Engagement Photos, a How-To.

Happy Wedding Wednesday!

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This week in wedding I wanted to jot down my advice for how to take engagement photos. It’s an awkward thing to do for sure, but if you can get over that initial hurdle, you can get some amazing shots!

Two weekends ago we finally got around to taking our engagement photos- a mere year later and 9 months before our big day nonetheless, but hey, at least they’re here in time for me to get some Save-The-Dates out to our guests! I’m SO EXCITED and ABSOLUTELY IN LOVE WITH OUR PHOTOS and feel like a lot of things contributed to capturing the magic between Joey and I, and now I’d like to pass that information on to any of you that need it! Now, this is my advice for any type of photo shoot, not just engagement photos!

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Engagement Photos- What’s Important?

  • Photographer: 100000% if you’re paying someone to take your photos, make sure you meet with them in person or have a conference call with them before actually hiring them. You want to make sure you’re hiring someone you LIKE and someone you get along with. For our wedding, photography was one of the biggest priorities for me. I wanted to make sure that I found someone I felt would click with us and someone who’s art I actually liked and fit my style. You can’t hire someone with the idea that they can change their style for you. Photographers have their own vibe and artistic license and you want to make sure that’s in line with your own. We spoke on the phone for 2 hours with our photographer before booking her and putting a deposit down. I knew I liked her portfolio and her IG feed, but what if I didn’t like her personality? Immediately after having answered the phone, I knew she was the one. She was warm and funny and honest and just on board with all of our ideas. It was like she was a long lost friend of mine.
  • Location: You definitely want to scout some locations or ask your photographer if they have any recommended spots that they can send you pictures of. If you’re a city person, consider some place with a city skyline, if you’re a beachy person, head to the water! The location should be a place that you feel comfortable and be a place that brings you happiness. For instance, I LOVE all the beach engagement photos I’ve scoured over on Pinterest, but the beach doesn’t really fit or scream “Joey & I,” so it wasn’t a location I considered. Fun fact, the location you see in our engagement photos was not something I thought would work either and my photographer suggested it and I trusted her instinct so badda-bing-badda-bang! She knew wayyy better than me and now I could not be more in love with our location. It totally encompasses the light-hearted, free-spirited relationship I believe we have.
  • Posing: Probably one of the most important aspects of the photos is also where you get to have the most fun! The best part about our photographer was she totally just let us be free! She guided us to make sure we got some of the shots that I had sent her that I loved (again from Pinterest) but the rest of the time was just us goofing around with each other and her capturing it. Joey and I have never been very fond of “posed” photos and really enjoy the in the moment, candid shots that happen when we’re traveling, at home, whatever it is- so again, we wanted the photos to capture us, which would never be posed or statuette. Our photographer set up funny moments between us, she had Joey stand 5 feet behind me and just run up to me and either pick me up, tickle me, grab me, whatever- it just had to be a surprise to me. It was so fun because our reactions were genuine and real which you can really feel when you see our photos. You should feel comfortable being yourself infront of the camera and not worry/stress about how things are looking, then you’ll just end up looking too stiff and worried.
  • Outfits: The first thing I would say, is definitely pick something that you of course, FEEL COMFORTABLE IN. You don’t want to have to worry about which angle makes you look good in something, whether or not it hugs your hips the right way, etc. You should wear something you first and foremost feel comfortable in, something that makes you feel GOOD. I’d definitely recommend wearing something a little nicer than your average every-day outfit though. We did a “fancier” look and then a “laid-back” more “casual” one. With that, if you’re taking photos with someone else in the frame, definitely coordinate. And I would recommend wearing solids/patterns that do not contain any type of logos or words. IMO they just look cheesy in photos (unless you’re shooting for a brand, then like duh). Also, I think it’s important to coordinate your outfits with the location as well. If you’re in the snow, maybe wearing a short, sleeveless dress won’t come off as very authentic. 
  • Set the Mood:  We wanted to play music while we shot so we brought a bluetooth speaker, luckily our photog was actually thinking the same thing and brought one with her too! We shot and danced around to all of my favorite country music. It was the best and definitely made any ounce of awkwardness go away since there literally wasn’t any silence! It was a lot of fun and made the mood a lot more relaxing and just normal. 

Well, I hope this little guide is able to help with anyone out there scheduling an engagement session or just a photoshoot in general! Happy Wedding Wednesday!

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xoxo,

Amanda

IG: @amandac_smith

6 comments

  1. These are glorious!! Our first engagement shoot lasted all of 15 minutes before a severe storm moved in. We got a handful of shots, but we ended up having a makeup day and got some really amazing shots.

    I had a bunch of people tell me they thought engagement shoots were a waste of time/money, but I couldn’t agree less. Like you said, it’s a chance to test out your photographer before your big day. You want to be able to work well together before hand and make things as smooth as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much girlie! That’s too crazy about your shoot! At least you got a few shots and thank goodness your photographer did a make up shoot!

      And the same thing happened to me! People were telling me to save the money and just use some photos I already had of us, but I was so set on getting engagement photos. Like how often in your lifetime are you going to get professional photos taken? So it was super important to me. Especially for the sake of getting to know the person behind the lens! I’m so glad you liked the read and can agree!! ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay wow these photos are engagement photo perfection. I do not have words!!! I wish I could have read this post before I had ours done!! I remember when he had ours done our photographer found some spots I would have never thought of that translated beautifully on camera too. Just gotta trust those experts, huh!? These are probably my favorite engagement photos I’ve ever seen. Thanks for sharing, Amanda!

    Like

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