off to Bukchon Hanok Village shortly after lunch to do more photos until sunset. There were a ton of crowds and it was real funny that I had an audience behind me. Some were interested in how I interacted with the couple because I wasn’t posing them instead we were just having a great time in front of the camera.