We all love a good engagement announcement. There's something so magical about a soon-to-be-wed couple's youthful happiness and love.
London-based photographer Sujata Setia aims to create similar moments with an unexpected twist. Instead of shooting recently engaged couples, Sujata asks elderly husbands and wives to pose in similar ways. Rather than knowing each other for a few years, these pairs have been together for decades.
As she teaches photography workshops around the world - everywhere from Ireland to Dubai - Sujata stops older couples and asks them to model for her and her students. Her photographs are taken in her typical style, and look like hyper-realistic paintings.
Sujata says that, while the pairs are typically confused at the start (it's a strange request, to be fair), they usually warm up with a little instruction. Sujata starts by telling the couples to hold hands or kiss. They usually laugh in response, especially the husbands.
But sometimes, her subjects get a little too comfortable with each other. Sujata tells Huffington Post about one couple she shot in Ireland:
“The weather was ridiculous that day. There was rain and thunderstorms and the couple was freezing but the lady would not stop kissing her husband. I had to literally shout, ‘Mary, will you stop kissing your husband. I need to take different shots!’”
Oh, Mary. You busy lady, you. Aside from having a good time while posing, the couples also get to keep the photos.Check out this video of a couple who was married for 71 years dying hours apart:
Sujata says that, even though she's been doing this for a while, the surprise of her request will never wear off for her or her subjects: "It’s just the pleasant shock of never, ever imagining that someone would ask them to pose like a newly married couple at 80 years old."
But Sujata doesn't stop there with her favourite models. Aside from elderly couples, she also shoots grandparents with their grandchildren in adorable shots in similar styles.
Sujata, you keep on giving these older people the photographs and visibility they deserve. I want to see people who remind me of my grandma everywhere I turn.