Hi, we're Hunter and Sarah, a husband-and-wife, luxury wedding photography team. We’re also educators, helping other photographers build profitable and sustainable photography businesses.
None of our clients are professional models. Since our very first portrait session more than 6 years ago, we have never had a professional model hire us for their engagement session. As we’ve grown more and more comfortable behind our cameras, we’ve realized that many times, our couples can be just as uncomfortable in front of the lens as we were behind it when we first started shooting. It took us a while to realize how intimidating it can feel to meet two strangers at a local park and just a few minutes later have these HUGE lenses pointed at you while they give you posing direction.
But over time, we’ve learned. We’ve grown. We’ve become experts in our craft and pros at helping our couples feel comfortable in front of our cameras. And we’ve found that there’s one thing we can do ahead of time to make them feel ten times more relaxed during their session and considerably less stressed as they prepare for it: prepare them well.
It all began with us typing out the same tips and tricks to every client who would book us, sent to them via email before their session. Eventually we drafted a long message and would send the same content alongside our booking confirmation. It began with a few tips on what to avoid wearing to help minimize distractions in front of the camera. But over time that draft grew to include style tips for our ladies and eventually for our gentlemen as well. We also began to consult on some of our favorite locations in the area and even the best time of day to schedule the session.
Every single time we would leave a session, we would ask ourselves, ‘What could have made that photoshoot even better?!’ Then we would add that into the draft. Years of photographic experience accumulated until finally we felt like we were ready to invest the time and energy into turning our long email into something so much better. And today, we’re excited to announce the Engagement Session Style Guide!
This project has been months in the making and is choc-full of years of our experience with portrait photography of all kinds. And now, we have the final product in our hands and it feels incredible! We’ve already mailed copies of the magazine to many of our 2019 #HSPBrides, and they’ve told us how receiving their style guide has made them even MORE excited for their engagement sessions!
But here’s why we’re most excited about the Engagement Session Style Guide: it makes life easy for our couples! Not sure when to schedule your session? Page 5 — no problem. Bewildered on how to dress your man for your engagement session? There’s an entire section on style tips just for him! Wondering if you should bring your puppy to your session? Check out page 37 and have all your questions answered!
The information in this guide has been making the scheduling and shooting process as smooth as butter for years (in email form), but now our couples are expressing to us a whole new level of comfort with their sessions. We know that the Engagement Session Style Guide magazine has already been a huge benefit to our couples during their engagement sessions this fall, and we cannot wait to order our second batch with updated photos and a few new tips for all our future clients!
And the best part? We include a digital copy of this guide FOR FREE with every single portrait session that we shoot! Whether it’s your engagement, family, high school senior or maternity session, you had better prepare to feel prepared for your session like you never imagined, throw away all the stress associated with professional photography, and to look like a million bucks in the process!
**Update Fall 2019**
Along with all new updated photos, we’ve also re-released the guide in two distinct forms! Now, our couples will have the Engagement Session Style guide while our families and seniors will get the Portrait Session Style Guide! Each is unique and filled with specific advice for each kind of session 🙂
We would be remiss if we didn’t take a moment to thank our photographic mentors Amy & Jordan Demos for their guidance in this area and the templates that made the Style Guide possible. They absolutely ROCK and we could not have done this without them!