Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Engagement Photo Shoot

Two weeks ago, I received a phone call from my favorite niece,  Dayna. ( Don't worry my other nieces, you are ALL my favorite!)  She requested that I take her and her fiance's engagement pictures.  I was thrilled beyond belief.  I was thrilled because she is my niece and her fiance is a great guy and they are so happy and she wanted me to document through photos a very important event in their life.  To say I was a tiny bit nervous is a HUGE understatement!  And could I have them done in time for their engagement party in two weeks?  Of course I said, "No problem!".

Since this was my very first "formal" (and I use that term very loosely) portrait session, I scoured the internet and magazines for ideas and received advice from the photography forum on Two Peas in a Bucket, I was anxious but felt a wee bit more confident.  I shopped both my house and my local craft store for props and made sure I had fresh batteries and a new compact flash card for my camera.  I watched the weather that morning to be sure no rain was in the forecast.  We had talked back and forth about wardrobe (I let her call the shots on that), places to take the photos and different ideas we had.  I had laid awake for nights thinking about the pictures I wanted to take and was very excited.

They came at the appointed time and I wanted to take a few "test shots" to hopefully set them both at ease and untangle my nerves (which I tried really hard not to show).  Here is the result of a couple of those shots:

Aren't they gorgeous?  My niece and future nephew-in-law I mean.  There should be a law against such gorgeousness!  I took these photos in front of a yard of black velvet taped to my dining room wall and just used natural lighting.  I was fretting about not having an external flash, but the nice photographers on Two Peas said it would be okay.  And they were right! :-)

I took a few pictures outside in our backyard and while they were changing their wardrobe, I took these pictures plus a few more.  

I asked my niece to bring along her bridal magazines and notes and such to use as props.

After spreading everything out on my kitchen table, I asked them to relax and look through the magazines while I snapped away.  I know I was annoying and probably making them nervous, but they were good sports.  I explained to them that this is one of those things that they will forget as time goes on and it is a snapshot of what it was like to plan a wedding and gather ideas.

We then went to a couple of places around town.  By the river and behind the convent that my hubby and I like to go to for walks.  They are both beautiful settings.

One more wardrobe change and we were off to the banks of our river that runs through our town.  Here are a couple of more shots:

There are several more pictures where this came from.  These are just a sample of what I took.  Since it was my very first portrait session, I put my camera on "auto" mode.  I know that I am supposed to use manual and set the aperture and exposure settings as I go.  But I'm still learning and felt more comfortable with that.  And I used my iphoto software on my computer for editing.  Here is the equipment I used for this shoot:

Canon Rebel XTi
50mm 1.8 lens
70-300mm lens
18-55mm kit lens

I want to give a special thanks to my hubby and son for their support through all of this.  They gave me ideas, helped me set up shots and gave Sean a hard time for being a Spartan!  (We still love ya, Sean!).
And a very special thanks goes to my wonderful niece and her wonderful fiance for having faith in me and for all of your patience and being such good sports!  I love you to the moon and back! :-)


  1. wow very nice i love the pictures they look great together... wonderful awesome is all i can say... stay blessed and congrats on there engagement

  2. Congrats! Looks like it went well! My favorite is the peelie paint one!

  3. Your photo's are gorgeous, but then again how could you go wrong with this beautiful couple.

    I can so relate to staying up most of the night over thinking things.

  4. Amazing photos! What a beautiful job and a beautiful couple:) I love the one of the ring in the flower!

  5. Pam, your pix are awesome! Really, this couple is amazing and so are your photos of them and that red flower is wOw. Keep it have a bright future and congratulations to this sweet couple and all of your family.