One of the questions that usually comes up in our initial meetings with couples is “What if we’re not comfortable in front of the camera?” We hear this concern so much! In all honesty, MOST people aren’t super comfortable in front of the camera. We wanted to address this concern by adding an engagement session to our wedding collections in 2021 and beyond. This blog post explains WHY we now do an engagement session for all of our clients and how it makes photography on your wedding day so much more seamless and stress-free! There are so many great reasons to do an engagement session! We rounded up six of them below.
1. PRACTICE BEING IN FRONT OF THE CAMERA
As we mentioned, for most people professional photography is a new experience. Even if you had something like your head shots taken for work, it’s quite different from being photographed as a couple. So getting some practice is super useful for your wedding day photography to be seamless and stress-free. Consider the fact that most women do a trial for their hair and make up to make sure they’re happy with it on their wedding day. Same idea here. If we do an engagement session together prior to your wedding, you’re going to see what it’s like to be in front of the camera (we promise, it’s not that scary!) and you’ll know what to expect on your wedding day. It helps to calm the nerves. Also, it helps build that relationship of trust with your photographer that’s really crucial for authentic images.
2. GET TO KNOW YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER
Let’s face it, your photographer is going to be there for your entire wedding day, from when you’re getting dressed to when you’re dancing the night away. It helps to get to know your photographer so that you feel comfortable with them. We want to be a joyful and calming presence on your wedding day. Spending some time together during your engagement session helps so much! By the time your wedding day comes, ideally, you should feel like a friend is there to take photos rather than just another vendor.
It also helps the photographers because we get to watch how you interact, what makes you laugh and how you two like to spend your time together. Every couple is different with their energy levels and how they express affection. It really helps the photographer to get to know you as a couple in a relaxed setting to document you more authentically on your big day.
3. DOCUMENT THE TWO OF YOU “IN YOUR ELEMENT.”
Our goal for your engagement session is to make it truly about you. We’ll work together to find some locations that are meaningful to you and showcase this awesome time in your relationship!
We can photograph you at home, in your neighborhood, at your favorite park, in nature, at your favorite coffee shop or record store. You might move to a different home/neighborhood/city after the wedding, so this is a chance to document this unique moment in your life, the start of your life together!
If you have pets and they can’t come to your wedding, here’s where they steal the spotlight! Cuddle on your couch with your cats (if they let you!), take your dog to your favorite park. This results in a more casual set of photos that show the real you and what your relationship is about.
4. GET FRESH PROFESSIONAL PHOTOS FOR YOUR SAVE THE DATES AND WEDDING WEBSITE
We hear it a lot from couples that they barely have any photos of them together (excluding some selfies!) It’s fantastic to have fresh photos of you to use for your Save the Dates, wedding website, reception decor, etc. Here are some other ideas on how to incorporate your engagement photos in your reception decor. You can display your engagement prints and/or incorporate them in heirloom family photo displays featuring your parents’ and grandparents’ wedding photos. You can have us design a guest book with your engagement photos that can be used as a sign in book for your reception. We offer modern minimal guest book design with space around the photos for your guests’ well wishes!
It’s also great to have fresh photos to update your Facebook and Instagram and send them to your parents. It makes your parents very happy, trust us))) We even make sure to take a few great head shots of each of you separately so you have an awesome portrait of yourself.
5. HAVE FLEXIBILITY WITH SCHEDULING, TIMING AND LOCATIONS
Another great reason to have an engagement session is that for your engagement photos, we can have all the flexibility we need! We can take advantage of the best time of the day to photograph (golden hour!) We can pick your favorite season (We actually recommend doing your engagement session in a different season so that your engagement photos have a different feel and look from your wedding photos). We have an option to reschedule if the weather is terrible. We can plan on having multiple locations that fit your style and aesthetic.
On your wedding day, we can’t always be this flexible. If it ends up raining, we’re going to have to roll with it. We’re going to have a limited time to do your portraits, which also means limited locations. After all, your wedding day is so much more than just a photo shoot! We don’t want to take you away from celebrating with your loved ones.
6. RECONNECT AND SPEND SOME QUALITY TIME WITH EACH OTHER!
And finally, an engagement session is a perfect excuse to take some time to just be with each other! Our lives are busy and it’s easy to get caught in day-to-day hustle. What an engagement session really is is a fun date that you’re going on together (well, and letting us tag along!) This photo shoot is an experience that’s meant for you to connect and be in the moment.