Sassafras Mountain, South Carolina
Julia Madden Sears
The day of our engagement photoshoot dawned gray, cold, and by all estimation pretty miserable. I had been casually planning our engagement shoot for a little while and since the weather in Greenville had been mild and sunny for a month I figured it was safe to assume our shoot day would be the same. But even the best-laid plans go awry at some points and the best thing to do is roll with the punches and have a good time while wearing a silk dress in sleeting rain and 32 degrees!
Thankfully, Lee and I were going for that PNW deeper colored look for this set of engagement photos so the low hanging fog, sleet, and snow on the ground definitely added to the mood of the photos!
Our original plan was to head up to the Blue Ridge Parkway and do a shoot at Craggy Gardens, but since the Parkway was closed because of snow and ice we had to come up with a Plan B and that included a scenic drive up to Sassafras Mountain, the tallest point in South Carolina. The moment we got to top of the mountain I knew this was going to be the perfect location for taking photos. On a clear day you can see up to 6 states and a breathtaking mountain vista, but today the evergreens were brilliant and the low-hanging fog added an ambiance that is difficult to recreate. Our photographer was the greatest, seriously guys go check her out, and she shot her heart out in the cold, cold temperatures.
Lee and I knew from the very beginning that we didn’t want uber posed or ‘arranged’ shots. Instead, we wanted shots that truly captured what made us, us! And Julia captured those moments perfectly. Sorting through all 140 photos she sent over to us – seriously wow! – I couldn’t help but stop and smile at the authenticity of the photos. Having no pre-conceived notions about the day really helped us keep an open mind about the look of photos and we trusted Julia to do what she does best and capture us as a couple.
So all you brides out there, listen up! If you’re planning (read stressing out about) your engagement session, stop for a second and remember why you’re taking the photos to start with. You obviously want some photos of you and your loved one. So before you worry about the details, like what you’re wearing, who’s taking the photos, or where you’re going to take the photos, remember how special these photos are and keep in mind as long as you are your true self, the love you have for each other will be the only thing people notice.
But as you’re looking at details to plan that perfect photoshoot don’t forget a couple important things.
ONE | Wear what you’re comfortable in.
Most people opt to buy new clothes for an engagement shoot. I did! It’s always fun to have new clothes while on a super special shoot, but don’t try new trends or a little more risky outfit for the first time on a shoot. If you’ve always wanted to try high-wasted pants and cropped top but haven’t ever worn it before don’t you dare wear it to an engagement shoot. You’ll feel uncomfortable and thus look uncomfortable. Wear what you know. You’ll thank yourself later.
TWO | Don’t try to ‘look’ a certain way.
You all know what I’m talking about. You get on Pinterest the night before and search the heck out of model shots thinking that perfect pout is achievable overnight. Then you try it in every photo and when the proofs come back it’s not a pretty sight. Just be yourself. Laugh, smile, make faces, react, interact. Those true emotions will be what the camera will pick up and be beautiful.
THREE | Trust your photographer
They know what they’re doing. Seriously if you try to control everything you will end up hating every moment and what’s the fun in that?
What engagement shoot stories do you have? I’d love to know in the comments!
~ Emily ~