You’re engaged! You’ve shared the good news with friends and family, googled dream venues and dresses, and have a long list of ideas for the big day. But first, it’s time for your engagement photo session! Let’s talk strategy!
Whether you plan on using them for your Save The Date cards, invitations, or simply announcing to the world that you said yes, here are five tips to prepare for your session and make sure you get the most out of your engagement photos.
The location you select will set the overall tone for your engagement photos while also giving a peek into you as a pair. Pick a location that matches your personalities and personifies who you are as a couple. Think about what you like to do together, the times it’s just the two of you being your most natural and comfortable selves, then build an idea that reflects that.
Incorporating your favorite activities is a great way to make sure your pictures feel like an accurate reflection of who you are as a couple. Are you homebodies that spend most weekends on the couch, all snuggled up with snacks, the pooch, and Netflix? Don’t be afraid to do a living room shoot in your comfy pants. Have a favorite coffee shop you visit every Sunday morning or a hiking trail where you spent a good chunk of your first summer together? Sentimental spots often make great locations for your shoot.
If you’re unsure or can’t narrow it down to your favorite spot, ask your photographer for tips or suggestions. We’ve scouted tons of places, have lots of ideas that would make a great backdrop for your pics, and will have suggestions on what will work best for the season and the time of day of your session.
You’ve picked out the perfect location and decided on those perfect coordinated outfits, but you’re unsure about hair and makeup. Don’t fret! Consider professional hair and makeup for your shoot. Not only do you deserve to be pampered, but this serves as a good test run for the artist you may have in mind for your wedding day. Because this is their field of expertise, your hair and makeup artist can help guide you on what looks and styles will photograph well in your chosen setting. What we see with the naked eye and what wears well in photos aren’t always the same. Whether you like a more natural look or want to go full glam, working with a professional will ensure that you look your best in your engagement photos.
Good preparation is key to looking and feeling your best for your session. That goes for your ring too! You’ll want those close-ups of your engagement ring shining bright. Having it cleaned professionally beforehand will leave it dazzling and ready for its closeup. The good news is that most jewelry stores will clean and polish your ring at no cost.
Now that your ring is dazzling, it’s your turn. The best prep to ensure you’re looking and feeling your best is to get a good night’s sleep before your shoot. You’ve spent the last couple of weeks focused on skincare and staying well-hydrated so you’re looking good, but lack of sleep can make all that preparation a waste. Give yourself plenty of time to unwind the night before so you can look and feel well-rested in the morning. You don’t want dark circles and undereye bags because you stayed up a little too late. Cut back on the caffeine the day before to ensure you’re in bed nice and early. Waking up looking and feeling refreshed will start your day off on the right foot.
Our little furry loved ones make a great addition to our engagement photos and often result in some great candid shots with lots of natural laughs. Many couples love to incorporate their dogs into their engagement pictures and they always make a fun addition while personalizing your session a bit more. Be sure to check with your chosen location in advance to make sure dogs are allowed.
Our pups won’t be in every shot though, so be sure to bring someone else along to take care of your pet while you two are having your photos snapped. Taking your pup to the dog park to run around a bit before the shoot is a good way to make sure they burn off some energy so they’re more likely to sit nicely for photos. After all, they want to look their best too! Their humans got engaged!
The most important thing you can do to get the best photos possible is to simply relax. The less you stress about the shoot or getting that one perfect picture, the more fun you’ll have. That enjoyment will translate in your photos. Breathe, don’t be afraid to move around, laugh, crack some jokes, and lean into the moment. You’re not a model and no one expects you to be hitting pose after pose. Engagement photos are about capturing you two as a couple, together, reveling in the love you have for each other, and giving the world a peek into who you are when you’re at your best with one another.
Take a few deep breaths, trust your photographer (we’re here to make you look and feel your best!), and enjoy the moment. Afterall, it’s practice for your wedding day!