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Five Steps to Ensure Genuine Smiles at Your Engagement Session

Earlier this week I was asked to write a blog post for Guesterly! (Getting married, or not, you absolutely need to check these guys out). I thought it would be fun to give you that same blog post here on my own website. Thanks to copy + paste for making it possible! You can see the original blog post here.


Meet Chelsie Starley, a seasoned wedding photographer who has shot events around the globe! Chelsie loves people and has an amazing gift of documenting authentic moments during her photoshoots. This week we had the pleasure of talking to her about her top tips to brides, from a photographers perspective, to ensure genuine smiles at your engagement session.
I promise nothing will make your photographer happier than showing up at the designated time. Completely aside from them having to wait around for you, it is truly in your best interest because absolutely no photographer can control the sun. You might think we’re all rockstars, but in complete truth, we cannot. Your photographer has most likely very intentionally given you a time for your session that will work so magically with the sun coming over the mountains at just the right time to make all of your beautiful, gorgeous, sun-filled, glowing dreams come true – but if you show up an hour late, the sun will be down in 30 minutes and then you’re only going to get 30 minutes worth of photos – who wins in that situation? No one, no one wins.With that said! When you are late, because, let’s be honest, everyone is late to their engagement session – don’t stress! Photographers ARE rockstars, (I mean if you’ve hired one of the good ones at least) they can turn an little itsy bit of light into a masterpiece and everything is going to be a-okay. Take solace in knowing, you’re not the first couple that’s been late to their engagement session.Then again, if you’re photographer says “Let’s meet at 6:00!” Maybe put 5:30 in your calendar, and then if you forget you tricked yourself and show up a half hour early, you’ll be stressing out your photographer, instead of yourself… muahahaha now you’ve got the upper hand. (:
2. PICK OUT YOUR CLOTHES A WEEK BEFORE (and then set them aside!)
Nothing is worse than trying to get everything together 5 minutes before you’re supposed to be meeting your photographer. So this will help with tip number 1, and will also help with you two lookin’ REAL GOOD. Picking your clothes out a week before will help you when you have a freak out and need to raid your friend’s closets or hit the shops, because you’ll still have a whole week to do it! And if you set your things aside, it will ensure that you have EVERYTHING you need (I can’t even tell you how many grooms have forgotten their pants, or their shirt, or their shoes… or all three.) The 1 week rule will also give you time to wash your clothes. Guys, YOU GOTTA SMELL GOOD, SMELLING GOOD WILL BRING YOU THE CONFIDENCE YOU NEED.
Hit up In-N-Out Burger BEFORE your engagement session, not after. You don’t wanna be hangry, your photographer doesn’t want to you to be hangry. Every bride needs a fed groom, I can tell you that much. But if you’re both coming from work and have no time to stop and get food… pack in some snacks for the car. Get yourself a big fat fountain soda and a granola bar, or water and an apple, or a cookie or a freaking entire cake. Whatever you need to feel the opposite of hangry, do that.

If you’ve hired a good photographer – they’re gonna make sure you look good. You don’t need to send photos of poses you like beforehand, and that doesn’t need to be on your mind during the session either. Here’s the way I think of it – as long as I can make my client’s comfortable around me, they’re going to give me their genuine selves. That is absolutely what you want from an engagement session – you want to look genuinely happy and in love – so worry less about how you look and concentrate on loving the person you’re with!


This goes a lot along with #4. Don’t stress, just have fun with it. If you’re having fun the photos are going to turn out great! No matter how many things went wrong getting to your engagement session, you’re here now! You get to hang out with your very favorite person and your only job is to be in love with them! TALK ABOUT IDEAL!

All photos taken by the amazing, Chelsie Starley. To see more of her work and to book her for your upcoming event check outhttp://chelsiestarleyphotography.com/


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