We’re happy to share this awesome article, written by our even more awesome Studio Manager/Guru/Mom Melissa Judson, which was posted today on www.theweddingring.ca. This is such a great article that, well…explains The Importance of an Engagement Session. We’re often asked about removing them from our wedding packages…but here’s why we always recommend keeping it included. Thanks Melissa!
The Importance of an Engagement Photo Session
An Expert Tip from Renaissance Studios Photography
Clint Russell and Shawn Van Daele, Owners and Photographers of Renaissance Studios Photography, say that they often have brides inquire a lot about removing the e-session from their wedding photography packages. So, they had recent bride, Melissa Judson, sum up why she thinks it’s a good idea to keep the e-session included…. This is what she said.
I don’t mind having my picture taken. Secretly, I rather like it. As a child I was the little girl who smiled on cue whenever my dad waved a camera in front of my face. But my husband doesn’t share my enthusiasm for the shutter. He quite literally cringes at the thought of having his picture taken. So I was a little concerned when I realized that we would have a photographer (two, actually) steadily following us around for many hours on one of the most important days of our lives. A day that I wanted perfectly documented, with photos showing my husband and I looking relaxed and happy and like “us.”
The solution? An engagement session with our photographer a few months before the wedding. It made all the difference in the world.
There are many reasons to schedule an engagement session with your photographer. Our intended goal was to increase our (i.e. my husband’s) comfort level in front of the camera. And, an engagement session does just that. We felt a bit nervous and a little awkward and unsure of ourselves as the photographer began taking pictures; but, by the time she clicked her last click, we were completely at ease in front of the camera. And with our photographer as well. An engagement session not only helps to make you more comfortable with the camera, it also helps you to bond with your photographer. And when you consider that your photographer spends almost as much time with you as your husband and bridesmaids do on your wedding day, building this comfort level is pretty important.
Besides better acquainting you with your photographer and their camera, an engagement session leaves you with a gallery of pictures to choose from for the various wedding-related photo needs that seem to pop up when you’re engaged. For the engagement announcement in the newspaper that your parents want to post. For your save the date cards. For your wedding website. To use on table numbers and wedding programs and seating charts. For your Facebook profile picture. And, honestly, to just have.
While I’m completely in love with our wedding day photos, I’m also ecstatic to have some beautiful pictures of just the two of us where I’m not wearing a big poofy white dress and he’s not tightly stuffed into a suit.
And really? An engagement session is fun. Even my lens-leery husband had fun. At a time when we were both feeling a little stressed and bogged down by the sometimes all-consuming process of wedding planning, the engagement session gave us something fun to do together for a couple of hours on a Tuesday that was entirely about us, and not even really about the wedding. Just us, the camera, our photographer, and a really cool shoot location.
There are so many good reasons to do an engagement session. We wanted a trial run in front of the camera, but we also ended up with some fantastic pictures and had fun at the same time. I adore my wedding photos. I’m actually a little obsessed with them. They’re amazing. My husband and I look relaxed and happy and like “us.” The day that I wanted perfectly captured ended up being beautifully documented, and we both look like complete naturals in front of the camera. I credit this phenomenon to having an absolutely fantastic photographer, but also to booking an engagement session prior to the wedding. It’s an old adage, but apparently very true: practice (for wedding day pictures via an engagement session) makes perfect. Even for my husband.