Updated: Dec 7, 2020
When deciding on a location for your photo shoot, it is important to think about what makes you tick as a couple. Think about a typical weekend for you - are you out camping? Hiking in the mountains? Drinking and dancing downtown? Or snuggling up with your dogs on the couch together binge watching Netflix? Your style as a couple should come through in your engagement photos, after all, they are all about YOU!
You can also think about places that have been important in your relationship. Is there a special place where you went on your first date or had your first kiss? Where did he propose to you? Does your family have a favorite camping spot where you have been going since you were a kid? If there is somewhere special in your life, there isn't a better time to revisit it and capture it than in your engagement photos.
Some couples like to memorialize where they live in this phase of life. Maybe you aren't originally from the place you live now, or maybe you won't be living here forever, and you really want to remember it. You can pick an iconic location in your town that is unique and really represents the feeling of the place you live.
Pick a night when you and your fiance can sit down together with a glass of wine and go back through some of these memories and places in your mind. Brainstorm and write down a short list of places that have a special spot in your hearts. Pass these ideas onto your photographer so you can talk through each option and pick the locations that will be the most meaningful and photogenic.
If you have enough time before the wedding, you can also think about what season you love the most. Are you really into falling leaves and golden fall colors? Or does the idea of winter snow sound romantic to you? Maybe you love orchards full of blossoming blooms in the spring. Most weddings take place in warm weather, but engagement photos give you the opportunity to play with the timing and take them in the season of your choice. Make sure to schedule ahead if you want a certain season, because they have to be timed carefully, and are also very high in demand for photographers.
When thinking about engagement photos, make sure you give yourself enough time to get your photos back and print out your save the date announcement or invitation. Before your session, ask your photographer what their turn around time is for delivering your photos. Also ask if they provide digital files for you to share on social media and to use for your wedding website.
Save the Date announcements should be sent out 6 months before your wedding, or 8-12 months if it is a destination wedding where your guests need to plan travel.
Your invitations should be sent 6-8 weeks before the wedding, or about 3 months for destination weddings.
Check with your wedding planner for their recommendations on printers, but plan about 2 weeks from ordering your announcements for them to be printed and delivered.
Fun ways to use your engagement photos include printing out photos to display at the wedding, or printing them on a canvas that guests can sign. Lots of couples also like to make a guest book featuring your engagement photos. You can also share them on social media as a countdown to the wedding.... "100 days to go! Can't wait to marry this man!" People love seeing your engagement photos, and it gets them (and you!) excited for the wedding. Don't be afraid of oversharing, that's what they're for!!
THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WHEN PICKING A LOCATION FOR ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS:
Timing - Will you have enough time to print your save the date announcements and invitations?
Season - What is your favorite time of year together? What type of weather do you want for your photos?
Place - Is there a place that has been special in your relationship? A favorite getaway spot? Hiking trail you love to go together? The place you had your first date? Somewhere near where your wedding will be?
Background - What type of scenery do you want behind you? Snowy mountains and trees, or beautiful views of the desert? Maybe a vineyard or orchard?
Your photographer can also be a great resource for finding locations you may never even have thought of. Talk to your photographer about what your dream engagement photos would look like, and they will help you bring that vision to life.
A few of the sites featured in this blog post include: Palisade, Colorado peach orchards, Mesa Lakes Lodge in the Grand Mesa National Forest, Connected Lakes in Grand Junction, Colorado, the Colorado National Monument, and the mountains of Silver Jack Colorado. A few of my other favorite locations include Moab, Utah, Maroon Bells in Aspen, Colorado, Ridgway State Park, and Cascade Falls in Ouray, Colorado.... but the options are really endless!
Need some ideas on what to wear for your engagement photos? Check out my blog post: Nailing your engagement session style
Ready to schedule your engagement session? Let's talk! firstname.lastname@example.org