Washington National Cathedral Engagement

What to Look for in an Engagement Session Location


August 30, 2023

Engagement sessions are the best possible way for you to see how well you and your photographer will work together. They are also great for you and your fiancé to practice perfecting your poses for your wedding day portraits. (A lot of our couples find their most flattering angles or fall in love with a certain “pose” after seeing their final images, and then want to recreate it on the wedding day.)

That being said – we’re here to talk about your options for engagement session locations. While you can always come to me for some insight on where I would suggest going, consider these tips to help you choose a location that has significance and meaning to you and your fiancé.

Washington National Cathedral Engagement

1. Choose a Place That Fits You as a Couple

Do you have a favorite coffee shop? Go there. Spend most of your evenings dueling it out over scrabble? Set up a session at home. Want to recreate your first date? Let’s do it!

The location of your engagement shoot should be one where you two are comfortable. You don’t have to go all out and glamorous if you both are more laid back and casual. Nor do you have to search for an open field to shoot in if you’d rather shoot in front of a street mural. Your location choice can be any place that will allow you two to act naturally (bonus points if your location has a story behind it).

2. Take the Sun Into Consideration.

This tip is one thing I can certainly help you with. I will always make recommendations on where we go at your location of choice based on the quality of the light that day.

If you are choosing a location because of the sunset or sunrise we’ll have to schedule our session time accordingly. You’ll also want to take into consideration the season of the year, as well as whether the sunset starts later or earlier. If we are shooting at multiple locations for your engagement session we won’t forget to account for travel time. If you’re going for a sunset or sunrise backdrop you may want to keep your locations closer together to give us more time.

I always recommend one main location with the option of changing outfits while we’re there. Doing this will give you plenty of variety in your portraits.

Blue Ridge Mountain Engagement at Ravens Roost Overlook

3. Consider the Visuals and Background

Whether you are going for a rustic or urban look, brainstorm some locations that have interesting backgrounds. Find some interesting architecture or brick walls for an urban feel or fields and trails for a more urban and country feel. We will try not to choose a spot that has too much foot traffic since this can result in your images getting photobombed by a passerby. That being said, it’s usually not too much of an issue because I have experience working around distractions.

I hope these tips help! Happy planning!



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