How to decide where to have engagement photos taken?

Now that Spring is here and the weather has turned lovely, I have begun to schedule my wedding clients for their engagement photographs. I am lucky to live in California,where we suffer from some of the mildest 'winters' around. 

One of the most common questions I get from my couples is about location for their engagement photos. This is the first time that the couple will be in front of my lens, and most people aren't used to being in charge of deciding where this will happen.  This can seem like an overwhelming choice with too many options to narrow down, but relax!  Just follow some simple guidelines and you will come up with the perfect location in no time!

1. In what style would you describe your fiance and yourself?

     Urban? Natural? Country? Traditional?  This is important to think about because it will help you to decide what the perfect setting will be.  If your style is urban, you wouldn't want to have your photos taken in a field with a barn in the distance.  Stick to city streets with colorful storefronts. More traditional?  Maybe a picnic in a park followed by a stroll on a nearby beach or lake.  You will indefinitely feel and look more natural in your photographs when you feel comfortable with your surroundings.  

2. Does the location provide many different looks within walking or short driving distance?

      The most ideal locations for your shoot will provide you with many options and looks in a small amount of space.  An example of this could be found on a country field often found in Sonoma County.  There is a colorful barn wall, a beautiful oak tree standing alone, a tire swing, the horses out in the pasture, the rock wall lining the property, etc.  This is important to diversify your shoot and get many options for print.  This is also a great tool so you can do some outfit changes to really change the amount of looks you get from the day. 

3. Are there any special locations to consider?

     The answer could easily be found by asking yourself this question. Perhaps the place you went on your first date, or where he asked you to marry him?  Having meaning and a powerful association with the location of your session will be so powerful when you look back on these photos for years to come.

You will want to run by your location with your photographer beforehand.  He or she will be able to give you their input to help you decide which locations with photograph well, and what time of the day to do this. Good luck!

For more information about my business and what I do, visit my website.