Thursday, June 10, 2010

Expert Tips For a Perfect Engagement Shoot

Engagement session on the horizon? Don’t miss these expert tips from L.A. wedding photographer Damien Smith. We used them before our shoot, and they made a huge difference!

• Girls, get a mani and pedi. This is my #1 thing to do for any shoot. Your hands and ring are important, and there's nothing that ruins a shoot more than no mani and pedi!

• Have your hair and makeup done before the session begins. Bring a small touchup kit with hairspray, gel, lipstick/gloss, etc. Also bring a comb and brush. Use lotion on your hands, and make sure your hands and nails are well-manicured.

• If Murphy’s Law reigns supreme, and you break out or have blemishes, don’t worry, and don’t try to cover them up. I can retouch your images and remove the nefarious zits!

• Gentlemen, get a nice haircut and a nice shave. Clean nails are great, too!

• Bring at least two outfits, maybe one casual, and one more formal and dressy. I do love it when people really think about this session, and go beyond the call of duty by getting something really exciting for the shoot.

• Girls, borrow things if you have to in order to make the shoot great! Especially great shoes! Bringing some props that are special to you doesn’t hurt, either.

• When choosing clothes, try not to make them too contrasting. When one of you is wearing white and the other black, it’s hard for a photographer to keep all of those colors intact, because they are so far apart. So, choose colors that are more similar, and clothing that does not steal attention away from you.

• Try to pick a place that is really cool to shoot. If you can’t think of one, or don’t have that very special place, your photographer should be able to help you decide.

So, the "cramming for a test" version:

• Get a mani and pedi beforehand.

• Wear the same or similar colored clothes in the style you're used to.

• Push your face slightly toward the camera.

• Relax your hands at whatever position you like and is comfortable.

• Smile with your eyes first.

• Relax, relax, relax!

If you’ve already done an engagement shoot, what are your tips for fellow brides-and-grooms-to-be? If yours is still coming up, are there any questions you’d like answered?

(Photo Credit: Damien Smith Photography)


  1. All great tips! I forgot to get a mani before . . . oops! We had our engagement photos done at one of our favorite places, the Petaluma Pumpkin Patch. The colors were amazing, and it was a gorgeous fall day. I can't wait to go back up there this year, closer to the wedding.

  2. All such great tips.. I agree on the mani, pedi and props! I think having some props for our beach engagement session really added to it and helped us feel a little more comfortable.

  3. Great tips! Hope yo are enjoying yourselves!

  4. Great tips! Congrats sweetie! Hope you are having an amazing time!

  5. Love the tips !!
    Have a safe trip back home.