Why Shoot an Engagement Session?

Why Do We Shoot Engagement Sessions with Our Wedding Clients?

There are several reasons as to why photographers decide to include engagement sessions with their wedding packages.  The most common would be for the booking value.  Why would a couple pay a photographer for both wedding and engagement photos when they can get their engagement session included with the wedding packages?  There are a number of other reasons, however, ones that both you as a client, and us as photographers, should consider.

Katie & Brian - Minnesota Engagement Photography - RKH Images  (15 of 198).jpg


When weddings are booked, they can be booked out years in advance, what with venues booking out so far.  We do initial consults with our clients, as well as secondary, but the engagement session gives us a way to personally see what the client is looking for.

Let's face it, unless you get photography done on a regular basis, this is new to you.  The concept of posing and trying to look natural (all while not being completely natural) all in front of a camera, is not something you do every day.  You'll be asked to hold still, smile, kiss, basically, pretend you like each other for extended periods of time.  This is all with someone that you just hired who you may not know personally.  That, in itself, gets weird.

The same goes for the photography end of things.  The engagement session, although we shoot them all the time, is essentially a first round with a new couple.  We learn so much about you during this session, most importantly, what you are comfortable with.


Not everyone is the same when it comes to style - this is common knowledge.  However, it may be difficult for us to specify your exact style upon meeting you one time.  Most clients also have a tough time describing exactly what it is they are looking for in photography.

When it comes to engagement photography, there are a number of things that people are looking to have done.  In the rise of Pintrest, there became some extreme trends in this type of photography.  For years, we would see the ampersand prop, the frame prop, PROPS IN GENERAL.  Over the past couple of years, we have seen that trend die off considerably.  Some people still enjoy them.  Some people like doing photography in the woods, in the city, with their pets, and more.


We want our clients to be relaxed around us and for us to be relaxed around them.  Trust us, shooting photography is terrible when one of the parties is not comfortable.  Engagement sessions make it so that on the day of the second consult, we are again excited to see you, and on the day of the wedding, we are not only excited, but have an idea of how to help you decompress during stress.

The first ten minutes or so of an engagement session is always a little odd.  Reason being, you don't know what to do and we are trying to figure out what you would like and what makes you comfortable.  Then we work it all into a fine pile of information and start having fun.  That's when the real photos come out because you are relaxed and genuinely enjoying your session.


Engagement sessions are kind of like homework for wedding photography.  We get to learn a ton about the couple and they get to learn about us.  There have been numerous times in which couples invite us out after shoots for lunch or drinks just to talk about things other than photography, which is really cool.  We feel more connected that way and feel that they look at us as more than just the people they hired.  We never want our clients to feel that way.  We feel that we could go hang out with everyone that we have photographed in the past and hope it always stays that way.

In essence, it's good to do a engagement session with your photographer that is shooting your wedding on both your end and theirs.  We love doing engagement sessions and include them in all of our wedding packages.  If you like what you see here, please feel free to check out our testimonials page, as well as the rest of our blog.