5 reasons why engagement photo sessions are the best, and why rachel downey photography gives them away as a gift.

Rachel Downey Photography gives us 5 reasons why engagement photo sessions are the best and why she gives them away as gifts!

Today I have a lovely treat for you all! I met Rachel through the Rising Tide Society at our San Jose chapter Tuesdays Together. This girl, let me tell you, is incredibly intelligent and talented. If aren't convinced that an engagement session is important, continue reading.


Hello, new friends! Big thank you to Kim for reaching out for this guest blog; poke around her website some more while you’re here!

…I’ll wait.

Ready? Great. Let’s talk engagement sessions, and why you should definitely book one.

1. There’s nothing quite like that giddy, “brand new engagement” kind of love. It’s such an exciting time in your lives! And it goes by so quickly, even if it’s a few years (although I’ve had couples get married just three months after getting engaged!). Freezing that magic with an engagement session is seriously my favourite part of my job.

We plan something incredible that speaks to you as a couple and to your relationship, and then we get to document it!


2. Your “save the date” cards and invitations are pretty much done after that. Boom. You’re welcome.


3. A lot of makeup artists that I know will do a trial run before your wedding. The way your face looks on your wedding day is kind of a big deal, and not everyone has the same style, so a trial run ahead of time to get you on the same page is a pretty good idea.

But here’s the thing: what are you going to do with that beautiful wedding makeup?

You’re going to schedule your engagement session with me for the very same day, that’s what.

Wedding makeup isn’t something that most people throw on to go grocery shopping. It’s expertly applied, set in place for all day wear, and photo ready. You may not even notice all the little things your makeup artist is doing to make sure everything photographs well, but it’s important! Cameras capture life slightly differently than the human eyeball; they pick up things that we may not see. So depending on the type of makeup and the manner in which it’s applied, your photos could turn out…interesting.

I was even going to look up what “photo ready makeup” entails, and then I reminded myself that this is a makeup artist’s website and she knows what’s what and I don’t have to ask Mr. Google anything. That’s why you hire her.

Long story longer: your trial run is the perfect opportunity to get a photo trial run too. See how your wedding makeup photographs.


4. It’s also something of a trial run with me as a human! Hopefully, you book me to photograph your wedding because our personalities gel and my style speaks to something deep in your insides. But I cannot emphasize this enough you guys: meeting me ahead of time and learning how I work will make your wedding day run so much more smoothly.

It gives us a chance to get to know each other before the chaos that is a wedding day. We can take our time, chitchat about your dog and your hopes and dreams and who farted in front of whom first and what the proposal was like.

Then, when I show up on the morning of your wedding, we don’t have to go through the whole “Hi I’m Rachel, I’ll be all up in your business for the entire day like a barnacle with a lens and we won’t actually have time to get to know each other properly during that time because you’ll be busy getting freaking married.”


5. Ok this one is part of my “secret sauce” that goes way beyond clicking the shutter and hoping for the best: if you’re already comfortable with me, your photos are going to turn out way better.

You’ve just got to trust me on that one.

(That’s also why I like to meet people even before the engagement session, but that’s a different discussion for a different time.)


Bonus #6:

Wedding planning can be hectic and stressful, and before you know it, you’re married already and you can barely remember the last 6 months, never mind what it felt like to be newly engaged.

The engagement session is a brilliant opportunity to take some time away from the planning and the organizing and just…be. Take an evening to just be engaged, without worrying about the rest of it.   

…Plus it’s really fun. Pinky swear.


And honestly, I could ramble on for another few pages, but I’ll stop myself here. I know how I get; I’m excitable. But I love what I do! And I believe so strongly in the importance of an engagement session that all my couples who book a full-day elopement get one for free.

Seriously. It’s my gift to you!! Even if you’ve already done an engagement session with another photographer, I still want to hang out with you.

What are you waiting for? Let’s do this thing.

xx Rachel



P.S. If you’d like to read more of the things in my brain (good luck), you can head over to my website at www.racheldowneyphoto.com!