The venue, the photographer, the cake, the invitations, the flowers, THE DRESS! When it comes to planning a wedding, there are so many details, large and small, to think about. At times it can feel overwhelming. If you feel that way, do not be afraid. You are NOT alone! Sometimes adding an engagement session to your To-Do list can seem stressful and many couples shy away from this opportunity. I wanted to take a few moments today to explain why it is well worth the effort and how your engagement session can feel less like a task and more like a fun night out!
1. It’s all about you!
This one may sound kind of funny because the whole wedding planning process and wedding day is about you of course! However, as amazing as your wedding day is going to be and as much as you are going to love every second of it, you are going to be busy. You will be getting ready, having fun with your bridal party and family, greeting guests, dancing the night away, oh and of course… GETTING MARRIED TO YOUR BEST FRIEND!!! On the other hand, during your engagement session, it is just you and the love of your life taking a step away to celebrate and take in all that has happened, is happening and will happen in the future.
2. Be uniquely you
This is your time to relax and even get a little creative. During a wedding day, your portrait location may be limited to the vicinity of your wedding venue. An engagement session, though, really has no limits. Do you have a favorite ice cream shop you like to frequent on date nights? Did he propose to you at a little cafe in San Francisco? Are you two gym rats, running buddies, rock climbing partners, wine/beer drinkers or just want to explore somewhere new? Well, let’s do it! Your engagement session gives you a special opportunity to be truly and uniquely you. You can showcase to the world who you are as a couple. Don’t be afraid to think big. And don’t forget to include any fur babies of yours if you’d like! If you haven’t met me yet, one of the fastest ways to my heart is through a dog. My husband learned this pretty quickly… we now have two of our own! I would be more than happy to have them join us for your session.
Side note: If your dream is to take photos in Disneyland, first of all, you’re my hero! Second of all, do not feel this request is too big. As a fellow Disney geek, we can and WILL make this happen!
3. It is a practice session for you wedding
Let’s face it, how many of us live life with a total stranger following us around with a camera glued to their face? I won’t lie, it can feel kind of weird at first! But have no fear. My goal is to make everything fun and comfortable so that you even forget there’s a camera around. One way I do that is by taking some time to get to know you and allowing you to get to know me. I love building true relationships with my #comptonsweethearts.
A big part of this is done at the engagement session. You get to see how I work, learn more about me, and see what taking photos on your wedding day will be like. I also get to know you. No two couples are alike and I would never want to treat you as such. Each couple has their own personality and style and I want to enhance that in your session. Are you more shy, romantic, private? Do you love to laugh and make goofy faces at the camera? I get to see all of this at the engagement session and can enhance these personal features for you during your wedding day when we may have less time to shoot and definitely have less time to get to know each other. I also see which poses flatter each of you and what makes you look your best. Another big plus for your big day.
Oh! And any of my #comptonsweethearts who already have had their engagement session and know the terms “go home” or “the weirder you feel, the better you look,” you know exactly what I’m talking about!
4. Dress it up!
Your engagement session is a perfect time for your trial run for your hair and make up. The hair and make up you choose to have for your wedding day most likely is not what you wear every day. This gives you a chance to see what your hair and make up will look like in your wedding photos. You can show them to your hair and make up artist and let them know what you like, what you don’t like, what you’d like to change and what you’d like to keep. Remember, make up photographs differently than how it may look in person. Many brides find that heavier make up shows up better in photos. This gives you a chance to play around with your look.
And who doesn’t like to go shopping for a new outfit?! I like to say #treatyoself and find a little something new, whether that be a new dress, new shoes, getting your nails done, or all of the above. You could even rent your look from the amazing Rent The Runway. Just click here to browse their selection and have your dream outfit delivered right to you!
Now that you’re all dressed up and looking and feeling amazing, plan a date night for yourself! Make a dinner reservation at that fancy restaurant you’ve been wanting to try for after your shoot. Go out for a night on the town. You’ve earned it!
5. Use your photos for a personal touch for your wedding details
Do you plan on sending out a picture of you two with your save-the-dates or your invitation? Or you might be planning on having a photo on the invitations. If you say yes to an engagement session, you will have high quality, professional photos to do this with. As a guest, I love going to weddings and seeing framed photos of the couple around the wedding: on the cake table, the gift table, or even incorporated into the center pieces. It adds such a personal touch. You could make a photobook with your pictures to use as a guestbook. Now that’s a guestbook that won’t be left on a shelf! It makes the perfect coffee table book. Everyone who comes over is sure to pick it up and look through your beautiful memories!
Until next time,
Rancho Victoria Vineyard | Plymouth, California
Cielo Estate Winery | Shingle Springs, California
The Maples | Woodland, California
Hair and Make Up
Beauty by Melanie P | IG: @beautybymelaniep
Vanessa Martinez | IG: @makeupxness