Wedding Ideas

Get the Most Out of Your Engagement Photo Shoot

Posted on February 05 by Molly Gregor

The traditional posed engagement photo used to have just one purpose: to be submitted to the local paper to announce a couple’s engagement. But as the newspaper has diminished in our lives, the engagement photo has taken a different direction, expanding into a full-blown photo session—complete with props, themes and exotic locations. Today’s engagement photo shoots are now one of the first tasks on a couple’s wedding checklist. Fun is definitely the name of the game, as photographers aim to capture the unique interaction, chemistry and personality of each couple. Here are some great tips from local pros in New Jersey, all wanting you to get the most out of your engagement shoot…

Lauren-Brimhall-Photography-engagement-shoot

Lauren-Brimhall-Engagement-Shoot
Lauren Brimhall Photography

Fun, relaxed, candid and spontaneous are four words that define Lauren Brimhall’s approach to her many New Jersey-based engagement shoots, which she sets up in creative locales that are of sentimental value to the bride and groom. These sites include Liberty State Park in Jersey City, Central Park in Manhattan, and local gardens and arboretums. Couples are also opting for “destination engagement shoots” to locations as near as Long Beach Island and Cape May and as far away as Las Vegas, Miami and the Caribbean. “An engagement shoot also ensures fun, professional shots of the couple that they probably wouldn’t get on their own after they’re married,” Brimhall adds.

David-Salomone-engagement-shoot

David Salomone/The Studio Photographers

A photo session by David Salomone of The Studio Photographers in Millburn was built around a Fifties vintage country theme, achieving the timeless effect of a painting. In addition to creating great pictures, these photo sessions also give you the chance to develop a rapport with your photographer before the big day. “Engagement photo sessions take away a huge unknown with your photographer, as they help the couple and photographer get to know each other better before the wedding,” Salomone adds.

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John Arcara Photography

For couples with an edgier style, John Arcara Photography in Red Bank offers its signature “RockStar :E: Session,” a high-fashion, celebrity-style engagement shoot involving lighting, hair and makeup, and music and drinks to help bring out the couple’s playfulness and ensure “that they feel like rock stars in front of the camera,” Arcara says.

Many photographers offer the engagement shoot as a standard part of their wedding package, with about 80 percent of clients choosing it. So before you pay for an engagement shoot on its own, research potential photographers that you’d like for your wedding and ask if they offer the engagement shoot.

These engagement images can then be incorporated into save-the-dates, invitations, guest books, magnets, wedding blogs, websites, life-size posters that can be signed at the wedding and even tiny images that florists can insert into glass vases during the cocktail hour. Engagement shoots capture the start of your relationship and can really be a special and important piece of your history. Whichever style you choose, have fun…and it will show.

Cover photo from Claire and Jimmy’s Engagement shoot

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