Your Engagement Session
Leading up to your engagement session I am sure you will experience a wide array of emotions. Excitement for a night out with your sweetheart, anticipation as to what to expect from the experience, maybe even a few nerves centered around getting in front of the camera. All of these feelings are completely normal! So take a moment to pause, breathe, and know that I’ve got you! As a wedding photographer here in Tucson, Arizona, I love educating my couples and guiding them through all the ins and outs of their wedding experience, and a big part of that experience is their engagement session. So today I am here with five tips that will steady any nerves you may have and get you and your fiance ready for a flawless engagement session experience.
Engagement sessions are such an amazing opportunity to capture you and your love in a more intimate environment. It is a chance to get dressed up, snuggle with your sweetie, and take some gorgeous photos highlighting your love story. Engagement sessions are such an integral part of your wedding experience. In many ways it is a practice run for the big day. As your photographer, the engagement session is a time where I can gathering key information that will help me best serve you on your wedding day. I am able to see how you two interact as a couple; how you naturally hold and love on each other. From there I am able to guide you into poses that are beautiful, authentic, and reflect you two as a couple. Engagement sessions help you both to relax in front of my camera, know what you can expect from me as your photographer, and get even more excited for you wedding day!
So without further delay… here are five tips for a flawless engagement session.
Thoughtfully plan out your wardrobe
Have you been eyeing a grogeous dress, but just have never had an occasion for it? Well, this is your chance to do it up! Your engagement session is a special occassion. Remember these photos will be setting the tone for your wedding day. You may be using these photos as a save the date or as part of your invitation suite, so it is worth noting that the wardrobe you chose should be reflective of the style, colors, and theme of your wedding.
Ladies- Say yes to the dress! Dresses and skirts tend to look the most stunning on camera because they really flatter the female body. I recommend long, flowy dresses or skirts because they eliminate the concern of being too short or too tight when trying to sit for example. They create organic movement in your photos and set a romantic tone. A few of my favorite places to find the perfect dress are Lulus, Anthropologie, BHLDN, & Rent the Runway.
Guys- I encourage you to wear a blazer or suit, dress shoes, and a tie. For men, dresswear is designed to flatter the male body, giving you that strong, broad physique. Keep in mind, it isn’t the price that is important, but rather the fit.
Remember, the point is not to be someone you are not, but to allow yourself to be a little fancy and enjoy the chance to be a model for a day. With that being said, I often suggest to my couples to bring three or four outfits and plan on wearing two. One of them being more dressy, and the other a bit more relaxed and casual.
Hair & Make Up
Now that you’ve picked out the perfect outfits to wear let’s talk about hair and makeup. Your engagement session is the perfect opportunity to schedule your trial run with your makeup artist fo the wedding day. There are so many incredible local Tucson make up artists that I have loved working with and I am happy to recommend. I can’t emphasize the huge difference professional hair and makeup makes in pictures. If I could have a do-over, this is one thing I would have definitely made sure to schedule when I got married.
It’s also important to consider your hair as well as his. Make sure your look is fresh, but try getting your cut/color at least a week in advance. This is especially important for him. A little thing that I will mention is that a day or so before, remind your man to do a quick clean up around the neck area. We will want to capture all the intimate snuggles, and you will both love your photos even more if the nape of his neck gets a quick touch up just before. And ladies, don’t forget to get those nails done (and ring cleaned) for all of those close-up ring shots!
When choosing the location for your engagement session, there are a few things to consider. One, if not the most important ingredient for gorgeous photos is LIGHTING. So choosing a location that will offer the most ideal light for that time of day is what will create epic, breathtaking images. This is where hiring a professional is key. As a professional I know where to place you in a location to create the dreamy, romantic photos you love. I also encourage you to think of somewhere that has significance to your love story. Now is the time to think outside of the box. Do you have access to a unique location that you love? Do you love to hike and have a favorite trail? Is there somewhere that you both feel inspired by? Your engagement session is the chance to get images at a location that you can’t be at on your wedding day, so the sky is the limit!
Get To Your Shoot Location A Little Early And Relax
I schedule my engagement sessions during golden hour, the two hours before sunset or after sunrise. Again, this has to do with lighting. The Arizona sun can often be harsh and it is important to plan your session when the sun will give us the best light. One of my biggest suggestions to ensure we get the best lighting for your session is giving yourself time the day of your shoot. Unless you are one of the rare few that feels completely comfortable in front of the camera, you may feel a little nervous about your engagement session. The last thing you want to do is arrive the moment you’re suppose to start and feel as if you have just ran a marathon because your heart is racing and you are trying to hurry and buckle your shoes. It is worth setting aside some extra time to get to your session. This will ensure that any traffic hiccups or last minute outfit changes won’t stress you out. This is a day to celebrate the two of you! It is going to be fun! By getting there a few minutes early, you can relax, listend to some music, and be ready to go on time so that you don’t miss out on any of that amazing light!
Let Go And Trust
Know that there is no “right” way to do things. Your love story is unique and beautiful! The way you pull her in tight, the way you snuggle into his neck, the way you look into each other’s eyes after you kiss- all of it is perfect! Trust that I am here to guide you through your session. I will lead you through different poses to encourage you to open up and play games and be flirtatious with one another. Hold hands…nuzzle in close…whisper sweet words…and by all means steal kisses. This is the time to celebrate you and your love! So let the nerves go and trust that I will be there to capture all the sweet moments.
Looking for more engagement session inspiration? Hop on over to my pinterest for more pretty things…