Tips for Your Engagement Session

January 5, 2022

As someone who loves to be prepared, I understand the uncertainty and questions surrounding your engagement session. For most of you, it’ll be our first time interacting in person and maybe your first time being photographed. I’ve heard all of the questions. “What should I wear?” “Where will we go?” “What time should we meet?” “Can you make my partner smile? They hate being photographed!” Take a deep breath. I got you!

Where will we take them?
Let’s start from the beginning. Before you plan your perfect outfit, you’ll need to know where you’re being photographed! I’ve compiled a list of my favorite spots which you can view here. If there is a certain location you have in mind because it’s special to you and your love story, let’s chat about it! I’ve chosen my favorite locations based on optimal lighting and surroundings for my style of photography.

What Should We Wear?
The most common question that I’m asked. I’ve broken this down into four parts and I’ve also got a guide featured on my instagram if you ever need a quick refresher!

Dress for the Season
If your engagement session falls in the middle of winter, it’s not realistic for you to show up in shorts and sandals. Winter means sweaters, jackets, and cute hats! Spring means long dresses, shorts, and boat shoes.

Neutrals Over Patterns
If you’re not sure, go for a neutral solid. With the exception of a few colors, soft pastels and bright neutrals translate the best for my style of photography. Don’t let this steer you away from patterns and texture though! You can always use your best judgement or contact your photographer to ask for their expert opinion. Remember that YOU should be the center point of your outfit, not a crazy pattern!

Trendy or Timeless?
These photos will line the walls of your home for not just now but years to come. Just because kitten heels and pink hair are in right now, is that how you want to be showcased? A dress, dress shirt and slacks, or a cute blouse with jeans will never go out of style.

Be You
People ask me all the time “Can I just wear this?” And of course the answer is yes! These images should be a genuine reflection of you, not something that feels forced and fake. Most engagement sessions allow multiple outfits, so if you’re afraid one of your looks isn’t showcasing your true self, you always have option two!

What time should we meet?
I always schedule sessions 90 minutes before sunset. Because of daylight savings, I don’t have one time I use for every session. In the fall you can expect to start anywhere between 2:30-4:00, while in the summer it’s anywhere between 5:30-7:00. It’s also dependent on your location. Mill City Ruins requires a slightly earlier start time because the sun is quickly swallowed by the surrounding buildings! You can plan to meet in the afternoon. I’ll be sure to give you a specific time as we get closer to your session!

General Tips + Housekeeping Items

  • All of my sessions offer at least two outfit changes. Start with the formal and change into the casual. I also provide a portable changing room for you to utilize.
  • I know you are nervous and your partner might not love having their photo taken. But it’s my job to make you both feel at ease and comfortable on the other side of my lens. I love to keep you laughing and moving!
  • Your engagement session is a great opportunity to see how I work and for me to see you and your partner as a couple. I’m able to get a better idea of what feels authentic to you and use that for your wedding day!
  • Dogs are of course welcome! I just ask that you give me a heads up so I can plan to bring an assistant to help.
  • Use your engagement session as a trial with your hair and make up artist.
  • Paint your nails if it feels genuine to you. I take a few photos of your hands and the ring so your fingernails will be in there!
  • Clean your ring. Even a quick wash with dish soap and a toothbrush will do!
  • Relax and enjoy it 🙂 You’re all dressed up with your favorite person!