Tips to prepare for an engagement session

You found the perfect partner! You just got the perfect ring. But, does posing for engagement photographs give you butterflies? It’s normal, and here are a few tips to help you prepare for the perfect photographs.

Talk to your partner about your goals for engagement pictures. Do you want to celebrate and remember this exciting time in your life? Are you planning to send out personalized save the date cards? Do you want to announce your engagement in the newspaper? Do you have lots of relatives who haven’t met your partner in-person yet and would enjoy seeing photographs of the two of you together before your big day? Getting involved with the process will help your fiancé enjoy and look forward to the photography session. It may not be as delicious as cake tasting, but it doesn’t have to be a chore.

Find a photographer whose style you enjoy.

Check out the photographs on their website. Are they classic and traditional or spontaneous and fun? What types of photographs resonate with you? Can you see yourself in any of the photographs you’ve viewed on their website? Are you excited to work with the photographer?

Talk with the photographer about the location for your session. Many engagement sessions take place on-location and outside the studio. Ask the photographer where they are willing to travel and if there are any fees for on-location sessions. Think about places that will be meaningful for you. Where did you go on your first date? Where did your fiancé propose? Where do you hang out in your free time? Do you share any hobbies together? Ask the photographer for recommendations of places they have used for engagement sessions in the past.

Plan the style of clothing you will wear for the session. First, decide whether you want to dress formally or casually. How do your friends normally see you? You want to look like yourself in the photographs – so clean, casual clothes are not off-limits. If you usually wear heels, make sure you pick a location that you can easily traverse, or bring along a change of shoes. Ask your photographer if changes of clothing are allowed, and talk about how long the session will last.

Think about color. Have you picked a color palette for your wedding yet? Some couples follow this pattern in their engagement session, too! Love purple orchids and yellow sunflowers? Great – these colors are complimentary and photograph well together! You can also wear the same hue, but in different shades. Neutral colors like white, black, gray or even brown look great with a splash of color.

To match or not to match? That’s the question. Some couples choose to wear similar clothing like white/black shirts and jeans for a classic portrait look.  Simple is better. Avoid clothing with logos, horizontal stripes or graphic patterns.

Unless you’re photographing on an unbearably hot day, avoid short sleeve shirts. Long sleeves are more flattering, and darker colors are also slimming. Guys should wear dark socks with dress shoes – white will be distracting. Long pants are generally more flattering than shorts. Make sure you iron out any wrinkles – they can be noticeable in your photographs. Don’t rule out engagement sessions in cold weather as well. You can always take off bulky coats, scarves or mittens for a few shots, then put them back on to warm up.

Your ring will take center stage in a number of the pictures. Help it shine by cleaning it before the session. Use jewelry cleaner or warm water with dish detergent and an old toothbrush.

Ready to rock your wedding photos?