I always offer engagement photos to every couple who hires me as their wedding photographer. But I hate the term “engagement photos.” It makes it sound like the session is all about your engagement. In my mind, this session is all about getting to know your photographer and her style, and getting familiar with being photographed as a couple.
That is why I call “engagement sessions” as Get To Know You Portrait Sessions. I insist that this session isn’t about your engagement, it’s about YOU TWO AS PEOPLE! And it’s about getting familiar with being photographed.
The majority of people hate having their photo taken, so getting used to being photographed before your actual wedding day is the primary reason WHY to have a Get to Know You Session! Getting used to the camera will make your wedding day a snap.
Here are some tips on how to prepare – physically and mentally – for your Get to Know You Portrait Session.
1. Wear comfortable clothes. This is a tip that I offer to all of my clients, no matter the shoot. If you feel comfortable, then you look comfortable, and that is critical to great photos. Also, Get to Know You Sessions are informal and unposed. During your session you may walk a lot, sit on the ground, walk on the beach, or do whatever kinds of things you do in real life. So wear clothes you like and that are comfy to you.
2. Don’t try to match – just compliment. I am not a huge fan of matching clothing for portraits, EVER. You and your partner are two separate, independent people. And while you may be joining your lives in marriage, you certainly don’t need to wear matching clothes. Think complimentary: blues and greens, yellows and oranges, blue and khaki, gray and black. You’re a grown up – you know what looks good.
3. Embrace the awkwardness. I assure you that the first 10-15 minutes will feel super awkward as you try to be “natural” and “relaxed” while being photographed. But the awkwardness always gives way to laughter and cute moments as you start relaxing. So let yourself be nervous and just accept that it’s gonna be weird. You have to work through the awkwardness!!
4. Channel what you love most about your relationship. The best “engagement photos” aren’t actually about your engagement; they are about you two, as two people in love and looking forward to the next chapter of your life together. I want to make you photos that reflect your relationship in all of its silliness and sweetness.
5. Remember that it’s all just for fun. I offer these sessions to my wedding clients because I want to hang out with them, get to know them before their wedding, and have fun doing it. There really is no pressure. Hopefully the session is as fun as it is productive, and as sweet as it is hilarious. No matter what, you’re guaranteed to get photos that you love, that show you and your partner being uniquely you.
What could be better?