The kına gecesi, or henna night, is an indispensable part of any Turkish wedding. Essentially comparable to the Western practice of the bachelor party, except that in most Turkish cultures the bride’s role, and that of her friends, is given more importance. In most Sunni villages the men and women would gather separately; in other settings including Alevi communities, men and women celebrate together. The common ground is always the henna, which in this case was not only used to dye the bride and groom’s fingers and palms, but also to form round pasty green candleholders circulated throughout the party on trays. Here, Mikhail and his veiled bride are surrounded by candles, singing and video cameras the night before their wedding in Kahramanmaraş.
Canon EOS Rebel XTi, ISO-1600, f/3.5, 1/60 sec.