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Tidbits: Engagement Sessions

As promised a couple weeks ago, I want to talk with y’all about engagement sessions.

They really are one of my favorite things to do. Why, you may ask? Well, I have lots of reasons…

One, it gives us a chance to hang out. We can spend time together before the whirlwind of your wedding day. I get to know you as a couple and you get learn what it’s like to be in front of my camera.

Two, and my favorite reason, you are left with images that represent you as a couple, just as you are, right now, in this stage of your relationship. I love that you can look back on the images in 25 years with your children or grandchildren and remember what it was like.

Because I believe these sessions are so important, I put together a few tips so you can get the most out of your engagement pictures with us.

Tip #1- Inspiration.

There is inspiration EVERYWHERE these days. Wedding blogs, magazines, Pinterest, Facebook, the list goes on. I think it is awesome to have so many resources as a bride…. but I do know that it can be overwhelming at times too. You see a bajillion cute ideas and you will find yourself wanting to copy all of them. My advice is this… your inspiration needs to come from YOUR relationship. What you love doing together, maybe a special place to you as a couple, etc. That’s where I would start! If you have never gone on a picnic… then don’t feel like you have to put together a stylized picnic session. That’s not you guys!

We love to help our couples in this area… which is why we give you a questionnaire to tell us about yourselves. That will help us come up with ideas that fit you as a couple.

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Tip #2- What to wear.

When choosing your wardrobe, think about where your shoot will be and what kind of look you are going for. Wear something you feel awesome in. And yes, you can try to coordinate not only color palette, but also style of clothing… but don’t feel you have to be too matchy. If you wouldn’t normally go out to eat both wearing white shirts and jeans, then please don’t come to your session matching either.

As always, if you are unsure of what you should wear, just ask! You can always bring a few options as well the day of.

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Tip #3- When to do the session.

There really isn’t a “right” answer to this question. The answer really is.. whatever works for you!

I usually tell my clients it depends on what you plan on using the photos for. If you plan on using them in a save the date or invitation, I would recommend taking the photos at least 6 months before your wedding date. If you want to use them for the reception decor or your guest book, at least 2 months before is a good amount of time. If you just plan on using them for yourselves to decorate your home, etc. You could do them as late as the week of your wedding honestly (this sometimes works better for destination weddings, because the couple will only have to come in to town once).

I hope these tips have helped you in coming up with ideas for your session!

Tidbits: Q&A with Kirby

We have so many couples smack dab in the middle of wedding planning.. and we know there are so many decisions to make.
We thought it would be fun to introduce you to some of our previous brides and let them share a little advice on how they put together their big days.
For today’s Tidbits, meet Kirby.
Her and Andrew were married in Boston, MA at the beautiful Boston Harbor Hotel. To see their full post, click here.
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–  Describe your wedding day. What details were the most important?
My wedding day was exciting and emotional! It was so amazing to be surrounded by all of our friends and family. I definitely paid close attention to certain details like whether my flowers we as I ordered, and whether the band played as long as we had paid them for, but what was more important was trying to put all of that stuff aside and focus on being in the moment since it goes by so quickly.
– How did you find your vendors? How would you advise other brides to find theirs?
For photos, I looked for photographers who had shot at my venue, and picked Jenny at Captured Photography because I liked their photos of the venue best. For rest of vendors, I used some combination of referrals and websites.
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–  What were the most memorable moments about your day?
Seeing Andrew for the first time, dancing with my Dad, celebrating even more at the after party
– Whats something you wish you would have done differently?
I wish I had worn my hair up! It was a very humid day so my hair went crazy before I went down the aisle.
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– What’s something you think every bride should do/have?
A good budget tracker! We created an excel spreadsheet early, and it helped us in sticking to our budget.
– Any other words of advice?
Enjoy the planning process as much as you can. Things will definitely be stressful at times, but it is a very special time.
Thanks Kirby!

Brandon & Anna- Palm Beach

Brandon & Anna have been together for over 6 years, but they knew from the beginning this was it. They fell hard for each other and nothing has changed.

Their wedding was classy, beautiful, and a ton of fun.

Here’s just a quick look back at their day.

And some of the vendors involved:

Ceremony: Royal Poinciana Chapel

Venue: Lake Pavilion

Florist: Flower Market

Catering: A Alexander 

DJ: Entertainment Connection

Videographer: Hope Media

 

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Tidbits: Unplugged Ceremonies

So there you are gazing into the eyes of your beloved, saying your vows surrounded by your closest friends and family (the people most important to you)… You turn to sneak a glance at those wedding guests… and boom…. you are greeted by a sea of faces staring at their LCD screens.

I love the way Offbeat Bride said it in a recent article, “Welcome to the era of the over-documented wedding, where, even though you’ve hired someone to take photos, every guest has a camera or an iPhone and is tweeting the whole event. They’re there with you, but are they really there?”

There is a new wedding trend arising to help solve this problem… and honestly I think it may be my favorite one yet.

Unplugged Ceremonies.

What is an Unplugged Ceremony? Basically, the couple simply asks that guests and family members turn off all their electrical devices so that they are truly “there” during the ceremony.

Here’s an example of what a bride and groom might say to their guests…

And from my side, as a professional photographer, when a couple adopts this new trend.. I want to scream, GLORY, GLORY, HALLELUJAH!

Professional photos can be- and have been- ruined by guests standing in the way or having their camera flashes go off at inopportune times. Not to mention you worked hard to find your photographer and spent a pretty penny to assure that we will get you fabulous images. So trust us to get the job done.

As you can see here… I am quite surrounded…

And in this shot, all of the phones really take away from the bride and groom walking down the aisle and getting to make eye contact with their guests!

It is really becoming an issue for us when the bride first walks down the aisle as well. Everyone wants to grab that shot, but really all they get is everyone else in their shot trying to grab that shot. I feel like I am having to creep more and more in to the center of the aisle, just to get a clear view. And, I definitely don’t want to be blocking the groom from seeing his bride arrive.

So, what’s next? Just relay the message to your wedding guests. Lauren over at Every Last Detail has some ideas on how to present those requests here. As well as the Offbeat Bride here.

If you are still in the planning pages of your wedding… we really encourage you to take a look at their ideas and have an Unplugged Ceremony.

Stay tuned for the next Tidbits… Tips for Engagement Sessions including what to do, what to wear, and when to do them!