Along with all of the emotions, questions, and stir craziness of wedding planning, newly engaged couples have a decision to make before they make their official announcement: do we take engagement pictures?
Many couples elect to take their own engagement pictures either through a family friend that is offering it as a favor, setting up a tripod, or taking a picture with a cell phone since some phones can take good sized images. The images may turn out great, but the experience of being photographed is completely missing. Even if Save the Dates are not something that you envisioned or budgeted for, you don’t want to miss out on the experience of having your picture taken. Engagement photos have the ability document the excitement, the bliss, and the love that is to come. Your engagement is a new beginning to a lifelong journey, and the emotions felt and displayed early on in the engagement can be different than what is displayed on your wedding day.
I like to think of engagement pictures as a tryout for the wedding photographer. When my wife and I got engaged, we were pretty certain on who we wanted to take our wedding pictures, but we wanted to take engagement photos to be certain that we liked the photographer’s style. Our photographer made us feel comfortable, and we knew exactly what to expect on our wedding day.
When I’m working with couples on their engagement shoots, there is a visible tension that dissipates throughout the shoot. Couples, both the guy and the girl, become more comfortable with the camera being pointed at them as the session continues. What may start as a very stiff, unnatural, and uncomfortable session often ends with natural, candid photos that couples love and cherish.
I’m glad my wife and I elected to do professional engagement pictures. There are so many emotions that are present on your wedding day that could possibly be hidden behind the uncomfortableness of being in front of a camera.
For those that don’t like having their picture taken, why wait until your wedding day to see what it feels like to have a camera pointed at you all day? Get the jitters out of the way and do yourselves a favor while you are planning a wedding: go through a professional engagement photo shoot. Many photographers will often throw in a free engagement session if you sign with them for your wedding; I know at least I do.