Rules of Engagement*

* Title courtesy of Leigh Miller; I love a lady who puns.

As I mentioned in my previous post, prior to Weddingbee, I had no clue what engagement photos were.  And I'm fairly certain that Mr. HC still has no idea what an engagement shoot involves.  But now that we are scheduled to have an engagement shoot, I thought I'd better do some research on how to get ready for this event.  I asked our photographer, Leigh Miller, for some tips on how to prepare for an engagement shoot.  She had such good advice that I thought I'd share it with the hive.  (Bonus: This gives me an excuse to show more of my favorite e-pics.)

Tip 1: Wear something comfortable and that reflects your style.  Leigh says: "My goal, no matter who I'm shooting, is to capture who that person is.  So if your attire is far from who you are and you aren't comfortable, well that just stinks."  Speaking of comfort, how adorable is the couple above on the couch?  They're like Mr. HC and me, only cute.  (Because let's face it, if it were Mr. HC and me on the couch, we'd probably be in our jammies, watching "Harold and Kumar" for the thousandth time, and guffawing at jokes intended for 16-year-old stoners.  It's not an attractive vignette.)

And in case you failed to learn from Britney and Justin's denim debacle of 2001, Leigh advises, "please don't match but do coordinate" -- like the darling couple above, who rocked a chic black and white look.

[Leigh Miller Photography]

Leigh also says that "heels are great with jeans, pants, or skirts, if you're comfortable in them. They make the legs look longer."  You'd better believe I'm busting out my 3-inch stilettos.  At 5'3 on a good day, I need all the length illusion I can get!

Tip #2: Think of your photographer as an observer.  Leigh suggests taking photos in a place that has meaning to you both or taking your photographer along to do something you would normally do.   She says: "I love shooting like an observer. Thats so fun!  I'm actually doing a session later this year that is more like a day in the life of and I'm totally excited!!!" We're asking Leigh to start our shoot at the university where Mr. HC went to college and did his post-bac before med school and where I went to law school and now am finishing up my Ph.D.  Combined, we've spent nearly fifteen years at this place, so it's very much a part of our relationship!

Tip #3: "Listen to your photographer's suggestions regarding location and time of day."  If you don't believe in the power of good lighting, Leigh recommends revisiting the good light/bad light "Seinfeld" episode:

Okay, hopefully we're not as two-faced as Jerry's date, but when you can control the lighting situation, Leigh says, you should!  "If you tell your photographer the only time you can meet to do the engagement session is noon on the beach, you should expect much different results than the hour before sunset with softer more flattering light. The photographer is the pro, and you're paying them. Take advantage of their expertise!" 

When I taught a film class last year, I talked to my students about the "magic hour" -- those precious moments when the sun is going up or down, and the light is angled just so, such that you get Hobie colors and lens flare.  Hopefully, Leigh will be able to catch us at the magic hour on the cobblestone walks of Beacon Hill or on the Weeks Footbridge over the Charles River. 

Speaking of magic, isn't the photo below stunning?  Soft, flattering light indeed.

Tip #4: Travel light.  Leigh says: "Don't bring a bag full of junk with you that someone has to carry around or attend to while we're out."  You want to be carefree and mobile, not stuck babysitting your hefty Marc Jacobs tote while the best light is disappearing.

Finally, Leigh says, "Don't over think it. Don't stress! Have fun. Some couples even have a glass of wine before we tee off. Be yourselves."

I hope this was helpful for those of you who have yet to take your engagement photos.  Anyone have additional tips or a favorite e-pic to share?

Post a Comment

Search me

  © Blogger template Shush by 2009

Back to TOP