A couple embraces on a rocky beach as waves crash around them, with a calm sea and a distant island in the background under a twilight sky.



Engagement photography tips

You’re getting married, congratulations! You are starting to plan your wedding and have found a wedding photographer you like (I hope that is me), do you really need an engagement shoot?

After all you will have lots of photos from the wedding. You don’t need an pre-wedding shoot, or do you?

Well, here are four reasons why I think an engagement shoot is a very good idea.


Through the creation of your mood board, I am able to tailor images around your personalities, the activities you enjoy and your sense of style.

Now, this is not just about your potential engagement shoot but it’s also about your wedding day. I use the pre-wedding shoot mood board as a tool, because it tells me a lot about what you like. For example; are most of your photos being taken on Sidmouth Beach, or are most of your pinned images from Dartmoor National Park? By analysing your photos, in particular the place you have chosen for your engagement photoshoot, I get to learn a little bit more about you both as a couple. Now there is more to the mood board than this (see my article on How to Create a mood board), but you can see that creating a mood board with photographs you love can be really advantageous.

At the pre-wedding photoshoot, we are able to nail down the images and style you love. From there we can assess the resulting photographs, making any changes we need to the style or poses you liked or did not like before your wedding day itself, as opposed to just guessing what you guys do, or do not like. The mood board and engagement photoshoot allows me to really hone in on your vison and capture the sort of photographs that reflect you both as individuals, and as a couple.


The engagement shoot helps to build a stronger relationship between you and I . My aim is for you both to begin to feel more relaxed in front of the camera. It can take at least half an hour having photographs taken before you begin to feel comfortable, and that is one of the key reasons why I offer a 2 to 3 hour long engagement photoshoot.

I want you to become relaxed, to build trust in me as a professional wedding photographer,  and through that trust relax into the experience and have a good time. Building that relationship is so important, so that when it comes to your wedding day I am not just the photographer, but a trusted friend. Believe me when I say your photography will be all the better for it, as we will now be relaxed in each others company.


I know there is a trend for photojournalism, candid wedding photography please see my article on How to find a wedding photographer and most of the images on your wedding day will be photojounalitsic  photography. They capture moments as they happen due to the busyness of the day, but I also like to teach my couples a little bit about how to pose to help in getting great photos when we reach the couple’s portion of the day.

Dial in the vision

Through the initial consultation, the mood board and now the pre-wedding photoshoot, we have been able to tailor your engagement shoot to your vision, style and personality. The photographs that we create together represent you as both individuals and as a couple. Whether you are looking for a vogue look, or country casual the engagement photoshoot that we build together is not about me, but all about you.

From the above processes, I hope you can see that having an pre-wedding shoot does not just give you great engagement photographs, which you can use for save the date cards, but it also enables your wedding day photos to be so much better.

About Helen Chapman Photography

My philosophy:

“To provide excellence by placing YOU, Your dreams, Your wants, Your needs in the heart of everything I do”.

“To create beautifully, naturally, authentic, fun, romantic heirloom photography, that YOU are guaranteed to love and that will be cherished by future generations to come”.

“To provide YOU with a truly exceptional service through following my core beliefs of honesty, fairness, integrity, determination and creativity.”

I have been helping couples plan their weddings in the stunning natural landscape of the Devon countryside, rugged moorland of Dartmoor and spectacular seascape of the coastline of Devon, Somerset, and Cornwall for years and I’m using that experience and relationship with a great network of wedding vendors to help you plan your special wedding day. Why not take a look at my Client resources pages & Check my availability for your wedding and book a call today.

beach engagement photo shoot

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