A Bride's Guide To Her Ideal Photography
With so many decisions to make throughout planning a wedding, I hope you can use this guide to ease some of the stress and get a jump start on making your dreams a reality!
Need to catch up on the other posts in this series? Find them here:
1. 5 Tips For Choosing Your Perfect Wedding Photographer
2. 6 Tips For Rocking Your Engagement Session.
3. Setting Your Wedding Timeline For The Best Images.
Congratulations! You are one step further in the process. You've chosen the wedding photographer that fits you and you've secured them for your wedding. The next thing to look forward to is your engagement session!!
I hope this makes you excited because it should! Engagement sessions are my favorite part of the overall experience because it's a fun way to get to know my couples better. I love laughing with my couples and learning each of their personalities.
If you do feel a little nervous (it's certainly natural) or just want to make sure you're fully prepared here are some tips and tricks to ensure your ready to kill it!
1. Personality in Your Location over Beauty
This is the most common hang up that my couples have when discussing their engagement session. So many people believe they need this stunning location in order to get beautiful images, often trying to sacrifice their personal style, and it's just not true! A skilled photographer can make images in some grass on the side of the road look beautiful.
So try not to get too caught up on a lot of aesthetics in your location of choice. While those wide shots of a gorgeous location are stunning, it's not the focus of the entire shoot. You are!!
Instead be true to who you are as a couple. Pick a location that matches that personality or a specific place that means a lot to the two of you. You will look back on the images much more fondly if you do.
2. Get Your Groom Ready
While it's not always the case, generally guys aren't fond of getting all dressed up and in getting in front of the camera for an hour or more. Or worse, they have a misconception of the entire process.
So ladies, the best thing you can do is sit down one evening before your session and educate him on exactly what to expect. Show him some of your favorite images or blog posts online from an engagement session. That way he'll know what is in store for the session and what his role will be.
This will make the experience enjoyable for everyone and he will hopefully even walk away saying how fun and easy it was!
3. Clean Your Ring
One of the must-have images during your engagement session is of your ring. And we also want it to be glittering from your finger in portrait images as well. So make sure to clean it the day of your session. This is a small detail that's easily overlooked but I don't want to downplay that gorgeous heirloom. Your wonderful fiancé spent good time picking out the perfect one and we need to show it!
For my couples, I will take your ring shots while you are changing outfits so I can keep working and we don't loose any time or light during our session.
4. Styling For Success
Speaking of changing outfits....
As long as your photographer includes an outfit change, I always suggest doing one. It will add more variety to your images, giving you more options and ability to hang more on your walls.
I recommend choosing one fancy outfit and one casual one. With this combo, you'll get those amazing GQ styles images in your dress clothes but still be able to change and get relaxed, fun images as well!
I could write an entire post just on styling but I'm saving some tricks for my amazing St. Pierre couples. However, the most important one that everyone should know is to coordinate your colors and outfits but not MATCH them. This is the trick to eye-catching photos! Choosing the same color shirts, for example, will leave your images a little flat and monochromatic. Instead choose two different colors that go well with each other for more dimension. It will work to draw the eye into the image.
5. Consider Getting Hair and Make-Up Done
I know you have a lot of expenses while planning a wedding but if you can swing it, splurge for hair and make-up. You have dedicated so much of your budget to getting beautiful photography and, for a lot of couples, an engagement is the only pre-wedding session you'll do. So you should do it justice! These are the images you'll have to remember this season of preparing for your life together.
Another reason to splurge on yourself is you will be feeling your best and completely confident. It will certainly show through in your images. You'll always remember how amazing you felt and it will make you love the pictures even more!!
6. Relax and Have Fun!
Don't get too stressed about your engagement session. This is just a chance for you to get loose and comfortable in front of the camera before your big day. There is no pressure here; nothing is expected from you. Your photographer will teach you everything you need to know. Consider it a test run for your wedding day. It's just a chance for you to have fun and get to know your photographer a little better.
Now go and enjoy the experience of your engagement session!! It's a wonderful and fun treat to yourself. It allows you to pause during the wedding planning process and just appreciate each other and all of the reasons you are doing this in the first place. Soak it up!
Until next time, with love!