Before a lot of engagement sessions, the couples will admit they are a bit nervous about being in front of the camera. Sometimes, they are VERY nervous.
Unless you’re a professional model or you just happen to be in front of a camera A LOT then it’s natural to be nervous. Even if you have been in front of the camera before, it’s normal to still be nervous before a session.
I obsess over what to wear for a photo session just like everyone else. Honestly, I start thinking about what we will wear DAYS before the session (just because I’m type A).
You don’t have to obsess over your clothes like I do, but planning your outfits before time will make the whole session MUCH easier. I promise. Don’t worry about planning down to socks and bracelets, but having an idea of what you’ll wear before you’re getting ready will take a lot of the stress off.
This tip comes from experience. When we went for our engagement session (what feels like AGES ago), I didn’t put a lot of thought into what we would wear. So when I started getting ready about an hour and a half before the session, I was panicking picking outfits for us that complimented each other but weren’t too matchy.
Learn from my mistakes. The whole time I was getting ready and in the car, I was so flustered and annoyed. I was doing my makeup in the car and was just over it before the session had even started. Thankfully it was still so amazing, but a lot of that could have been avoided.
This is a tip that I have to give myself for EVERYTHING, but it’s similar to picking out your clothes beforehand.
This applies to me as a photographer and when I’m in front of the camera. This is something I’m sure you’ve experienced as well. If you’ve ever been late for a date or a doctor’s appointment, then you know how annoying it is. It feels like it throws everything off.
I try to always leave 15 minutes before my sessions. This gives me a cushion for traffic, red lights, or just to stop and rest when I get to the session.
Here is what happens if I don’t have that time built in. I pull up to the session the minute I’m supposed to be there, I get all my gear out as quickly as possible, trying to fix my hair, all while trying not to trip. Needless to say, I’m often out of breath when the session starts.
It’s no different for me when I’m on the other side of the camera. We take family pictures at least one time a year, and when we do we leave with at least 10 minutes to spare before a session. We get to rest when we get there, look at the location and just enjoy the moment.
Here is another tip that applies to so much more than just engagement sessions.
There is a lot of power in talking about your feelings. If you’re nervous about your sessions for whatever reason, talk about it! Talk about it with the photographer when you get to the session or even the day before. It’s our job to make you feel comfortable and hopefully we can help.
But don’t just talk about it with the photographer. Tell your fiance! They are probably feeling the same way. He or she knows you and knows how you feel. You would be surprised at what talking about your nerves can do.
Some people don’t think so, but we think any day with an engagement session should be a fun event. We recommend going to dinner or ice cream after your session. Make a date out of your engagement session.
You’re already dressed up, why not take advantage of it?
If you have the time, do something fun BEFORE you come to the session. Grab a cup of coffee or stop for a fun snack. This is great for two reasons:
Just hear us out on this one, because we PROMISE it’s really good advice. I know it sounds simple for us to say since we are BEHIND the camera, but just wait.
When you’re posing with your soon-to-be spouse, enjoy the moment. Look at them and soak it in. Smile at them like you’re the only ones there. Joke with them like you’re watching Netflix in your living room.
This will make you feel better and more comfortable. We want every engagement session to feel as natural and as fun as possible. If you can’t forget the camera, you can just enjoy the time with your loved one.