How to Prepare for an Engagement (Or couple) Session

Let’s start with the most important question: Where should we take them?!

If my couples don’t have a very specific location they envision and want to take their photos in, I typically try to find an ideal location. I meet my clients halfway if they are not in the same area, typically meaning neither of us will know the area very well.

I have a list of great locations in many different places that I send my couples to help, but if I (and my couple) have never been to a specific area, I typically look at a map and look at all the towns that are halfway between our locations and zoom in on places that say: Recreational Park, Regional Park, Wildlife Area, Trails, River, Waterfall or Lake. I then check out recent photos taken there by looking at them on instagrams tagged locations. These kinds of places typically have a lot of different backdrops to offer.

Backdrops like:

  • Mountains

  • Rolling Hills

  • Meadows

  • Waterfalls

  • Redwood trees

  • Desert

  • City/Urban vibe

  • A nature reserve / outdoorsy “park” / Arboretum

  • Beach

  • Lake/Dock

  • Vineyards

  • Orchards

You may even want to even plan your session around the beauty of the season!

Seasonal backdrops:

  • Orange fall trees in the FALL

  • White snow in the WINTER

  • Colorful wildflowers or white blossoms in the SPRING

  • Dried meadow grass or sunflowers in the SUMMER

Seasons. Snow vs. spring flowers.

Seasons. Snow vs. spring flowers.

Now, what types of outfits should we wear?!

I recommend bringing 2 - 3 outfits. If you plan to do two outfits then I recommend a cute casual outfit and a fancier outfit. I am kind of obsessed with long flowy dresses.


  • Iron your clothes. The camera really does pick up the small wrinkles in your shirts/dresses.

  • Wear what you know you look best in and what makes you feel good.

  • Avoid small patterns. These can be difficult for the camera to pick up.

  • If possible, have your wedding day make up trial run the same day to see how it photographs!

Casual vs. Fancy

Casual vs. Fancy

Long dress magic!

Long dress magic!

What can make our session more unique… aka props.

Think about bringing props! This can give your engagement session more of a style and can give you something to do for more candid looking shots as well. Some ideas (but definitely not exclusive to)

  • Real flowers: a flower bouquet, flower crown

  • Rowboat

  • Bike(s)

  • A record player / A guitar (mah heart!)

  • Fishing rods

  • A picnic

  • Your dog (Yaaas!)

  • Food/drinks that you can use as props like coffee, ice cream etc..

  • Bathing suits (At the beach)

Picnic on a mountain top! Goals.

Picnic on a mountain top! Goals.

Hopefully these ideas help when planning for your engagement session!

Christa BoyntonComment