Hello, belles! Life has been extremely busy in the Southern Weddings office lately – all good things, of course, but still busy! So busy, in fact, that I decided to postpone my usual Emily Plans a Wedding post until this week so I could make sure I had enough time to do it justice. And I’m glad I did, because this week is extra exciting – I’m sharing our engagement photos!!
Once we set a date with the wonderful Gina Zeidler, my first order of business was to round up some inspiration images, to give her an idea of the style of engagement photos we liked. Here are a few of the ones I collected:
Inspiration from top to bottom: top two by A Bryan Photo, Nancy Ray, Abby Jiu, Gina Zeidler, and A Bryan Photo
Once I had my inspiration in front of me, it was easy to see I liked natural light; cleanly-processed images; close, natural poses; lots of smiling; and simple, softly-colored outfits, possibly with some pattern. Got it! I sent my favorites off to Gina so we were on the same page, and then John and I turned our attention to choosing a location.
We had a really hard time with this one! We didn’t grow up in the area, so we didn’t have any super-meaningful locations from our seven years of dating that immediately jumped to mind. Since we generally liked close-up shots with the couple as the focus, we didn’t really want a location that would steal the show or be a big presence in the photos. Also, we wanted somewhere fairly private, since neither of us is a big fan of public displays of affection :)
After tossing out lots of suggestions, we finally arrived at the art park at the North Carolina Museum of Art. It’s generally sparsely populated, has a great mix of natural and man-made locations (including some tall grass fields, which I really wanted!), and is somewhere we love to walk and take out-of-town guests. Done and done!
Next, we had to choose our outfits. This was the one I was expecting to be difficult, but it turned out to be pretty easy! We each laid out a few options, and since John chose his final picks before I did, I made sure mine coordinated with his. A few tips:
1. For photos that really represent you, wear outfits that you would really wear in your every day life. If you’re not “dress up people,” don’t dress up! On the other hand, if you wouldn’t be caught dead wearing jeans, by all means, go glam.
2. Aim to coordinate, but not match. Go for a mix of solids and patterns, and make sure the color and style of your clothing will fit in well with the location you’ve picked out for your photos.
3. Wear something you’re comfortable in! Good engagement photos (in my opinion) involve a lot of sitting on the ground or on potentially dirty surfaces, walking, running, twisting, hugging, etc. Don’t wear something you’re constantly having to readjust, or something you’re afraid to get a speck of dirt on. Also, don’t forget to wear bugspray, if applicable! Not that glamorous, I know, but you won’t be able to smell it in the final images :)
So outfits: check.
We completely lucked out with our day – bright and sunny, though perhaps a bit hot. We met up with Gina, and set off on our photo adventure! I had already met her, but this was John’s first time, so she took care to get to know him and put him at ease, which really helped. Funny story: Before our shoot, John was not really feeling the whole engagement-session thing, but was going along to be a good sport. Turns out he had the best time! He loved Gina, and was super enthusiastic about the whole experience. I think it definitely helped to set him at ease for our wedding day photos, too.
Enough talk – more pictures! Here are a few of our favorites from the extremely talented Gina Zeidler:
Needless to say, we think Gina did an amazing job and are so, so, SO happy with the way these turned out. We love you, Gina!!
What do you think, y’all? It would make me so happy if you commented with which one is your favorite :)
Up next: Thoughts on our wedding ceremony!
In case you missed a post…
The main characters
Where we’re getting married
I go dress shopping
We choose a photographer
I ponder bridesmaid style
We’re renting a tent!
We discuss bouquets + boutonnieres
We send out our save the dates
I gather hair and makeup inspiration
We talk cake and sweets
I introduce you to our videographer
We create a registry
We buy a tuxedo
We style a reception
I choose accessories
Nancy Ray is a fabulous member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!