Prepping For Your Engagement Session


Now that you’ve picked a date, a photographer, and probably a venue as well, you can celebrate! Those are some of the toughest decisions in wedding planning that are now crossed off your list. Hooray! On to the fun stuff, like your engagement session. I truly believe an engagement session with your wedding photographer is a vital part of the entire process.

During your engagement session, you’ll have the chance to get to know your photographer and experience how he or she works and handles posing and lighting. This session has a huge impact on how the wedding day flows. Your photographer arrive on your wedding day already knowing how you two interact, what your best poses will be and how to photograph you in a genuine way. What your photographer will learn about you during your engagement session is invaluable. You’ll feel like such a pro on your big day because of the great practice you had during your engagement session.

I suggest booking your engagement session at least 3-6 months before your wedding to keep you relaxed and feeling like you have plenty of time to order any products you'd like to display your engagement session images. I love it when couples pick a location that’s meaningful to them, such as the place they first met, or the hike where he or she proposed. If you don’t have a specific location where you’d like your session to take place, your photographer should be able to help you decide. Think about if you want a “theme” for your session, such as apple picking, camping, sledding, cooking at your house–the options are endless!

If you think your partner won't be enthused about your engagement session, I recommend sitting down with your him or her and showing them two-three of your favorite engagement sessions that your photographer has photographed. Spend some time together scrolling through a few blog posts. This will allow him or her to gauge what his or her expectations should be. On the day of your shoot, allow for plenty of time to get to your session. There is nothing worse than when a couple shows up late and they have been arguing in the car. That definitely does not get you in the romantic, loving mindset! Finally, remember to have patience with your partner. Don’t assume he or she is not going to have a good time. I think you’ll be surprised by how much you will both enjoy your session.


Here are a few more tips for you to consider while you dream up and plan for your engagement session:

  • Make a Pinterest board of 5-10 images you like. Share this with photographer and say what you like about the images. This will help photographer guide your location choices (outdoorsy locations vs urban locations, etc).

  • Pick outfits and accessories that coordinate instead of just“match”. If everyone wore the same exact color at their engagement session, how boring would those images be? Don’t be afraid to be BOLD!

  • Most patterns are ok, but graphics are not favorable for portraits. If you’re wearing a pattern, make sure it’s not overwhelming or distracting. If one of you wears a pattern, have the other dress in a more solid color. Avoid wearing plain black if you can. I’ve created Pinterest boards for more outfit inspiration if you’re having trouble!

  • Empty your pockets–literally! You don’t want to have key chains or phones showing through your pockets.

  • Bring at least two outfits: one everyday-casual, and one dressier option, both with different shoes. This will give you a ton of diverse images.

  • Make sure you’re comfortable in what you’re wearing. If the top is super low cut, it will limit the amount of angles your photographer can shoot from.

  • Get lots of sleep the night before, avoid large amounts of alcohol 24 hours before your session, and drink lots of water. These tips will help you to naturally glow!

  • Arrive a few minutes early. The later you arrive, the less time you have to shoot. And nobody wants that!

  • Ladies, have a professional hairstylist do your hair, and bring a makeup artist on board as well. This would be a great time to do a trial run of your wedding day makeup! Be sure to have your ring cleaned, and consider having your nails done as well.

And finally, be sure to RELAX, you don’t have to be a pro at this! Your photographer is going to guide you along the way. Enjoy this time together and make a date out of it with dinner afterwards to celebrate! Your engagement session is the start of the photographic storytelling of your wedding adventure. Love on each other, snuggle up, and prepare to leave just a little more in love than when you arrived.

Until next time,