Engagement Session A little advice from one big picture photography, especially for you.

About the session

An engagement session is a great way for us all to get to know each other a little better. Think of it as a practice run through. I can see how you both are in front of the camera and more importantly, it will give you a glimpse of how I work so come your wedding day, you'll be completely relaxed about the photography.

I love observing how couples interact with each other. An engagement session is about just the two of you hanging out, being best friends, losing yourself in a moment...or two. Heck, just be in love and be yourselves.

Where & When?

Think about somewhere you love to spend time together, just the two of you - a local park, the beach, in the city, where you live or it could be the place where you were proposed to. Don't worry if your mind draws a blank, I have some places up my sleeve that I've spotted along the way where I'd love to shoot.

As for the when, well in most cases I do the session around 8-10 weeks before the wedding so it feels fresh. But we can do it whenever you want to. You might want an image to use for your Save the Date cards which can be sent out at least 6 months before the wedding. So for this purpose I'd recommend scheduling the session 6-7 months beforehand.

How long will it last?

Engagement sessions usually last one to two hours and includes us having a chat over a coffee first which will help you to relax a little. Ideally it will take place on a weekday and during the evening, a couple of hours before sunset. But I can shoot any time of the day. I appreciate it's not always possible to do a weekday so if we need to, we can schedule a weekend day instead.

What should you wear?

Ever heard the phrase 'look good, feel good'? Well it rings true here. If you feel good about what you're wearing then it'll give your confidence a boost too. And where photography is concerned, that can only be a good thing.

But don't over do it. Wear something you feel really comfortable in. Keep it casual, you can do formal on your wedding day! Bright colours can really make you stand out against certain backgrounds too, be it a top, bottoms or even your shoes.

Be inspired

Below are a few real engagement sessions I've done. Have a browse through the galleries and see what you think. They might give you some ideas on what to wear and/or where to do the session.

Lynsey & Colin

Ardgowan Estate, Inverclyde, Scotland

For me, this location had everything - peeling paint on garage doors, an old stable block, a woodland feel, wide open spaces and a vast array of colours to play with.

Will & Natalie

Blanefield, near glasgow

Will and Natalie live in a converted barn in what felt like the middle of nowhere. They suggested we go for a walk around the woodland that surrounds their house. Music to my ears. I had never been and had no idea what to expect, so we just explored. There was lovely light, fabulous trees, great shapes and lots of greenery along the way.

Kirsten & Paul

KIRKNEWTON house stables, near edinburgh

Kirknewton House Stables was Kirsten and Paul's wedding venue. So we doubled up looking around for wedding day ideas with doing the engagement session. The grounds were so vast that I was able to produce a completely different look for both. For the engagement session - bluebells, wild garlic, tree bark, green leaves and an old barn - perfect!

Karen & Craig

ashton lane, glasgow

Karen and Craig live in Australia but had wanted to return to Ashton Lane as they hadn't been for years. So that's where we did their engagement session. We simply walked around this inspirational urban setting, stopping every time I saw something. It really challenged me but forced me to produce very different images than what I'm used to shooting. And I'd happily do it again and again.

Colette & Samuel

Pollokshields burgh hall park, glasgow

This is another example of where we went along to look at the wedding venue and decided we would also do the engagement session there. On exploring the park, I discovered an old abandoned yard that had steel sheds with peeling paint, perfect for a backdrop.

Helpful?

I've done so many engagement sessions, I sometimes forget that couples don't have a clue what to expect so I hope you found this little guide helpful. There are no hard and fast rules to it, just be yourselves. The engagement session is all about you guys, so whatever happens, don't take yourselves too seriously and just have fun!

Got any questions?

I may not have answered all your burning questions, so please, just ask. I'm here to help. It's my job to make sure you're as relaxed about an engagement session as you possibly can be. I want this experience to be amazing for you both. Oh and let me tell you, pretty much every couple I photograph tell me 'they hate having their photo taken'. Yes, all the people you see in the photos on this page, all of them! It's completely normal and we're all only human, therefore none of us really like photos of ourselves. But I'll soon change that.

What to do next

Write to me. I'd love to hear from you. Let me know what you thought of this guide, did you find it helpful? Do you feel better about an engagement session? Do you see yourself in these photos?Anything at all.

Credits:

One Big Picture Photography

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