In preparation for our “professional” engagement photo shoot, which we received as part of our wedding photography package through Linczak Photography, we asked my mom to come up to our house to check out our outfits, take a few photos of us in outfits we liked but didn’t want to wear in the official pictures and get us a bit more comfortable in front of the camera. Practice makes perfect, after all, and I was also still in limbo over which outfits would look good without being too matchy-matchy.
I would recommend others do a practice round as well, especially if you don’t love being photographed or if you’ve not really been photographed as a couple. There were small things I realized during the shoot as well as after when we were looking through the pictures:
- We do not take ourselves seriously. I already knew this, but it came across in the photos. For us, that was a good thing–I loved the way we interacted, laughed, shared some funny moments, etc., and my mom captured them all. However, it became apparent that we were probably going to struggle through any serious photos our photographers might propose during the official shoot. Again, not necessarily a bad take-away–ultimately I want pictures that capture who we are as a couple, not just glam shots– but it was good to know in advance.
- The fiance is easily distracted. Again, I already knew this (ha!), but I was somewhat astounded at how many of the pictures my mom took had him looking in the wrong direction or making a face because he was talking, etc. The final shots look like a hilarious blooper reel, and I’ll be doing something with them, but we did have to talk about how we were both going to make a concerted effort to behave during the professional session.
- The people on Pinterest are contortionists. Seriously. I pulled a bunch of engagement photo examples off Pinterest for us to try, and thank goodness we were doing it in the privacy of our backyard with my parents! We were not successful in recreating any of the awesome poses I found, but our “attempts” turned out really funny and we laughed the entire time. I’m just glad we ran through them among friends rather than wasting time trying to do something that wasn’t really us with the professionals.
- Your outfits come across differently on camera than in person. I was trying to keep our clothes casual and something we would actually wear–t-shirts and jeans, dressy tops with casual bottoms, etc.–in colors that complimented but didn’t quite match. It was interesting to see how they came across in the final photos. One of the outfits we wore in the photos below was definitely in my second tier hanging in the closet, but I was really pleased with how it came through in the pictures.
We also lucked out in that a local hot air balloon festival was taking place the afternoon my parents were up, so after the backyard photo session we headed over there to enjoy the balloon launch but also take a few additional photos. It made for a few interesting shots where we were not the only thing you were looking at in the picture, which made me more comfortable.
I’ve included some of my favorites from the practice round below and look forward to using some of them in the wedding Save the Dates, guest book, etc. No matter how the professional photos turn out, I’ll always enjoy thinking about how much fun we had during our practice round and love that my mom took them!