Now that you’re engaged, you may be focusing on everything you need to do before the wedding. One of those things? Engagement photos.
You’ve probably seen some before, and you may even be wondering what the purpose of engagement photos is or whether they’re worth it.
If that’s the case, then keep reading while I share everything you need to know about them. Plus, I’m sharing my top 9 favorite places to take Lake Como engagement photos!
The purpose of engagement photos may be different from one couple to another. Some may want them because they need photos for their wedding planning. Others may just want to document this milestone in their lives.
As an engagement and wedding photographer, I believe the purpose of engagement photos is to act as a “rehearsal” for the wedding itself.
You’ll get more comfortable in front of the camera, you’ll get more comfortable with your photographer, and you’ll get beautiful photos of the two of you from the entire experience.
Taking engagement photos isn’t a mandatory part of getting married (nothing is mandatory, other than getting a marriage license). So no, they’re technically not necessary.
But I believe that’s the wrong question! Instead, you should ask if taking engagement photos is worth it.
To that, I say absolutely. Keep reading for my 6 major reasons why they are.
Wedding planning inevitably puts a lot on your plate. So the last thing you want to do is add more to it if you don’t have to.
But believe me when I say having an engagement photography session is worth it. And I’m sharing 6 major reasons why:
Hopefully, if you’ve booked your engagement photo session, you’ve booked it with your chosen wedding photographers.
You can think of your engagement photo session as a “trial run” for the wedding itself. You and your partner will get more comfortable with your wedding photographers. You’ll learn how they like to guide you through the session. You’ll learn each other’s personalities, and that will help you feel more comfortable in front of the camera.
Speaking of being comfortable in front of the camera, the engagement session helps you do exactly that. No wedding photographer is expecting you to be a model or an expert at having your photo taken (even with an engagement session beforehand!).
So they’ll guide you through the session. But there are always some nerves before stepping in front of the camera, even knowing that someone will walk you through everything.
And it’s so much better to have those nerves washed away at the engagement session rather than on the wedding day!
You may still have some reservations about wedding photography overall. How do your photographers achieve that “candid,” “in-the-moment” look as they guide you through natural prompts and poses? What are you going to look like in their style of photography?
Having an engagement session lets you build trust in the photography process overall before the wedding! You’ll see how your photographer is a pro at angles, lighting, and composition to make sure you look your best.
And that will keep you feeling confident in the process on the wedding day itself!
Your engagement is also a major milestone in your life, just like your wedding! So planning for an engagement session is a great way to capture this moment in your life forever.
There are infinite ways to connect more with your partner. Just one of them is through an engagement session!
It’s a few-hour window where the two of you can focus on each other – not work, not electronics or screens, nothing else. You’ll walk away feeling so much closer to your partner.
You’d be surprised at how many photos you may want or need to help with wedding planning! From a wedding website to Save the Date cards, having photos of the two of you comes in handy throughout the planning process.
Trying to find the time to have your engagement session is just another thing to add to your wedding planning plate.
But I promise – it’s worth it in the end.
When it comes to when to take your engagement photos, you do need to plan ahead. After you’ve hired your wedding photographer, go ahead and schedule the engagement photoshoot.
Think about what your purpose of engagement photos is. Are you planning to use them for wedding planning needs, such as a wedding website, save-the-date cards, or decor? If so, you’ll need to plan accordingly. Save-the-date cards typically go out 6 to 8 months before the wedding itself. Therefore, you’ll want to make sure you have your engagement session 10+ months before. That way, your photographer has time to edit and deliver your photos, and you can still get your save the date cards designed.
If the purpose of engagement photos isn’t for other wedding needs, then you have more freedom when you schedule your session. The big priority is to book it before the wedding and when your photographer has an available session in their calendar.
Among all of your other wedding planning, the last thing you want to do is have to search for and choose another vendor.
The good news is that, ideally, you don’t have to select another photographer for your engagement photos. If at all possible, I highly recommend having your selected wedding photographer also capture your engagement photo session.
And even better, most engagement and wedding photographers know the importance of having an engagement session before the wedding celebration. So they incorporate those into their services.
Just like I mentioned earlier (as to the purpose of engagement photos), having your wedding photographer capture your engagement session is a great way to establish more of a relationship and a trusting bond between you and your photographer.
You’ll get familiar with each other’s personalities and you’ll feel more comfortable with one another. That leads to capturing the most epic wedding photos!
If you’re considering Lilly Red as your wedding photographer, then I recommend scheduling your engagement session in Lake Como when (or if) you come to the area to find your favorite wedding venues and other vendors.
Lake Como is filled with the most immaculate locations that are perfect for engagement photos. Between the many cities dotted around the lake’s edge and the hundreds of villas that are rich in history (and stunning architecture), choosing the best place to take Lake Como engagement photos can feel overwhelming.
That’s why you have me! Just call me your Lake Como engagement photo guide. These are my top 9 favorite places for your session:
Villa Sola Cabiati is one of the many villas that have been transformed into stunning wedding and event venues around Lake Como.
And for good reason. It’s impeccable. The grand villa paired with the regal iron gates and the majestic mountains in the background? It’s the epitome of Lake Como. That easily makes it one of the best places to take your Lake Como engagement photos.
Don’t worry! It’s also directly on the waterfront, so you’ll get those classic photos in front of the lake, as well.
This is the perfect villa for your engagement photos if you define your aesthetic as classic, regal, grandiose, or luxurious.
Another one of the many villas surrounding Lake Como is Villa Monastero. It’s such a picturesque, fairytale-like villa that it has quickly become one of my absolute favorite places to take engagement photos around Lake Como.
Between pathways lined with lush foliage, botanical gardens, grand staircases, and (of course) the waterfront, this villa is truly breathtaking.
Whether you’re already engaged and you want photos to commemorate this season of life, or you’re wanting to propose with a photographer to capture it all, this is a must-see location.
This is an incredible Lake Como engagement photo location if you describe your aesthetic as ethereal, dreamy, fairytale-like, whimsical, or delicate.
Lake Como has no shortage of monumental, historic villas surrounding the water’s edge. And a favorite of mine is Villa Cipressi. The botanical gardens on the property are unmatched! These ancient gardens, which are meticulously curated, create an epic backdrop for your engagement photos. That combined with the pergolas overlooking the water’s edge, and you’ll have photos that capture the essence of Lake Como.
Villa Cipressi is a perfect engagement photo spot in Lake Como if you describe your aesthetic as enchanting, luxurious, organic, or elegant.
If you’re a cinephile, then you may recognize this breathtaking villa from the likes of Casino Royale or Star Wars: Attack of the Clones.
And there’s a reason why directors and cinematographers love Villa Balbianello – it is a stoic and picturesque villa complete with gorgeous architecture and beautiful gardens.
Imagine having your engagement photos taken along the elegant balustrade with both Lake Como and the Pre-Alps mountains in the background. Or imagine having photos underneath the grand archways that hold the entire structure.
You won’t want to miss this Lake Como engagement photo location if you describe your aesthetic as classic, timeless, opulent, or traditional.
Close to the city of Bellagio (more on that location in just a minute!) sits Villa Melzi. It’s known for its clean, neo-classical architectural design (meaning straight, stoic lines). But one of the best reasons to choose Villa Melzi for one of your Lake Como engagement photo spots is the alluring garden.
It’s perfect if you’re inspired by romantic and elegant designs. And it’s especially perfect if you’re planning a garden-inspired wedding! Your engagement photos that you send out to your guests for Save-the-Dates will immediately set the tone of your wedding day.
Add Villa Melzi to your list of engagement photo locations in Lake Como if you describe your aesthetic as charismatic, artistic, poetic, or ethereal.
Along with those incredible villas, Lake Como is also surrounded by many different cities and towns. And Bellagio is one of the hidden gems among them!
Like many of the other cities in the area, it’s complete with ancient cobblestone streets, historic architecture, and local craftsmen and artisans selling keepsakes. But Bellagio is one of the best cities to visit.
If you and your partner look forward to exploring new cultures and getting lost in the locale, then you’ll definitely want to add Bellagio to your list. That’s especially true if you describe your aesthetic as chic, stylish, cultural, vibrant, or glamorous.
To truly capture that “Just saw it in Vogue” feeling in my photos, I love guiding my couples through a natural-feeling engagement session. And what better way to get that natural feeling than to have my couples doing one of the very things they came to Lake Como to do – touring the cities.
The city of Varenna is one of the greatest cities surrounding Lake Como, making it one of the best places to take engagement photos. Between the cobblestone streets, the old, colorful, cliffside architecture, and waterfront dining, it’s the perfect location to curate candid feeling photos.
This is the perfect location if you describe your aesthetic as modern, trendy, fashionable, or cool.
The streets of Como, with the cobblestone and the centuries-old buildings, create this romantic, Old-World vibe that is unmatched in photos. And that, of course, makes it one of my favorite places in Lake Como to take engagement photos.
This is the perfect location if you describe your aesthetic as romantic, stylish, enchanting, or editorial.
It’s quintessentially Lake Como. When people think about “photos on Lake Como,” they immediately think of the classic Riva boats.
That makes this one of the best locations for Lake Como engagement photos. And personally, it’s one of my all-time favorites! There’s something so naturally chic about dressing up, boarding a Riva boat, and capturing photo after photo of the two of you as the cities and villas sail by.
This is the perfect location if you describe your aesthetic as modern, chic, luxurious, stylish, refined, or polished.
As a Lake Como local, I love getting to help my couples create an itinerary for their engagement photos – whether that includes a surprise proposal or simply finding the best locations for their aesthetic.
And because I adore Lake Como so much, I also love helping my couples find their new, local favorites in the area. From new restaurants to try, to luxurious places to visit and stay, I always enjoy tailoring a travel experience unique to them.
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