Say Yes! To Engagement Portrait Sessions

By Kris Kimel, MFA

When selecting your wedding photographer, be sure to inquire about engagement sessions. Are they included in the photographer's wedding packages or offered as an a la carte service? Once you have settled on a photographer, schedule your engagement session within a few weeks. You don't want to wait until just before the wedding to work with your photographer for the first time. Allowing yourself plenty of time to develop a relationship with your photographer will definitely pay off in your wedding images.
Establishing this important relationship is one of the great advantages of an engagement session. During the session, a quality professional photographer will help you loosen up in front of the camera while getting to know you and what makes you special as a couple. Taking cues from how you interact with one another, the photographer will help guide you into posed and candid photos that celebrate your love and the intimate bond you share with each other. Some of the best engagement images are candid, when the photographer is able to capture you relaxed and comfortable- just being you.
There aren't any rules for what your engagement portraits need to look like, so you and your photographer can get as creative as you like. Taking portraits of you and your fianc̩ participating in an activity you enjoy together or at a location that you love is a great way to capture your unique relationship. A portrait session in a familiar location will set the stage for truly personal images - be they romantic, tender, playful or silly.
Often, the engagement session is the first time a couple is photographed professionally. It is a wonderful opportunity to discover the photography style that best suits you. Being photographed with your partner in a relaxed, no- pressure engagement session is the perfect setting to test angles, photography styles, and even hair and makeup prior to the wedding. The images will be a great communication tool for you and your photographer. They will help your photographer understand the shots and angles you are excited about as well as those you don't care for. After seeing your hair and makeup on camera, you can also decide if there are adjustments you'd like to make before the wedding.

There are many uses for engagement portraits for the modern couple. They can be featured on your personal wedding website and save-the-date cards, in your guest book and newspaper announcements, or in a slideshow at your reception. All of these help to personalize your wedding and offer your friends and loved ones a window into your relationship.
Engagement sessions are a great opportunity to get to know and trust your photographer. After gaining confidence in yourselves and your photographer and your ability to work together, you will be much more relaxed and able to enjoy your day.