You've selected your date, booked your venue, and shared with your friends, now it's time to choose your photographer. You'll probably spend more time with your photographer than any other vendor, so always make sure it's a good fit! If you love their images, can laugh over coffee, and have that "fuzzy" feeling inside, book them. Book them right now! A huge part in wedding photography is being comfortable in front of the camera with the photographer of your choice. Also, a great wedding photographer will always be with you every step of the way to ensure you have amazing images you can look back on for the rest of your life.
While seeming like two completely different stages of your wedding planning, the engagement session and wedding day go hand in hand. Your engagement session will help make your wedding day images even more amazing! Many photographers will include this in their wedding collections.. Having this time with your photographer will really allow you two to get comfortable in front of the camera. This way, when the wedding day finally comes around you will know what to expect. You'll be more comfortable to enjoy moments together during bride and groom portraits and you'll be dying to introduce the bridal party your trusty photographer!
Since proposal season is upon us and I have a "thing" for making lists, I've wrote out some of my favorite tips for engagement sessions! I share these early on with my amazing couples and it helps deliver amazing images that they'll have for years to come!
1. Choose a location that you LOVE and feel comfortable in. I often suggest you choose a location that is sentimental to you, maybe a place where you had a first date or first kiss. If you don't necessarily have "a spot" then choose a type of location that you like to go together. A setting where you two can feel like yourselves, such as a beach, park, or in the city. You can visit some of my favorite locations here!
2. You should feel beautiful and confident! I often suggest that the bride to be gets her hair and makeup trial done for the engagement session. This way you can have you can cross off two items on the to-do list. By having your trial you can see how your wedding day makeup would photograph, which is awesome in prepping for the wedding! Also, wear clothes that make you feel confident. Make sure you are comfortable and true to your style. Engagement sessions often include two outfit changes, personally I suggest one casual and one more formal, this way you'll have plenty of variety! If you've chosen a photographer that you really mesh with, then feeling confident and comfortable will be so easy!
3. Make sure you're on time! Like myself, most lifestyle wedding photographers depend on natural light for their engagement sessions. The light changes throughout the session and if you're late it could hinder the feel of your images and even cut your session short if it gets too dark!
4. Include the groom in the engagement session planning. Sure you've both looked at venues, visited the florist, picked a coordinator but it's really important he sees your vision for the engagement session. I always suggest you look through your photographer's engagement portfolio together and see what you both like together! It really helps get the groom excited for the pre-wedding photo shoot!
5. Interact. Interact. Interact! A huge aspect of the engagement session is to showcase the love you two have together through gorgeous images. You should always feel at liberty to share emotion and affection. I always encourage movement and interaction, and give more actions than poses, it's a huge part of being a lifestyle photographer!
6. Have a good time! Tell jokes, laugh together, share a smooch even without your photographer telling you to do so. Aside from delivering a couple's images, a huge part of the experience is having fun!
So there it is, my favorite tips for a successful engagement session! You should always opt for an engagement session with your wedding photographer. Just remember, it will boost your confidence, comfort, and trust with your photographer.
Happy wedding planning! :)