Congratulations, mazel tov, salut!
You’re on the most special path towards your wedding day. One of the stops you’ll make before you get there, though, is the engagement photo shoot. An engagement photo shoot is a special photo shoot with you and your partner in a beautiful, unique location. Engagement photos typically take place a few months before your wedding and are an intimate, relaxed and memorable experience. We will get to know each other before the “big day,” you’ll give me a glimpse into your personalities and I will give you some absolutely gorgeous photos that illustrate your love for one another.
How can you prepare for your engagement photo shoot? Truly there is not much preparation needed on your side of the camera as the goal of the session is to capture your authentic selves as stress free as possible. However, there are a few things you can do to help make this happen.
Location: your own
One of the most important ways to prepare for your engagement photo shoot is to choose a location that matters to you and your partner. I love helping with location ideas and can offer some wonderful suggestions, but if you and your partner already have an idea in mind that is wonderful too! Historically speaking, the best locations are those that are important to the couple or that you’ve had your eye on as a beautiful place you can picture yourselves in. For example, perhaps there’s a beautiful hiking trail you love to traverse on days off (how neat would it be to take photos, there, in heels instead or hiking boots?) or a park you love taking your dog to. Or maybe there is a really interesting building with textured façade you and your partner have always admired and would love to get your photos done in front of? The sky is truly the limit when it comes to the location for the engagement photo shoot, so have fun choosing it!
Try to schedule your engagement photo shoot on a day you are both relaxed to begin with, such as a day off from work or during a week that is on the slower side of obligations. Don’t schedule anything directly after your session except, perhaps, a nice dinner together. We want our time together to be unrushed and stress free.
The best engagement photos are the ones where the couple allows their true personalities to shine. Look at this session as a tabula rasa – a clean slate. Your engagement photos should be only about you and your partner. With that in mind, choose outfits that give a glimpse into who you are – whether casual or not. Your wedding photos will be a much more formal, so wearing something a little less fancy (if that’s what you prefer usually) can make for nice results. Conversely, if you lean towards the fancy side to begin with, by all means come in heels and a suit. I want to capture you in your best versions of yourself possible.
Dress to compliment
When figuring out what to wear for your engagement session, toss the idea of “matching” out the window. You want to dress just how your love is: complimentary, not identical! Dress to showcase each other, but not match. Colors that blend well together, but don’t necessarily match, are coral and brown, red and gray, pink and navy, silver and yellow and orange and pink. Ladies, remember to have your ring cleaned before the session in case I capture some close-ups of it and consider having your hair and makeup professionally done. The engagement photo shoot is a great day to have your wedding day makeup trial. The key with engagement photo hair and makeup is to still look like you, but the best version of you. Gentlemen, accessories that reflect your style and compliment your partners (like a bowtie, cowboy boots or cool hat) are a great way to let your personality shine in engagement photos.
Don’t worry about…
Your engagement photo shoot should be stress free. There are some things couples tend to worry about beforehand that they shouldn’t; the biggest being props and poses. Posing is not something you need to be concerned about. My job is to capture you and your partner at your absolute best and that is what I’ll do. If you’ve seen some poses you absolutely love online, by all means, feel free to share them with me or send them to me beforehand. However, this is not a “requirement.” The same is true of props (ex. signs, musical instruments, chalk boards, etc.) If you’ve seen or thought of a prop you truly can’t live without and think you’ll still love twenty-years from now, then let me know. If not, please don’t worry about it. The only thing required of you for your engagement photo shoot is to bring your beautiful, authentic selves.
Stash in your purse…
I know I just told you to only bring yourselves to the engagement photo shoot, but there are a few little things you may want to pack for “behind the scenes” to make the experience as comfortable and flawless as possible. If so, I recommend: bottles of water, a little snack if blood sugars run low, a handkerchief to dab glowing faces, hairbrush and comb (in case we get a windy day), makeup for touch ups (especially lipstick) and a pair of comfortable shoes to switch in and out of for walking (especially recommended if you plan to wear heels for the photos).
I hope you now feel prepared and excited for your engagement photo shoot. This is such an exciting stop on your matrimonial journey and I’m thrilled you’ve chosen me to capture it for posterity. Thank you!