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Outfit inspo, location ideas and tips for planning your engagement session!

The Style Guide

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When to schedule your e-sesh

Your engagement session is a couples portrait session that allows you to be more creative with when and where we take photos. You can choose the theme, season and location.

Scheduling 4-8 months before your wedding is ideal.

I photograph sessions on Sundays only within a couple hours of sunrise or sunset for outdoor locations and midday for indoor locations.

There are links inside your online portal to schedule your engagement session.

what about the weather?

 In cases of rain, snow or strong winds we will reschedule. Most of the photos you see in my portfolio are evening golden hour, each session will vary depending on the time of day, weather and overcast that day.

 

Below are good outdoor times on sunny days. Indoor sessions are always scheduled midday to get afternoon sunlight coming in. 

Spring

7am or 7pm

Summer

6am or 8pm

Fall

7am or 5pm

Winter

8am or 3pm

what to wear part one

Be you. You can stay within your personal style but elevate the look with statement pieces, accessories or rented items.
 

Fashion meets function. You can be fashionable and stylish but comfort is essential because we will be moving around, walking, standing and sitting. Wear clothes you are not constantly having to fix or be self aware that something has to keep being adjusted.

Makeup setting spray (especially on warmer days) and hairspray (especially on windy days) is a YES!

what to wear part TWO
 

Colors. I get asked this a lot and honestly, there is no wrong color. Wear what makes you happy. Mixing patterns/prints is fun and you can coordinate them other with solids or textures.

Accessories, props and other fun items: sunglasses, hats & caps, leather jacket, jean jacket, statement jewelry, hair clips, fur, fringe, neon, cocktails, mocktails, bubbly, blankets, signs, rugs, umbrellas, books, magazines, instruments, records, pillows, baskets, chairs, florals, plants.

What should I do with my hands?

 

So many options! I suggest putting your hands in pockets, holding hands, linking arms, placing on your partners chest or lower back, resting your hand on a shoulder, holding onto your jacket, holding a dress to the side, brushing your hair away, adjusting your glasses, under you chin, holding your partners face.

Leave bag(s) + empty pockets

 

Minimalism is best. The goal is to be hands free without anything noticeable in your pockets. Leave bags in the car. You can throw your keys and phone into my camera bag.

How to look and feel your best

 

It's all about mindset but also know that I got you. I take a variety of photos so you have options for favorites. Any insecurities you have about being photographed can be eased with an open line of communication. We all love flattering photos and my goal is to give you that.

My approach is prompts over posing. I give direction and then capture your movement and interactions. Don't wear anything that is too tight, needs constant adjustments or is not comfortable to move in. The goal is to be flexible for more photos options. Always slightly lean your upper body forward towards the camera when facing it from the front or side to avoid scrunching your head and neck back.

set your tone

 

You can set the tone by being relaxed, allowing enough time to get ready. Make your session the highlight of your day. Don't run too many errands and pack your schedule full of shopping, hair, makeup, nails or barber appointments on the day of.

WORK MODE

When I am photographing sessions or events I go into work mode. My eyes are scanning the area and I am forever searching for the best light. Sometimes I stop mid-sentence to take a photo and that's because I am in the zone. I will dive into giving you directions and prompts but feel free to stop me at any time to offer suggestions, adjust or throw out some ideas too.

Before your session

No two sessions are alike and I love for couples to plan something that is unique to them. Most couples use these photos for save the dates, invitations or wedding websites and it is my hope that you print them for your home too!

after your session

Engagement galleries are 50+ photos and ready within 6 weeks. I send a link to via email and you are able to download the photos to print on your own or you can print directly through the online gallery.

 

Pro tip: print your photos first. Jumping straight to sharing them on social media often delays printing them out.

Alicia Wiley Photography

Location Ideas

sherwood gardens

variety of flowers and plants, gardens are very colorful in the Spring + Fall

Cylburn Arboretum

gardens, mansion, woods, open fields,  variety of trees and colorful flowers

 

Baltimore Murals

Baltimore has so many beautiful murals + painted buildings around the city to use as a background for any session

choose your own

Choose a setting that you love, you want to feel in your element. Some ideas are: your home, library, museum, city sidewalks, waterfront, woods, beach, bar, brewery, boat, studio space, art gallery, greenhouse, coffee shop, bookstore, vintage shop, restaurant, rooftop, tennis court, basketball court

Info + Travel

You are required to get permission/permit/pay fees for any location that requires it. Please reach out to the location prior to selecting it. Keep in mind it needs to be within 20 miles of Baltimore, Maryland 21211 or a travel fee will apply.

loch raven reservoir

water, tall trees, woodsy, beachy

Liriodendron Mansion

mansion, gardens, vine covered porch, woods, elegant

North Point State Park

beach, sandy trails, woods with tall trees, tall grasses

Hampton Mansion

historical mansion, tall trees, pretty garden area

Oregon Ridge Park

we got married here! woodsy, trails, tall grasses, all of the trees

Historic Ellicott City

historic small town vibe, tree lined trail

Cromwell Valley Park

rustic white buildings, woody trails

Jerusalem Mill

rustic vibe, stream, open field, lots of trees

Tide Point

waterfront, cityscape, industrial

Fells Point

city, cobblestone, waterfront, pier, colorful buildings, ivy wall, pretty doors

Rawlings Conservatory

greenhouse, cactus room, palm room, rain forest room

Clipper Mill

industrial, edgy, brick, old glass windows

Federal Hill

city, view of Baltimore Harbor, park with trees

AVAM

Outside of American Visionary Art Museum

Patterson Park

the pagoda, butterfly garden, woodsy pond

Mt Vernon Place

Historic, monument, fountain, garden

Bromo selzteR tower

giant clock tower, industrial

Baltimore Museum of Art

sculpture garden, museum steps

Locations
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