I've compiled a few things you can keep in mind when you’re preparing for your engagement session. First, let me say that this session is supposed to be a fun, no pressure kind of shoot. Your engagement session is our chance to get to know each other, get comfortable with how a shoot flows and have a good time in front of the camera. One of the main reasons we do engagement sessions is because it’s so helpful to have a relationship established before the big day so that we both know what to expect.
This one is really important, and here is why. Most natural light photographers (myself included) are fully dependent on the sun and if clients show up late, they lose that amount of time during their session due to the lack of light later in the session. I fully understand that things happen and some may be beyond your control; like road closures and detours. All I ask is that you do your best to be on time so that you don’t lose any of your shooting time due to lack of sunlight.
Location & Time
Generally, the best time to shoot is 1-2 hours after sunrise or 1-2 hours before sunset. When choosing a location for portraits, think about what you are comfortable with. Are you okay with lots of people around? If you imagined something a little more private, please let me know and I'll do my best to guide you in your location decision.
Many couples opt for two outfits - one casual and one more formal. I am no designer, but what I can say is that I suggest that you try to coordinate instead of match. If you can, stay away from small patterns as they might not show up in your final images. For the ladies, jewelry, scarves, light jackets and colored shoes photograph really well. Guys can try a sports coat, jacket, or cardigan to change things up a bit. Please dress for the location as well. If we are shooting at a trail, try to bring a pair of boots or shoes that work with dirt and grass.
Please remember that I am not expecting you to be professional models. 99% of the time I am working with normal, everyday couples. In general, it takes a few minutes to "warm up". Don’t be nervous! Trust me and allow me to be creative and you’ll have an awesome shoot!
Hair & Makeup
Some ladies choose to do their makeup trial right before their engagement session. I think that is a great idea and would highly recommend doing so if possible! If you plan to do your own makeup, make sure you apply your eye makeup a touch heavier than normal for your pictures.
Lastly, I do shoot a variety of details during engagement sessions. I might take pictures of your hands, or your hair, eyes, or shoes! I might even take a few environmental shots of the sunset, grass, trees, or anything else that catches my eye. I don't take too many, but I like to provide couples with a "feeling" of their engagement session.
I hope these tips help you prepare. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org