How To Kick Your Engagement Session's Ass
You may have realized that what we do around here is photograph couples. And when I say we, I guess I mean just me and my business. Generally shoots are just me, a backpack full of camera gear, lame jokes, and too much excitement over almost everything.
SO YOU'RE GETTING ENGAGED. That is awesome and I'm seriously so happy for you both. When people find the person they can be 100% themselves around? I can't even believe how happy it makes me. But anyway, anyway. Couples. Engagements. Photos.
Some couples opt out of engagement sessions which obviously is fine, but I always encourage couples to get photos done before their wedding day so they're more comfortable in front of the camera and also know the way that I shoot. But most of you decide on having engagement shoots and a lot of you have never been together in front of someone else's camera before. So here we go. Blog post time.
CHOOSE A DOPE LOCATION
After all the booking and contract signing has been done, we're gonna start planning your shoot. It's important to pick an environment that reflects who you are. There are so many gorgeous places I can recommend (like too many places, the pnw is just too gorgeous) but I need to know where you both feel like your best selves. Maybe you both love hiking in the woods or maybe you love hanging out on the beach! Either way, I'm down and will probably just yell about lighting. Not actually yell. I'll just mention lighting a lot. More than once at least.
SHOW ME EVERYTHING
That sounds kind of terrifying, especially in all caps like that but ultimately this is your shoot and I'm capturing the two of you and who you are as a couple. So show me! If you two are mushy lovey dovey dorks, I wanna see it. If you two are constantly making each other laugh, I wanna see it. Be yourselves! Don't worry about fitting into a specific brand. I'm there to capture the essence of your relationship.
There are so many wedding blogs out there with engagement sessions featured and girls are wearing flowy dresses and flower crowns, which is totally great, don't get me wrong, but if you feel 300x better in a flannel in jeans, wear that! If you wear something uncomfortable, it'll reflect in photos. So if you do want to wear something a little different than usual, wear it out once or twice before the day of the shoot!
MAKE A WHOLE DAY OUT OF IT
I'm so serious about this. Especially if you're driving a bit to get to the shoot location! Knowing that the only thing you'll be doing that day is getting photographed by someone you've never met or met once before honestly sounds pretty scary. So take the entire day and turn the whole thing into a date. I'll simply be there for an hour to just document the awesome date you're having! Go to a restaurant. Sight see a little bit. Grab a drink. Be a tourist, even if it's in your hometown. Plan things before and after. It'll be fun, I promise!
PRETEND I'M NOT THERE
I KNOW, I know. Kinda hard to do when I'm following you around with a clicking camera and asking you to "stop over there! I love that light!!" but there are moments when I'll just let you two sink into a pose and hang out and exist. Take your time. Slow down. Take advantage of these moments.
Engagement sessions are supposed to be fun. You get to spend the day with the person you've decided to MARRY and you get to keep these photos for forever and ever. Wedding day photos are amazing, yes. But isn't it awesome to capture real life photos of your relationship wearing your everyday clothes in an environment you're familiar with, with your best friend? Make the most out of it. This is a big deal!
I hope these quick tips were at least a little bit helpful and help you relax a little bit before your shoot! And as always, and maybe I shouldn't include this in a blog post but whatever, you can always always message or email me if you have any questions of hesitations at all. I'm basically always available and ready to chat!
Chelsea Moudry is a wedding & elopement photographer in the Pacific Northwest. Conveniently located between Seattle and Portland, she is able to photograph engaged couples in love in both Washington and Oregon. This is for SEO. Gotta do it.