Determining where to take engagement photos is often a point of stress and worry for most couples. With a seemingly infinite number of locations for engagement photos available, how do you know what’s best for you? Rebecca Wilson-McCracken from High Gloss Weddings shares some tips and tricks for choosing the best engagement photo location for your story and for your style.
No. 5 – The School Theme
Is it a good fit for you? Are you two High School sweethearts? Or even Grade school sweethearts? Where you schoolyard friends before your romance blossomed? Are you both teachers who met at work? If the reason you’re together now stems from school days past, you may want to opt for a scholarly location for your engagement photos.
The Location: Ask your local school if you can borrow a classroom for a photo shoot one day after school. Get a few shots in the hallways with the lockers, by the principal’s office, courtyard, and cafeteria. Don’t forget about the playground for a few fun shots, too!
Prop Ideas: Chalkboards, food trays, vintage books, lunch boxes, pencils and a nice red apple for your favourite “teacher”
No. 4 – The Sports Fans
Is it a good fit for you? Are you the couple that spends every weekend cheering on your favourite sports teams? Do you both have a love for a particular game? There are so many ways to make a sports theme fun and all about you as a couple – putting on the fairway or driving range (with a little romantic coaching from the groom) or throwing around the ol’ pigskin and piggy backing while running for the touchdown? Are you planning winter engagement photos? Then why not a trip to the skating rink with a hot chocolate late afterwards?
The Location: Arenas, Ballparks, Soccer fields, Golf course, Basketball court, tennis court, etc.
Prop Ideas: Team jerseys! Skates, ball gloves, football, golf clubs, running shoes, crackerjack popcorn, markers to write your wedding date on the ball.
No. 3 – Local Adventures, Local fun!
Is it a good fit for you? Do you both love a romantic day out on the town? Mini adventures may be the perfect theme for your engagement photos. Head out to the local fair and play some games, have some cotton candy, ride the tea cups. Check out the local farmer’s market get some fresh fruit, flowers, etc. have a “beavertail” or another fun shareable treat. Apple orchards and Pumpkin patches have lots of fun photo possibilities, and you can just have fun together interacting & goofing around! If closer to the end of the day have some sparklers on hand for some pretty evening shots.
The Location: Fairgrounds, Farmer’s Market, Apple orchard, or a Pumpkin patch
Prop ideas: cute outfits, rubber boots, bubbles, balloons, or just pick up your props along the way; Cotton candy, candy apples, fresh flowers, apples, or pumpkins.
No. 2 – Your Favourite Local Hot Spot
Is it a good fit for you? Can you and your other half be found sitting comfortably at your favourite coffee shop every evening? Do you frequently head out for a milkshake or rootbeer float together? Maybe you have a sweet tooth and find yourself often shopping at your local candy shop as you bring home some sweet treats (and ring pops!) Are you a musical couple who likes to hang out at your music store, strumming a few guitars or banging some drums? Or are you a cinema-loving couple who can often be found watching a doulbe feature at a local vintage movie theatre – complete with popcorn and a custom marquee sign with your names and upcoming wedding date!
The Location: Coffee shops, Soda or Candy shop, Music stores, vintage movie theatre.
Prop ideas: Themed attire specific to the location you choose – rocker chic wear (music store), vintage movie inspired wardrobe (movie theatre), sweet & frilly dress with a bow tie for the groom (soda or candy shop), your favourite coffee mugs complete with your wedding date (coffee shop).
No. 1 – The Picnic
Is it a good fit for you? There are so many variations on the picnic theme and you can really personalize it and make it about you as a couple. The nice thing is too it can be anytime of the year also, in winter lots of snuggling blankets, fur throws, and some hot chocolate will be required!
Locations: Beach, park, walking trails, wooded areas, green spaces, treed lots, your backyard, field of flowers with a picket fence, local farm and the barn floor, etc.
Props: This is a theme where you can really play with props and bring in a variety of things: picnic blanket & basket, vintage books, board games, candles, framed chalkboards, custom sign with your wedding date on it, vintage cameras, suitcases, umbrella or parasol, balloons, some wine glasses with a sparkling beverage, some cheese and fruit to snack on. Expand your theme a tad more and consider: fishing rods, tackle box, canoe, or boat. Finding a vintage truck would be a perfect setting for a tailgate picnic. Don’t forget about finishing off the picnic with a tandem bike ride into the sunset!
Not a ‘theme’ couple? No worries!
Even if you don’t want to do a specific themed shoot there are some great ways to incorporate some fun items into you shoot. While there’s no need to use props, they are definitely a great way to bring in some personalization to your engagement session, regardless of the location you choose.
Here is a list of some “all around props” that can be used pretty much anywhere and anytime.
- Chalkboards – framed, unframed, shaped and a piece of chalk or chalk marker (less dust!)
- Wooden letters – initials, hearts, &, LOVE, etc.
- Scrabble pieces – spell out words, names, Save the Date, etc.
- Balloons – doing one HUGE balloon is really neat also!
- Polaroid camera – shots of each other and shots of you holding the shots
- Bubbles or Sparklers
- Custom sign with your names & wedding date
- Bunting signs with your wedding date, or spelling LOVE
- Fresh flowers in a bunch or vase
- Candles – depending on venue, safety first!
- Blankets, quilts, and pillows
- A fun pair of high heels
Are you wanting to incorporate some neat elements like this but don’t know where to start? Consider having a designer come in and help you with your engagement shoot. They can work with your photographer to help create a set which leads to a super-amazing WOW factor for your engagement photos.
At the end of the day, no matter what location you choose and whether you add personal props or not the important thing is to make your engagement session fun! Make it about you as a couple, your love and your story – I guarantee you’ll rock it!
Rebecca is a WPICC Certified Wedding Planner/Coordinator, Decorator, Floral Designer, Make-up artist and Esthetician. With over 10 years experience in the Wedding Industry under her belt. She is a “Jill of all Trades” being able to offer multiple services all in one package.
” It doesn’t take much to see why Rebecca Wilson, owner of High Gloss Weddings has quickly become an in-demand planner in Southwestern Ontario… From her incredible energy and compassion, to her keen eye for detail and uber creative spirit, we really could go on and on.” – The Wedding Ring