Behind the Lens: Melbourne Wedding Photographer Lakshal Perera
Welcome to another Behind the Lens post where I interview a talented wedding photographer whom I’ve had the pleasure of collaborating with. Every photographer has their own distinct style so the purpose of this series is to help you choose a photographer whose style best represents you. Thus I want you to meet them not as “vendors” but as potential friends who just so happen to have the skills to creatively chronicle your special day in pictures.
Lakshal Perera as captured by his lovely wife Kristen
Meet Lakshal Perera, Melbourne Wedding Photographer
If you’ve been reading this site for a while, you probably already know photographer Lakshal Perera as my previous features on Carly & Jeff’s hip-meets-chic wedding and awesome paint war engagement, both of which he photographed, are among this blog’s most popular pages. Lakshal is based in Melbourne but he is open to traveling internationally. In fact he had just returned from photographing a wedding in India and will be heading to New York City sometime later this year.
Lakshal, also known by his nickname Lucky, wasn’t always a photographer. He actually has a PhD in Medical Radiation Physics (!) and was also a musician for five years before he bought a camera and “accidentally” became a photographer. I should say that we’re the lucky ones because if he hadn’t decided to switch careers, we wouldn’t be able to see the ridiculously stunning images that he can offer.
Needless to say I’m honored to be showcasing some of his work and thoughts today. Please enjoy reading about this hugely talented photographer!
* All photos on this page are copyright Lakshal Perera *
Hello Lucky! Please tell us more about yourself and your wedding photography business.
I’m a wedding photographer who lives in Melbourne but will gladly travel the world in search of the most rad weddings! In fact, most of my work is not in Melbourne, only 20% or so is local.
I’ve been a photographer for about 7 years and shot my first wedding a little over 5 years ago but I’ve only been full time for a little over 2 months now. Photography was a bit of an accident, I just bought a camera for fun and fell into it more and more seriously as time went along. I started out as a live music photographer and did a lot of studio/promo work for bands as well. My first wedding client was the bassist in a band I photographed and it all snowballed from there.
I’m not very good with labels for what I do but I imagine people having giant prints of their photos in their home. So maybe fine art wedding photography? It sounds a little pretentious which is probably why I try to avoid those words! But I’m really conscious of trying to steer clear of formulaic photography and to ensure that every exposure is hopefully different to every other one I’ve made in the past. It’s not necessarily how it happens but the search for true originality is pretty exciting, if not sometimes inherently futile!
The quirkiest wedding you’ve photographed?
Hands down it has to be Rachel and Karl. These guys were so lovely and their wedding was truly about them, their families and a lifelong commitment to each other. So awesome!
The most unusual or unexpected location you’ve shot a wedding at?
Probably Eleanor and Richard‘s wedding at Richard’s sister’s husband’s family’s vineyard (HA!). Eleanor and Richard also went to Richard’s parents house which is a 150 year old heritage listed house in the country that has been fully restored over the last 15 years. I’ve never been in a more amazing house than that one. Most people might think 150 years isn’t that old but you have to remember our country is only a little over 200 years old.
A wedding photography fad you will never follow?
I’m not really aware of a lot of fads at the moment but I think there’s a lot of things I’ve done in the past that I’ve learned from and will never follow again. I think things like using cross process filters in editing photos, strong vignettes and tilted horizons are things I definitely steer clear of now but it’s only though a period of self realisation and artistic refinement that I got to this point. Fads are fads for a reason, people can see the appeal in it so in a superficial way, there must obviously be *something* to it! I probably wouldn’t dismiss anything outright unless it completely offended my aesthetic sensibilities!
Barring budget, logic or reality, what would your dream wedding (to shoot) be like?
Well it would need all the things I love. Some sort of dinosaur, zero gravity, lots of ice cream, live music, some cats, a healthy dose of pop culture and located somewhere in a city with wide streets but also filled with beautiful tall trees.
In reality, I honestly have no idea what my ideal wedding is. I’ve shot so many weddings that I’ve loved to be part of so it’s a bit difficult refining that down to a single example. But like I said, there are things that I love which could all be involved in some way to make it amazing (the zero-g thing might be hard thought…)! For me, I enjoy weddings when I feel connected to them and when it’s obvious the people involved have really thought about what they’re doing. I’m really big on having personalised celebrations so it’s always exciting to see the joy and love that people have for different elements that make up their day.
A book, movie or tv show you’d love to base a styled shoot on?
I think the 60s and 70s were the pinnacle of design and style, it’s never gotten any better than that. The men looked dashing and the women looked elegant. The cars were cool and the architecture and design timeless. I can’t think of anything better!
Which celebrity couple’s wedding do you think would be a blast to photograph if you could (doesn’t matter if they’re already married or not!)
I honestly have no idea about this question! I don’t even know any celebrity couples outside of Posh and Becks and Brad and Angelina! I’m not much of a celebrity follower!
Quick, name 5 favorite songs off the top of your head!
Aaah, a much easier question.
- No Quarter – Led Zeppelin
- Dream Brother – Jeff Buckley
- Everything In Its Right Place – Radiohead
- re: Stacks – Bon Iver
- To Build A Home – The Cinematic Orchestra
If you weren’t a photographer, what would you be?
Well I’ve been something else in the past already which is probably what I’d still be doing if it were not for photography. I was a research scientist focusing on the treatment and detection of cancer using radiation. I did that for a sizeable chunk of my life, as well as studying at university, but it slowly wore away at me and I realised that photography was something that never made me feel the way my other job did. Photography doesn’t even feel like work, it’s something I wake up and enjoy doing every day.
I hope you all enjoyed reading about Lakshal Perera. The spectacular images on this page are just a taste of what he can offer! If you want more info on this talented photographer, please visit the following pages:
* See all our previously featured weddings & shoots by Lakshal Perera.
* Meet other featured photographers in our Behind the Lens interview series
* While you’re at it, do check out the site map to browse our real wedding/engagement/styled shoot features by photographer and by location.