It seems to be coming more and more popular over the last couple of years, to have a pre -wedding, or engagement photo shoot. Several of my couples ask if I offer them and although some people love the idea, most people are unsure whether or not it’s for them.
So… I thought I’d just write a quick blog post on my thoughts surrounding the engagement shoot explosion!
Does it help to practice our posing before our wedding day?
No. Absolutely, 100% no. I struggle to understand it when I see people selling engagement shoots as a way to ‘practice’ posing before the big day. Perhaps if you have a specific, magazine type pose in mind, then it might be a good idea to try it out first, but for the majority of couples, the last thing you want to see when you look back at your wedding photos, is a series of stiff, overly practiced, overly posed photographs. You want to look natural and happy, reflecting how you truly feel on your wedding day. You don’t want to look as though you’re forcing a smile, while your photographer tells you to hold your head up higher and not let your arm drop below 45 degrees.
So why do I want an engagement shoot?
Good question! I love doing pre wedding photo shoots, they are always fun and we get to hang out for an hour or so and have a good old chat about your day. But why else..?
A chance to get to know each other
A pre wedding photo shoot is a really good opportunity for us to get to know each other a little bit more before the wedding, and for you to get used to me taking photos of you while you wander around the woods, skip around the park or just hang out at home together. I will be with you for a good part of your wedding day, so it’s really good way for you to start to feel comfortable with having me around.
It’s not unusual for you to book a photographer a good year or two in advance of your wedding, so it’s nice to grab a coffee and meet up again before the big day itself.
To have some nice photos!
Although we won’t be practicing poses for the big day, I will be taking photographs of you, so you will start to get used to being in front of the camera.
One of the reasons I don’t like to call an engagement shoot a practice for the wedding day, is because the two things are poles apart. When you have an engagement shoot, we meet at a pre determined location for the purpose of having your photo taken, so along with most of the population, you will naturally start off feeling a little awkward. As the hour progresses and you realise it’s more about having a chat and just taking some nice photos, you will feel waaaay more relaxed, but there is no getting away from the fact that the main focus of us being there, is to take photographs your smiling faces.
Fast forward to your wedding day… You have spent the morning getting ready with friends and family, in a little bubble of hairspray and happiness, (as well as the odd glass of Prosecco). You then head to the church or your fabulous wedding venue, where you marry the love of your life in front of those closest to you, and then head out into a shower of confetti. You grab another couple of glasses of bubbly and can’t keep the grin off your face as everyone congratulates you and tells you how amazing you both look.
Having your photograph taken is a natural part of your wedding day. You feel fantastic, you look amazing and you can’t stop smiling at each other. You are on a natural high, this is THE best day of your life. And it needs no practice.
So tell me again, why do I need an engagement shoot?
To have some really lovely, photos of the pair of you. How often does that happen?!
Photos that aren’t selfies and haven’t been taken in a dark bar on a friends mobile phone.
Photos that you will look back on in years to come and remember exactly how it felt to be excitedly planning your wedding.
Photos you can use as ‘save the date’ cards or signing frames for your wedding day.
Or, just photos that you can hang on your wall, of just you being you. The couple that you are now.
Engagement shoots can take place anywhere you would like. In the woods where you walk your dog, in the park where you met, or even in your own home. It’s all about capturing the real you.
* Pre wedding photo shoots take place at a location of your choice, within 15 miles of GU14. anything outside of this area may incur additional travelling costs.