From my experiences of being a wedding photographer for over six years now, I have noticed a new and exciting generational shift involving the presence of social media. The digital age has transformed the wedding photography/videography industry, in my opinion, for the better!
A recent request my clients have been making is to shoot an engagement session. This session is to be done prior to the wedding day which allows for the clients to get a better sense of the photographer, develop a connection, and for both the clients and photographer to gain trust. The connection developed during the engagement session will eventually determine the final products of the shoot which couples love to share on social media!
During the 60 minute engagement session, it is important for the wedding photographer to accomplish a checklist of procedures involving proper lighting, perfect exposure, poses, deciding on the proper background or foreground, choosing the right lens, etc. Completing the checklist serves as a test, and this will allow a great photographer to stand out from the rest.
Shooting over 400 engagements in the past 3 years, I have learned a great deal from the couples I have worked with. Every couple is unique and my number one priority is to develop a connection with them in order for everyone to feel comfortable and confident for the best results.
Lastly, I want to share a few tips for couples on their first engagement session:
- Location: From my years of experience, I have noticed that shoots at parks surrounded by a small town or a city have the best results. The sense of architecture compared to simply trees in the background captures more energy in the photos, resulting in a richer and more colorful image with the combination of trees, cars, boutiques, and buildings.
- Dress code: Of course, personal style is unique to all individuals and it is important that you feel and look your best! Please make sure to wear professional or business-casual clothing that does not include shorts, t-shirts, flip-flops, or PJs. Remember, you may want to share your professional photoshoot on social media for many to see!
- Let loose: It is perfectly fine and encouraged to have a little drink one hour before the photoshoot. During our engagement session, I want you to feel comfortable and have fun and if that means having a glass of wine before your first time posing in front of a professional camera, so be it! Your good energy and mood will reflect in your pictures.
- Punctuality: Please do not be late to your own engagement session. For a less obvious reason, being on time is important for the lighting of the shoot. The right timing for any photoshoot is early morning before sunrise or 1.5 hours before sunset (golden hour). The time lost from being late is less photos being taken for your special day.