Engagement shoots, also commonly known as e-shoots, are a staple in today’s wedding scene. Even though your wedding might seem far away, your engagement will fly by and you’ll appreciate looking back at this tender moment in your lives.
The weeks and months to come will be a whirlwind of planning and celebration, from colors and bridesmaids to venues and music. Your engagement is one of the happiest and most exciting times in your life and capturing it on camera is often as meaningful as your wedding day photography.
This shoot is all about the TWO OF YOU. The wedding day will be a flurry of activity, tears and laughter. Engagement shoots, on the other hand, are slow-paced, peaceful and a rare opportunity to capture the early days of your pending marriage.
Things will get busy as the wedding draws near, so this is the perfect time to step back, celebrate and even announce your engagement through a series of candid photos.
Don’t worry about posing. I understand it’s easier said than done but trust me! We want natural photos that allow your personalities to shine through. I use a variety of tricks and tools to help couples build confidence in front of the camera and you’ll quickly find yourself laughing and sharing romantic moments without a second thought as to my presence.
I’ll guide you here and there, offering some instruction as to angles and poses, but as long as you focus on loosening up and enjoying one another, you’ll be thrilled with the outcome. I promise!
What better way to announce your upcoming nuptials in style, than with a stunning shot of you and your fiancé? Your engagement session is the perfect opportunity to capture authentic, casual, and fun photos for your Save-The-Dates. Typically, Save-The-Dates are put in the mail 7-9 months before the wedding. In order to allow sufficient time for scheduling the session, editing and turnaround time, and printing of the actual cards, we recommend reaching out to get the ball rolling on your e-session two months prior to when you plan to sign and seal for delivery!
Whatever makes you feel like you! Honestly, there’s no right answer. You should wear something that makes you feel beautiful and comfortable, whether that means jeans and cowboy boots or an elegant dress and heels. Totally up to you.
My only recommendation is that you don’t match your partner. Coordinating colors and outfits are flattering and look great in engagement photos. If you’re going to dress up or dress down, just make sure your partner does too.
Engagement photos give us a chance to work together and develop a rapport for your wedding day imagery. I want you to understand my photography style, direction and how I interact with the couples I photograph. Your e-shoot is a blank slate so be 100% honest and open with me and we’ll make something magical!
Your photographer is going to be present your entire wedding day. Nothing’s worse than artificial, staged, “deer-in-the-headlights,” look! The e-shoot is the ultimate icebreaker between a couple and their wedding photographer. By the end of the session, you’ll feel much more prepared for the rollercoaster of emotions your wedding day will bring.
Whether you want to take your engagement photos by the water, in a park, or against the Chicago skyline - natural light is essential to capturing truly stunning photos - which is why we schedule two dates for your engagement session, a primary date, and a backup date.
If the forecast calls for rain on the day of your primary session, we will decide whether or not to reschedule 12 hours in advance. This gives you time to reschedule any hair and makeup appointments and also eliminates stress and the possibility of a mid-session downpour.
We recommend planning for your pet to be at the first part of your session and then either dropping them off or having a friend take them home. We won’t use the pet in every single photo so it’s also nice to have a friend available to hold him or her in between shots.
Keep in mind that bringing a pet along often means that we’ll need to choose a pet friendly location.
I book engagement sessions Mondays through Thursdays, with the rare Friday appointment. I have a very busy wedding photography schedule and, unfortunately, am not able to schedule engagement shoots on the weekends.
Other than that, the time of the session depends on the location and time of year. I usually schedule all sessions at sunrise or 2 hours before sunset. This rule of thumb can be applied to any time of the year.
If you have already booked your wedding day makeup artist, your engagement session is the perfect opportunity to test out how your preferred look will translate on camera for the big day. This can also apply to your hair trial if you are envisioning wearing similar styles for both the e-session and the wedding day.
Since I will be using this time to take lots of photos of your stunning engagement ring, a clean, neutral manicure is always a great idea (you can even make it a date with your significant other, guys need some tidying up as well).
Virtually anywhere you want! I’ve photographed engagement sessions at dozens of locations in Chicago and Wisconsin and am happy to make some recommendations. Some of the best shoots, however, are taken in places that have meaning for you and your partner.
I suggest picking a place that inherently makes you feel good. This should be a place where you’re relaxed, comfortable and happy.
This time, these photos, are all about you.
Our couples’ comfort, happiness, and pride in their finished photos are what drives us to put in the hours and attentive detail that ensures each precious moment is captured on film. Your wedding day is a celebration of your journey as a couple, and the engagement session is a reflection of the path that you traveled to get there. So come as you are, I’ll bring my camera, and let’s make some magic!
After your session is complete, we recommend scheduling a date night with your fiance so the two of you can reflect on the day. Whether it’s dinner at your favorite restaurant, cocktails at a rooftop bar, or a sweet treat from your favorite ice cream shop - your engagement session is an important milestone in the wedding planning process, and it’s important to celebrate! Trust us, you’ll be glad you did.