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Sam and Grace are partners in life and business. Capturing beautiful memories is our thing.

We're Sam + Grace


engaged couple kissing museum of art

Did you know that even we (Sam & I) are super uncomfortable in front of cameras? Well, it’s true. Because of that we understand why any photography session could give you anxiety. We seek to make you as comfortable as possible during your engagement session with us. These tips will help you be more at ease as you prepare, so let’s get started.

a man dips a woman in the middle of a brick road in german village ohio


Feel free to choose one outfit for your session, but we highly suggest two. Choose one outfit that is closer to what you’d wear every day and another outfit that is dressier. Try to follow a color palette as you coordinate your outfits, but also seek to be yourself. The better you feel in the clothing you choose, the better you will feel in front of the camera. If you feel like you look good, you will truly shine during your session. Here are some more tips from about what to wear.

Think of bringing any sort of umbrellas or blankets that you would like to include in a few pictures. You don’t need to bring any props, but these essentials may end up coming in handy AND saving your outfit from the elements.

We go off trail when we take your pictures and ask you to do the same just for fun. Because of this please think to bring a few kinds of footwear in order to protect your feet and dress shoes and legs from bugs or mud. A pair of boots that can get messy are handy; a pair of shoes that you are okay getting wet and muddy, and/or a pair of practical shoes. These will not be in your pictures and we will change into them whenever we need to.

a man pulls a woman in for a kiss with a stone fence behind them


Choosing a location often brings a lot of anxiety to our newly engaged couples. Here are some questions for you to ask yourself as you narrow down the locations:

  1. What are some places that are key to your relationship milestones?
  2. Where did you go on your first date?
  3. Do you have any local parks you love? Here is a list of parks in Columbus.
  4. Do you like natural or urban landscapes? Both? Here’s a list of the Columbus neighborhoods to help you on your search.
  5. Are there any indoor ideas or spaces that you love and could work on a rainy day?
  6. Do you want traditional engagement photos that are generally natural in nature, or do you want to capture doing an activity instead? You could share coffee or ice cream; go bowling or roller skating!
alex and jocelyn lay on their bed during their intimate in-home anniversary session in Delaware Ohio


Often when you get engagement photos you are going to use them on your invitation or save-the-date cards for your wedding guests. Our clients love buying photo books full of their photos to have available for their wedding day as well. You’re investing in your photographer, so make sure you invest in yourself because you are the center of these pieces of art. Consider hiring a professional hairstylist or makeup artist (La Prima Beauty, or It’s the Rose) or making a visit to a salon (Free to be Me or Total Platinum Salon) to get touched up and ready for your session.

If you have time, schedule a hair trim to make sure your hair is healthy and fresh before your session. If your hair is colored, make sure your roots are touched up and flawless, too. It’s amazing how much these little details will enhance your mood and make you feel confident during your session.

If you’re into DIY and want to style your hair and makeup on your own we have a few suggestions for you! First, invest in a good hairspray because you want to make sure your hair will hold in any weather. Next, make sure to wear a little more makeup than you would every day. With that, you should think about filling in your eyebrows, lining your eyes and adding a touch of color to your lips. When you are filling in your eyebrows just try to darken the inside of your brow rather than drawing on the shape. This will make your brows look fuller and your expressions really stand out. We are huge supporters of your natural beauty, but because of the distance between you and the camera, going a little heavier on your normal makeup will actually make your makeup application look natural. (Perspective really makes a difference!)

man and woman walk together in front of a stone and brick building in ohio


The first hour when the sun rises and the last hour before the sun sets are both part of the golden hour. During this time of day the sky casts a gorgeous blanket of warm rays over the land. During this time of day you will get stunning and often breathtaking natural shots. The other reason we love these times of day is because you can snag beautiful sunrise or sunset images too, as long as the clouds are in your favor.

Do not fret though, if the golden hour timeline does not work for your schedule, great photographers can make any time of day look awesome.

man kisses woman's cheek from behind while hugging her in the osu oval


Feel free to check out our most recent couple’s galleries for inspiration, or even look on Pinterest if you’re wanting something surprising or new. Always communicate with your photographer before and during your session. The more you are willing to suggest and add to the session, the better it will go. Some of our most favorite work has been due to collaborating with our couples. Your voice and opinion matters so make sure you share it, otherwise your photographer will never know. At least 99.9% of us are not able to read minds. 🙂

a woman and man sit together in a field during an engagement session in ohio


Most people are uncomfortable getting their pictures taken. Try your best to have fun with it and trust the photographer. We want you to look and feel like your best self and are on your side the entire engagement session. You are building a relationship with your photographer during this session. We aim to make sure our sessions are built around a rich conversation. We focus on your love for each other and let that drive the entire session.

an engaged couple snuggles at the columbus museum of art


There is nothing more sad than investing in having portraits taken and then leaving them on a USB drive in a drawer forever. Make sure you budget to include prints from $25-$500 depending on what kind of artwork you are hoping to have in your home. Ask photographers for their pricing sheet if they offer printing so you can make sure to have a realistic budget for their artwork. Also, the work printed by photographers is generally through top of the line companies that are only available to professional photographers. (ALWAYS check this to make sure because it can be a red flag!). The reason that their artwork costs more than a drugstore is because it will be the best quality printing and material that you’ve ever seen. And finally, supporting your local artists and local businesses is extremely important for the community as a whole and will preserve your engagement session forever.

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