I love engagement sessions. They are some of my favorite photos to capture, and I love seeing my couples photos printed and used during the wedding. Ahhhh… that’s the best.
Today I wanted to share some of my top tips that will help you beautiful brides prepare for your engagement session!
Prior to an engagement session I send out a survey to each of my couples. One of the very first questions is, “what do you like to do as a couple?” I ask this as majority of engagement sessions involve a fun activity the couple loves to do together. This could be a coffee date, a stroll in the National Harbor, or having fun in the park. It's about having fun and capturing timeless moments.
Tip #1: Having two outfits for your engagement session is ideal.
You’ll want to pick two outfits. A casual playful outfit for the first half, and a dressier option for more of the stylish images. A bonus is you will have more of a variety in your portraits. Typically, my couples and I shoot for 45 minutes just laughing, interacting, and having a great time. Then they get changed and we get romantic.
Tip #2: Don’t match, coordinate
Wear things that will show off your styles and personality. A great touch is to have your fiancé match the colors of your outfit or come up with a specific look you both like.
Pro Tip: Make sure to include each other in all the decision making. This way you know that your session will be what you both want.
Tip #3: Pick a location that is meaningful
Most couples are unsure as to where they would like to do their engagement session. Think about a place that you both love to visit. This could be the park where he proposed, your favorite ice cream shop, or a beautiful historic site in your city. As I have ventured throughout the entire state of Maryland. I know the amazing sweet spots.
Tip #4: Makeup and Mani’s
Having your makeup professionally done for your engagement session is essential to your look. It’s also great as you can use this time for your wedding make up trial. Make sure your nails are ready as we photographers love to get close up details of your engagement ring. Go big or go simple. It’s up to you and what suits your look.
Pro Tip: Most makeup artists will include your engagement make up in the wedding package. Make sure to inquire about this when looking for a professional makeup artist.
Don’t over think your posing. I walk all my couples through this at the start of the session. It’s my job to help them relax and enjoy the moment. This happens by explaining my shooting style. I have four elements; interaction, movement, romance, and physical touch. I’m capturing love stories and this can only happen if you are relaxed and enjoying being you. Focus on each other and the camera will focus on you.
Tip# 6: Think of the theme and plan accordingly for the season and time
If you want to have warm images with a nice sunset, you will want to plan your session two hours prior to the sun setting. This is what we photographers call golden hour. The lighting is so yummy. Getting married in the summer? Having an early spring engagement session is beautiful. If you are using your images for save the dates, you will want to plan your session about 3-4 months prior to when you plan to send out your official wedding invitations.
Dare to be different. Have your images printed in a photo book that you can have your guest sign next to your images. Or, print an image as a canvas print and have your guest sing it. Not only will you see the messages of your friends and family, but they will be with your images forever. Sweet!
Don't be afraid to be who you are. This really brings your images to life and enhances the your love story.
I love sharing my resources to help brides prepare and plan for their beautiful wedding day and engagement season. Grab my free wedding time line here that has helped my brides fully plan out their entire wedding days.
If you have any question about planning your perfect day with wedding photography. Feel free to reach out. I love to chat.
Happy wedding planning loves!