How To Get Great Photos on your Engagement Session without Feeling Overly Posed

Congrats on your engagement! Now that you're madly in love and found that person you want to spend the rest of your life with comes the fun part! I may be a little bias, but the engagement shoot is my favorite part of the wedding planning process. When done right, these sessions are intimate, authentic, raw, and fun, and showcase your unique love. While no two couples are the same, these 6 tips will work for anyone to get great photos on your engagement session.

Give yourself time to get comfortable in front of the camera

As is the case for most couples, your engagement session is the first time you are in front of a professional camera together, meaning you might be a little nervous. This is totally normal! That's why I like to give a little extra buffer room in our sessions so you can have time to warm up to the camera, to me, and to each other. Once you're ready to be cuddly and cute the real magic happens!

Brainstorm both beautiful and meaningful location ideas

Hawaii has no shortage of breathtaking views and sweeping vistas, but not all locations are created equal! Sure, some are all over Instagram and Pinterest and you might think this is where you absolutely have to take photos at; and while there's nothing wrong with that, a lot of those "famous" spots will be crowded, illegal, or difficult to access. Now don't get me wrong, I love adventure and finding secret spots off the beaten path, but if you're not one for getting dirty, opt for a location that is meaningful to you and your relationship.

Photos at a location that you both enjoy will come out more candid and real. I've done engagement shoots at bars, skateparks, and even shooting ranges! And while this may seem quirky, the photos came out AMAZING, and you will be amazed at getting photos you love on your engagement session.

Bring both a formal and casual outfit to get great photos on your engagement session

To get good engagement photos, variety is key. That's why I always recommend 1 formal and 1 casual outfit for my couples (I also usually make each couple a personalized style mood board!) Having multiple outfits will ensure you have enough variety in your photos and the casual outfit is key in case you are less-than-comfortable in your formal look.

Have your session either at first light or golden hour

Please, for the love of all things beautiful, do NOT try to schedule your session in the middle of the day. Unless you are purposefully going for an edgy, high-fashion look, we typically want to avoid the mid-day sun. The reason being is when the sun is high in the sky it can cause unflattering shadows. It can also make it hard for you to open your eyes! The lighting during sunrise and sunset is much more flattering and will make you both look oh so good!

Practice together

I don't like using the word "posing" when referring to photography. My goal during your session is to make you forget you are taking photos at all! But alas, we cannot avoid all poses altogether, but just let me worry about that. But before the session, with your partner, try simple things such as foreheads and noses touching, kissing with your teeth (sounds funny I know), and smiling with your eyes. These small touches make BIG impacts in your photos!

Be yourself to get great photos on your engagement session

Going off of choosing a meaningful location, remember to be yourself in the photos. Just have fun and be silly together! I'll always be there to guide and prompt you, but I love when my clients' love for one another take over and your beautiful love story shines through.

If you like unconventional, nostalgic, compelling and soul-stirring photos,

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I believe everyone's story is worth telling...& I'm a really good story-teller *brushes shoulders off*

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Masha Sakhno is a passionate and talented photographer who specializes in capturing intimate weddings and elopements with a unique and cinematic approach. She believes that every love story is worth telling, and works tirelessly to preserve each couple's special day through stunning imagery.

With a keen eye for detail and a deep love for the art of photography, Masha Sakhno creates stunning and timeless images that perfectly capture the raw emotions and beauty of each couple's special day. Whether it's a small, intimate gathering or a grand elopement in a breathtaking location, Masha Sakhno approaches each wedding with a fresh perspective and a deep commitment to capturing the essence of the couple's love story.