How to Plan Your Perfect Engagement Shoot

Embarking on your engagement photography shoot is like capturing the start of your shared story in pictures – a special prelude to the beautiful moments that await as a married couple. These photos may well be the most charming snapshots of you both before tying the knot, destined to bring back fond memories of this exciting and joyful time a few years down the road.

I always encourage my clients to choose an engagement session, seeing it as a wonderful way not only to prepare for your wedding portraits but also to build a connection with me as your photographer. It’s a chance to make memories and feel comfortable in front of the camera before the big day. In this post, I’d love to share some tips and ideas on how to make the most of your engagement photography shoot.

Destination engagement photography

How to Plan Your Perfect Engagement Shoot

Why Should You Have an Engagement Session?

Embrace each step on your journey to the big day – from saying ‘yes’ to the dress to picking your photographer. The time leading up to your wedding should be filled with joy and excitement, and an engagement session is the perfect way to celebrate this wonderful time.

Beyond the celebration, an engagement session brings a calm and relaxed vibe to your wedding day. While your wedding is a fresh experience, an engagement shoot helps you get comfortable with the photography process. Anticipating your couple portraits becomes a pleasure, and your wedding day flows seamlessly because you’re already familiar with my approach.

Many couples use their engagement photos throughout their wedding festivities. Some even use them to announce their engagement! Whether it’s for Save the Date cards, invites, wedding websites, or guest books, these images could become a wonderful part of your wedding story.

How to plan your Engagement Session?

Here’s my simple advice: Dream. Research. Communicate.

I’ve had the pleasure of working with couples who have a clear vision for their engagement session, and I absolutely love bringing those visions to life. But, if the idea of a professional photo shoot feels a bit overwhelming, don’t worry – I’ve got you covered. With a decade of photoshoot experience, I’m here to assist with every aspect of the session.

To start, I use a pre-photoshoot form to gather as much information as possible and get a sense of who you are as a couple. The more I understand about your story – how you met, your likes and dislikes, favorite activities, and your engagement story – the better I can tailor the session to reflect your unique connection. If possible, I love meeting in person or having a video call to have a friendly chat about your ideas and vision.

If you’re planning to use the images for your wedding, please share your wedding theme and colors with me. Consider creating a mood board or a Pinterest board with photos you like, so I can better understand your preferences. You can also bring along meaningful items for the shoot that hold importance to your story – things you want captured and remembered.

Romantic engagement shoot

How to Plan Your Perfect Engagement Shoot

Choosing a Meaningful Location: Where Your Story Unfolds

Picking a spot that speaks to both of you is the key to capturing timeless moments. I always suggest couples choose places with sentimental value, like where your story began, where you shared memorable moments. Engagement shoots also offer an opportunity to infuse an alternative atmosphere into your photos, distinct from the backdrop of your wedding. Whether it’s a vibrant cityscape, a peaceful beach, or a magical forest, the options are wide open. And if you dream of a far-off destination for your engagement session, let’s go on an adventure! I’m all for travel, and no place is too far or off-limits.

What to wear for your Engagement Shoot

Pick something chic, comfy, and that flatters both of you. It’s worth dressing to impress! Consider investing in a new outfit or getting help from a stylist if you’re not sure. The key is to feel at ease in what you wear. Feel free to switch up outfits or add accessories for variety! It’s a fun way to change the vibe throughout your shoot.

Have your hair and make up done profesisonally for a truly polished and sophisticated look. Expert makeup artists understand the difference between everyday looks and what pops on camera. Even if wearing lots of makeup isn’t your thing, just a little bit can define your face for the camera. As makeup ends up looking about 2 shades lighter in professional photographs, this is why makeup artists compensate by using products and colours which photograph well. If you are doing your own makeup, I encourage you to just go for a bit more blush, lip colour and eye definition than you normally would. YouTube is also a great resource for tips and tricks specifically tailored for achieving flawless looks in photoshoots.

Hyde Park London engagement phot session

How to Plan Your Perfect Engagement Shoot

Relax and Trust the Process

On the day of your shoot, let everything else fade away and simply focus on each other. Just be yourselves and enjoy the experience! You don’t need to be pros in front of the camera to get stunning images—I’ll be there to provide guidance and support throughout. Part of my role as your photographer is ensuring you feel at ease during the shoot—let’s face it, it can feel a bit odd! But with someone who brings laughter and comfort, it all becomes easier. Your engagement shoot should be a fun experience, and even if cameras aren’t your thing, trust me, it’s possible to enjoy it! (Please check out the testimonials shared by couples who have previously entrusted me with capturing their special moments.)

Following your photo session, indulge in a special experience—whether it’s a romantic meal, dancing, or coordinated with another event. Embrace the joy of feeling your best and transform your shoot into a dreamy date night. You deserve it!

Ready to capture the magic of your love story?  Please check out my engagement portfolio and contact me to chat about your ideas. Let’s create beautiful memories together!

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