What to Expect
During the session, your photographer will help you pose, or ask you to interact with each other. If you’re nervous, ask the photographer for direction about where to look and how to hold your hands. Strike up a conversation with your fiancé and try to relax and forget the photographer is there. If you feel unnatural in any pose, speak up. You don’t want to feel or look awkward in your pictures.
A few tips on posing – first, tip your chin up slightly to avoid the double chin look. If you wear glasses, tilt them down a little to avoid glare – follow the photographer’s direction so it looks natural. Turn your body about 45 degrees away from the camera; you can always look back at the photographer. Tip the shoulder closest to the photographer down slightly and roll both shoulders back so you stand with good posture. Your weight will be on one leg, so bend the knee a little on the other leg – you’ll look like a fashion model! Don’t be afraid to give the camera some attitude with a hand on your hip or send a flirty look to your sweetheart!
Not all photographs require a smile. Try out a few “serious” looks in the pictures as well as some natural smiles. If you’re nervous, practice ahead of time in a mirror. For natural smiles, whisper a joke or funny memory in your fiancé’s ear while you are taking pictures. Reactions may be priceless. If you know you might be nervous, ask your photographer about bringing along props. Cute signs, items that reference your wedding theme or something that represents you can be worked creatively into your shots, and it gives you something else to focus on during the pictures.
Don’t forget to get close! You’re getting married! Hold hands, kiss, dance, snuggle, or look into each other’s eyes! Enjoy the session; it’s a celebration of your love!
Check out other couples’ engagement photographs before your session. Did you fall in love with a certain pose, idea, or look of a photograph? Print out a copy and bring it with you to your session, or speak with your photographer ahead of time. Giving them ideas about your style and tastes will help the photographer create beautiful art for you. Do you love black and white photographs, light and airy, dark and moody, matte finish, or edgy, textured artwork? Tell the photographer about your preferences, but don’t be afraid to try new things. You may be surprised at what strikes your fancy!
Not sure you want to indulge in engagement photographs? Here are a few creative uses for those images:
Ask your photographer or stationer to incorporate a few images from your session into save the date cards. Save the date cards are great reminders, especially for out-of-town guests, about your upcoming nuptials. Plan to send them out 6-9 months before your wedding date (longer for guests who will be traveling internationally, or if you are planning a wedding on a holiday weekend).
Create a custom guestbook to use at your wedding. Instead of a book with just lines for signatures, use the engagement photographs in a hard cover album or book and let your guests enjoy your pictures while they write messages to you.
Post photographs on your wedding website to personalize it. “Announce” your engagement virtually by posting on your Facebook page, your blog or by sending out e-vites to an engagement celebration. Always, check with your photographer about the rights to the digital images before you post or print.
Have your photographer make prints to use in your custom centerpieces or as escort cards/favors.
Pose with a sign that says “thank you” and create cards thanking your friends and family for shower and wedding gifts.
Surprise your parents with an album or framed photograph of you and your fiancé at the holidays or as a thank you for their help with the planning of your wedding.
An engagement session is a great time to grow accustomed to posing together before you wedding, and to test out the style of your wedding photographer. You’ll spend a lot of time with the photographer on your big day. Do you like his or her personality? Do they make you feel at ease? Seeing yourself in their photographs will help you trust that you made the right choice in photographers.
Congratulations on your engagement! Now get out and celebrate!