Fancy doing an engagement or pre-wedding shoot with your photographer but not sure how to go about it? Are you more stylish than sentimental? Camera shy or superstar in the making? Whatever type of couple you are, we have the perfect engagement theme for you. By Karen Birney
There is a good chance you may have heard about the trend of having an engagement photo session before the wedding – and if you haven’t, it’s certainly something to consider! It’s a fabulous idea for two reasons – it’s not only a great reminder of a very special time, of that engagement glow of pure happiness, but also a great chance to get to know your photographer before he takes the wedding photos. The photos are usually focused only on the couple, as there is no ceremony, cake, guests, or family to capture. It’s an excellent chance to be a star of your very own photo session, or if you’re camera-shy – a chance to relax and see how to look your best!
These photo sessions can be hugely productive as well as fun. If you fancy something more personal for your save-the-dates, or your thank-you cards, you could take some photos to use as cards or invites, and there’s part of your stationery sorted! You could also combine them with the day of your hair and make-up trial, so that you get an idea of how your look will come across in photos.The following are some cute ideas for your engagement shoot:
Image by Photography by Anjuli
Props like balloons, chalkboards and signs are great to use in engagement photos because they give depth and add an extra fun factor. If you are a bit nervous about being in front of a camera, grab a guitar, a book or maybe a vintage frame to use in your photos, it will give you something to concentrate on while the photographer does their thing! Signs and chalkboards are perfect if you want to create your thank you cards or photos for your guestbook table. Just let your photographer know what you’re thinking of doing with the shots afterwards!
City of Love
Image by Bella Lunardi
If you are getting married abroad, or have a city that’s close to your heart, why not take your photos there? Just walking though cobbled streets hand in hand is romantic and personal! Pamela and Alan got married in Rome last year and on one of their planning trips they decided to ask their photographer, Bella Lunardi, to take some photos. The cityscape was a perfect backdrop for their images (see above!)
We Met In…
Image by Rubistyle Photography
Some couples choose to take their engagement photos in a place that is intimately significant to them, such as where they met. Pubs and coffee shops make a nice backdrop for photos, and the familiarity of the place will instantly make you relaxed and more ‘yourself’. You could tell the photographer how you met or what you talked about on your first date, they’ll be sure to get some lovely photos when you start to recollect your fond memories of that time!
On the Road
Image by Kbobb Photography
If you are a very sentimental, romantic couple, this is a really nice idea. Roads, footpaths through the grass or corn field, stones across a river, or even wooden bridges in a playground, could represent the road you have now chosen to take through life together. Another theme for your engagement photos could be a poem/song/passage from a book that really means something to you. Take the visual imagery from the poem and recreate it the way it speaks to you. It might only be you two who understand what the true meaning behind the photo is, but that will only make it more personal.
All Dressed Up
Image by Real Photography
How many times have you been all scrubbed up on a night out and only wished you had someone there to take some photos of the both of you in your Sunday best?! Well now’s your chance. If you are in the middle of wedding planning you probably haven’t had much time (or much money) to get all dressed up and go out to dinner or for cocktails with each other, so why don’t you glam yourselves up for a few snaps? For the bride it can be a great way to try out her make-up for the day, and see how it’ll turn out on camera, and it will give the groom an absolute stunner of a photo to show anyone asking about you (isn’t that what it’s all about after all!)
Image by Voytek Photography
A great idea for an adventurous groom-to-be is to book a photographer to capture the actual engagement as it happens. If the groom is planning to propose in a place where a photographer could easily attend (such as a park, restaurant, or family gathering), he could arrange for photos to be taken of the exact moment he pops the question, capturing the true happiness and even the tears of the bride! This would require some behind-the-scenes planning on the part of the groom, but imagine the bride’s delight at seeing the photos afterwards!
Whatever you decide to do for your engagement photos, whether it be the two of you dressed as Tom & Jerry, or in your scruffies, have fun and enjoy yourself. You’ll be happy you did it (and if you’re the shy type –surely no one needs to know!)
Tip! Your engagement shoot should show you as a couple, naturally. Wear whatever you are most comfortable in, whether that be a shirt and tie, an evening dress, a pair of jeans, or your PJs! Try to forget you are being photographed and act like you would if you were alone! A great photographer will do his best to ensure you are at ease and happy.