why take engagement photos?

An engagement session can be a very beneficial part of your pre-wedding plans. I’ve found that couples who do an engagement session are more relaxed on their wedding day and get their best photos. There are many reasons to take engagement photos before your wedding. If you’re on the fence or wondering ‘why take engagement photos,’ here’s a few of the best reasons:

Get to know your photographer

One of the best ways to be more comfortable in front of the camera is for us to spend some time together before the wedding day. I always meet up with couples early (usually for a drink or two) to chat for a bit before we start the session. We can catch up and talk about any wedding planning questions you might have. Once we start shooting you’ll get to see exactly what it’s like to work together ahead of time.

It’s a great warm up for the wedding day

The number one reason couples don’t want to have engagement photos taken is that they think they might be awkward – but this is actually the reason you should. 

My couples are real people, not professional models. Making you feel comfortable in front of the camera is what I do. As long as you’re happy and in love, it will work – I promise!

An engagement session is the perfect opportunity to learn what works best. That way, when the wedding day comes you’ll know where to put your hands and how to interact naturally.

I’ve had so many couples that didn’t think they wanted engagement photos come back and tell me that they were so happy they went for it. It really does help!

“We were not used to being in front of a camera so the engagement session was great practice and made us much more comfortable, which made our wedding day photos even better!”


Pick a different location

Engagement sessions are also a great chance to make pictures that will be different than your wedding portraits. Wedding days are filled with logistical challenges and time constraints. Maybe you’re getting married in the spring, but would love to have fall color engagement photos. Or maybe your part of your story is in a city outside of Chicago. I’ve traveled all over the world shoot destination engagement sessions. If you have a special place that won’t be possible to get to on the wedding day, this is your chance!

Or a different look

Not only can we get to different locations, but this is also a great chance to get some photos of the two of you in something a little less formal. You’ll look awesome on your wedding day, but sometimes it’s nice to pick outfits that incorporate more of your real, everyday personalities. There’s a lot more info on engagement session wardrobe ideas here.

You can use the photos for wedding related purposes

One of the original reasons couples needed an engagement portrait was for official newspaper announcements. These days there are countless cool opportunities to use the photos in other ways. You can use them on your wedding website, save-the-date cards, thank you cards or even make a custom guest book. One of my grooms brewed his own beer as the wedding favor, and they made custom labels with the photos. Another couple that was being married in a theater created their own movie posters and displayed them at the venue.

You can incorporate your pets

If you’re not getting married in a dog-friendly wedding venue, we can still get some photos with your four-legged family member. I’ve even got a few tips on how to include your dog in the engagement session.