I think the term “engagement photos” is really misleading, because it makes it sound like the session is all about your engagement. It makes me imagine photos where the engagement ring is in focus and you two are out of focus kissing in the background. (My least favorite photo to make.) 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.
Now, I exclusively refer to “engagement sessions” as Get To Know You Portrait Sessions, because that is really what you’re doing: getting to know your photographer and her style, and getting familiar with being photographed as a couple.
Okay, enough said. Read on for more tips on how to prepare for your Get to Know You Session!
So your wedding photographer has offered you an engagement session and you did a little research and have decided that engagement photos are really worth it! You’ve chosen a location, booked a time, and now are totally dreading it. What now?
The majority of people hate having their photo taken, so having photos taken while you’re trying to appear romantic and sweet is even worse! But remember, shaking out these nerves and getting used to being photographed as a couple are the two primary reasons WHY to have a Get to Know You Session in the first place! Getting used to the camera will make your wedding day a snap. So just sit back, relax, and enjoy the awkwardness.
More specifically, here are some tips to help you prepare (mentally and physically) for your Get to Know You 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, during your session you may walk a lot, sit on the ground, climb a tree or do whatever other wacky thing you come up with. 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?