Top Tips for Your Engagement Photo Shoot

Everyone takes photos at their wedding, but engagement photos can help you preserve additional treasured memories. Once you’ve chosen a wedding photographer, it’s worth discussing engagement photos as well. As with wedding photos, you’ll want to share your ideas with your photographer, so you get the best possible results. Let’s look at why engagement shoots are a good idea along with some tips for getting the best results.

Why Engagement Photos?
If you’re not sure about an engagement photo shoot, here are some reasons to consider it.

  • Engagement photos will provide you with valuable keepsakes to help you remember this magical period of your life and to pass along to future generations.
  • They provide more intimate photos than you’ll get at the wedding. Wedding photos are beautiful, but they come with lots of other people and a hectic environment. An engagement shoot is all about the couple and no one else. They provide an opportunity for you to express yourselves in a way that is special, and specific to the two of you.
  • It gives you a chance to work with your wedding photographer before the big event. They’ll get to know you and you’ll get familiar with their working style, which can help things to proceed more smoothly on the day of the wedding.

The following are the top guidelines to consider when planning your engagement shoot.

Find the Ideal Location
The location of a photo shoot will help to determine the look and feel of the photos. You may want to use multiple locations such as a natural outdoor scene and one indoors at your home or a public venue. Choose locations that have special meaning to you or that reflect your passions. If you enjoy nature, choose a scenic spot in a park or nature preserve. The restaurant, club or cafe where you had your first date is another spot to consider. Think of the places that have the most meaning to you and that help to define your relationship.

Couple hugging on mountain top at sunset

Choose the Right Time of Day
The time of day will have a big impact on your photo shoot whether it’s indoors or outdoors. Consider the natural lighting, which will depend on the time of year and the location. One of the best times to shoot is just before sunset, which is often referred to as the “golden hour” by photographers. This time of day is especially striking for outdoor shoots when you want to have a dramatic sunset in the background.

Another option, if you’re willing to rise before dawn, is to schedule the shoot during sunrise. Of course, when planning sunrise or sunset shoots, the weather may not always cooperate. It’s always best to have a backup plan for overcast or stormy conditions.

Dress For Comfort
When choosing what to wear and where to schedule the shoot, don’t overlook comfort. It will be hard to take natural and spontaneous looking photos if you’re wearing uncomfortable clothes, for example. If you’re planning to buy a new outfit for the shoot, you may want to reconsider. You’re more likely to feel relaxed wearing something you’re accustomed to.

When it comes to your outfit, make sure that everything is ready on the day of the shoot. If anything needs to be cleaned or ironed, make sure you do this beforehand. You don’t want to notice stains or wrinkles ten minutes before the shoot.

Couple holding hands on desert pathPrepare Your Appearance
In addition to your outfit, you also have to consider your hairstyle and makeup. Consider a trip to the spa or salon before the shoot. Consider how you want to look as well as the location. For example, hair color and makeup will appear differently depending on the lighting and time of day. If you’re going to use a stylist for your wedding, you may want to consult them earlier for the engagement shoot. Our company uses Signature Artists for hair and makeup who is also my wife (Lydia) which makes planning a lot easier if you’re interested.

Keep it Natural
Unless you’re a professional model or actor, you probably feel a bit self-conscious when someone is taking your photo. Most photographers will tell you that the best shots are the ones that appear natural and spontaneous. While this isn’t easy to do when you’re on a photo shoot, you can do your best to relax and put your attention on your partner and surroundings rather than the camera.

Looking directly at the camera will only make you more self-conscious. It’s better to do something else. Walk, dance, kiss, eat, drink, or engage in whatever activity is at hand. A good photographer will help you relax and set up the best shots. The best thing to keep in mind is to ignore the camera as much as possible.

Couple face to face desert sunsetFind the Right Photographer
If you want memorable engagement photos, make sure you choose a talented photographer who is willing to work with you and help you achieve your vision. The most convenient solution is often to use the same photographer for your wedding and engagement photos. If you want to find the ideal photographer for both your engagement and wedding photos, it’s especially important to do your research and book well in advance.

Get the Most Out of Your Engagement Shoot
Engagement photos will help you preserve precious memories from this unique part of your life. And as mentioned above, provides a trial run with your photographer, so you’ll all be better prepared for the wedding. If you plan it well, your engagement shoot can be a fun and hassle-free experience that will chronicle a very special time in your lives.

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