Engagement Session Prep
I’m super pumped to shoot with you both in a few weeks! I wanted to give you an idea of what the shoot will be like so you know what to expect. When you two arrive, we’ll just walk around and chat for about 15 or so minutes before we start shooting so we can get to know each other a bit better! Once we start shooting, I’ll be directing you and helping you out, by telling you what to do, but it won’t be stiff and awkward. If you’re nervous, no need to worry, I’ll be there to help you out!
If you’ve still got questions after this, that’s cool! Just email me and we can chat.
I really love the in-between moments that happen, so even though I might direct you and pose you into certain actions, don’t feel like you have to stay still and rigid when my camera is up. Feel free to move around within a pose, laugh if you want to, etc. If I ask you to kiss, it usually isn’t the actual kiss that I’m looking for. Its the tension leading up to it, the smile or laugh afterward, and anything else that comes with it. So feel free to be yourselves! You will steer the mood for the session and I will totally play off of the energy of your relationship! If you’re calm, peaceful, relaxed and quiet, great! If you’re goofy, energetic, fun, and weird, that’s good too! If you’re a bird, I’m a bird.
I get asked this all the time: “what should we wear?” My best answer? Try to coordinate instead of match. Neutral colors photograph nicely. Neutral doesn’t have to mean only browns, I’m more referring to muted colors. Instead of bright green, try a forest green, replace a bright red with a deep maroon or burgundy; switch out yellow for mustard, try navy instead of blue. Earthy tones are amazing! Stay away from bright colors such as turquoise, hot pink, bright reds, bright yellows etc., these will reflect off of your skin and cause your skin to be the color of whatever bright color top you might be wearing. Avoid from neons and really tiny patterns, as they don’t show up well in photographs. If your other half is more comfortable in solid colors, try choosing something with a little texture. Below is a great example of coordinating neutral colors.
2. Preparing your groom
You know your guy better than anyone else. If he’s expecting to show up and take a few pictures of you and show off your ring, he will be in for a surprise when I tell him to “nuzzle”, “snuggle in close”, or ask him to sneak up behind you and play wrestle. Your engagement session is a time to be sweet and romantic, and show your love to the camera! I will be giving you guys some prompts that will show real emotions, and not just posted photos. Show him a few pictures on our facebook, just so he’s prepared for what he’s about to experience!
3. Take the Time of Day into Consideration & Be on Time
As a natural light photographer, lighting is super important. The best time of day to have your session is approximately an hour before sunset, which is referred to as the “golden hour.” This time before sunset gives you a gorgeous golden backlight and adds a soft, warm glow to your images. The start time for your session will be discussed a few days before your session, but your session won’t be confirmed until about 24 hours before hand (you know, weather and all that good stuff). Speaking of weather, you will want to take into consideration. Overcast skies make for good images as well, but having an engagement session at 1 in the afternoon will give you harsh lighting throughout your images. Dark, cloudy, and rainy days will make your images look dark and moody, which is also great! Remember, that since most sessions are done approximately an hour before sunset, it is super important to be on time. Take traffic and travel into consideration so you don’t miss out on any lighting or session time!
4. Hair and Makeup
Some brides will decide to have their makeup trial done for their engagement session so that they can get an idea of what it will look like in photos, before their wedding day. This is a great idea! It is by no means necessary to do it this way, and if you’re more comfortable in light makeup, then, by all means, you can do it yourself! Just remember to apply a little extra than you normally would for pictures. Whatever you decide, I want you to be your MOST comfortable. So do you!
All too often I hear “we aren’t very photogenic!” I work with couples daily, and it turns out all you need is a little guidance. I can tell you that often times it will take a good 15 minutes to warm up and get rid of that awkward or nervous feeling, so just relax and have a good time. I’ll bring along some music to help you guys relax and feel comfortable. It’s going to be a good time!
5. Choose a Place That Fits You as a Couple
Do you have a favorite place you frequent? Let’s go there! Whether is a place you guys both love, like the beach or a park, where you had your first date, or where the proposal happened, anywhere that’s sentimental to you as a couple and has a story behind it is a great spot! The location of your engagement shoot should be one you two are comfortable in. If you don’t have a favorite or sentimental spots, that’s totally fine too! There are so many great locations around the area, we can absolutely find something that you will like! We can show you locations of past sessions based on what your preferences are, such as open fields, city streets, parks, beaches, and anything in between. There are also some great areas outside of Volusia County, if you feel like being adventurous!
6. Consider the Visuals and Background
Whether you are going for a rustic or urban look, brainstorm some locations that have interesting backgrounds. Find some interesting architecture or brick walls for an urban feel or fields and trails for a more urban and country feel. If you choose a location that has too much foot traffic, this can result in your images getting photobombed by a passerby, which is totally cool if that’s what you want- I’m down for whatever. Based on the type of style you like, I am more than happy to recommend some great places!