Engagement Photography session at the Tangled Gardens:
In the days or weeks leading up to an engagement session, Rae usually sends a questionnaire out to the couple so we can get a better sense of the people we’re about to photograph. It helps us get a sense of what sort of shots we’re after….is this couple outdoorsy? If so, for a location, are we heading to the forest or the sea? If not, are we headed to urban spots? Graffitied walls or gardens? Daytime or sunset or night? Are we going for a romantic vibe in the photos? Cute? Quirky? Edgy? Modern or vintage? Flashy or understated? And so on.There are a lot of ways a photography shoot can go.
We keep reading that as photographers, we’re supposed to nail down a consistent style (we’re supposed to be quirky and not edgy, for example), and we keep thinking “no thanks”. Couples are different from each other, and we really try to reflect that as much as we can in our photos….even at the risk of appearing inconsistently styled. Life is too complex to fit into a style. That’s why the fashion industry can recreate itself weekly. But anyway, we send out these questionnaires, and we ask a bunch of questions, some of which are somewhat personal. Not everybody answers all the questions, which is totally cool, but a lot of people do, and I’m sometimes really humbled by how honest and genuinely open people can be. Some people have told us about life & death tragedies they’re struggling with, or their deepest joys and gratitudes in life. Reading the answers reminds me that everyone I meet has a really fascinating story and a depth that goes way beyond our “hi, how’s it going?”. One of our questions is about how the couple met, and I love to read this part there is usually a weird sense of fate bringing the couple together through an unlikely coincidence (or a string of them).
When we read J & B’s answers, the answers were particularly heart-warming and also emotionally charged. Every answer they wrote down reinforced the same on-going theme: a family-oriented couple who are deeply committed and quite in love. Example: On their first date, B brought J to meet his family! What a rare boldness! (Rae and I had our first date at a library, with coffee, and she was tutoring somebody, and we were both time-zones away from our families). After reading all their answers, we knew that we were going to pose them very close to each other, very intimately. And we found that we got them close to each other, they both lit up as if they were igniting internally. You could feel it, and in the photos, I think you can see it.
Hope you enjoy a few of our favourite photos. It rained for like, 5 minutes during this session and we quickly grabbed our umbrellas and made the most out of it!