If you're a client coming into an engagement session, there's a lot to be informed of. Not so much that you should be stressed or nervous, but because it's all new to you, there's a lot to know! I learned very quickly in my business that it was better to be overly informative than not informative at all. I tend to be a details girl when it comes to helping my clients plan and I LOVE when my clients are willing to trust and listen to me. If you want what you see on my blog and website, you have to take my experience and advice into consideration! :)
And when it comes to engagement sessions, I personally think they are crucial before the wedding day. I didn't use to push for them but now it's something HUGE that I think a couple is missing out on if they don't do! Here are some things that hopefully be helpful to know before your session!
1. Engagement sessions are the perfect time for us to get to know each other!! I have a couple hours with you where I can ask you questions and you can ask me questions! I lot of times I don't meet my couples until their engagement sessions so it's nice to get acquainted. I want to be your friend! :)
2. Being in front of a camera can be nerve-racking! You probably don't want your first time being in front of the camera to be on your wedding day! You'll learn all about my posing at the engagement shoot and you'll feel prepared for all the photos to be taken at your wedding!
3. It's important to know that an engagement session is not a 30-minute ordeal. I like to have 2 hours and not be rushed!! Being rushed puts stress on me and you and I just want to be able to have a relaxed time and get a lot out of the shoot. It usually takes at least 30 minutes for a couple to get comfortable in front of my camera so the more time, the better. Definitely eat some food before the shoot! ;)
4. Choose two to three outfits!! I know it can be hard coordinating clothes with each other but bringing variety to the shoot is really fun!! And this might seem silly but you'll have a little break when changing at the shoot. That short little break is sometimes nice because you start fresh again! Outfits with color are so great and I always tell couples to bring jewelry or accessories like hats, watches, or scarves! A well thought-out outfit will take your shoot to the next level. Check out this post for some inspiration! Also, if you're not from VA and are traveling for your shoot with me, be prepared for what the weather will be and plan your outfits accordingly!! It might be cold; it might be scorching hot. VA weather can be bipolar so check the radar!
5. TRUST. Trust is huge during an engagement shoot. I might have you do some silly things like dance with your fiancé, run towards me, or make silly faces at each other but ultimately I want to capture your personalities and have FUN!! Come willing to have fun and willing to put up with whatever I might ask you to do. The more willing you are to just go with me, the more genuine your images will be! Don't hold back... I will not judge you. I want you to be yourselves and to let loose.
6. Engagement sessions usually happen mid-week since I shoot weddings on the weekends and a few hours before sunset. Depending on the time of year, sessions might be happening at 3:30 or they might be happening at 7 PM. But we'll obviously chat about all this good stuff!! :)
7. I am a natural light photographer so engagement sessions happen outside 99% of the time! When it comes to choosing a location for your shoot, I usually leave it up to my couples! It is my goal to make the shoot something special to you so think about places that are meaningful to you both!! Where did you get engaged, where did you go to school, where do you go for walks in your free time, where do you kayak together, where do you vacation??? I love keeping things fresh by going to a location that the couple chooses! That makes my job even more fun!
8. And last but not least, this one is for the girls!!! Clean that bling, paint your nails, and if you really want to go all out, schedule your wedding hair and makeup trial for your engagement shoot day and you'll look really official! :)