Six Degrees of Separation Downtown Atlanta Engagement Session by Ross Oscar Knight

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Corey and Shantell @ Downtown ATL

I was blessed to meet Corey and Shantell this morning for their engagement session. I found out that Corey jokingly asked Shantell to marry him after their first date. Now the two will be tying the knot in May! We learned about our six degrees of separation through friends and other interests. Like me, Shantell went after her dreams and is now in a career that she loves. Corey is a dapper fella that taught me a thing or two about playing chess. I'm not sure who laughed more while we were shooting, them or me. Look out for the wedding in a few months.

Ross Oscar Knight Photography Destination and Fusion Wedding Photographers


I Almost Caught My Sweater on Fire at The Atlanta Wedding Creative Photo Shoot

Friday, January 20, 2012

Yesterday I completed a 6-hour shoot with the visionaries of The Atlanta Wedding Creative. I've known this crew of three for a few years and I'm really excited that they decided to team up for a new venture. Michelle and I have worked together on numerous weddings and she helped to plan my surprise 30th birthday party. Brian is all about the GLAM and he was the man behind planning my successful gallery showing in 2010. Lisa is the "go to" woman for custom letter press cards of all kinds.

For location, the group decided on the newly renovated Renaissance Atlanta Midtown (formerly The Palomar). Of course the shoot had its surprises. First, I fought the wind, the cold, and the water fountain on the terrace. Then, I managed to dodge hotel guests and security guards to get the head shots done. Next, I rearranged some furniture in the restaurant after a concurrent video recording threw me a curve ball. Last, I tiptoed around the candles on Michelle's table and almost caught my Club Monaco sweater on fire! It wasn't all craziness, actually it was quite organized thanks to the team. We kept things light-hearted and joked mostly about the industry and our busy lives.

Brian and Michelle came up with two separate table designs while Lisa designed complimentary stationary. I've features a few images in this post because the rest will be featured in an upcoming premiere wedding publication.

I want to thank Eric from the Renaissance for feeding us, for letting us use the Presidential Suite, and for the unlimited access to the hotel. Others that helped to make the day a success:

Brian: F&G Events
Charlton: Inije Video
Edge Design Group
Heath: Jackson Durham Flowers, Events, Designs
Lisa: Papered Wonders
Melanie: Lucky + Lovely
Michelle: Lemiga Events
Scoobie: Scoobie West Makeup
Sharon: Sweet Sensations
Tamara: I Do Linens

The Atlanta Wedding Creative is a collaboration that seeks to educate, design and inspire the wedding industry through seminars, workshops and luxury bridal events. 

Upcoming planning & design workshop -

Follow on twitter @atlwedcreative and facebook
for details on upcoming luxury bridal event in April.

Ross Oscar Knight Photography Destination and Fusion Wedding Photographers


A Day of Ceremonies and The Garba (ગરબા) Dance - My Return to India: Day Six

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Entry #6

Last night I stayed at a home in the village. When the lights went out it was REALLY dark. I forgot my flashlight back in the city. So much for the midnight bathroom run. It seems like I am waking up earlier and earlier as the days progress. This morning I was up by 4:30 AM. I showered with cold water until the home owner knocked on the door and showed me the correct temperature knobs. Soon after, I tripped through the door frame and hit the floor. Ouch! I didn't want to disturb others in the home so I dressed in the dark hoping that I had put on my pants straight and tied my bow tie correctly. Oh yeah, I am wearing a bow tie today!

By the time I left the home the sun was just starting to rise. Walking in the shadows, I couldn't see my camera or camera settings in front of my nose but nonetheless I started shooting anyways. As an act of defiance I decided not to use my iPhone light or my camera auto light to see.

The further I walked, the lighter it became outside. As a result, I adjusted my camera's white balance to take advantage of the warm color temperature. It was cool outside but the air was dry. At least the dust on the dirt roads hadn't been disturbed yet by too much activity. I smelled food cooking in the distance and saw people coming out of their homes. The woman below was brushing her teeth and waved hello to me.

Generally, wildlife is not something I seek to photograph but when I saw the monkeys in the trees it made me think about my father. He loves monkeys and used to own one after I left Florida for college. I fumbled for my phone and called him to describe the primates. He was amused.

Finally the sun was out and the deeper contrast in my photos was evident. Soon after, I realized that while speaking to my father I have taken a detour. On my way back to the ceremony location I could not figure out whether to go right or left at the fork in the road. I decided on left and eventually saw a familiar haystack in the distance.

The first ceremony was in a small room in the home. I switched lenses so that I could capture the room in its entirety and not disturb the prayers. This was the Ganesh Sthapan. Lord Ganesha is always the first deity to be propitiated at any significant event. His blessings are invoked before the preparations begin for the wedding so that no obstacles present themselves and all goes well. (source: DharmeshPatel)

The puja was attended by close family members and friends.

During the Mandva Mahurat blessings are sought for the ground on which the wedding canopy is installed. The pujari puts tikka on the foreheads of five men in the family. The men receive a stick with red thread wrapped around it.


After the puja a vegetarian meal without onions and garlic is served.

Next, the beautification rituals for the bride began. This is called the Pithi. A yellow paste made of chickpea flour, tumeric, rose water, and other ingredients is applied to the bride's skin. The paste is supposed to even out the skin tone as well as make it glow. Many of Amruta's family and friends enjoyed rubbing the mixture on her and making her laugh.

During the Griha Shanti the parents are the primary figures. On behalf of the parents the priests asked the deities for peace and harmony during the wedding.

Amruta (the bride) entered to take a shripal (coconut) to her parents who were seated on patlas (low stools) in front of the sacred fire.

She handed the coconut to her parents who then handed it over to the priest for sacrifice.

The coconut was placed in the flames to promote peace and harmony between the planets.

I left the ceremony to eat lunch a few blocks away and encountered these men at the gates of the community center. Instead of going straight to the serving line I stayed with them for a while and then proceeded to the kitchen to see the food being prepared. You could tell that everyone relaxed after I talked with them for a while.

Spending time with the kitchen crew was a trip and they were amused by my bow tie. The food was magnificent. I sat with Shishir and his family for the meal. I want to sincerely thank him for all the explanations and rich culture lessons.

I took a short nap after lunch and was so happy when I woke up. My allergy issues had subsided and I could breathe freely. At the ceremony location a dance was being taught for the evening's festivities. It was hilarious to watch all of the people who came from the US try to learn. Summer, from Richmond, picked up the dance right away and looked like a pro.

Darkness soon fell upon us again and it was time for the Garba. I headed back to the community center in the village to check out the lighting and it was perfect. During the Garba everyone forms a circle and does a traditional dance to music. Some of the men join in a dandia raas which is dancing with sticks.

Amruta and Samir lead the way. I loved this canded of her looking back at him.

Some people came out on their rooftops or watched the dance from their windows.


KNIGHT Internship Oppurtunity (Summer 2012)

Monday, January 16, 2012

I am actively searching for one ideal intern to help me with my post production this summer. Although this is a non-paying position, in exchange for your time I will teach you valuable information about the basics of photography and how to run a successful business. If you are a current college student enrolled in a program specializing in Graphic Design or Photography then this is the perfect opportunity for you.

1. Current college student (2 or 4 year program)
2. Advanced knowledge in Photoshop CS4 or higher/Lightroom 3/Adobe ID and AI
3. No photography business owners or professionals need apply
4. Available 10-15 hrs a week

If you are interested, please click above to apply! For questions related to the application, email us at


Ross Oscar Knight Photography Featured on Well Groomed

Friday, January 13, 2012

I'm proud to be featured on Well Groomed - a site that is dedicated to men's style at weddings. As a former drag racer, I think Darren has a great concept going on here with his new direction.


Ross Oscar Knight Confirmed as Women in Focus Guest Speaker - 1.11.12

Friday, January 6, 2012

I will be the guest speaker for the Women in Focus organization on January 11, 2012. I'm honored by the opportunity!! This Wednesday, I will be presenting to the group on my transition from Corporate America to the Photography Industry. Also, I will display selected international works from Haiti and India. For more info visit: Women in Focus Page


The Mehndi (મહેંદી) Celebration of Samir and Amruta – My Return to India: Day Five

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Entry #5

While I was editing this morning I observed the prayers by the elders in the home. I found out that the framed picture above the couch is of the present spiritual leader of the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Sanstha (BAPS). His name is Pramukh Swami Maharaj. As soon as I heard the acronym "BAPS" I immediately remembered that I did a photo session at a BAPS Temple in the US. I began asking more questions and followed up on my research through the internet. I learned why I have been greeted with Jai Swaminarayan by some and Jai Shree Krishna by others.

Directly outside the gates of the home a transportation crew repaired the street. I was worried that the women's feet would be burned by the hot asphalt. The workers paid me no mind and continued with their task.

I needed to walk so I found a new route to survey the area. Along the way I passed an uncle and joined him on his motor bike. What a ride through the city! By the time we returned home lunch preparations were underway. I introduced myself to the caterer and the cooking staff but I only photographed one person. I was attracted by the posture of this woman diligently rolling a chipati. The man in the rear gives way to realism in the composition.

The henna designs for the children started early before I left to go to the Mehndi. Also, bags were being stuffed with of candy for guests.

We drove out to Nita's (bride's mom) home village for the evening celebration. The landscape of the home had been transformed with lights strung from the palm trees and colorful decorations extending from the balcony of the house.

The back yard was full of family, friends, and food. I ate until I was stuffed.

Tattoo artists carefully inked designs with the henna paste and the customers waited patiently still for the masterpieces to dry.

Amruta's uncle was responsible for a majority of the planning. After snapping a picture of the two together I tried to find the groom's name in Amruta's design.

The night was full of sweet and festive moments.

A guitarist provided entertainment for the evening. I stole a few minutes away with the couple to privately capture their joy.

Siblings danced.

Intermingled families danced too.

Friends of the bride and groom organized a flash mob style dance. Family members had special performances throughout the night.

The bride surprised everyone and sang to her groom. Many of us stood in awe, including the groom. whose countenance was as if Amruta was the only person in the world.

As the energy began to wind down, individual conversations took over for a while.

The night ended with a fireworks show that rivaled a New Year's celebration. My favorite photo of the night was the family standing together, holding one another and gazing out at the explosions. Today was an awesome day!!