how to prepare for your engagement session

‘Tis the season for engagement sessions, and I couldn’t be more excited. With the snow finally melted and the spring buds making an appearance, I know it’s time to start touching base with my engaged couples.
Most clients have no clue what they really want to do for this session. A lot of times, they didn’t even think they would get one, so the idea of an extra portrait session before the wedding is a new and exciting concept.
The reason why I love engagements so much, is I feel it gives both myself and the couple an opportunity to get to know each other. It gives the couple a chance to practise being in front of the camera, and set aside an hour or so to just enjoy being in each other’s arms.
Wedding planning is such a fun time, but it can also be a busy, stressful time. So I try to encourage every couple to just laugh together, focus on just holding each other’s hands and being a little goofy together.
There are a few important details that need to be decided upon before the day of the shoot. The number one decision is WHERE. I always encourage the couple to choose their spot, as I think this lends to them choosing something that reflects who they are and what they like. If it’s a couple from out of town, I will, of course, help with the process, but I always try to find out what they like, what they don’t like.
Second decision is WHAT TO WEAR. I love it when couple’s choose something kind of unique and fun, instead of basic blacks. Colors and light, fun clothes can give depth to the images and brings life into the photos.
Third decision is whether we KIS (keep it simple) or add some elements/props to the day. And I truly don’t have a preference here. Most of my sessions are simply the couple and the surrounding environment, but the odd couple will bring a prop or a little set of things, and I really dig how some of those sessions have turned out. It can be as simple as a blanket, or a favourite book, a cup of coffee or whatever will turn your session into something that reflects who you are.
Here are a couple images from some of my favourites sessions over the years. You’ll notice some with props, some without, and all sorts of different locations.

It doesn't get much better than a stunning location at sunset.

Love their casual and cozy outfits for thier cool autumn shoot on the beach - it rained and they still rocked it out!

Love the light colors and her gorgeous hair! A little extra effort goes a long way...

I say avoid black? But then she pulls out these fabulous boots, and the outfit is perfect! You can always bend the rules for boots like these...

A well tailored jacket on a man is pretty dang hot! And give me anything lace-y and I'm in love...

Breaking the black rule again, but there was something about Janelle's simple black sundress that made it perfect for their shoot. Not to mention this location was exactly where he proposed.

LOVED these earthy, country inspired outfits!

I hope these photos show you that even though there are some helpful guidelines for what can make your session fabulous, rules are made to be broken! Happy planning!

christina + greg engaged pt two

As we were talking on the phone about what the plans were for their engagement session, we talked about the outfits, the locations, the time of day… and all of a sudden, she asks, “what about silly string? Is it okay if we bring silly string?” – this was the moment I knew this was going to be a fun day.

As much as Christina + Greg are this incredible, in love couple (which you can see HERE in their first blog post), they are goofy, fun and love to play little jokes on each other. So, we decided to end their beautiful Naramata winery photo shoot with a graffiti wall, silly-string stand off!

terence + jen married

They were married on a beautiful sunny March afternoon in their hometown of Princeton, BC, and the day could not have been more perfect. As the bride finished off her final preparations, she was nervous and excited to see her groom.

I could tell by the smile that was permanently etched on Terence’s face, how happy he was. How lucky he felt to have the love of his life, his highschool sweetheart, marrying him today.

Jen + Terence, I wish you all the love in the world as you begin your marriage together. Thank you for having me be a part of your day,

To see more, watch the slideshow video below…

jen + terence engaged

This last-minute engagement shoot for Jen + Terence turned out to be a really fun morning with lots of giggles, lots of snuggles, and even some falling in the snow (blooper-reel that might come later). J+T’s wedding is tomorrow, and because they are from up north, we hadn’t had the opportunity to do an engagement shoot, so what better time than 2 days before the wedding!

We met up yesterday morning and started with a cup of coffee. We headed out into the snowy landscape and ended up having so much fun. I could see from our short time together, that J+T are a couple that is simply so excited to be married. They both feel so lucky to have found each other, and they enjoy every minute of being together.

Here is a little sneak peek of our session. I can’t wait for what tomorrow will bring, and I thank you for inviting me to be a part of this with you!

christina + greg engaged

They grabbed a plane for the weekend and flew from Edmonton to Kelowna for a chill weekend of wedding details and a little engagement session with me.

Up till this point, we had only chatted on the phone since Christina + Greg are from out of town. I was excited to meet them and find out what they were like! And I will say, if C+G lived in the area, I would be wanting to hang out and share some wine, because I truly adored my time with them. They were so sweet to me, so willing to go, sit, stand, snuggle, walk, come back, go again, etc, etc, etc. And more importantly, I had the opportunity to see their relationship with each other, which was so lovely. They were so real with each other, a little goofy, super love-y, supportive and totally into each other.

Thank you two for taking time out of your weekend to walk around the Naramata Bench with me, and I hope you enjoy your photos as much as I do!

So sweet and so cute!A little goofy fun, but leaves always make a photo session a good time…My favorite of the day, and probably the last frame from our Red Rooster Winery stop…

new brand

Like a girl in a candy store, I was ecstatic to open the big box that arrived at my front door. My new business cards. They are beautiful, they are professional, they are me.

When you see the pics coming up of my lovely new cards, you’ll ‘probably’ notice that the business name has changed. Yes, big changes coming down the pipeline!

We have decided to create a new website specific for my photography, so that each of our unique businesses have their own voice. Both Christina and I still work together like peas and carrots, but this way, our clients can see who we are separately as well as together.

With no further ado, here is the fabulous new business card of janelle photography! Created by the incredible, amazing Christina of Paperclip Creative.

Love the glossy ink and the subtle x’s and o’s