How to Prepare for Your Engagement shoot

LAST UPDATED November 30, 2022

Congratulations on your engagement! This is a time filled with anticipation and excitement, and one you’ll want to remember forever. And what better way to commemorate this milestone in your relationship than to have engagement photos?

Why Take Engagement Photos?

Your first question may be whether you really need to have a dedicated engagement photo session. My answer is a big “hell yes!” (and not just because I’m a photographer 😉 ).

Think about it: You’ve just declared your love for each other, and you are committing to spending the rest of your lives together. It’s a glorious moment and you should absolutely, positively commemorate it. You’ll want to remember the time in between being a couple and being a married couple.

Some people may have an idea of engagement photos as being super formal. If that’s your thing that’s great, but you can also have photos of you two being casual and awesome together that’s not so fancy. These photos can be used for save-the-dates, holiday cards, or big massive posters in your best friend’s bedroom. Whatever you do with them, you’ll be happy you took them!

Preparing for your Engagement Photoshoot

The next question couples often have is how to prepare for an engagement photoshoot. If this is their first experience having professional photos taken together as a couple, they may not even know where to start.

Not to worry – we’ve got you covered with the best tips to prepare for your engagement photoshoot:

  1. Pick the season you want
  2. Pick your photographer
  3. Pick your location
  4. Decide on activities
  5. Pick out your engagement photo outfits
  6. Plan your logistics
  7. If you are nervous, look up engagement photos before hand
  8. Take your engagement photos!

So let’s dive in!

1. Pick the Season You Want

The season will determine many of the other decisions for your engagement photoshoot. The weather will impact the activities that you’ll be able to do, what you wear, and even what the overall vibe of your shoot will be.

For example, a fall photoshoot will incorporate the stunning natural colors of the season, and may include other seasonal touches like pumpkins or halloween themes. While a  summer shoot may be brighter, with lush greenery or a beach backdrop.

Couple poses with pumpkins on their heads at engagement shoot

2. Pick Your Photographer

If you are going to take engagement photos, you’ll need a photographer! This is also an excellent opportunity to see if a particular elopement or wedding photographer you really like is a great match for you. Instead of leaving it up to the wedding day, hire that photographer for your engagement photos. See if you mesh. If you get along.

Rules for Picking Your Engagement Photographer:

  1. Make sure their photos match your vibe.
  2. Make sure their personality meshes with yours.
  3. Make sure their pricing is within your budget.
  4. Make sure they are available.

Most photographers will be available for a free consultation. If you like one in particular, reach out and see if you can chat with them.

3. Pick Your Engagement Location

Where you take engagement photos really matters. What type of environment do you want? Do you desire beaches, forests, mountains, snow, water? You may want to take photos in the opposite season or type of location from where you get married. If you plan on getting married at the beach, you may want a winter white engagement shoot. Or vice versa.

If you aren’t’ sure where to go for your engagement photos, the right photographer can help you find the perfect location.

Couple holds hands at their engagement photoshoot

4. Decide on Activities

What you do on your engagement day can vary from riding in jeeps, jet skis, a hike, or even just a nice picnic. You have almost unlimited options. Take some time to figure out what’s your ideal way to spend your engagement session together. What activities do you really enjoy doing. 

5. Pick Your Engagement Photo Outfits

Engagement photo outfits are an integral part of any engagement photoshoot. You don’t want to have your clothes outshine you. The best way to plan for your engagement photo outfits is to follow these rules: 

  1. Wear clothes that are comfortable!
  2. Wear clothes that represent who you both are.
  3. Wear clothes that don’t blend in with the background (white on white).
  4. Wear clothes that don’t steal the show (it’s not a high-end fashion shoot ;)).
  5. Complimentary outfits are usually better than matching colors.
  6. Feel free to incorporate accessories and props.
  7. Make sure to take care of your hair and makeup
  8. Bring more than one outfit.
  9. Dress for the activity
  10. Most of all, have fun with it!!!
Couple kisses in front of a waterfall at their engagement photoshoot

6. Plan Your Logistics

You need to have a plan for how you will get to your engagement spot. Do you need to rent an Airbnb or lodging? Will you need any other rentals like snow shoes, snowmobiles, boats or picnic gear? How will you arrive at your destination. Make a plan ahead of time that incorporates all the logistical questions involved so that you don’t have to stress the day of the shoot about how you’ll pull it all together.

7. Look Up Engagement Photos Beforehand

A lot of couples have never taken professional photos before. They don’t know what to expect, and are intimated by being in front of the camera. The best way to confront these hesitations is to hire an amazing photographer who knows how to get you comfortable. The other way, is to research how to take photos. Check instagram, youtube, and blogs to see how to take couples photos. Watch what the couples do and how they interact with each other. This will help you figure out how to be together in front of a camera. After no time at all you’ll be completely comfortable as if there is no camera in front of you.

Couple at their Italy engagement photoshoot

8. The Final Step: Take Your Engagement Photos!

The last step is the best of them all. Go out there and have fun! Get in front of the camera and let your love for each other roam free. Just focus on each other and have the best time of your life. The moments you share during the photoshoot may stay with you as some of the most fun you’ve had in a very long time.

Couple at their waterfall engagement photoshoot

Secret Step – Hang Your Photos!

Your photos aren’t meant to live on your phones. Otherwise, you could just take the photos with your phone! Professional photos are meant to be printed and hung around your home. So choose your favorites and your second favorites, print them out, and put them all over.

Adventure Elopement Photographer

Meet Your Colorado Engagement Photographer

Hi there! I’m Adam, and I love helping couples like you plan and capture their engagements and elopements.

If you have any questions about how to get ready for your engagement photoshoot, or are ready to start planning your engagement or elopement, I’d love to hear from you!

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