The Complete Guide to Summer Engagement Photos (2024)

As the days get longer and the temperatures warm up, couples across the country are gearing up for summer engagement photo sessions. This time of year is ideal for engagement photos as blooming flowers and lush greenery make for the perfect backdrop. Whether you're taking beach engagement photos or shots in the city, it does come with one worrying factor: heat. Will the humidity mess up that perfect look and will sweat show up in photos?

Florida-based wedding photographer Felicia Anderson knows a thing or two about warm-weather engagement photos. “Sometimes it’s hot, and we can’t get around it, but getting through it leads to these beautiful images,” she says. “It’s worth being hot for an hour, and I always tell my couples that eventually we will be having so much fun and they’ll be so into each other that they forget all about it!”

Meet the Expert

Felicia Anderson is the founder of Felicia V Photography and has photographs couples in the greater Jacksonville, Florida area.

Want to learn more tips and tricks for making your summer engagement photo session a success? Anderson breaks down what to know before booking your photo shoot.

Everything You Need to Know About Engagement Photos

What to Wear for Summer Engagement Photos

Choosing an outfit for any engagement photo session is tricky. You want flattering clothing, but you also want to be comfortable so you can relax and be yourself. Add potential heat and humidity to the mix, and the wardrobe decision gets that much trickier. So, what should you wear for summer engagement photos? “I like flowy dresses that are tighter at the bust and then flow throughout because I love movement in my photographs,” Anderson says. “Flowy in the summer is also really good because when the wind blows, it cools you down a tad. Plus, these full-length flowy dresses complement almost any body type.”

Colorwise, Anderson recommends sticking to more neutral, soft hues. “The camera just naturally loves shades of pink, blues, sophisticated neutrals, greens, creams, and whites,” she says. “That’s a whole lot of colors, so you definitely have a range of colors that will photograph beautifully.”

Anderson recommends stepping it up beyond a T-shirt and jeans for summer engagement photo sessions. “Guys just look dapper in a striking suit, so they can have nice jeans with a sport jacket, or any type of suit jacket just to take it up a notch,” she says. “I also recommend solid shades of gray or navy. These are strong complements to most outfits.”

Pros of Taking Engagement Photos in the Summer

Many couples lean toward spring and fall for engagement photos due to milder temperatures and equally beautiful backdrops, but summer engagement photos have many pros as well. For Anderson, who loves lush garden scenery, summer is actually quite ideal. “In the summer, you have these beautiful, full blooms, especially in the natural gardens,” Anderson says. “This gives you a variety of gorgeous location options.” Beach engagement photos are also incredible to take during the summer if you want some shots by the water.

Another pro to a photo session in the summer is lighting. In the early spring and late fall, the sun sets around 6 p.m. Anderson likes to start her engagement photo sessions about one or two hours before sunset to capitalize on those soft golden-hour colors. That means an early spring session could start around 4:30 p.m. or 5 p.m., and you may need to take a half-day off of work to be ready and glammed up in time for the session.

In the summer, the sun sets around 8 p.m. or 9 p.m., depending on your location. This gives you adequate time to get ready without the stressed rush, ensuring your photo session is as flawless as possible.

Cons of Taking Engagement Photos in the Summer

It’s hard to talk about summer engagement photos without talking about heat, but Anderson says that really is the only con of the season. However, it shouldn’t be a deal-breaker, especially if your photographer is equipped and ready to keep you comfortable throughout the session. For Anderson, that means bringing a fan—plus a sense of humor—to every warm-weather photo shoot. “I bring a fan to my engagement photo sessions, and I have it with me on the wedding day, too,” she says. “I’ll ask my couples if they’re feeling hot. If I see any sweat, the fan’s coming out!”

Some couples worry about how humidity will affect their hair, but Anderson says this can actually be a positive. “If you have tight curls, they may not be so tight at the end of the session,” she says. “But it looks more natural to me, honestly. I’d prefer looser, natural curls, and that’s often how they look toward the end of the session.”

Summer Engagement Photo Tips

Like any photo session, Anderson says the best way to ensure your summer engagement photoshoot is successful is to connect with your photographer before the actual day. “Talk with your photographer and go over the whole plan,” she says. “Tell them what kind of places you like for the backdrop, or what’s a place that’s special to you? If you talk through these things ahead of time, it’s smoother once you arrive at the session.”

Also, summer means more outdoor locations are open for your photos. She recommends getting creative with your backdrop, whether that’s a garden, beach, docks, or even in a boat. A final tip? Remember that it’s all about having fun. “Your engagement session is like a sneak peek of your wedding day,” she says. “You’ll look back on these memories for a long time, so try not to worry about anything like heat. Remember, you’re one step closer to getting married, so have fun!”

Ahead, discover more tips along with some inspiration from real couples to help you prepare for summer engagement photos.

How to Find the Perfect Wedding Photographer

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Try a Long, Flowy Dress

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Anderson is a big fan of full-length flowy dresses because they complement virtually all body types and keep you as cool as possible during summer photo sessions. Plus, the movement looks gorgeous in photos.

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Wear Soft Neutrals

Whether you're wearing a wedding white or tan hue, neutrals are ideal for engagement photos. These colors integrate seamlessly with most environments and ensure you stand out.

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Don’t Fear Heat and Humidity

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Many fear the negative effects humidity can have on hair, but Anderson says it often makes your hair look even better. Looser, more natural curls and styles come across beautifully in photographs.

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Complement Your Scenery

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If you’re taking photos in a garden, you’ll want to avoid greens that blend in with the background. Instead, try choosing flattering soft pinks or blues, which can really pop. If you’re unsure what to wear based on where you'll be taking photos, ask your photographer for ideas.

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Dress It Up

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You may feel more comfortable in loose, more casual outfits, but taking your wardrobe up a notch will ensure your summer photos look as perfect as possible. For soon-to-be brides, this means a full-length dress, and grooms-to-be should consider a suit jacket.

Photographers like Anderson offer one wardrobe change with engagement photos, so you can dress it up for some photos, then get more casual for the rest.

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Find a Summery Location

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If you’re taking engagement photos in the summer, you might as well capitalize on the location variety. Whether it’s a beach or a boat dock, get creative with your backdrop. And, if you need inspiration, lean on your photographer for ideas.

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Take Advantage of Golden Hour

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Lighting before sunrise and sunset is ideal for your summer engagement photos. This warm, soft light will make your photos feel elegant and editorialized. Even better? These hours tend to be cooler, too.

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Trust Your Photographer

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The heat may leave you feeling sweaty and uncomfortable, but fear not: Your photographer is trained to make you look your best! Trust your photographer to capture you in the best possible lighting and in fun, natural poses.

36 Important Questions to Ask Your Wedding Photographer

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Get Adventurous

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In most cases, you’ll only take engagement photos once, so you might as well get adventurous and make the most out of it. If you’re taking beach engagement photos, don't be afraid to put your feet in the water. You also can get out of your comfort zone and practice your first dance.

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Hire a Makeup Artist

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If you’re planning to hire a makeup artist for your wedding day, engagement photos are a great time to do a test-run to see how the styling looks in photos. Plus, these professionals are savvy when it comes to sweat-proof makeup. You can rest assured you’ll look cool, calm, and collected throughout the shoot.

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Bring a Second Outfit

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Anderson’s clients typically bring one change of clothes to each session for image variety. If you start off with a more formal dress and suit, consider changing into your favorite sundress for a more relaxed vibe—particularly if you’re planning on taking a hike or heading to the beach.

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Add Personal Props

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Every couple has their own inside jokes and personal quirks, and you can bring symbols of those small touches to your engagement session for photos that truly show your personality. This could be everything from a bottle of champagne to a memento from your first date.

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Choose Compatible Colors

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Certain colors go better together than others, so try to sync up your wardrobes for sizzling summer photos. Not sure where to start? Neutrals are always easiest, but you can also try one bold color with one neutral color to make the photos really pop.

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Head Indoors

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Summer weather is unpredictable. Your photo session could be sweltering at the start, chillier closer to sunset, or even be interrupted by an unexpected rain storm. Don't be afraid to head into a nice bar, restaurant, or hotel to grab a few shots in a more temperate climate.

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Bring Your Pet

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Share a pet with your fiancé? Take them along for the photo session so you can get a proper family portrait.

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Scout Your Locations

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Before heading out for your photo session, do some research to find the ideal locations you would want to grab photos. Look for fields with blooming florals, beaches with beautiful cliffs, and city neighborhoods that are meaningful to you and your partner.

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Help Your Partner

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Taking photos isn't the most natural thing in the world and doesn't come easily to everyone. If your partner is camera shy, be there to help them relax, enjoy the process, and work together as a team to get photos you'll both love.

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Have Fun

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Taking engagement photos doesn't have to be stiff and overly posed. Go on an adventure, grab a slice of pizza at your favorite restaurant, and have a blast with your spouse-to-be. The more fun you have, the better the photos will turn out.

The Complete Guide to Summer Engagement Photos (2024)


How do you respond to engagement photos? ›

  1. “You two are so right together. ...
  2. “I just love it when two wonderful people decide to spend their lives together.”
  3. “Here's to your engagement! ...
  4. “I'm smiling just thinking about your smile in the proposal photo. ...
  5. “If ever a couple deserved this much happiness, it's you two.”
Aug 28, 2020

How many photos should I get for engagement photos? ›

For an hour long engagement shoot I would probably expect around 50-150 images depending on the experience level of your photographer and the cost of the session.

What colors to wear for engagement photos? ›

Pick outfits with a neutral color palette

The camera loves shades of soft pink and muted blues, mixed with sophisticated light neutrals like heather gray, creams, leather brown and white. And this softer color palette works in just about every location.

What do you wear to a summer engagement photo? ›

With Summer months you will want to make sure you're wearing something breathable and cool. My engagement sessions usually involve a fair bit of movement and activity; you don't want to wear something too hot! Consider choosing fabrics like cotton, silk and linen.

How do you respond to engagement wishes? ›

Saying thanks for the well-wishes

Thank you so much for the well-wishes after our engagement. It was such a special moment for us and receiving your congratulations made it all the more special. We're so happy to be able to celebrate this exciting time in our lives with you. We can't wait to see you soon!

What should I reply to a photo? ›

Here are 30 potential answers to consider:
  • Thanks for sharing! ...
  • Wow, she has an amazing smile.
  • That picture really captures her personality.
  • What a beautiful place; glad she could visit.
  • Cute outfit – she always knows how to dress well.
  • Her eyes sparkle in that photo.
  • Looks like she had fun taking that shot.
Jan 11, 2024

Is 30 minutes enough for engagement photos? ›

We usually recommend a minimum of 1 hour for any surprise marriage proposals due to the complexity of the planning and the added element of surprise. Some of our favorite occasions are: Fall mini sessions.

How long after you get engaged should you take engagement pictures? ›

When should you take engagement photos? If you're looking to use your images for save-the-dates, the traditional time to take them is 6-8 months before your wedding. However, that doesn't mean you can't take them earlier or later!

What time of day is best for engagement photos? ›

Usually it's right after sunrise or before sunset so that the sun is on the horizon line which provides more flattering light for portraits. The worst time of day I'd midday, like 2pm, because the sun is harsh and casts shadows on your face.

Should I wear makeup for engagement photos? ›

At the end of the day, it's about what makes you feel most comfortable. If you're happy doing your own hair and makeup, or even not wearing any makeup at all, it's about what you need. Make the choice based on what will make you feel most comfortable and confident with your engagement photographer in New York.

Can I wear jeans for engagement photos? ›

Your engagement photos should reflect you as a couple. If that means hopping into a fun sweatpants outfit, showing off your favorite denim, or another look, then just go with it! After all, when it comes to what to wear for engagement photos, it should always feel like it's you and not someone else in those photos!

Do you change outfits for engagement photos? ›

Bring a couple of different outfits to mix it up.

"I always recommend my clients to bring a few outfits, as you never know how you will be feeling that day, and you want to feel your most confident," says Los Angeles-based wedding photographer Jessica Castro.

How to do makeup for engagement photos? ›

You can use a light shade of concealer to minimize dark undereyes, fine lines, and crevices. After applying concealer, apply foundation all over the face including the lips using upward strokes. You can use bronzer to the sides of the nose to minimize width and a dark shade of blush to enhance your cheekbones.

How to look skinny in engagement photos? ›

Try your best to keep your body slightly turned, this will help you look slimmer than if you were standing straight on facing the camera. Tilt your shoulders toward the photographer, slightly dropped down and keep your hips at an angle.

What shoes to wear for engagement pictures? ›

Choose comfortable shoes or bring two pairs!

Engagement sessions require quite a bit of walking so make sure you feel comfortable in your shoes. Ladies, if you choose to wear heels, bring a pair of flats to change into while moving from one location to another.

What do you say on someone's engagement post? ›

Congratulations on this exciting time in your lives! Well, this is BIG news! I'm thrilled for you both! I hope your future together is filled with infinite happiness, laughter, and love.

How do you thank an engagement photographer? ›

Thank you for capturing the joy and happiness in each picture. We are beyond grateful for your talent and passion. The photographs you took have exceeded our expectations, and we will cherish them forever. Thank you for capturing the raw emotions and candid moments in such a beautiful way.

How do you respond to wedding pictures? ›

You comment on a wedding photo the way you comment on a child's photo. You say, “what a lovely picture” or “this is a really nice photo”. Based on your question, there may be something about the photo that you don't like. This is not the time or place to make a clearly biased comment.

What is a sweet word for engagement? ›

Engagement Quotes from Television and Films

"You are, and always have been, my dream." — The Notebook. “The only thing that matters is that you make me happier than I ever thought I could be. And if you let me, I will spend the rest of my life trying to make you feel the same way." —


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