Ahhhhh! Congratulations; you’re getting married!!! You have picked the date, the perfect venue, and hired the perfect photographer (wink! wink!) I know you have read my previous post, in which we explained to you about the importance of booking an engagement session, and so now you’re convinced! You and your fiancé have decided to add The Engagement Session to your wedding photography experience, and you couldn’t be more excited!
So, I bet the next question you may have for me is “where should we go for our session?” Great question! A lot of couples ask for help when deciding on where to shoot their engagement session at, so you’re not alone.
Here are some of our pro-tips for picking your engagement session location:
1. Think About the “Feel” you Want – Are you looking for laid-back, playful photos? Or an adventurous session with stunning views? Or some nautical fun on the beach? The location you pick will be important to giving you the right feel for your photos. Some couples like their engagement pictures to match their wedding, so you can use the style and colors of your big day to help direct your session.
2. Pick Somewhere Special to You – Make it personal. Your engagement session should capture you perfectly as you are. Do you like to get dressed up and paint the town each weekend? Then an urban setting would be good for you. Maybe you can visit where you popped the question and get some great pictures there. Meaningful locations are great because you’re the most comfortable there.
3. Be Mindful of Others – While there may be a beach you love, keep in mind that other people also like beaches. It’s important to be mindful of areas that have heavy traffic on the weekends and some locations, like a cute row of stores, ice cream and coffee shops, that may be packed in the afternoon on a weekend. Our job as photographers is to assure you it’s normal, wait it out, and time the photos appropriately, but if this doesn’t sound like your scene, I totally get it. To avoid the large crowds, a home or a sunrise session could be perfect for you!
4. Meet at the Best Time – I hope this one doesn’t come out of left field but, the thing about glowy, beautiful sunset photos is that they happen at sunset. The light changes throughout the day, and with the seasons. Depending on when you schedule your engagement session, the photos will have very different looks. You know that time of day when the light is all soft and warm? Yeah, let’s meet then. The best time for photos is an hour before sunset or an hour after sunrise.
5. Dog-Friendly Locations – We love when our couples bring their fur-babies along as part of their engagement photos! We have a whole post on tips for including your pup, but one major important consideration is picking a dog-friendly location. Make sure the spot allows pups, and also pick a location that isn’t heavy in dog traffic. And if you’d like to venture into areas that may be a little busier for part of the shoot, having a friend or family member pick up your pet can be a huge help half way through the session.
7. Play by the Rules – Continuing from above, you absolutely need to follow any photo rules that your location may have. Research the spot that you are interested in and make sure you have permission to shoot your engagement session there. You might be required to obtain a photography permit and or pay a fee to shoot at that particular location.
8. Ask your photographer – If you are still struggling to pick the perfect spot, don’t hesitate to ask! As with anything, we photographers have a few ideas up our sleeves. Give us as much information about the two of you that you can, and we can help select the perfect engagement session location! At the end of the day, capturing the emotion and intimacy between the both of you is much more eye catching than having a gorgeous backdrop behind you. The scenery is just a sweet added bonus.