Tips & Advice For Couples


GJA Photography



What is a pre-wedding photoshoot or engagement photos?

Simply put this is a photography session with a wedding or portrait photographer who will capture some great images and memories before your wedding day. 

Do I need engagement photos?

Choosing to have some engagement photos or a pre-wedding shoot as it is sometimes known ‘before your wedding day is a great idea. This can be a fantastic way for you to get to meet your wedding photographer before the big day or even to trial several wedding photographers before you commit to choosing the one that’s right for you.

One of the most important things when it comes to choosing an engagement photographer is finding one who you can trust, not only to deliver the style of images that you like but hopefully exceed your expectations. Arranging an engagement session can be a wonderful opportunity to meet up, ask questions and enable you to become comfortable being in front of the camera, particularly if you’ve never had your photograph professionally taken before.

I always find that couples value having a pre-wedding shoot as it enables them to become relaxed, comfortable and confident more quickly on their actual wedding day. The result is much more natural-looking images on the day itself, it’s a great investment!

engagement photography in Lincolnshire with real wedding couple


How much do Engagement photos cost?

Engagement or a pre-wedding session can take some time for a photographer to plan, shoot and edit the images as such prices tend to reflect this. However, some photographers offer engagement photography deals as part of their wedding photography packages and some savings can be made.

As a guide depending on the photographer expect to pay anything from around £150 – £300 for an hours engagement session with edited images. 

For a price list and package prices that include engagements please get in touch.

When is the best time to have an engagement session?

If you choose to use an established and professional wedding photographer they will have no trouble creating stunning photographs for you at any time of the day or night.

Whilst there is no right or wrong time to have your images taken one of the best periods to photograph an engagement session is what is known as the golden hour.

In photography, the golden hour is the period of daylight usually around an hour after sunrise or about 1 hour before sunset. At this time of the day, the light is usually much softer and warmer in colour which can be very flattering for portraits, especially when you want really dramatic and romantic images. Also if you wait a little longer you may get an incredible sunset!

Another option to create variety is to have your engagement photos taken in a completely different location to where you’re going to get married and at a different time of the year. For example, if you’re getting married in the summer months when it’s warm the contrast can be quite nice to have an Autumn engagement shoot. You can wrap up warm with those autumnal colours and you can create something completely different to what you would get on your wedding day.

Here’s an example I shot below taken just after the golden hour. The image is taken against an amazing sunset causing the couple to become silhouettes for added drama.

engagement photography at Kenwick park hotel


We hate having our photo taken and don’t know how to pose, any advice?

This has got to be one of the top questions I get all the time when approached by clients. They worry unnecessarily that they will not know what to do or simply take just awful photos. Now I know that it can be worrying being in front of the camera, particularly if you have never seen a good photograph taken of yourself. However please don’t worry as the job of a wedding photographer is to put you at ease quickly.

Remember we are on the same side, you want great photos and your photographer want’s to produce them for you. I always make it my top priority to make couples feel relaxed in front of the camera and do everything I can to make it so. I promise things will work out just fine and you never know you might enjoy it!

What happens if it is forecast rain or the weather is not looking great?

I am constantly looking at the weather forecast before your engagement or pre-wedding shoot and will always reach out to you to chat about the option of changing the date. Most photographers will do this too.

However don’t despair, some of the most magical wedding photos can be taken in the rain so why not embrace it, bring your wellies and a brolly and make some memories.

What should I wear on an engagement session?

An engagement session is about the two of you and being comfortable is important as it will show through in your photographs. Choose something that reflects who you both are and enjoy seeing each other wearing.

However, if you’re struggling with what to choose and would like a little guidance then perhaps choose clothes that make you feel comfortable, complement each other without matching too much. Try steering away from loud garish colours instead choose cool pastels and Neutral Tones.

Remember to flatter your body type perhaps even choosing a couple of outfits to take with you on the engagement session for variety. Also, why not bring along some accessories to inject even more personality and interest.

For more inspiration visit the Bridal Guide.

Choosing the location for your engagement session

Many couples choose to hire a wedding photographer who will take photos before their wedding day at their chosen wedding venue. This can be a great way for you to interact with your photographer and show your venue off. 

If your photographer hasn’t been to the venue before it can be a great way to come up with some great ideas to capture wedding images on your big day.

There are so many fantastic locations to photograph around Lincolnshire and beyond, from the amazing Lincolnshire Wolds to the miles of coastline you are spoilt for choice. Choose from rural or urban locations for added interest.”

Another option may be to go somewhere where you first met that’s significant to you both, perhaps even where you got engaged. Also, It is well worth asking your wedding photographer for ideas as they may have photographed in some wonderfully unique locations that they can suggest to you.

night time engagement photography lincolnshire


Should I bring along props to my engagement session?

Another option to consider is bringing along some props to add interest and individuality to your shoot, they can be a great addition to making a fun shoot creating Style and uniqueness. For example, you could bring an extra-large photo frame to pop your heads through!

Including fun activities

Why not add another interesting element to the day by incorporating a fun activity. When it comes to activities the sky’s the limit here are a few ideas:

  • going for a walk on the beach, 
  • taking a picnic, 
  • hiring a rowing boat or 
  • going for a game of bowling.
  • Go to a theme park

How to get natural engagement photos?

This is one of the most commonly asked for things not only for engagement and wedding photos but for any portrait session.

Couples are always looking for images that reflect who they are naturally. The thing to remember is that no photographer can create natural moments as those smiles and laughs are created by you. 

The best wedding and engagement photographers have great interpersonal skills that enable you to relax quickly and capture what is already there making you feel comfortable enough in front of the camera to enjoy yourself and let go.

How long does an engagement session last?

A pre-wedding shoot usually takes around an hour as a rough guide however depending on the locations and your willingness this could if you wish last longer which of course means you get lots more pictures.

How many engagement photos will I get?

This does depend on which photographer you choose and can range from 20-30 images to much more than that. When I photograph an engagement I always guarantee that I will deliver at least 100 images to you, all fully edited.

How will I get my pre-wedding photographs?

After you have been on your engagement session your photographer can deliver those images in many different ways from beautiful albums, online galleries, a USB or gorgeous prints.

One fantastic option is to print off one of your engagement photos and place it inside a large frame which guests at your wedding evening can sign to wish you good luck on your wedding day. Other options include:

  • Thank you cards
  • ‘save the date’ cards
  • A canvas on your wall

Need further help?

Why not view this recent engagement session for more inspiration

I do hope you found this article useful please do get in touch if you would like to discuss the options of an engagement shoot before your wedding day you can get in touch here.

For more great tips, advice and inspiration why not pop over to my articles page or visit The Knot website for more great ideas.