October 8, 2014

Planning your wedding photography – the engagement or pre wedding shoot

Planning your wedding photography – the engagement or pre wedding shoot – I really enjoy meeting and getting to know couples that have booked me for their weddings on their engagement or pre-wedding shoot.

Photographing weddings is so much more than pointing a camera at someone and clicking a button – it’s about capturing something special, having a connection and understanding a bit about who I’m trying to capture.

That’s why these shoots are a great way to find out what its like being in front of the camera and always help with nerves if you’re a bit camera shy or anxious about what’s involved. Of course engagement or pre wedding shoots are very different to the wedding day itself as we’ve so much more time to get creative and find great spots to shoot in. And the focus is all on you as a couple without any interruptions or time pressures.

It takes time to get us both warmed up to the shoot and to get into the flow of things and I work with the personality of my couples, so whether you’re shy and reserved or cheeky and playful, you’ll get a good feel for what’s involved on the day and how I work. When you are planning your wedding photography, its really worth considering booking one of these sessions.

How to make the most of it

Be yourself to start with. There’s no pressure so relax and enjoy.

What to wear

Be comfortable – you can dress up or down. Glam or comfy, its totally up to you but be comfortable as that will help make you feel at ease. Comfy shoes are good in case we walk a lot, but if you want to wear that special dress you’ve only worn once with 4 inch heels that make you feel completely gorgeous, that’s also fine! Colours are great – the bolder the better – but try to avoid colours that make you looked washed out. Jeans and white shirts are classic! And avoid patterns that clash badly – good clashes allowed so a bit of co-ordination beforehand helps! 

Ladies leave your handbags at home (or in the car) and travel light! And avoid big coats (unless is freezing cold of course). If it rains, we’ll head indoors or try and get some fab shots in the rain if you’re feeling brave!

Where we’ll do the shoot

We can shoot in pretty much any location (provided permission isn’t needed) and can go city or rural. If you have a special place that’s significant to you like where you proposed or your favourite park or beach, that’s just fine. Don’t be shy with your suggestions as I love discovering and shooting in new places, and if you’re stuck I can make some suggestions about places we can go to.

Best time

I always try and avoid doing these shoots in the middle of the day – the light is usually very harsh whereas late afternoon, or before sunrise or sunset the light is beautiful. The light has different qualities at different times of the day and different times of the year and I can make suggestions about timings that would work best. Low winter sun is also great. Due to work commitments these shoots happen mostly during the week.

What to expect

We’ll start shooting after we’ve had a scout around for the best locations wherever we’ve chosen to shoot, which quite often we’ll stumble upon, using backgrounds or places I know we’ll get some great images in. This could be an interesting background like a graffiti covered wall, something architectural, textural or colourful, in a lovely landscape with blue sky, a sunset sky or just a lovely field of flowers.

I work in a very relaxed way, chatting and getting to know you whilst we’re shooting, and usually asking you questions that are all about you to help you get comfortable with things. There’s no pressure and I’m not the least bit bossy so you’ll find it easy to relax. You can get as cuddly and close as you want or just have fun and get playful – usually we have a great laugh and I get to learn quite a bit about you. I shoot from both close up and from a distance, lightly directing at times, and if you want to whisper sweet nothings that’s fine, I won’t be listening.

We’ll do a variety of shots in a variety of places so that you get the feel of what its like to be photographed and how I work. Shades not always required!

Once we’re finished, we can grab a coffee and chat a bit more about the plans for your wedding, running through any timings and arrangements so I know more about what to expect. 

I love these shoots and clients always tell me how helpful they’ve been and how being photographed on their wedding day doesn’t seem so daunting anymore! If you’re interested in booking a shoot, drop me an email or comment below and check out the last few images below and previous posts on engagement & pre wedding shoots in my blog!