Updated: Apr 28
Engagement Photography is trending up massively here in Ireland, about half of my Dublin couples last year requested it (up from approximately zero the year before!). The newfound popularity is not surprising – it is an excellent idea. Not convinced? Here are five of the best reasons why an Engagement Photoshoot is something you should consider.
1 Get to know your photographer, and vice-versa.
There is a huge benefit in spending time with your Photographer in advance of the Wedding.
It gives you guys a chance to get to know one another and to develop a relaxed working (and social!) relationship. On your Wedding day you will be meeting a familiar face (and possibly even friend) instead of a stranger. One less thing to worry about in the run-up.
You will have a chance to get comfortable with your Wedding Photographer, with his / her style and with how the photography sessions will flow on your Wedding day. Most couples are not models and are not used to posing and being guided. Possibly the very idea of it will send some of you into a fever chill. When you spend a bit of time with your Photographer you will get used to posing very quickly and (again) this will be one less thing to worry about in the run up to your wedding day.
On the flip side, your Wedding Photographer will also get to know you guys, will know what style you like and (most important!) you will all learn how to communicate together as a team.
In a nutshell – remove the unknown!
2 A Stitch in Time
Have you ever been snapped and thought you struck a jaunty pose, only to later see it on Facebook and wonder why you were the only one in the shot miming along to ‘I’m A Little Teapot’? Ever looked through a set of photos and couldn’t find one of yourself that looked natural / normal / humanoid? Posing does not come naturally to most of us. Maybe it is an Irish thing – you can almost hear the conversations “She thinks she’s Beyonce that one, or what’s her name, Maradonna, ha?”.
A good photographer can not only help you to relax and to enjoy being photographed (which is a HUGE thing on the day of the shoot) but they will also spot any sign of ‘awkward’ and let you know how to fix it. That solves your posing for the Engagement Shoot as well as every other photo for the rest of your life!
By the way, I have seen a wedding album where the Groom, in pretty much every photo, had his hands so deep in his pockets you start to wonder whether something has come loose down there. Extreme example I know, but if the photographer (or the Groom himself) had seen that at an Engagement Shoot a quick word would have cured him for life, there and then. It can be a little more awkward issuing this sort of advice on the Wedding day, surrounded by elderly relatives who are not nearly as hard-of-hearing as they let on.
3 Save the Date
Instead of sending some generic Save-The-Date card with a delightful stock photo of a top hat and veil or a pair of somebody else’s wedding rings, you can fully personalise it with a stunning photo that captures you as the unique fun loving couple you are. Start your Wedding off on the right note.
4 Variety is the Spice of Life
On the Wedding Day, I love telling the story of the day through the photos – from the relaxed preparation in the morning up to the dancefloor shenanigans. Generally the couple will be in their wedding outfits for the entire Wedding album and they are seen in this context throughout. Including some Engagement photographs at the start of the album adds an extra dimension and reveals a little bit more of the couple’s personalities in a less formal setting.
5 They are fun!
In fairness, I can say this about any type of photo-shoot. They are always a bit of craic, once you have a relaxed Wedding Photographer that is up for a bit of craic (and if you don’t – get another one or your photos will be a bit of something that sounds a bit like craic, but is far from it). The right Wedding Photographer will put you at ease and you will be relaxed and have fun, working with whatever is there on the day in terms of the location, the weather, people in the background etc. Every day and every shoot is different and if you are working with a creative photographer that can adapt quickly, you will really enjoy the experience. With Engagement Photography it also gives you a chance to really take your time, go with the flow and have fun whereas on the Wedding Day there can be time pressures, usually the day vanishes in the blink of an eye!
So there you have it, give it a lash and thank yourself later.
Stephen O'Sullivan is a documentary wedding photographer. It appears he talks about himself in the third person these days....... Apologies.... I am an award winning Wedding Photographer, specialising in relaxed & fun Wedding Photography. No awkward nonsense, no excessive posing, no hogging the couple on their big day. My style is natural Wedding Photography. I have twin bases in Dublin & Killaloe and I serve Dublin, Kerry, Tipperary, Clare, Limerick, Waterford, Cork, Wexford, Wicklow, Monaghan, Galway and anywhere in between. I would love to hear from you, get in touch here, fill in some details and get a quote. No awkward nonsense, simply beautiful photos.
I love my work, and you will too.