Having an engagement shoot done before you get married is so special. It is another way to connect as a couple and the perfect way to capture another stepping stone to your upcoming nuptials with photos that you will be able to look back on for years to come. We have some great engagement shoot tips for couples who are planning what types of photos they would like to take.
Another great thing about having an engagement shoot is that it is a GREAT change to get to know your photographer better. Think of it as sort of a “practice session” for your wedding day photos. It is also great as it helps the photographer see what types of photos you like and the ease you have in front of the camera.
With an engagement shoot, you are not bound to anything. You can have the photos taken anywhere, you can wear what you would like, or you can add any type of props to the photos. The possibilities are endless!
Here are some great engagement shoot tips for couples that we hope will help you when planning!
1. Pick a location for your engagement shoot that is meaningful to you both.
Do you both just love being outdoors? Maybe you both enjoy camping, hiking, biking or boating. Or, maybe you both were born to lay with your toes in the sand at the beach. Do you have a favorite restaurant that you love? Or maybe you want to include the beautiful campus at the university you both attended and fell in love at. Our first of our engagement shoot tips for couples is to be sure to plan ahead with the theme or location of the photos you would like to have so when you discuss these ideas with your photographer, you can give them some ideas. They can then bring in their photographer eye to help narrow down the most photogenic places or locations to shoot your photos!
These great photos from Rachel with Silverleaf Photography are of Austin and Nikki who chose to do their session outdoors with beautiful greenery and trees surrounding them giving the photos that rustic feel. Here is what Rachel had to say about this couple.
“This amazing couple travelled from Hawaii to central Oregon for their wedding, and we met on the grounds of the High Desert Museum for their engagement session. The winding footpath led us through forest and over streams on picturesque bridges, and we all enjoyed being surrounded by nature. The couple had a wonderful time, and we captured some lovely moments from the day.”
2. Choose great outfits.
First, it is great to plan to bring a few outfits so you have a variety of things to wear in each photo. Maybe bring an outfit that is a bit more dressy and one that is casual. But keep in mind that you want to make sure to be comfortable in what you wear. Also, you should coordinate your outfit and the colors with your soon-to-be spouse but you do not want to match. Would you walk around matching outfits in real life? Probably not… so you don’t want to do so in your engagement photos either.
Be sure to choose clothing for your photos that reflect the type of couple you are. And it is also good to try and avoid any type of clothing trends that are happening at the time of your shoot. Trends tend to change fairly quickly and you would hate to be wearing something and look back in 20 years and wonder what in the world you were thinking.
As far as the colors you choose, avoid wearing white in your photos. Solid colors work best but there are times when a print will work. A good rule is that is one person is wearing a print of some kind, the other should wear a solid color that compliments that print, just so there is not way too much going on. If you have too many different prints or patterns, it tends to take the focus away from the couple, and you definitely do not want that!
Be sure to check out this post for more engagement shoot tips for couples that includes advice from photographers on what to wear during your engagement photos.
These engagement photos taken by Chuck with Chuck Adams Photography between Eddie and Danielle are great! They chose great colors that both compliment each other and their surrounding. They also had a few different outfits and each one looked amazing!
3. Incorporate your hobbies, props or even your pet in your photos.
Incorporating the hobbies you love, props that go along with your life or even your furry friend is a great way to make the engagement shoot more personal with you as a couple. Here are a few other really great engagement shoot prop ideas you should check out for more engagement shoot tips for couples!
This photo below by Katie with Edmonds and McKinlay Photography is of Dan and Carla who wanted to take their photos just like they would spend a typical Sunday afternoon. They drank their tea, took a few photos in a restaurant that the frequented regularly and just hung out. The theme of their engagement shoot was “Love on a Sunday.”
Alysha with Alysha Yoder Photography took these great shots of Matt and Rachel during their engagement session. They decided to include their one-year old puppy Serena in the photos. As you will notice, they also matched nicely, Rachel using a blue dress with a pattern and Matt complimenting her pattern with a solid blue shirt.
4. Do not be afraid to be creative.
Do you want to do something that seems totally out of the box? No problem! If your photographer thinks that the idea will work, try it! You may be so surprised in how fun those photos turn out!
This couple decided to be very creative and do a “Great Gatsby” themed engagement shoot. Photographed by Jessica with Forever Photography, here is what she had to say about the couple and the shoot.
“Last week we spent an entire afternoon at Sands Point Preserve out in Long Island, New York. When Candice and JM asked us if they could dress up and do a Great Gatsby engagement shoot, we were ecstatic. We decided this location was perfect for the shoot, since it had two castles at our disposal that fit in with a 1920’s look. Candice looked gorgeous in her vintage style dress and headpiece and JM looked handsome in his old school suit. We can’t wait to photograph their Great Gatsby themed wedding next summer!”
These fun carnival themed engagement photos taken by Jessica of Adorro Impressions Photography between Jack and Tara are a great idea for using your creativity. A carnival has so many great backgrounds and fun things you can do together as a couple… and there is nothing more romantic than riding the carousel with the one you love!
5. Expect the unexpected.
Are you so excited about having a beautiful engagement session right on the beach with the sun shining on your skin? That is so great but have a plan in place if something gets in the way. You can go through every one of our engagement shoot tips for couples, plan out everything to the tee, but sometimes the unexpected gets in the way. The weather is very unpredictable so have a backup plan just in case it does rain on your parade. Maybe you and the photographer have an alternative date in your calendar saved just in case of bad weather? Or, you could embrace the rain and enjoy the session just the same. There are so many great photos that have been taken in the rain, and it could make for a great story to tell your children one day!
This couple who was photographed by This Modern Romance took a beautiful rainy beach day and made some amazing engagement photos!
6. Think ahead for thank you cards or save the dates!
It is always such a cute idea to take one photo that you will use for your save-the-dates or your thank you cards. It makes the save-the-dates or thank you cards much more personable just like this one below by Carrie Jean Photography.
7. Have fun and be yourself!
This is a fun time… you are getting married and are with the one you love. Do not be afraid to be silly, goofy and fun, just like you would any other time. Just because you have a camera following you around doesn’t mean you need to be tense. Some of the best photos that photographers can capture are the ones where the couple is being totally real and true to themselves. Use all of these engagement shoot tips for couples while you plan, get everything ready, and then on the day of your photo shoot, HAVE FUN!
This couple, photographed by Mospens Studio, is showing just that. They are being themselves, having fun and what a great moment that was captured.
We hope these engagement shoot tips for couples have been helpful for you if you are in the planning process. We have some great engagement pose ideas if you need some inspiration for your own photos! For other great engagement idea, be sure to check us out on Pinterest!