Did you just get engaged? Look at that shiny new ring… Congrats! Did you book an engagement session with me? EVEN BETTER! Right now you’re probably floating high on cloud nine with excitement for your new engagement, wedding planning, and the thought of getting to spend forever with the love of your life! All-things-weddings are completely new to you, or maybe this is your second time around. Even so, you likely want to know what an engagement session is, and how to get ready for it.
Why have an engagement session
Your engagement session is an exciting, fun, and exhilarating opportunity to enjoy your partner while getting to know your photographer better before the big day. We’ll spend some time chatting about how you two met, what she does to make you laugh, and what he does he do that gets on your nerves – but always manages to make you laugh anyway! When we’re done, you can also use these photos on your wedding planning website and save-the-dates! It’s recommended that save-the-dates are sent 4-6 months before the wedding date, and formal invitations 8 weeks before the wedding date. If I have the honor of being your wedding photographer, I’ll contact you about 7-8 months before the wedding date to talk about engagement photos.
TIPS TO START
Where do we begin?! For some couples this is their first time ever having professional photos taken. It can be overwhelming, maybe scary and I want to prepare you as much as possible for a fun and easy shoot! These are mostly for the bride but read them together to get started!
- I always suggest having your nails done for every session! We will be taking bunches of photos of that gorgeous ring and want to make sure everything is cleaned and polished!
- Speaking of the ring, make sure to take the ring to the cleaner 5 days before your session! This is normally complimentary at the place of purchase!
- Photography captures colors slightly different than how we see it, because of this I heavily recommend having your makeup professionally done for your photos! There are certain ways a professional can apply it that photographs differently than your every day makeup! This is a great time to work with someone you are vetting for your big day!
- Professional hair is option however if you don’t love to style your own hair take this as another opportunity to treat yourself, and then go out on a date after our sesion!
5. Eye brow or facial waxing can cause some redness to your skin so make sure to have this done at minimum 3 days prior to your session.
Choosing a Location
Because this session is about the two of you, and your love story, I encourage you to select location that’s meaningful to you. Maybe it’s the place you went on your first date. Maybe it’s your favorite park to go for walks, or your favorite spot to grab coffee. Or what if it’s just a place you really admire? If you haven’t selected your location(s) start with thinking about important locations to the two of you. Make some suggestions and I’ll help narrow them down. Check out my 3 breathtaking locations in Seattle for engagement Sessions!
This session is about the two of you. GET CREATIVE. Is eating pizza together all you do? Let’s head to a local pizza shop! Think out of the box! Once you select a location make sure to call and see if they require permission or a permit to shoot there. If so, it’s very important to take care of this in advance.
Want to travel? Let’s do it! When you decide on a city, state or country let me know and we can work out the details!
What to Wear?
Try to dress comfortably and confidently. This means that if you feel like it’s too tight, or you have to sit or walk a certain way, or constantly need to adjust your clothes to make them work, it’s likely not the best outfit choice. When having your photos taken, the last thing you want to feel is insecurity. So, why not look your best? Get formal! Take out that dress, heels, button-down shirt, and dress-shoes! You’ll feel so elegant, beautiful and handsome walking around in your finest digs and this will add an extra boost of confidence. Wanna switch it up? I recommend bringing a casual change of clothes for two looks. No matter where we go, we’ll likely be walking a bit. So bringing a pair of flats, and just the essentials along will make this a fun and easy process. You won’t want to be carrying a duffel bag and full wardrobe.
Focus on only one of you wearing a pattern at a time (i.e. If you wear a floral dress, your fiancé should wear a solid shirt. If they wear a checkered shirt, you should wear a solid dress!). Aim for pastel and light colors – light blues, pinks, yellows, whites. They photograph better than dark colors. Don’t try to MATCH! Pick outfits and accessories that coordinate instead.
If you’re able, wear heels! It makes us stand up taller, which makes us look longer and slim! – who doesn’t want to look that?
You’re welcome to have 1 or 2 outfits for the session – one casual, one dressy is my suggestion! One outfit MUST be dressy. If you do two outfits make sure to arrive wearing your casual outfit first.
Hair & Makeup : Be Photo- Ready!
Do you want to look your very best for your photos? Having a professional do your hair and make-up can make a world of a difference on the overall appearance of your photographs. Clients that use a professional for their hair and make-up tend to be more satisfied with their final product. If it’s your first time using a makeup and hair stylist, take the opportunity to feel pampered and special in a whole new way. This is a also a chance to try a make-up trial with your wedding makeup artist.
- A clean and classy application (no harsh eye shadow, foundation, or eyebrows) of make-up can really soften your skin and accent your facial features Sometimes, visiting a makeup counter at a mall can do the trick! If you’re doing your makeup yourself, make sure it matches your skin tone and the rest of your body.
- Ladies, please have your hair styled and maintained prior to your photo session
- Fellas, please groom your beards or facial hair and get a fresh haircut to look sharp!
Engagement sessions are my absolute favorite. Ready to book your engagement session with ? Let’s talk!
Many of these tips are from a guide by my mentor, Michelle Harris of M Harris Studios.