Congratulations on your engagement! Everyone's excited for you and cannot wait to hear about the wedding date, location, ideas, and more. But more than anything else, they want to see photos of the couple. So you find the photographer you like, and schedule the shoot. But often times, the photographer fails to communicate how you should prepare for the shoot. Well, here's an in-depth guide for couples.


Guys generally have an easier time preparing for shoots. All they need to do is some simple grooming. However, there is a good amount to think about. First of all, a good haircut is crucial for the shoot. If you're like me, however, your hair looks better a few days or even a week after actually getting cut. Keep that in mind when scheduling your haircut. The same can be said for shaving. If you want a 3-day stubble, don't shave 5 days in advance. Also, since a close-up of the hands is a standard photo these days, get a manicure a couple days before the shoot. I realize it's not something a lot of men do, but it will make for great photos.


Engagement photo tips

As for clothing, make sure to have them cleaned and ironed. If you're planning on wearing a suit, have it dry-cleaned. Any shoes or boots will benefit from a good polishing. When driving to the location, do not wear your jacket or sport coat, so as not to wrinkle it up before the shoot. These simple guidelines will help you prep wonderfully for your photoshoot.


Engagement photo tips


Ladies, you definitely have a much harder time prepping for the shoot, but you tend to have the routine down. Mani-pedi, facial, haircut and style, make-up at the mall, and you're good to go. However, here are a few tips that might help you along the way. A lot of women will hire a makeup artist for the wedding day. My wife paid for a couple trials before picking her makeup artist. If you feel confident with the breadth of work a makeup artist is showcasing, combine your test with your engagement shoot. This way, you have fantastic makeup done and pay only once for it. You could even negotiate to have the artist on standby for a couple different looks, so you can change things up between locations.


Engagement photo tips

As for clothing, the same guidelines apply as above, with one other addendum: please do not match your partner. And I mean literally match. The last thing you want your engagement shoot to look like is the placeholder photos that come with frames that you buy at Target. This means no white shirts and dark jeans, or anything of the sort. Each of you should express your own style, and let the photographer guide you if you think you may clash in photos.

The Couple

Now that we have individual grooming and prep out of the way, let's talk about the details surrounding your shoot. When it comes to locations, have a few spots in mind that are meaningful to you. If you need suggestions, tap into your photographer's experience. A combination of the two will help you get locations that are photographically beautiful as well as overall meaningful to you.


Engagement photo tips

Also talk through and discuss if you want to have some sort of theme shoot as one of your looks. My wife and I did a 50's shoot that turned out great. I have photographed some couples with pets and other who didn't want any real theme. It depends on you as a couple, so don't feel too obligated one way or another.

Engagement photo tips

Finally, be rested. No amount of grooming or Photoshop will hide the dark circles under your eyes, and the overall look of exhaustion. Drink plenty of water all week, get enough sleep, and try not to stress too much. All of these things translate into your photos, so be mindful of them.


Engagement photo tips

Oh, and one last thing - have fun! These guidelines are only meant to get you to the shoot. Put them out of your mind once you're there. Enjoy each other's company, and the beautiful day. It'll make for excellent photos.

About the Author:

Arpit Mehta is the owner and chief photographer at Mehta Weddings, a husband-and-wife run small business specializing in cinematic wedding photography that focuses on providing an exclusive and unique experience for each couple. // // 949-922-8426