A big question in wedding planning is whether or not to take engagement photos. With all things in wedding planning, it is a personal decision, and you absolutely do not HAVE to do anything...but I love engagement photos, and I always recommend them to all of the couples that I work with. Why? Below are my responses to some of the most common questions about engagement photos.
We've met our photographer in person. Don't we know her well enough already?
There is a level of trust that you must have with your wedding photographer. You are hiring this person to capture the biggest day of your life, and you need to trust that she fully understands the style of your wedding, and your personality as a couple. Your personality is not something that can be explained, or shown on a Pinterest board...it comes out by spending time with you. In an engagement session, you'll develop a bond with your photographer that will carry through your wedding day. This bond will make it easier for you to relax and be yourself in front of the camera, and it also will help your photographer understand what you like and what you don't like when it comes to photos of yourself (come on ladies, we all know we have a good and a bad side...your photographer needs to know these things)! Your engagement session becomes your trial run for the big day!
What will I use my engagement photos for?
You will receive so many beautiful photos that you won't know what to do with them all! Most people use their engagement photos on their save the dates, and maybe share a few on Instagram before the big day, but there are so many other unique ways to use your engagement photos. I recently worked with a bride who had such a hard time with her save the dates because she loved all of her photos and couldn't decide. When I started working with her, we narrowed it down to just one photo, and plan to use more favorite in other ways. Below are a few of my favorite ways to use engagement photos:
Wedding Website Create an album or sprinkle the photos throughout the website.
Holiday Cards Do the holidays fall over your engagement? Use these beautiful photos to send holiday greetings to your family and friends.
Bridal Shower Thank You Cards Personalize your bridal shower thank you cards using your engagement photos.
Guest Book Create a photo book using your favorite engagement photos and leave some pages blank for your guests to write well wishes. This also makes a great keepsake to remember the day with a custom coffee table book.
Will it fit in my budget?
Engagement photos are usually very budget friendly! When selecting your photographer, ask if an engagement session is included in the package. Many photographers will include the session with digital files and full rights in your wedding package. If budget is a concern, this makes it a no-brainer.
We will already have so many photos from the wedding day. Why do we need more?
Someday you'll look back and realize that your engagement photos were your first "family photos." If you choose to have children, you (now known as "mom and dad") will never be the focus of the photos...and for good reason! Once little ones enter your world, it will be a rare occurrence to have a nice photos of JUST you and your spouse. I adore my wedding photos, but there's something about our engagement photos that just feel more "us." They represent a snapshot of a different time in our lives.
You will never think back on your wedding planning and regret getting engagement photos. Even if you're shy in front of the camera, or feel like it's just one more thing to do in your wedding planning...have some fun with it and enjoy the experience with your fiance.