The engagement is typically the shortest and fastest part of your relationship with your special someone. You may be debating about whether to have an engagement photo session.
The engagement session provides an opportunity to create beautiful images to use on your engagement announcements, save the dates, in a guest signature book, and other mementos on your wedding day. In this blog, I we are going to take step by step look at the engagement session with your wedding photographer.
The first decision many people debate in an engagement session is who should be the photographer: a family member or friend versus a photographer? Many wedding photographers offer engagement sessions as a part of their wedding day collections. This session with your chosen wedding photographer can be an eye opening experience. The engagement session can be considered a trial session with your wedding photographer. It will give you the opportunity to learn how the photographer works, poses, shoots, and the process for getting your images once they are edited. Once your wedding day comes, you will be more comfortable with your wedding photographer, which will allow you to relax, help eliminate camera nerves, and be yourself.
The location you choose for your engagement session should be somewhere different than where you plan to take your wedding images. This will help separate the time periods in your life and allow for a completely different look in your images. You do not want to have your engagement images look the exact as your wedding images. It is ideal if the location has ample shade. Avoiding direct sunlight in photos will help provide you better images. Bride St. Louis Magazine put together a list of the best locations for engagement sessions in St. Louis. Here is the link for the list http://www.bridestlouis.com/37-great-engagement-shoot-locations/
The best time of day for portraits is called the “golden hour.” The golden hour is the time period that is shortly after sunset and shortly before sunset, which produces a gorgeous, warm, golden light that is very flattering. When I do my engagement sessions, I always shoot early in the morning or late in the evening. My preference is the evening, as I feel you have more room to work with as far as light. In the morning, the sun can quickly get to a point high enough in the sky that makes it difficult to work due to unwanted/unavoidable shadows.
When planning clothes for the shoot, remember to dress to impress. This will really bring attention to your engagement photographs. Depending on the length of your engagement session, you will want to bring an outfit change or two to add variety to your engagement images. However, be mindful of the time you need for the outfit change. If you have a time constraint on your engagement session, you could significantly cut in to your photography time if you do not consider your outfit change. I also recommend to avoid picking out clothing that has logos or designs on them, as this will draw attention away from your facial expressions and to the logo or designs on your clothing. Take time to iron or steam your clothes. Most wedding photographers will not photoshop out wrinkles in clothing. If your clothes wrinkle easily, I suggest bringing them with you on a hanger in the car and changing into them once you arrive at the photo shoot location.
Once you get all your images back and you decide which images you like, it is time to decide what to do with them. A lot of couples send out save the dates or engagement announcements with a couple of the images. Some couples will also order a print or two to hang in their homes. One of my favorite products I offer is a wedding day guest signature book with your engagement images outlined on each page. After the wedding is over you look back at not only your engagement photos, but also read notes from your wedding guests. I offer a guest signature book as a part of my engagement packages and couples seem to really love them. A proof book another favorite of mine and a great item to place on a table in your home to flip through when you have visitors.
Your engagement is a great time of your lives together that should be documented. Doing your engagement session with your wedding photographer gives you an opportunity to learn about your wedding photographers process. It also allows you to be more comfortable with your wedding photographer, which will help create natural looking expressions and remarkable images. If you should have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. You can also take a look at my other tips and tricks at https://andrewjosephportraits.com/five-tips#five-tips. I would love to hear about your wedding vision and help you capture all the specials moments of you engagement time and wedding.