There are so many things to plan for a wedding. It's easy to look at the prospect of doing an engagement photo shoot and think "Well this isn't a huge deal, it's not even ON my wedding day!". BUT, you'd be missing out on a ton of benefits! I'm going to take you through the list of reasons why you should be doing an engagement session. Fun fact: Annie x Mike include a free engagement session with all of our wedding photography packages!
First off, you need something to put on your Save the Dates and your wedding website! Having beautiful photos of you two to publish all over your pre-wedding materials is a giant benefit to doing an engagement shoot. Sure it'd be easy enough to snap a few iphone photos and call it a day, but it won't be a genuine reflection of the level of planning and care you're putting into the rest of your wedding festivities. You are, no doubt, trying to find your favorite venue, and food vendor, your favorite florist and DJ. If you're getting the perfect invitations and save the dates, then why would you represent all of that hard work you've done researching, consulting and booking all those services and perfecting your overall vision with a few poorly lit, grainy photos? It'd be like painting your new Ferrari with a can of spray paint. That's simply not cute. They say a picture says a thousand words, well this is your chance to use those words to tell your prospective guests that this is going to be a beautiful, elegant, well planned event that they are going to truly enjoy and is worth the potential travel.
Secondly, an engagement shoot is an opportunity to get to know your wedding photographer and get comfortable so that when your wedding day comes you don't have to have any awkward first meetings. Your photographers will show up with the comfort of a new friend that you are excited to see again! There are already plenty of reasons to be a little stressed on your big day, from guests texting you, to vendors asking questions, to parents well....just parents. So if you have a tiny bit of wiggle room in your budget then adding an engagement session will diffuse any butterflies you might have about meeting your photographers for the first time (or if you book with Annie x Mike you don't need any wiggle room because the engagement session is FREE). Furthermore, when your photographers have already spent an hour during your engagement session getting to know your mannerisms, and the way you interact as a couple this will translate into way more magic moments they are prepared to capture when it really counts. Everybody is different so it can take a little trial and error to learn when a person is going to smile, laugh or do something downright adorable. Better for your photographers to already know that about you than to be figuring it out while you're saying "I do".
Lastly, you are (most likely) not professional models. Most couples have never been the subjects of a professional photo shoot before. The engagement shoot is an opportunity for you two to shake off any nervousness about being photographed and really break the ice. When your wedding day arrives and it's time to have your photo taken five thousand times you will be able to approach it with the comfort of a seasoned veteran instead of worrying about where to put your hands (hips? pockets? this hole in the ground?). You will have seen the final product of your engagement shoot and so you'll have the peace of mind that your photographers know what they are doing. Being photographed can feel a little weird and you might be thinking to yourself during the shoot "there's no way I look good right now". Luckily, you'll know from your engagement shoot that in fact, yes "these guys know how to grab that magic photo and make me look good even if I feel like a chinchilla in a plastic terrarium being gawked at by a gaggle of wide-eyed eight year olds".
While we're here let's talk about the elephant in the room. Social media. In a study we found on magicvenues.com using data collected from google they found that since 2004 the popularity of engagement shoots has been increasing steadily and they are attributing that growth to the rise of social media. Let's face it in many circles if it didn't get posted to facebook or instagram it simply did not happen. So having some really incredible images of you two lovers is the best way of announcing to your friends and families that you've just got engaged or set your wedding date. Even before sending out your Save The Dates it can be really fun to share a few snaps from your engagement shoot and gin up some excitement among your friends and family. You'll get to see who's super pumped to visit your city for the wedding, and which aunt just learned how to use emojis. Even just the joy of dropping some big life news and showing all your circles how happy and in love you are can be the cherry on top of the fact that they were already all jealous of you. Just kidding (not really).
In summation, there are just too many reasons to do an engagement photoshoot. From getting comfortable being photographed yourself, to allowing your photographers to get to know all your fun little quirks. The opportunity to break the proverbial ice is reason enough to book your engagement shoot right now. Having incredible shots for your pre-wedding materials or content for your social media are also huge considerations. Most of all doing an engagement session will bring you peace of mind. Really isn't peace of mind what we're all going for when we hire vendors for our wedding? That's why we hire professionals instead of aunt Becky with her new DSLR. You wouldn't buy a dress without trying it on first, or order a cake without tasting it, so doing an engagement shoot brings you that same peace of mind and knowing that you can trust your photographers and they are going to make it a fun experience, and make you look amazing on the most important day of your life. If you were considering hiring Annie x Mike to be your wedding photography team, then just go ahead and book the full wedding package today, because, not sure if I mentioned this before, the engagement shoot is free!