While planning your wedding you may have come across the term or activity, ‘engagement shoot.’ In brief, an engagement shoot is generally a 1-2 hour session with your wedding photographer in a relaxed and informal setting taking place some months before your wedding day. It is a growing trend with more couples asking for them and more photographers including them within their wedding packages. You may now be wondering why they are becoming so popular and if an engagement shoot would be a good fit for your ‘pre wedding experience?’ With the help of Documentary Wedding Photographer Matt Badenoch, we’re going to tell you 4 of the key benefits of having an engagement shoot.
1) Shake off those nerves of being in front of the camera
If you find the idea of being in-front of the camera and having your photo taken uncomfortable you are certainly not alone. The majority of the couples I work with initially feel this way. Even myself, a photographer, would much rather be behind a camera than in-front of it. Like with most things one way to overcome this is with practice. Also as with many of the things we worry about, once you give it ago it’s often not as bad as you first imagined. And this is where the engagement shoot is great. It gives you a chance to get a feel for what it’s like to be in-front of the camera in a relaxed environment. So when it comes to those portrait photos on your wedding day you’ll know exactly what to expect and may even be looking forward to them.
2) Get to know your photographer
A big part of how you feel in front of the camera will be down to your photographer. Your photographer can give you the correct amount of direction to make you feel confident and look awesome. They can also know what to say to help you relax. Getting to know your photographer and how they work ahead of your wedding day will mean you know exactly what to expect from your photographer on the day itself. It’s also important to remember that your photographer will be your one wedding supplier who will be with you for your entire wedding day. They’ll likely be with you from your preparation all the way through to you busting out moves on the dance floor. Welcoming your photographer on your wedding day as a friend rather than a complete stranger will help both you and your guests feel more at ease in-front of the camera.
3) Give your photographer a chance to get to know you
Having worked with a lot of couples you learn that each one is unique. So when it comes to getting amazing photos of them that emphasise their characters and what makes them awesome as a couple, you have to adapt your approach a little with each couple. This ranges from the level of direction you give them and how to pose them to what you say and do to help them feel relaxed and be themselves (really important). After an engagement shoot, going into your wedding your photographer will know exactly how to get the best possible photos of you. On a personal note, knowing my couple beforehand really helps me kick off the wedding day feeling relaxed and excited for the day ahead.
4) Get some fantastic photos of just the two of you
That’s right. As well as all of the above reasons of why an engagement shoot will benefit your wedding day you will also get to walk away with some amazing photos of you and your partner. In addition to maybe sticking a few of these on Facebook and printing a couple to hang in your home, you can also use these in creative ways as part of your wedding experience. For example, save the date cards ahead of the wedding or a signing book, slideshow, posters and table settings on the day. There are a whole range of ways you could get creative with them.
So to wrap up, it’s not just about getting some nice photos, an engagement shoot focusses mainly on practicing and making sure you get the best possible photos on your wedding day and enjoy every moment of it! Plus, a fun couple of hours with the one you love and photographer, and with this London Wedding Photographer…a free session!