Today’s guest post is by Laura Segall Photography. Thanks for sharing with us today!

As the weather in Phoenix finally drops out of the triple digits I start to got more and more requests for engagement photo shoots. Engagements are one of my favorite things to photograph because it is all about having fun and the only goal is to take lots of good pictures. I include an engagement session in most of my wedding packages because I find it is a great way for me to get to know you and for you to see how I operate behind the camera.

The majority of my couples have never had professional photos taken (beyond their yearbook photo) so don’t worry if you think you will be awkward or uncomfortable in front of the camera. You are not alone. I encourage engagement sessions in part to get any of that insecurity out of the way before the wedding.

See the rest of the tips after the jump!

Here are some tips, ideas and information to help you get the most out of your engagement session.

  • Think about the location. Where did you meet your fiance? Can we incorporate that location into your pictures? Do you have a favorite coffee shop or hiking trail? I always love to include anything personal or sentimental into your photographs that will make them unique and reflect your personality as a couple.
  • Include your pets. My Boston Terrier is like our first baby so I know how much those four legged fur balls are part of the family.
  • Do a makeup trial run before your engagement session. You will feel and look beautiful and your photos will be that much more stunning.
  • Wear solid colors or fabrics with rich textures. I recommend staying away from loud prints that will look distracting in a photograph. All the attention should be on how great you look together not a crazy shirt with some giant logo on it.
  • You and your fiance certainly don’t have to match but do consider how the colors you are both wearing will look in a photograph. Think about different shades of the same color, complementary colors or neutrals with colorful accessories and shoes.
  • Feel free to bring a change of clothes. Jeans and a t-shirt are perfect for a more casual feel. A dress with heels and your groom in a crisp button down will create a more formal or dramatic image. Of course always let your own unique style shine through.
  • Bring comfortable shoes. I like to walk and explore during my engagement shoots and I never know where I might see really amazing light so please be prepared to do a little walking. This could mean having a pair of flip flops in your purse so you are not stuck in 6 inch heels tromping around the desert.
  • Feel free to share your ideas before the shoot and bring props if you want something specific included in the pictures.
  • Plan ahead. I am often asked when we should schedule the shoot and the answer depends on what you are going to use the pictures for. If you are planning on using them for a “save the date” or for the invitation then it would be helpful for me to know when you need to send it to the printers so I can be sure to get you the edited images on time.
  • My engagement sessions generally take about 1.5- 2 hours. I am also more than happy to travel outside of the valley for pictures. Sedona and Flagstaff are two popular locations and if you have other ideas just let me know.

This post originally appeared on Laura Segall Photography’s blog. For more about Laura Segall Photography, see their WeddingPhotoLove profile, or head straight to her website!