Mr. Orchard and I finally got engagement pictures taken in April. I have to admit that while I was extremely excited to have some couple pictures done (up until this, we had, like, three photos with both of us in them) I was also very nervous about being the center of so much camera attention.
My mom is a photographer so you think I’d be used to mugging for the camera, but in the last few years I have hated getting my picture taken more and more. The day we were set to do our pictures I made sure I had chosen outfits I felt great in. I made sure it wasn’t going to be too hot or too cold, and I chose sensible but cute shoes. I wanted as much working in my favor as possible.
I shouldn’t have been so nervous.
When you’re working with someone like Hannah there’s really nothing to fear. She is quite simply the sweetest girl in the world, and within 15 minutes, Mr. Orchard and I had shaken our nerves and were working the camera like an America’s Next Top Model contestant. (OK”¦maybe not quite, but we were close—we definitely threw out the words “tooch” and “smize” a few times.)
We had Hannah for three hours, and we decided to start our session at the West Virginia Botanical Garden, which few people seem to know about. It was still early in the spring so there wasn’t a ton of plant life, but we got some epic shots anyway. I scoured Pinterest for inspiration prior to the day so I knew what kind of look I wanted. I definitely suggest doing that—even if you don’t have time to share those images with your photographer, know what you want going in. It makes it so much easier.
*All photos are used courtesy of Hannah Silverman Photography.*
One of our first shots—we were a little nervous and stiff
Getting more comfortable!
After playing in the garden for a bit, we moved on for a quick stop at the site of our first date, a little diner called Ruby and Ketchy’s. We even put on the same (or similar) outfits to try to recreate the scene. While I had grand ideas for this part of the shoot, these pictures aren’t my favorites. We definitely got some cute ones because Hannah is a genius, but trying to look cute while crammed in a booth isn’t as easy as you’d think. Bonus, though, we did get to eat some delicious pie. I just wish we’d had the foresight to take some ring pictures using the utensils and food as props. I also wish we had removed the advertisement place mats.
We ended the day in our neighborhood. We live in a historical district and it is full of charming houses, little parks, and a local high school with some great architectural elements. Hannah did her student teaching at that school, so she knew just the right locations to visit. It’s also no real secret that I eventually hope to end up teaching at that school since it is SO close to our house. I loved being able to capture a place where Mr. O and I took so many of our first walks. It was also great to be able to get a few pictures of the house before we make a bunch of changes.
All in all, we could not have had a better experience, and I feel fully confident that Hannah is the perfect person to capture our wedding day! Mr. Orchard and I LOVE vintage filters, and the editing that Hannah did to our photos not only makes them look awesome but also means that I can frame them and put them all around the house and they’ll fit in perfectly.
If I can give any tips about engagement photos (and I am sure this is mostly true of wedding day photos too) the most important would be to not POSE or feel like you have to pose for every shot. Honestly, all of my favorite pictures were ones Hannah snapped while Mr. O and I were in the midst of talking or teasing each other about how awkward it is to have your picture taken for three hours! While I relied heavily on the internet to help me come up with a vision for our pictures, I didn’t feel the need to highlight specific shots to Hannah—after seeing her work I knew that she would be able to guide us in the direction that worked best for us, and she did.
Any other bees out there with tips to share?