The engagement period of your relationship is a special time that I love capturing. An engagement session is a stress free and fun opportunity to remove any nervousness and get to know each other. I want you to feel comfortable working with me and being in front of the camera. Most engagement sessions are used as a trial run for the wedding day and can be featured and shared as save-the-dates, signature guest albums, on your wedding website, or on display at the wedding.
The engagement session comes with:
* Bri Johnson's personal expertise and creativity on all pre-session planning, the shoot, and post session work.
* A two hour photography session.
* A high-resolution, downloadable online gallery of all the images for approval and to print and share with friends and family.
*Three “save the date” retouched images sent digitally.
*Prints, products, and other retouched digital files are additional costs.
What to expect: It's all about styling and planning. The more time invested in selecting wardrobe and using professional services, the happier you will be with the end results. We will collaborate in depth to decide on the perfect location and wardrobe to make your engagement session a success. An engagement session typically takes 1.5-2 hours to complete and includes one outfit change mid-way through the session. We will visit various spots at your chosen location and spend time taking photos at spots that give you a variety of backgrounds and tell your love story. I recommend bringing a minimum of at least two outfits, one causal and one a little nicer that will give us options and keep the photos interesting. You can always bring more than two outfits as backup options (I recommend bringing a few). I will help you decide which outfits would be most appropriate.
Locations & Travel: It doesn't matter where you are, but who you are with. Try not to overthink selecting your location. Simple locations with significance to you as a couple are great options for your engagement session. One of your favorite places to spend time together, where you met, or even where you proposed are all great ideas. Simple locations allow the focus to truly be on you and your partner without worrying about busy backgrounds.
Engagement sessions are photographed either in the NYC area or when I am visiting an area for no additional fee. For additional travel expenses, a session can be at your desired location. If the location requires an admittance fee or permit for photography, clients are required to cover these expenses.
What to Wear: Imagine you are going on a date. Your wardrobe should be a direct reflection of your personality. I recommend wearing something that you are comfortable and confident in. Wardrobe should also take into consideration what type of a location (beach, park, cafe, city streets, etc) the engagement session is going to be at. As a general rule, solid colors work best to keep the focus on you. Primary and complementary colors can offer a pop of color to add interest and energy into the photos, and monochromatic colors are the easiest to coordinate between people. Always remember Don't Match, Coordinate.
Hair & Makeup: I recommend hiring professional hair and makeup services for your engagement session to ensure you are confident and feeling your best. This is a great time to do a trial run with your hair and makeup team for your wedding day. It is a good idea to bring the products used for touch ups during the engagement session as well.
Recommended Hair and Makeup Artists in the NYC area:
The Bridal Artistry Co (NJ & NY)
Samantha Linn (NJ)
Brenna Drury (Brooklyn & NJ)
Melissa Formica (Jersey City)
How to Look Natural in your Engagement Session: The engagement session can seem daunting with another thing to plan, but you should remember this is our stress-free trial run. We are here to have fun and celebrate this incredibly exciting time in your lives and if you are having fun, looking natural will happen automatically. Remember to focus on each other during the session. The key to a successful engagement session is to focus on one another and your special connection and relationship. We will only do whatever you are comfortable with. If you're still nervous about the engagement session, doing something you love together is a great idea. Any hobbies or activities you enjoy together (hiking, coffee, dancing, etc) will make the session feel more genuine and give you something to focus on. I will guide you through the engagement session on what to do and where to look, but always feel free to take whatever I say and make it your own.
When to schedule your engagement session: How you are going to use your engagement session photos depends on when you need to schedule a session. If you are using the photos for save-the-dates or your wedding website, I recommend scheduling your session 7-8 months prior to your wedding date. Save the dates are typically sent out 4-6 months before a wedding date and this will give you time to design or print your save-the dates. If you have decided to use the engagement photos for personal use, to remember this time in your life, you can be more flexible and schedule the engagement session at your convenience.
Which season is best for your engagement session: It's very important to keep in mind climate and season for your engagement photos. I am always down for adventure, but I want you feeling comfortable and confident in your photos. This usually means avoiding the dead of winter cold and intense hot summer heat.
What if it rains on the engagement session date? Depending on the weather and season, there is always a chance of rain. Typically, we embrace the rain if rain is intermittent, only a chance, or minimal since reschedules are not always possible (think nail, hair, and makeup appointments too). If the weather is absolutely awful, we can move the location to somewhere inside or covered or try and reschedule. Light rain photos can be really magical with the right preparations. Clear umbrellas and appropriate footwear are recommended to allow us to get the best photos.
Timing: Golden Hour Light is best: Photography is all about light. The best and most flattering light is in the early morning and the late afternoon before sunset. I recommend most engagement session to begin 2 hours before sunset to capture "Golden Hour" light or 30 minutes to 1 hour after sunrise depending on your location. Morning or sunset might have a more optimal advantage that we can consult together to make a decision on what time is best for your session and location.
Props & Pets: Props & furry family members are a great way to personalize your photos and add interest. Props that show off your personality and hobbies as a couple are best. If you want to bring your furry family member, please have a helper who can take your pet after we have finished the section of photos including your pet.
Tips & Recommendations: It is a great idea to have your engagement ring cleaned the week of the engagement session since we will be taking a few photos focusing on the ring.
Post Engagement Session: After the engagement session, you will receive a sneak peek of a few images within a couple days of the session. Next, I will send over the online gallery for your approval of all the images from our session. Once you approve the gallery, and choose your three selects for retouching, I will prepare and share a download link of all the images and work on retouching your three selected images. After you have all your images we can talk more about what you liked, what poses you might not have liked and ensure we create a plan in place for the wedding day.