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Preparing for the Engagement Session

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With engagement season in full swing, our calendar is filling up, and it’s my favorite time of year where we get to spend lots of time getting to know our couples for the new year!

Anticipating your engagement session can be a mix of emotions for many people – excited, nervous and maybe even overwhelming. You may be thinking, what will I wear? What if I smile weird? How will I do my hair? And the list could go on! Tyler and I even get nervous sometimes when we’re on the other side of the camera, so I want to reassure you that it’s totally normal to feel nervous! So I wanted to give some pointers for preparing for your engagement session to help put those nerves at ease.

So you book us for your wedding, and now it’s time to plan the engagement session? What do we do?

Shortly after booking, we’ll send you a questionnaire that helps us get to know your story better, and often times it’ll inspire us when recommending engagement session locations. Once we get a feel for what kind of location you want, we’ll suggest locations. Some locations will have restrictions on what hours you can shoot there, but if not, we’ll always be shooting in the last two hours of the day when the light is prettiest outside. During the winter, when the sun sets around 5:30, this might mean we have to pick a weekend to avoid cutting into work, but in the summer, the sun sets much later so we can normally start as late as 6:00 or 7:00.

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After we choose the date and location, it’s time to talk about outfits. You’ll have time for one outfit change. If you’re not sure where to start, we have a few recommendations to help as you shop your closet! :)

  • Guys look best in full length slacks and close toed shoes.
  • Heels elongate a woman’s body.
  • Coordinating your outfits within a color scheme always looks better than matching. You don’t walk around looking like twins on the daily, so why should you suddenly in your photos? ;)
  • We recommend dressing it up in at least one of your outfits, you’ll look sharp and classy – and you’ll feel confident in your bold look!
  • Fun pops of color always look amazing, but definitely stay away from busy patterns. If one of you wears a pattern, it’s best for the other to wear a more neutral to tone it down. And when wearing patterns, we recommend larger patterns since small ones don’t photograph as well.
  • Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize! Statement necklaces, scarves, and hats add so much personality! So find something that’s you and rock it!

Make sure you love what you’re wearing and that it flatters your body. Posing is important, and we will do everything we can to make you look your best, but if you hate your outfit, you most likely won’t like your photos as much as you could! Additionally, if you feel like you look great, you’ll exude that confidence, and you’ll photograph great as well!

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Okay, so you’ve got your outfits ready, but now what else can you expect?

  • I always say, come ready to have fun. It’s your job to have fun, and our job to make you look good! So be ready to flirt, hug, kiss, and be playful!
  • Know that we don’t expect you to model for us. We will guide you through each pose and before you know it, you’ll be a pro! Remember, confidence sells! ;)
  • Know that the first 15 minutes is always the hardest part. EVERYONE needs time to warm up the camera, so don’t worry if you feel nervous at first!
  • Most of the time, Tyler comes with me to engagement sessions, but I’ll take the lead on shooting and directing. If you’ve got a purse or bag with a change of clothes, he’ll happily carry those for you! And he’s great at standing in as a model to demonstrate a pose with me.
  • Expect to hear me laughing and talking along with you. I promise not to leave you hanging in silence or wondering if you’re doing the right thing. For example, one of our brides described her session as more like hanging out with friends than a photo shoot, so expect a lot of energy and fun! This photo right here below perfectly captures what I’m like at a session!

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Some other things to think about:

  • Consider professional hair and makeup for her. This certainly isn’t required, but I’ve noticed throughout the years that girls who pay for professional hair and makeup often exude more confidence! We know lots of great hair and makeup artists in the area and would love to recommend one to you!
  • Spend time browsing our blog and portfolio. Brides typically spend way more time browsing our site than their fiances, but guys may have no idea what to expect because they’ve not seen as much of our work as their fiance. So take some time and make sure both of you have looked through our blog. This will help y’all get a feel for our poses and better know what to expect.
  • Girls, clean your ring & paint your nails. It should be of no surprise that your ring and therefore fingers will definitely be starring in some of the photos, so don’t forget to paint them and get your ring extra sparkly!

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like The Getting Ready Room or Creative Ideas for a Memorable Exit!

And if you’re looking for some great engagement sessions to browse, may we introduce you to Nicole & Daniel and Gina & Austin!

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