For couples, Engagement Sessions tend to come with polarised opinions. On the one hand, brides are adamant about having one - particularly if the images are to be used for Save-the-Dates or within a guest book. On the other hand, couples feel they aren't a necessary expense - especially if they generally feel awkward in front of a camera, it's just something extra to stress about.
We are HUGE advocates for Engagement Sessions, which is why they're included in all our pre-made package options, and why we encourage them for anyone creating a custom photography package. I think we can speak for most photographers when we say that Engagement Sessions are not at all something we're trying to up-sell you on to increase your overall investment. They're honestly the best way to "warm up" for your wedding day - ESPECIALLY if you aren't the biggest fan of having your photo taken. It gives you as the couple a chance to see how we work behind the camera - how we direct you during the shoot, and then the end result from that direction.
This past fall we had an Engagement Session for a GORGEOUS couple, but the bride was super self conscious about how she looks in photos and was super stressed about the shoot (we women, always our own worst critics!). But when they received the finished image set she was over the moon! And now on the wedding day, the would-be stress and anticipation is gone - replaced with excitement for capturing the best day ever! More than anything else, this is why we such big fans of Engagement Sessions.
This said, it is absolutely 100% possible to have a wildly successful wedding portrait hour without an Engagement Session - some of our favourite 2015 weddings did not have one! If you're still unsure about whether an Engagement Session is right for you we're always more than happy to chat :)