ADVICE // How to Totally Nail Your Engagement Photos Without Feeling Awkward
We’ve been adding TONS of new couples to the Carly Romeo & Co family, and many of y’all are now preparing for your engagement sessions! These tips should help you better understand what to expect and how to get the most out of our time together.
Don’t start hungry. Our engagement sessions usually last 1.5-2 hours, so make sure you eat beforehand or bring snacks if you’re a snacky type.
But you can start with a drink. Having a beer, glass of wine, cocktail or any other type of “herbal refreshment” before we start is helpful if you’re looking to quell any jitters!
Plan what you will wear. We’re often asked what a couple should wear for a photo session, and we love to respond with the not-super-helpful "whatever makes you feel fab!" but that is really the most important part. You don't have to worry about "matching" each other, color-wise, but instead try to plan outfits that are comparably fancy (or not-fancy). For example, if one of you is wearing a cocktail dress, the other should avoid a beachy maxi dress. Or if one person is wearing cargo shorts and a polo shirt, the other should go for something more casual than a suit and tie. Other general tips: opt for solid colors whenever possible (except black, white and green if we’re shooting in nature), avoid logos and items with words on them, and wear comfortable shoes (if you prefer heels, bring a second pair of more comfy shoes for walking). Bonus points: wear something with MOVEMENT!
Fuck the “shoulds." Overwhelmed with the amount of "should"s involved in this process? Guess what: fuck 'em. Are you dying to wear androgynous clothes but think you "should" be more femme/masculine? Fuck it. Do you hate getting bug bites but feel like you "should" do your photos in an epic meadow of wildflowers? Fuck it. In the age of Pinterest and Instagram, there are countless poses and themes to emulate; we're not copying those. Instead, we'll go someplace you like (Art museum? Farm? Cafe? Mountaintop?), and do something you like (Look at art? Milk cows? Drink coffee? Fireside sing-a-long?) and we’ll take photos. There's usually some off-roading, some go-stand-over-there-no-wait-over-there-ing, and we'll probably play some silly games. The goal of the session is to capture your relationship in a series of photographs, so the only thing you should be worried about is being yourselves, in love -- not trying to recreate something from the internet or doing what you feel obligated to do.
DURING THE SHOOT
Focus on each other. Our engagement/couples' sessions are designed to feel more like a fun date (with me as a professional third wheel) than a cheesy posing experience. We will help you forget about the camera and enjoy one another by asking you to talk to each other, tell stories about your relationship, and laugh together.
Get snuggly. In most cases, there’s a good amount of squeezing/snuggling/smooching/hand-holding/etc, but I promise if you go with the flow and focus on each other, it won't be as awkward as it sounds. Remember: a (consensual) butt grab is always appropriate, especially if you don’t know what else to do with your hands.
Go with the flow. The more flexible you are, the better your photos will be! Some of our favorite engagement session photos came from spur-of-the-moment ideas, like ducking into an abandoned building during a rainstorm or standing on a pile of trash where the light is juuuust right. The more you trust us to do our thing, the more creativity flows.
The best time to start our shoot is two hours before sunset. Because most wedding happen on Saturdays, it’s very unlikely that we’ll be able to do our shoot on a weekend, so keep that in mind when planning!
Whenever possible, choose outdoor shooting locations (or indoor locations with lots of windows). Natural light helps make your photos look dreamy and, well, natural.
PRINT YOUR PHOTOS!!! Use them for Save The Dates, give them as gifts to your family, put them around your home or office. Don’t let them just live on social media where you’ll only get to enjoy them every once in a while.
Finally, here’s our biggest tip for engagement sessions AND for life in general: