10 Things To Do Before Your Engagement Photo Session

You’re probably having mixed emotions when it comes to having your engagement photos taken. I’m sure on one hand, you’re feeling super excited to work with a professional photographer who can capture the love between you and your fiance and create heirlooms that you can treasure for the rest of your life. On the other hand, getting your pictures taken can be intimidating, awkward, and a little bit stressful.

Most of us don’t have a modeling background, so we don’t feel totally comfortable in front of a camera. What do you do with your arms? Which direction should you face? Chin up or chin down? It’s so much to worry about and you’re probably thinking if you do the “wrong” thing, your pictures will come out awful.

Look, I know exactly how you’re feeling. Everyone feels this way! It’s my job as a photographer to make you feel comfortable and direct you so there’s no second guessing on your part. In fact, I like to help couples prepare for their photos well before we even meet for the shoot. Here’s 10 simple things you can do before your session to ensure breathtaking photos:

Plan what you’re going to wear – This can take some time, so start early… not the night before. Generally, couples like to tie in some or all of their wedding colors, since the engagement photos are often used for save the dates or other wedding announcements. Resist the urge to match each other, and focus on coordinating your colors instead.

  1. Don’t shy from bold accessories – If you’re someone that expresses yourself with fun clothing or accessories, be sure to do so in your photos, too. Wear bold shoes, a scarf, a hat, or a statement necklace that really shows off your personality.
  2. A little goes a long with with patterns – Some people think you can’t do patterns at all in photos, but that’s not true. Stick with large patterns like florals, oversized gingham, or plaid. Stay away from small stripes, busy geometric patterns, or any kind of writing. If one of you is going with a pattern, make sure the other wears solid colors to avoid clashing.
  3. Empty those pockets – A lot of people, men specifically, forget to remove items from their pockets before their session, and I’ll just stop and remind them to do so. The outline of your keys, wallet, or cell phone can often be seen in photos if left in your pockets.
  4. Start with formal – If you’re doing two looks, always start with the formal look first. It’s much easier to transition into a more casual look, and this will ensure your hair stays exactly the way you want it for your dressier shots.
  5. Turn to Pinterest for ideas – If you’re totally stuck on what to wear for your engagement photos, head on over to Pinterest! You will find so many amazing ideas, your only trouble will be choosing one (or two) favorites.
  6. Watch the neckline, ladies – I have nothing against a beautiful low-cut top, but it does limit the poses I can do with you. You don’t have to wear a turtleneck, but just know that if you can’t lean comfortably, it will affect my ability to try certain things.
  7. Be comfortable – This is the last thing I’m going to say about clothes: just be comfortable. If you or your man never get dressed up, consider keeping it casual for your photos. Just because other people choose to do things one way doesn’t mean you have to. This session is all about you and staying true to who you are as a couple!
  8. Make that ring sparkle – Inevitably, we’re going to be doing some close-up shots of the ring, so make sure to give it a good cleaning before your engagement session! We want it to sparkle and look its best in your photos.
  9. Make a plan to be on time – Despite our best efforts, sometimes we just run late. I get it! However, I schedule engagement shots in a very short window of time to take advantage of the best lighting of the day. If you’ve never been to the location at that time of day, it might be good to do a test run to see exactly how long it’s going to take you with traffic.

BONUS TIP – Just relax! Like I said before, it’s my job to make you feel comfortable, to suggest poses, and to take the pressure off you during your engagement shoot. If you go into it thinking it’s going to be fun, it will be! Remember to be open minded and go with the flow. Enjoy your time together and think of it like a date. After your photos are done, you can go have dinner and a glass of champagne to celebrate this major step toward your future life together!

If you have any questions about preparing for your engagement session, please email me or call me. I am always happy to help, and I have lots of practice so I can definitely share some ideas with you or give you some inspiration if you need it!

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