It is finally time for your engagement photos…and I know you are SO excited! Chances are, this is the first time you and your fiancé will have professional pictures taken together. To help you get ready (and to ease any nerves), I have put together my top ten tips on how to prepare for your engagement photos!
1. Choose a location that has meaning to you.
The location is the most important choice you will make because it will really set the tone for your entire engagement session. I recommend choosing a place that helps tell the story of your relationship! Do you go apple picking together every fall? Why not grab a couple of wicker baskets and head to a pretty orchard? Spend the weekend walking your dog together in Central Park? Bring your pup and your favorite leash and we will stroll past your usual spots. Want to re-live your first date at that adorable coffee shop? Lattes for two! The options are endless! Think about what you and your fiancé enjoy doing most. Incorporating that into your engagement session will make your photos more meaningful.
2. Plan for the prettiest light.
The time you choose to take your engagement photos is also important! You have seen those dreamy golden images on Pinterest right? Shooting in the hours right after sunrise or right before sunset will allow for that gorgeous soft light. While I often suggest beginning engagement sessions 2 1/2 hours before sunset, sunrise shoots can also be great…especially when you are shooting in a busy location like NYC.
3. Dress to impress!
What you wear is almost as important as the location you choose! I always suggest bringing two looks. One casual, one dressy. For the casual look, you want to wear what you feel comfortable in…what you would be caught in on a Saturday together. Dark jeans and a cute, colorful top always look great. For the more dressy look, you really have the chance to totally STAND OUT! You know that little sequined dress you are saving for a special occasion? Pull it out and strap on your favorite pair of heels. Dress your man in a casual bow tie and sports jacket. If you don’t want to splurge on an expensive dress, consider renting one from Rent the Runway! It might feel weird packing such a fancy outfit for a walk in the park, but I promise if you do, you won’t be disappointed. The only downside? People might mistake you for the next couple from The Bachelor and beg you for autographs as you walk by.
4. Choose complimentary hues.
When you are picking out your outfits, consider choosing complimentary hues. This helps visually tie you and your fiancé together and looks great on camera. For example, if you are wearing a light blue dress (to match your pretty blue eyes), put your hubby in a navy top. The shades you wear don’t have to match exactly, in fact, it is better if they don’t! Choose colors you know already look great on you. My one suggestion…try to stay away from black. It can sometimes end up looking like a dark hole in the photos. You want to POP!
5. Play with patterns.
It is often a misconception that patterns do not photograph well. While this is true for very tiny patterns, larger patterns can look great! If you decide to wear a patten, I recommend having your fiancé wear a solid or simpler pattern. This keeps the photo from looking too busy!
6. Get a little girly!
It is not everyday you get to have professional photos made with your sweetheart. Head to the spa for a mani/pedi the day before your engagement session to make sure your nails will be beautifully polished for those close up ring shots! In need of some new make-up? MAC offers free make-overs when you spend $50! This provides the perfect excuse to buy those hot new shades you have had your eyes on. Planning a trial run with your hair stylist for your wedding day? Why not schedule it for the morning of your engagement session for hair that will SHINE? You can always have your stylist change it up a little so your hair is still a surprise on your big day.
7. Find a way to be unique.
It is all in the DETAILS! This is something a lot of couples overlook that can really add a lot of meaning to your engagement photos. Think about specific things that make up your relationship. Did you do the long distance thing? Bring any hand written letters you might have exchanged or an old map with a red line marking the route you took to visit each other. Sports fanatics for opposite teams? Don your favorite jersey for a couple of playful photos. Small personal props are what will make your engagement session stand out from all the rest.
8. Consider bringing your pet.
Is your pet a part of the family? Consider bringing him/her along for your engagement photos! This usually works best with dogs, but if you are a cat lover like me, I would be happy to start at your home to capture a few sweet photos of you and your feline. If you do want to include your dog in your engagement session, think about asking a friend or family member to come along. It only takes about 30 minutes to get some great photos with your pup. Your friend or family member could walk your dog home after the first part of your session. Your dog will be happy, and this will leave us plenty of time to focus on creating beautiful photos of you as a couple!
9. Think about the season.
Maybe even more important than location is the time of year you choose to take your engagement photos! A picture taken in the spring is going to look very different than one captured in the fall, just like one taken in the summer is going to be night and day from one captured in the winter. Every season is beautiful…you just have to decide on the look you are going for.
10. Give yourself permission to be FABULOUS!
That’s right! The best thing you can bring to your engagement session is your confidence! I truly believe couples in love can’t help but be beautiful together. Go into your photo shoot with the mindset that you are going to ROCK IT…and you will!