I’ve been cooped up at home since Beau was born in December, in some ways just wishing these winter months would fly by and in other ways wanting them to slow right down so I can enjoy every little moment with our new baby boy. There’s such a difference between having a baby in the summer to having one in the winter. With Smith, we were out cruising in the stroller, even jogging just to get some exercise, within the first few weeks of him being born. I remember our first walk to Starbucks like it was yesterday. Super nervous that he would wake up crying…but he slept the whole time. And thankfully, Smith is still a rockstar sleeper…knock on wood!

Christian Lee Photography

With Beau, however, I’ve been so less motivated to out for walks and excursions because the weather has been so miserable. Not to mention all the sleepless nights.
So cold, so much snow, freezing rain…you name it. Even someone without a newborn wouldn’t willingly go out unless they had to. I used to love winter but now the thought of getting two kids geared up to go outside, for what will likely only be 15 minutes before they want to come back in again sounds like a lot of work.

Mom and newborn baby boy cuddling

But in a few short weeks, I’m taking the two boys to Mexico with my parents for some fun in the sun, swims in the pool, and an endless amount of stroller walks. My goal is to be shoeless for the majority of our trip. I strongly dislike wearing socks. Another reason why winter isn’t my jam. I also can’t wait to see Smith in the pool…I think he’s going to love it this year.

mom and son standing by the pool before dinner

Anyways, that’s my little life update! Onto the real reason for this post.

Booking season is in full force following the holidays and all the proposals that took place. Since then, I’ve been getting a lot of the same comments over consultations with clients. “I don’t like having my photo taken”, “I’m not photogenic”, “We’re super awkward in front of the camera”.

Boom. Enter engagement session.

engaged couple cuddling under trees

Sure, engagement sessions can feel like an added expense that isn’t exactly necessary. But wedding photographers offer engagement sessions for a reason – it’s the greatest way to get comfortable in front of the camera before your wedding day.

Picture this. Most couples have never been professionally photographed until their wedding day. Unless you’re models or Instagram influencers, you are most likely a little apprehensive about having your photo taken. It’s the morning of your wedding. Your photographer, who you’ve met only once or twice before today, shows up with her camera and starts snapping photos of you and your bridesmaids (potentially makeup-less and with hair disheveled). Instantly, you’re uneasy and so acutely aware that there’s a camera pointed in your direction that your palms get sweaty, your shoulders tense up and you are visibly uncomfortable. Not exactly how you want to remember your wedding day.

photojournalistic engagement photo

An engagement session can help ease these feelings. You’ve had time in front of the camera to get those jitters out of the way, you’ve spent more time getting to know your photographer (who you’ll be spending the majority of your wedding day with), and you and your fiancee have nervously giggled, all cuddled up in front of the camera together that it feels like any old day. By the time your big day rolls around, your wedding photographer feels like a friend, you’re more confident that you will appear relaxed and photogenic (because you’ve seen proof of that already!), and there’s so much going on anyways that you kinda forget there’s even a camera in the room.

engaged couple getting close

I’ve had so many couples tell me how happy they were to have done an engagement shoot. It’s your practice run. It’s an opportunity for us as photographers to show you that you ARE photogenic. Yes, we may have to work extra hard to make you feel comfortable in front of the camera, but that’s our job. Not yours.

engaged couple with arms wrapped around each other between two cedar hedges at sunset

And the best part? It’s usually a great excuse to go to dinner afterwards cause you’re already looking pretty damn good.

Not quite convinced? Here are some of my fave engagement sessions in Ottawa from last year! Some of these couples will totally agree that they were nervous AF about having their photo taken. But they look pretty dang good if I do say so myself. Take a peek!

Hogs Back Engagement Session

Mackenzie King Estate Engagement Session

Perth Engagement Session

Ornamental Gardens Engagement Session

Need some inspo on where to have your engagement session? Check out this post on the best locations for engagement photos in Ottawa.

Until those hot, sweaty, summer nights…stay cozy my friends. xo


Engagement sessions and why they’re important

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