Monday, June 15, 2015

How to Look Your Best in Your Engagement Photos

After a beautiful session in a Southern canyon, we received the most heartfelt words from Julie speaking to her experience with us while making engagement photos. I've often thought of compiling some tips on how to get engagement photos you'll love, but who better to hear it from than the folks on the other side of the camera? We were so delighted to get this message from them, we just had to share it with you!

From our amazing clients:

The morning of our engagement session, I stood in my bedroom making a mental list of what all to bring: lipstick, blotting papers, bobby pins, multiple pairs of shoes. My fiancé and I had slid hanger after hanger in his closet the night before, comparing what shirts of his complemented my chosen outfits. He wasn’t as excited or nervous as I was, and to be honest, he somewhat dreaded the idea of a day full of pictures. But being the trooper that he is, and knowing how much these meant to me, we chose our clothes for the day and were off towards the canyon for our shoot.

As the radio quietly hummed Neil Young, I had a good while to think about how I wanted our pictures to turn out. I kept thinking to myself, what do I want our love to look like? I had scoured Pinterest for engagement pictures and saw other friends’ photos on my Facebook feed. I had this idea of what engagement pictures should be, and that idea included the happy couple in crisp matching clothes while looking longingly at each other or smiling for the camera in a pose that said, “We are in love.” 

Inside I had this fear that maybe our pictures wouldn’t portray that; what if my fiancé kept the stern face he often had whenever someone pulled out a camera? What if I looked sweaty or uncomfortable? So many things could go wrong, and I kept hoping that our photographers would like us. It was our first time to meet with Erin and Bryan in person since booking them for our wedding , and I hoped they would give us specific instructions so that our photos were perfect.

My fiancé and I arrived early at our location, and as we sat on a swing waiting on Erin and Bryan, my heart did a little flip when they pulled up. Somehow, any fear or hesitation I had went out the window as I watched them walk towards us holding hands and smiling.

I can’t quite put into words how the rest of the day went, but I can point out what I remember most. I never unzipped my make-up bag or looked in a mirror during the whole day; I was having too much fun to care. My fiancé and I never wore the outfits we picked out together (because we decided that they didn’t look like us at all), and all those shoes I packed? I winded up going barefoot most of the day, just how I like it. 

I don’t remember the snapping cameras, the poses, or any rushing. I remember cool water over my feet in the river, holding the calloused hands of my soulmate, gazing into the eyes of the person who makes me feel like a wildflower, and dancing as he laughed and pulled me near. 

I remember feeling free and loved, and I remember trusting Erin and Bryan, because their love for each other and their craft is so overwhelmingly evident. One can’t help but to second-hand absorb a love like that.

When I received our edited pictures from Tin Can Photography, and I can tell you now what our love looks like. It looks bounding like the mountains in the background, steady like the river we waded through, strong like the boulder we stood on, and happy. It looks so happy. 

During all of those moments we were lost in one another, unaware of the cameras so diligently capturing every small touch and movement, we took our best photos. At the end of the day, after we hugged Erin and Bryan goodbye, my fiancé leaned over and whispered in my ear, “Today was so much more fun than I ever expected.”

As we drove home that night, the radio quietly humming a song I can’t recall, I let my head rest against the window. I only had one regret, just one. I couldn’t relive that fun, adventurous day again, and oh how quickly it seemed to fly by. 

I smiled to myself and realized that when you have the perfect person by your side, make-up, clothing, and accessories are just not that important. Without Erin and Bryan there, it would have been another day with my fiancé, and that’s the beauty of their work; they make you feel like you and your fiancé are the only two people in the entire world. 

Their patience, kindness, gentle instructions, and keen eye not only made our day relaxing, but we ended up with engagement photos that have brought tears and smiling gasps from our family and friends.

Just tonight my mother was scrolling through them, her eyes bright and gazing, and she sighed as she said, “They’re all so beautiful. You look so in-love. You two were simply made for each other.”

Seeing the joy that our engagement photos bring to our closest family and friends, as they hug us and slowly wipe tears from the corner of their smiling eyes, that’s what our love really looks like.

—Julie Skinner

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