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Engagement Session

planning your

Mouna Photography

Second, you can showcase your personalities in a more casual setting that is significant to the two of you (and even include pets!). While they’re great for save-the-dates, I've taken engagement photos anywhere from 18 months in advance to a few days before the wedding. 

There is a lot to think about when it comes to planning a session and since I get asked the same things over and over again, I thought it would be the most beneficial if I put together a guide that walks you through everything you need to know. 

I'll cover what to wear, whether to bring pets & how to manage them, location ideas and more! 

I'm so excited to be working with you and I can’t wait for our time together during your engagement session! It’s normal to be a little nervous about your session. I always tell people that I still get nervous before having my photos taken - and I do this for a living!

I am big fan of engagement sessions for a few reasons. First, they allow you to get comfortable in front of the camera. It takes time for most couples to warm up to being photographed and understand how I pose. Timelines can be pretty tight on weddings days and 40 minutes may be all we have for portraits on the wedding day - which is why I found that wedding day portraits turn out so much better when couples do engagement sessions ahead of time. 


the Engagement Gallery

I get it. Having your picture taken for 1-2 hours is not in your top-10 favorite things to do during your downtime. And at first you might feel sort of awkward being in front of the camera.

But I think you’ll find that by the end of the session, it’s a lot easier than you thought, and you even had a little fun. I look forward to it because it’s a great opportunity for us all to hang out a bit before the wedding day.

The guys


Engagement sessions can take place anywhere from immediately following a proposal to just a few days before the wedding. I've found that there isn’t a “good” or “bad” time to take your photos. I normally plan sessions based on a particular “look” a couple has in mind, spring flowers for example, or based on schedules. 

These sessions typically last around an hour and a half, ideally beginning roughly two hours before sunset whenever possible. Shooting during this time allows for softer lighting, minimizing harsh shadows and bright spots. Additionally, the first couple of hours after sunrise also offer ideal lighting conditions.

I carefully schedule sessions during what I anticipate will be the optimal lighting conditions of the day, emphasizing the importance of punctuality. Being late to an evening session risks losing precious daylight, potentially cutting short the shoot. Similarly, morning sessions are subject to the sun becoming harsher as it ascends in the sky.


Time & Light: is there a

While I shoot most of the engagement sessions between April and late November, sessions can take place all year. Couples often select a season based on their desired location for the shoot and the timing of their "Save the Date" announcements.

Here are some considerations for each season:


If you’re planning to take your engagement photos during the winter, keep in mind that if your session takes place in the evening, we could begin shooting as early as 2:30pm to catch the sunset. I recommend dressing in layers, so that in between photos you can warm up. Make sure you bring a little extra makeup and tissues in case your nose begins running. 

snowfall, hot cocoa and cozy coats


For a spring engagement session, we can scout picturesque locations with blooming flowers and lush greenery. Optimize timing for soft, flattering light during the golden hour or a little bit before. A pastel wardrobe choices and incorporate natural elements as backdrops or props. 

fresh flowers and sunny days 


In spite of the heat, I am big fans of summer sessions! Because of the later sunset, sessions sometimes begin as late as 6:30 pm. If you’re taking your engagement photos during the summer, I recommend bringing extra makeup and a few towels to make sure you stay fresh throughout your session. 

walks on the beach hand in hand


Fall is one of the prettiest times of the year in Wisconsin and because of the perfect weather, our schedules typically book up quickly! If you have your heart set on a fall engagement session, I recommend scheduling it as soon as you book! 

colorful leaves and snuggling close


If your wedding is local, save the dates should be sent between 4 and 6 months before the wedding. For a destination wedding, you’ll want to send them out 8 to 10 months before the wedding. 

If you’re hoping to use your engagement photos for your save the dates, I recommend scheduling your session at least two months before you plan to send out your save-the-dates. Between inclement weather, editing, designing your save-the-dates and printing, two months is generally a safe amount of time to make sure your images and cards are ready. 



I adore those stunning destinations mentioned above, yet I'm equally passionate about discovering meaningful locales alongside our couples!





I love when couples choose a location for their session that complements their wedding. For example if you’re planning a chic, elegant wedding, it may be fitting to take your engagement portraits among the classic architecture of the Federal Building, while a local park or flower-filled fields may be more fitting for a couple planning a more rustic affair.

The best session locations are often meaningful places to the couple; however, I also happy to make recommendations. From sunflower fields to apple picking and college campuses, the options for engagement session locations are endless! 



I love when couples choose to incorporate pets into their session. Keep in mind that bringing a pet along often means that we’ll need to choose a pet friendly location. 

I recommend planning for your pet to be at the first part of your session and then either dropping them off or having a friend take them home. I won’t use the pet in every single photo so it’s also nice to have a friend available to hold him or her in between shots. 

If you’re going to bring a pet, I recommend exercising your pet before the session and bringing your pets favorite toy or treats! Depending on your pet’s fur type, it might also be a good idea to groom them before the shoot. 


When picking outfits I recommend keeping in mind the word “complement” rather than “match.” For example, if the groom-to-be is wearing a blue and pastel plaid shirt, the bride-to-be may want to choose a long, what would complement his colors. It can also be a great idea to choose “color-families,” such as pastels or jewel tones.

 Generally couples pick two outfits for an engagement session: a more formal outfit and a casual outfit. I recommend saving your favorite outfit for later in the session, when couples usually feel more comfortable in front of the camera. And don’t forget to bring a few accesorries! Statement necklaces, cute shoes and classic watches are great ways to add detail to outfits. 



A good rule of thumb: pick 3 or so colors and spread them throughout your attire. Don't be afraid to mix a few subtle patterns or textures

And always keep the location in mind. If you're shooting in a green field, light green dresses might blend in too much with the surroundings. 

Heels looks great, however, if your heels aren’t comfortable for walking or we'll be in grass, bring an extra pair of shoes to slip into in between shots.

Professionally done hair & makeup last longer than typical hair & makeup. They also tend to hold up better in humidity and wind.

Choosing Outfits

on to the next

Heels lengthen legs but if your heels aren’t comfortable for walking or we'll be in grass, bring an extra pair of shoes to slip into in between shots.

We love the way larger patterns and textures (like linen) photograph - just be careful not to choose a pattern that is too small - it may accidentally make your photo look a little too busy.

Softer, pastel colors tend to photograph better than bright colors - especially since bright colors could reflect on your skin. We love bright, neon dresses, but we don’t love the neon reflection they add to your complexion. 

Wardrobe Tips

for the ladies

on to the next

Statement jewelry is a great way to add color or pattern to a simple dress. Lace and tulle look amazing in photographs.

And dresses with sleeves are a great way to help slim arms. Depending on your location, you might want to consider a fit and flare or a flowy dress.

They look great in walking and photos with movement. Choose an outfit you feel comfortable in, but don’t be afraid to dress up!


for the ladies

We think it’s so important that you look and feel your best for your photos. Investing in professional hair and makeup can go a long way towards creating photos you love for years. 

Professionally done hair & makeup last longer than typical hair & makeup. They also tend to hold up better in humidity and wind.

If you go this route, we recommend staying a bit “classic”. Now probably isn’t the best time to try out that new contouring technique you saw on TikTok. 

If you’re planning to do any spray tans or waxing, schedule those for a few days before the session to give your skin time to recover. 

Hair & Makeup

for the ladies

on to the next

You can’t go wrong with crisp button up. Or consider layering a blazer or sweater with jeans with this look. Bowties are always a good idea.

Be careful not to choose a pattern that is too small - it may accidentally make your photo look a little too busy.

Softer, pastel colors tend to photograph better than bright colors - especially since bright colors could reflect on your skin. Cozy sweaters layered over button ups are a great way to stay warm and stylish during the cooler months.


for the gents

on to the next

It's my standard practice to schedule a primary engagement session date along with a backup date. Coordinating schedules can be challenging, and I've discovered that having a backup plan ensures our couples achieve the exact aesthetic they desire for their photos. If the initial date doesn't align perfectly, we'll have the second one ready to go.

I'll touch base with you the week of your engagement session to finalize the time, location, and weather forecast. I understand the effort it takes to prepare for these sessions, and It can be disappointing to get all dressed up only to have it rain on the day of your session. If you're open to it, we can also discuss incorporating rainy day options into the session. Just let me know what works best for both of you. Typically, if the weather forecast isn't favorable, I'll aim to make a decision at least 12 hours in advance to minimize any inconvenience.

what to do if it rains

Inclement Weather

If you’re planning to bring props to your engagement session, I'll e recommend including them only if they’re meaningful to you.

Shots drinking coffee at a local coffee shop would be cute if that’s where you met or coffee shops play a significant role in your relationship; however, trying to fly a kite together when it’s not a part of your relationship may come off as contrived.


should we bring

When it's time for your engagement session, don't stress about posing! I'll lead you through everything, starting with simple and natural poses. If I suggest something that feels a bit silly, it's because I'm aiming for those genuine laughter moments – those are the ones that make the best photos.

During the session, I'll make sure your hair, makeup, and outfits are all on point. My goal is for you to feel completely at ease and to savor every moment together!

"what do I do with my hands?"


A note on

If you’re anything like me, you probably don’t get dressed up all that often. Which means that the day of your engagement session is the perfect occasion for a date night (or brunch if your session is in the morning!)

The engagement session is another part of celebrating your love and heading off to dinner is a great way to end the session!

Date Night

As soon as possible after your session is complete, I’ll be working on Editing your images. Typically, it takes about 4-5 days to have them ready for viewing online, complete with a private link and password. You can anticipate receiving your engagement photos within the following 6 days after the session. Once they're ready, you'll be able to download the high-resolution images from your end.


When to Expect Your

I know that this guide is long and hopefully it covers everything you need to know to prep for your engagement session! However if there is something  I missed, or you need a recommendation feel free to email


Thank you for visiting my page. I am very excited to provide you with a unique photography experience! 
I will promptly answer all pricing and availability questions.
I look forward to chatting with you.

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