Tips and Tricks



Browse by Category

We are all about photography for those who are crazy in love and education for photographers who love capturing the madly in love.


Sessions, Tips and Tricks

Engagement Session Style Guide

It’s okay to feel a bit nervous! Relax! This is going to be easy!

Taking photos can be intimidating, but I promise you there is nothing to fear. My sessions are laid back and super easy. Think of it less like a big formal shoot, and more like a few friends hanging out and getting some great pictures while we’re at it. It’s the perfect way to connect and get comfortable, and you’ll be amazed at how much of a difference this makes on your wedding day. 

Dressing yourself in the morning is hard enough when you don’t have to stand in front of a camera and be your best self. Choosing what to wear for a photoshoot can trigger even the most confident fashionista to pull their entire wardrobe out onto the floor in search of the perfect outfit.

So if your nerves start to fizz when you think about what to wear, don’t worry. This is SO normal! Before you lose sleep to late nights spent online shopping – putting articles of clothing in your cart only to take them out again – let’s talk about what works and what doesn’t.

Number one thing I want you to remember? Being comfortable is EVERYTHING. You should look and feel like yourself, first and foremost.

So don’t stress – You’re going to kill it! 

No Cheesy Poses Required: Let’s hang out, take some photos, and make you look amazing!

First off, if you’ve never had photos taken before – It’s going to be waaaay easier and more fun than you probably would expect! In fact, I do as much as I can to avoid any cheesy poses or awkward moments. We’ll start off by just hanging out for a couple minutes. Once we’re ready to take a few photos, it’s all about you two interacting and connecting in whatever way is natural to you. 

I’ve got a handful of favorite activities that will give you something to do and get the interactions started. Every couple is unique, so your session is really totally up to you. If you have ideas for an epic location or fun activity I’m 100% down to go with the flow. Most people think a photoshoot is going to be awkward, boring, and full of fake smiles. The truth is your session is about capturing the REAL you. So bring your genuine self, and we’ll capture some amazing photographs together. 

Let’s go through some of my tips and tricks!

TIP: It’s about the feeling of being in your own skin!

It’s not uncommon for people to want to shop for new, sparkly, fabulous clothes to wear to a photoshoot. And that’s totally fine – if that’s your jam. Let’s talk about comfort a little more. Do you think you’d be more comfortable in your favorite t-shirt and jeans or a new clingy little black dress? The best route is usually to go with something that’s tried and true. Something you know moves with you and hugs you in all the right places. 

Don’t get me wrong – it 100% does not have to be jeans and a t-shirt. You can glam it up a bit more if that’s what you fancy. If authenticity is what you’re after, you’re going to have to show up as yourself. If you want to capture this time of your life in all its glory, then it’s about the feeling of being in your own skin.

What to Wear: Your outfits should be a reflection of you!

TIP: Match your outfit to the location and season

If you’re wearing a fancy ball gown in your living room, the viewer might assume you’re going to prom. A little sundress number in a snowy field and the viewer might suffer from a crippling amount of pity for you. You and I will be collaborating on telling your story together, so let’s get this right!

Plan your outfits around what you know about the conditions at the location we’ll be shooting at. You’ll want to be warm enough (or cool enough), have pain-free feet, and look relatively native to your environment. For at home sessions, slip into your comfiest comfies and rock that (pants optional). The idea is to authentically capture you wherever you are.

Think through your clothing choices logically based on location, vibe, and comfort level!

Maybe don’t wear black on a stinkin’ hot day trust me on this one…

Compliment each other, don’t match each other!

You don’t want to create the illusion of being your partner’s siamese twin. When multiple people wear the same color, sometimes their matching outfits blend together so much that you can’t really see any of them properly. The viewer can’t tell where one person begins and another one ends. They turn into one uniform blob.

In order for the aesthetics of your photograph to really sing, you want to find complementary outfits that showcase a variety of colors, textures, accessories, patterns, and tones. Complement the other people in the photograph as well as your surroundings. The idea is to have everything look good together without everything looking the same.

For the rebels, rules are meant to be broken. 

Color Scheming: Aim for neutrals, earthy tones, and metallics

These colors compliment the outdoor environment almost anywhere you go and look damn fine as a printed, framed photograph.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating for a beige world of quiet and inoffensive colors. By neutrals, I just mean softer tones. Primary colors are incredibly striking (red, yellow, and blue), but can sometimes have the effect of detracting from the main subject (which is you). So for example, instead of electric blue, go for something closer to sky blue. Instead of bright orange, opt for ochre or apricot.

A rule of thumb here is to choose to either complement your natural environment or contrast it. A mustard dress in a deep green forest will look epic, whereas a bright pink, patterned dress doesn’t really fit in with your surroundings. It totally depends on what you’re looking for!

The Color Wheel: We’re back in 6th grade art class!

Remember the color wheel from 6th grade art class? Maybe you’ve gladly left your middle school days in the past (me too), but the color wheel comes in handy when making good color decisions (aka planning what to wear). The color wheel is a great reference point when trying to figure out what colors look a bit weird together and what colors are a match made in heaven.

Analogous Colors

We’re all built so differently and respond to color combinations differently. For those less taken by the ‘pop,’ analogous colours could be the way to go. Analogous colors are next to each other on the color wheel, and can be quite soothing to the eye. Think of the jungle and all of the lush variations of green, or the ocean and the infinite hues of blue. 

Complementary Colors

These colors, the ones that look incredible together, are called complementary colors. They complement each other and create a visual harmony. They’re salt and pepper, Bonnie and Clyde, peanut butter and jelly. Complementary colors sit across from one another on the color wheel (i.e. blue and orange, red and green, yellow and purple).


Be Careful of Patterns, Prints, and Logos

Avoid large bold patterns as they often dominate the photograph and detract attention from your beautiful face. Usually, subtle smaller patterns work best. Flannels or a light floral print are great when they complement the location. But less is definitely more with this one, try to limit yourself to one pattern at a time. Matching patterns is a tricky task, and it’s super difficult to do well. If you’re not quite sure what category your patterned clothes fall into, shoot me an email or send me a text and I’ll be happy to weigh in!

Logos tend to be distracting! Much like crazy patterns, clothing with writing or logos on it tends to be a bit distracting. We’re not getting paid for Adidas’ not-so-subtle product placement. However, if the logo or phrase is tasteful (read: not tacky), in theme with the shoot, tells your story, and fits your personality, I’m all for it!

Shoes: A key part of a look

You can’t have come this far, painstakingly planning your outfit, only to stop at your ankles. Shoes are a key part of a look and ideally complement the rest of the outfit!

If you wear heels like a pro, I definitely don’t have the authority to tell you not to do that! But if you, like the rest of us mere mortals, find heels to be moderately uncomfortable, then do yourself a favor and ditch ‘em. In most cases, we’ll be stomping around on some relatively uneven terrain and I don’t want you spraining an ankle. I’ll probably be giving you some energetic prompts to follow so you’ll want to be ready for action!

Select the right shoes based on the location, and consider what you’d normally wear if I wasn’t following you around with a camera. Being barefoot makes sense on the beach, and boots are beautiful in the mountains!

Leather is great for boots, and know that sandals win over flip flops by a long shot. Always consider context when choosing footwear for both aesthetic appeal and practicality!

Makeup and Hair: The do’s and don’ts

So this is totally your call! But, if I may… I would suggest cultivating a bit of the French je ne sais quoi that balances elegance and ease so well. I want you to look like you. So do whatever you need to do to feel confident and beautiful.

Hands tell such a story about who you are and where you’ve been and play a crucial role in portrait photography. Sometimes photographs magnify bright nail polish, chipped manicures, and dirty fingernails. And once you see it, you can’t un-see it. Your eye just keeps on zooming in on that one bit of the photograph. It’s really distracting. Treat yourself to a little subtle manicure or make sure your nails are neat and tidy before the shoot.

As for hair… Oh boy. I’m a sucker for the way a wild mane blows in the breeze. Up-dos are alright, and I totally get it – it’s so easy to throw your hair up! But when it comes to saving a moment and putting it in your pocket, hair down is the way to go. With your hair down, you get movement, you get interest, you get some perfect slices of imperfection in the best possible way.

Fine Art of Accessories

Hats, sunglasses, socks, and jackets are a great way to jazz up your accessory game
Throw some fun extras into your bag but avoid large distracting pieces. Each person can have one staple piece. More than one for each person can make the look overwhelming. If you couldn’t tell by now, I’m interested in shooting you (not your clothes or your bling).

Watches are a bit of a weird one, especially in couple sessions. Please PLEASE ditch the apple watch! The big fat circle face of a watch is particularly apparent when people are holding each other’s faces and bringing them in for some sugar. Best to leave the watch at home unless its sentimental.

Lead with Personality

If you’re in a heavy metal band and want to smash some things and scream at the sky, throw on your best concert attire and count me in. If you’re a drama kid at heart and live for the spotlight, I’ll help you turn your front porch into a stage and feed you the lines you’ve forgotten. If you’re a jeans and a t-shirt kinda person, let’s work with that. I want your shoot to be different from everyone else’s. I want it to be you!

Bring Multiple Outfits

Gather up 2 or 3 outfits that you feel We can play around with different combinations on the day. I’m not trying to photocopy trends in all their boring hues, I’m looking for the you-est you. Bring things that help you express yourself – I want you to grace my lens with your true, full personality!

Providing options helps me to make sure your threads compliment the environment – keeping the focus on you, where it should be!

Last but not least: let’s talk about props!

Props don’t have to scream ‘PROP!” Go for the subtle things that accentuate your personality and help to tell a story about your life. Think pets, an instrument, surfboards, an umbrella, bike, or even a beer. Avoid the cheese as much as possible!

Let’s recap together!

+ Always always always bring your pup
+ Dress for the season
+ Aim for neutral or pastels for summer/spring
+ Aim for darker colors for winter/fall
+ Compliment, don’t match (unintentionally)
+ Wear something comfortable that you feel like yourself in
+ Layers are always your friend
+ Natural and earthy colors look amazing in most settings
+ Darker colors will slim you down
+ Avoid anything with intense patterns
+ Avoid large prints, logos, and patterns
+ Choose clothing that fits you well and matches the location
+ Throw some accessories like a hat or denim jacket into your bag


I hope you this guide calmed any nerves and answered your questions! The main goal of your photos is to get you two to connected and capture real, honest moments. So bring your authentic selves and do your best to relax and have fun! 

Read & Leave a Comment 

Share Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You might like these latest posts:

What to expect: hands on, individualized experience from beginning to end. A travel buddy, your personal hype girl, and a best friend. 

the kmp wedding experience

Want to dive deeper?