Its been a while since I have posted a blog solely on Pre Wedding or Engagement Photography, but after last weekends amazing evening light in Torquay, where I met up with one of my couples for a pre wedding shoot I simply couldn’t resist blogging. We were scheduled to meet in the late afternoon on Sunday, however in I knew early on that the evenings light had high chances of being super and because of this I had a discussion with the couple to meet an hour later in order to enter the golden hour of shooting (the hour before sunset or after sunrise). The light did not disappoint, and I had a throughly enjoyable evening photographing, planning and socialising with the couple.
Often couples are very keen for a pre shoot or engagement shoot and it is something I stress with the highest importance, however there are times when some of my couples have been a bit spectacle of having some pictures of the two of them in a normal situation, a wedding is natural but the engagement shoot isn’t often an event outside of its purpose. This leads me nicely on to explaining my three main reason for a pre shoot:
1. Allowing the couple to put confidence in me and my work. They will see the pictures from the pre shoot / engagement shoot several weeks before the wedding, and therefore will be able to see I can produce the pictures they want. So on the wedding day its one less thing for them to worry about and they are more likely to trust my decisions, ideas and judgement.
2. Allowing the couple to feel more comfortable with me around. Although my style is of a documentary nature for a large part of the wedding day, I often photograph the couple together in a combination of simple and ambitions ways that add to the narrative of their wedding pictures. To do this in the best possible way, the couple need to be relaxed and most importanatly act naturally as if I wasn’t around.
3. For me to get to know the couple personally and photographically. Not just their so called good side and bad side, but what they are comfortable doing and how they act together as a couple, are they the adventurous type, or just loving and affectionate? It gives me an insight and allows me to develop ideas of things like the level of documentary vs couple pics they might want on the wedding day itself. Although ultimately all I ever do at a wedding or on the planning day before is make suggestions and explain the advantages / disadvantages and let the couple decide. I just supply the options.
I can firmly say that after this pre shot and many others, I walk away feeling more like a friend of the couple than being employed by them. Initial meetings are for business and selling myself, a pre shoot is about having fun together, getting to know them and becoming more of a friend with them, so on the wedding day, all I have to do is take great pictures. :)
Below are a few of the pictures from my engagement shoot last week at Torquay – for those who follow my work you may notice more of a film look to the pictures and a bit more colour than normal, its an avenue and a development I am currently exploring – more on that soon.
So here are a few frames from the 95 pictures the couple will receive.
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