Planning Your Engagement Session

I love being a photographer but even I sometimes get nervous when I’m on the other end of the lens (so I get why couples may be hesitant to book an engagement session) but as a photographer, I know that there are so many great reasons to face your butterflies! Planning your engagement session is a fun way to get to know your photographer and gives you time to become more comfortable in front of the camera before your wedding day (which makes your wedding day flow so much more smoothly) and whether you use your photos for a save the date, for your guest book, or simply as a keepsake, engagement photos are a wonderful fun way to document this special time in your life!

Here are a few of my favorite tips that to help you make the most of your engagement session!

When Should We Have Our Engagement Session?

Having you engagement session 6 months before the wedding is ideal. Sessions are available on Monday-Thursday and on Fridays (November-April).

Trust In Me

The night before your engagement session eat, rest and hydrate — and the day of your session relax, making you look great is my job. I am not only your photographer but also your curator. The more you let me do my thing, the more fun we will have and you’ll receive all the photos you expect!

Spending time Together

Feel free to make each other laugh, smile, be silly, hold hands, kiss and whisper sweet nothings. Your engagement session is a celebration, just be in love, live in the moment and enjoy this time with your fiancé. If you can, take the day off work, (or maybe at least a half-day off) and make it a date day, do something fun together before our shoot.  And during our time together please, put the phone away.   

Beauty

Some ladies will have their practice run for hair and makeup before their engagement shoot, others use the shoot as an excuse to get pampered with a massage, visit their favorite makeup artist, get their hair blown out or as an excuse for that new dress you’ve been waiting to wear.  I don’t think that you need to do anything out of your everyday routine to look amazing but if there is something that you know will make you feel extra pretty, confident, and relaxed, please use our shoot as an excuse to pamper yourself! And as for your lovely husband to be, one thing I recommend to all men is to exfoliate the day before so that their skin looks fresh and glows on the day of our shoot.

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What to Wear

Wear something that you feel beautiful in! Whether it be a gorgeous evening gown, soft flowing maxi dress or a preppy cute casual outfit. Coordinate your colors and outfits but don’t worry about being matchy.  My photography focuses on light so wearing colors that reflect the light is a great idea.  Neutral tones (for example, blush, ivory, pastels, light blues and grays) reflect the light while letting the two of you shine.  I enjoy helping couples pick out outfits, so feel free to send me photos of what you’re thinking about and I’m always happy to send you ideas of where to shop or even the name of a stylist who can help you create the look you like.  For a mini-engagement session you will have 1 outfit, for a natural engagement session you can have 1 or 2 outfits and for a styled engagement shoot we will be working with a stylist who will help coordinate your outfits with each location.

Location

If you have a certain place in mind please let me know, but otherwise I’m happy to suggest locations.  It’s important to have your outfit and location compliment each other so if you have an idea for one or the other, just let me know. 

Extras

Bringing a few extra things can make your experience all the better! We may be walking in-between locations so if you are planning to wear shoes that are gorgeous but not so easy to walk in it, a pair of comfortable shoes to wear in-between locations is a great idea, if it’s a hot day please bring water to drink, and if it’s a cold day a jacket to slip into can make a world of difference.  If you are bringing a four-legged family member with you, it maybe a good idea to have a friend close by to help out just incase your pup decides they are done before we are.  

Prepare Your Fiancé For What to Expect from Your Engagement Session

Share this entry and take a few minutes to look through some of my photos together. Many times one of you may be more into your photography than the other and it’s best if you both come to your engagement session with a good idea of what to expect.  Your engagement session should be a fun experience, so there is no reason to spend days nervous ahead of time, life’s way too short for that. 

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Be On Time

Your engagement session time is based on the sun and as the sun rises or sets sun light changes. So, if you are looking beautiful images in golden light or the cool crisp first light of the morning, we need to start and finish on time. Mini engagement sessions last 20 minutes, a Natural Engagement Session lasts 1 hour, and a Stylized Engagement Shoot lasts 2 and a half hours.   

What should I do with my photos once I have them?

It only makes sense to print your photos with the artist who created them. If you are interested in a save the date, a guest book, or album please let me know.  I love putting together custom designs for my couples which means less work for you, a beautiful addition to your wedding day, and tangible way to remember this time in your life! Using low end printing choices will lead to prints that may look nothing like what you see on your computer screen.

So this is my little guide for your engagement session.  Nothing is mandatory, these are just my suggestions and really what matters most is that you enjoy this time in your life.  Last year, at the end of an engagement session, the groom-to-be told me he had not been looking forward to their engagement session (I think his actual words were “dreading  it”), but after the session finished he told me, it ended up being his favorite part of wedding planning, because it gave the two of them time to relax and laugh together.  I hope you will be able to have the same type of experience and I’m excited to tell you story!

xoxo,

Tessa Maxine

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