What is an engagement shoot?
In years gone by, after getting engaged you might have had an engagement shoot with a professional photographer and used those photos to announce your engagement. They would have been used on wedding invitations and the likes.
These days, most couples tend to announce their engagements almost immediately on social media. But that doesn’t mean that an engagement shoot, also known as a couple’s photoshoot or pre-wedding shoot, with your wedding photographer isn’t important and doesn’t have its benefits.
Why you should have an engagement or pre-wedding shoot
So you’re thinking about having an engagement shoot or couples session, but haven’t quite made up your mind? You most certainly don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do, but there are lots of benefits to having an engagement shoot before your wedding. So if you’re on the fence about having a pre-wedding photoshoot then continue reading.
How many times in life do you find yourself in front of a professional photographer? For most people, not often. Being engaged is a milestone worth celebrating in itself, it’s a big part of your journey together. An engagement shoot is a great excuse to dress up in your favourite outfit and have your photo taken by a professional photographer. You’ll get amazing images that you’ll get to keep forever to remember that special time in your life.
You get to find out what shots work for you as a couple
Every person I have ever photographed has said “I’m really awkward in front of the camera” or “I don’t like having my photograph taken”. For most people, it isn’t an everyday event, so it’s only natural to feel nervous. Like with most things in life, experience really helps. A couples photoshoot will give us an opportunity to work through all the nerves and anxiety, find out what kind of shots work best for you as a couple, and help you relax in front of a camera.
We get to know each other!
I always make a point of having a good old chat with couples before they book me. I think the fact that we can get to know each other as people, and you can feel relaxed around me is vital. After all, I’m effectively going to be a big third wheel on your wedding day. An engagement or pre-wedding shoot will give you an opportunity to get to know how I work as a photographer so that you know exactly what to expect.
I get the opportunity to get to know what your height difference is, what your best angles are. But also what makes you tick, what makes you laugh, what makes you you.
It’s good practice for your wedding day
The engagement shoot is a chance for you to see me at work, so you’ll have more of an idea what to expect on the big day.
I find that couples who have an engagement shoot are more relaxed in front of the camera on their wedding day. Instead of worrying about being photographed they get on with enjoying their day. Get a sense of what it feels like to be in front of the camera and breathe easier on the wedding day
You can use your photos for wedding invitations and websites
You can use the photos from your engagement shoot for your wedding invitations, or on your wedding website. Plus, it never hurts to have pictures for your social media that aren’t selfies.
Your wedding day isn’t your whole story as a couple
On your wedding day, you’re in gorgeous outfits, with your hair and makeup done, but what about who you are the other 99% of the time? Do you like going for walks with your dog? Playing sports? Is there a location where you both met or that is special to you? I’ve done engagement shoots with people’s dogs, at the places where the proposal happened, I’ve even involved people’s campervans in the shoots. A pre-wedding shoot gives you an opportunity to get images that reflect the real you and your lives together.
An engagement shoot can tell the story of your relationship together. You can truly get images that are unique to you and your relationship.
We can be more creative and more relaxed than on your wedding day
The schedule on your wedding day can often be tight. There’s little chance you’ll get more than half an hour alone with your new spouse. And, unless you’re waiting for a bus, half an hour isn’t long.
We can take an engagement shoot slower, without the pressure of people demanding your attention. You want to drive somewhere unusual, get messy, or any other thing you simply couldn’t do on your wedding day? Sign me up! This is your shoot without the restrictions of the wedding day.
The engagement shoot – do we need one?
Only you can make that decision. It isn’t strictly necessary but can be a really useful tool to help prepare you for your wedding day, and get images that reflect your everyday lives and relationship.
If you have a pre-wedding shoot you will feel a lot more relaxed during your wedding shoot. With most things in life, practice and experience can be important. If you’re worried about feeling anxious in front of the camera on your wedding day, or want to get unique shots that simply wouldn’t be possible on your big day, then go for it.
Where should we have our pre-wedding shoot?
Some people choose to have their engagement shoot at their wedding venue, if the venue permits. After all, this is a great chance to get acquainted with your venue and how your photographs will look.
I always suggest picking a place that means a lot to you. Maybe it’s the place the engagement happened, or where you met. Pick something that really reflects you as people and as a couple.
Book your engagement session or couples photoshoot
If you’ve already booked, or are thinking of booking me, to photograph your wedding, simply ask me to add an engagement shoot to your wedding package. Of course, if you haven’t already booked your wedding photographer, check out my work and get in touch if you like what you see.
However, you don’t have to have booked me, or even be engaged to book a shoot. A couple’s photoshoots can be used as a standalone shoot.