Planning Your Custom Engagement Session | Shot by Chelsea

An engagement session the perfect way for me to get to know the two of you, and understand what works best in capturing who you are—which is why it’s included in every wedding collection that we offer! The more time we spend together, the better I can serve you. It is also the best way for you to truly understand what to expect while in front of my camera, so you are even more comfortable on your wedding day.

So, if an engagement session is THAT big of a deal, and I believe that it is! I want to give you the tools you need to get the most out of it. So, let’s talk about the different elements that can give you a personalized, stunning, and overall bomb engagement session.

Deciding when and where

We want the overall style and feel of the session to fit and make sense. Your session’s style has a lot to do with when and where it takes place. For the when, many couples choose their favorite season. So, if you love all things green, spring blooms, fall leaves, or snow—that could be the answer. Also, thinking about your ideal color palette or wardrobe might lead you to particular time of year. For the where, think about a location where the two of you just fit. For example, if you love all things outdoors, a park setting or winery could be a go-to. But, I also encourage you to think about locations that play a role in your lives or story. Where do you love to spend your time? Here is a link to another post written specifically for choosing your session location, if you’d like to learn more about what I look for in a location from a light and photography perspective!


Incorporate your favorite date or activity

What you love typically goes hand in hand with who you love. So, the best way to take your session to the next level and to truly personalize your shoot, is to incorporate a favorite date or activity. We may still have a separate primary location for the majority of your session, but including a secondary spot or activity can make you more comfortable in front of the camera because IT’S FUN!! Plus, I’m there to learn, understand, and capture YOU. This can be anything from a coffee, ice cream, food truck, donut, winery, or brewery date (who doesn’t love food and drinks?). But, can also be hiking, mini golf, fishing, or just walking your dog! Basically, tell me all about what you love and we can find a way to make it photogenic!


Consider an extra something

If you opt out of the activity aspect of your shoot, I encourage you to think about small touches that go a long way. I suppose I should call them “props”, but I’m personally not a fan of props in the way that most people think of them. My style of shooting is very natural and authentic, so you won’t find me showing up to a session with chairs, stools, boxes, etc. But, if there is an extra something that makes sense to you, makes the session more personalized, or styles it beautifully—then, I’m all about it! Common examples are a coordinating blanket, champagne, or even florals!



Here it is. Your reason, your excuse, or your permission to go all out on a couple of new outfits! You know that confidence you get when you’re rocking an outfit, and you check yourself out in the mirror and think…YAAAS. That’s what we’re going for. If that means new clothes—great! If that means pulling a staple item out of your closet that you can’t live without—awesome! But, basically, I want you to feel like you walked straight out of your Pinterest inspo board, dressed as the best version of yourself. Here is another resource that expands on what to wear for your engagement session.


Trust the hair + makeup pros

And, while we are on the topic of looking and feeling your best, I also want you to consider hiring professional hair and makeup. Professional hair and makeup tends to photograph better and hold up longer. Especially if the weather brings wind, humidity, or any other curve balls. If that’s something that worries you, call in a pro! Many brides use the engagement session as a wedding day trial run, so that could be a way to make it a more affordable/two birds with one stone kind of thing.

Excited to start planning?! Reach out anytime to tell me about your must-haves and your maybes, what you love and what’s important, and what will ultimately tell your story and create photos that you are obsessed with!

Chelsea LieferComment