How to Crush Your Engagement Shoot Without Falling Prey to Clichés

Get ready to plan like a pro.
If you're just as obsessed with Amy Schumer's hilarious yet unfortunately true parody video of engagement photo shoots as we are, then you're well aware of overused engagement photo clichés... As more couples opt for engagement sessions, all too familiar locations, styles, and props emerge. If you want pictures that are one-of-a-kind -- and not all over Pinterest -- here are ten tips for pulling off unique snapshots that are far from cookie-cutter.
1. Pick a location you and your partner love. Who says you have to have your engagement photos taken in a field or wooded area? Choose a setting that means something to the both of you and don't choose it solely based on how it will photograph. Tell your photographer ahead of time the locations you have in mind (anything from your first date spot to a boat in the middle of a lake) and he or she can find the perfect spot to snap your picture. 
2. Choose a photographer who makes you feel comfortable. You're going to be spending a lot of time with this person, so you want to make sure that you not only like him or her, but that you also feel totally at ease in that person's presence. Your photographer can be the best in the world, but if he or she doesn't make you feel confident on the big day, then it's not going to work. 
3. Find poses that feel natural to you. If staring longingly into each other's eyes isn't something you frequently do, then don't do it in your engagement photos. While you want to take some direction from your photographer (chances are he or she know what they're talking about) it's okay to let him or her know if the pose feels wrong. 
4. Don't use unnecessary props. Don't go overboard on the props, people! You should never feel like you need fillers (from signs and prints, to books, and bubbly champagne) for your images. You and your partner are enough. Unless you want to get really creative and original with a themed series, say no to added tchotchkes. 
5. Relax and have a little fun with it. If you and your dearest are total jokesters, it's okay to have fun with your engagement shoot! Dress up in wacky costumes or make your pics ironically cliché. Your friends and family will think it's just as hilarious as you do. 
6. Take these photos for you, not for social media. These photos will be keepsake items for you and your significant other forever. You shouldn't feel as if you have to have the photos be one way or another because they're more likely to get picked up by a blog or reposted on social media. Remember, trends are fleeting and your pictures will be around long after. 
7. Wear what you both like, even if it doesn't perfectly match. If you're in clothes that feel unnatural, the pictures are going to show your discomfort. Pick favorite outfits that both you and your fiancé love to wear for the session. 
8. Incorporate your hobbies and passions. Enjoy sailing? Bliss out in hot yoga? Watch classic movies? We are totally into the idea of incorporating your hobbies and passions into your photos with themed engagements or action shots. As your personalities shine through, the end result will be more unique. 
9. Don't be afraid to go casual. If you don't want to get all dolled up for your engagement pictures, consider having a casual coffee shop or at-home engagement shoot. After all, staying true to yourself is always the best idea. 
10. Enjoy yourselves. Your engagement snapshots are a time to have fun together and prepare yourselves for the photos that will be taken on the big day. Don't put too much pressure on yourself or set high expectations for the day. This should be stress-free and enjoyable! 
About the author
Founder of Wiley Events.
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