So you’re looking to book us as your wedding photographers (yay!), and you’ve noticed mention of an “engagement session”. Are you wondering what the heck that is and what you need to do to be ready for it? Well, keep reading as we’re going to explain how to prepare for an engagement session and what’s involved.
I'm sure you already know, but an engagement session, sometimes called a pre-wedding shoot, is a couple’s portrait session that happens between the time you book us and your actual wedding day. It usually involves a couple of hours in a pre-agreed location (we have tons of recommendations) with you, us, and our cameras. We’ll spend a couple of hours getting to know you, telling you a little about us and showing you exactly how we work. Consider it a sort of practice session for your big day!
Like we said, it’s like a practice session which gives you some idea of how we work before the main event itself. Most people don’t commonly book professional photo shoots on a regular basis and, for many couples, the first time they ever have pro pictures taken is on their wedding day! That can raise some alarm bells and cause a bit of anxiety for some people. And a lot of people complain that they feel awkward in front of a camera because they’re not sure how to pose or stand, or where to put their hands when the camera is pointing their way (the hands thing is just about EVERYBODY, so don’t feel bad!). Ultimately, having an engagement session can help to reduce these worries.
Having the session with just the two of you, in your regular clothes and in an informal and relaxed setting can help show you that it’s not the scary experience you might be expecting. It takes the pressure and stress out of standing in front of the camera for the first time on your wedding day. In fact, we know you’ll be pros when the time comes after you’ve done an engagement session with us! It’s also a really great way for us to all get to know each other a little bit. You’re going to be seeing a lot of us on your wedding day, so if you can feel happy and relaxed around us because we’ve all gotten to know one another, then that makes our job so much easier. Yep, totally selfish reasons!
Also, why should you only have gorgeous photos of the two of you in your wedding outfits? An engagement session means you’ll have professional portraits of the two of you together in your everyday (but nice!) clothes. Consider it a lovely treat as part of the whole wedding photography experience!
Here are our top 6 pieces of advice:
Every couple is completely unique. You’ve got your own experiences, stories, likes and dislikes– no two people are ever the same. So your engagement shoot should totally reflect that! Choose a location that means something to both of you – like the place you had your first date, or a part of town you love visiting. These are just a few suggestions but, if you’re not sure, talk to us and we’ll be happy to give you more ideas. We know Detroit incredibly well and can recommend a ton of great locations that are ideal for photos!
And if you want to make it really personal by bringing your dog, we are here for that! We’ll never
say no to your pooch coming along!
Deciding what to wear for something like this can be tough for some. Our best advice is to stick with outfits that make you feel amazing and are comfortable to wear.
We wouldn’t advise going all matchy-matchy (unless you’re that kind of couple!), but maybe wear complementary colors or patterns if the mood grabs you. If you’d like some outfit inspiration, check out Pinterest or an app like Polyvore that’ll give you lots of ideas for what to wear.
Your engagement session is also a great time to get your hair and makeup trials booked in. You’ll have somewhere to test your glamorous look, and you’ll look like your best self for your pictures. That’s a win-win situation, right?
Think about where you’ll be having the shoot and what you’ve got planned. If there’s a lot of walking involved, you might want to wear shoes that are comfortable to stand around in for a decent length of time.
We’re always keeping an eye on the weather apps and watching what the weather is doing. If there’s a good chance of rain, we’ll happily reschedule your session so no one has to get wet!
But don’t get totally obsessed with recreating the perfect shots you see there. In other words, trust your photographers. We know what we’re doing and we promise we’ll get you awesome pictures that’ll totally blast any Pinterest photos you’ve seen out of the water…because they’ll be totally unique to the two of you!
On the day of the shoot itself, we’ll be chatting a lot with you. We’ll ask you questions and get you to tell us stories about the two of you. There’ll be a lot of times where you won’t even be looking at the camera as we take photographs.
Focus on each other and on enjoying the time together. Couples don’t actually get a dedicated amount of time in the run-up to their wedding day to just be together with nothing else going on. Make the most of this time!
We know this can be easier said than done but, we promise, we’re going to be working especially hard to make you feel comfortable in front of our cameras. Because that makes our job easier and we want you to love the photographs we take for you!
Ultimately, an engagement session isn’t just a “job” that needs ticking off the list. It’s an opportunity to get some lovely photos of you both, to get to know your (awesome) wedding photographers and to spend some much needed downtime together in amongst all the stresses of planning your big day. Take a breath!
Just sit back (or, ya know, stand) and enjoy being in each other’s company while we capture photos of you two crazy lovebirds!
DETROIT BASED HUSBAND AND WIFE WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY TEAM.
WE BELIEVE THAT LOVE IS LOVE, REGARDLESS OF ITS SHAPE OR FORM. WE AIM TO PROVIDE A SAFE, INCLUSIVE AND DIVERSE SPACE FOR ALL OUR COUPLES.