Singaporean Chinese family portrait: Parents, sons, grandparents.
When you walk into any given Singaporean Chinese home, there is one thing you can be pretty sure to find: the Singaporean Chinese family portrait. Most families take the portrait after a child has graduated from college, and he or she will wear the graduation cap and gown. The difference between this and say, an American family taking graduation pictures with their graduate, is that all of the children who have graduated wear their cap and gown—even if their graduation was seven years ago! This was the case for our family yesterday.
As you can see from the picture above, the last time the family took a portrait was when Junwen graduated over seven years ago from law school. Look how young and cute he was!
This year, his younger brother graduated from NTU (Nanyang Technological University) in Chemistry, and I graduated from UCLA with my Ph.D. in space physics. Therefore, it was time to take a new portrait! I hadn’t purchased any of the graduation garb when I walked (it’s over $700 to get the fancy robe!) so all I had was the token hat and tassel. The rest of the outfit the studio provided (they had the official colors for NTU and NUS—National University of Singapore—where Junwen graduated from). I won’t have the portrait of us to share until it’s developed, but here’s Junwen and I outside after the photo-shoot in our graduation garb!
In our graduation garb for the Singaporean Chinese family portrait.
Although my Chinese friends have told me that photo shoots in Asia are super cheap, for just two photo-shopped portraits the package costs $400+. After learning that, I was super glad that I got my hair blown out to get rid of all the humidity-induced-frizz—if you’re investing into a portrait that will hang on the wall for seven years, you want to look good! 😛
Afterwards, the whole family went out for dinner (which is common in Singapore, since eating out is so affordable and is often cheaper than cooking yourself!) It was a delicious meal—the fish head curry was awesome, the duck was really nice with the sweet soy sauce, and the prawn rolls were surprisingly amazing because I expected them to be really fishy and shrimpy—instead they were just plain yummy!
Fish head curry
Prawn rolls, duck, and kang kong (a spicy/fishy/sour veggie dish)
What a great way to wrap up our Singaporean Chinese family portrait outing!