Tag Archives: baltimore engagement

6 reasons why you should do an engagement session!

As we head into engagement season (yes, it’s a thing – this Vogue article made me laugh!), I wanted to share my top 5 reasons why engagement sessions are so valuable… since after being in this industry for awhile, I’ve answered all of the questions below and you might be wondering the same thing!

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  • “Do we really need an engagement session? We already have our save the dates designed so we don’t need them for that.”
  • “We were going to have Uncle John/my best friend/my brother take them because they can’t wait to try out the new camera they just got and have taken a few photos of us before…”
  • “We have a really tight budget. Can we eliminate them from our wedding package to save money?”
  • “My fiance really isn’t going to be into it…”
  • “I’d rather have my teeth cleaned than stand and pose in front of the camera with a stranger.”

    Hold on, I NEED TO STOP THIS LIST RIGHT THERE and say this:
    I can promise you by the end of our session I’ll have you laughing, snuggling up and holding hands more naturally than you ever thought possible. Strangers will be smiling at you (if we’re in a more public place) and I will be cheering you on as you feel silly and laugh yet look like you belong on the cover of the magazine that would exist if GQ and Vogue merged into one fancypants stylish publication for BOTH of you.

I love engagement sessions with my couples!! I think they are so valuable to our entire experience together that they are complimentary in all of Urban Row Photography’s wedding packages. My goal is to always give you the most enjoyable experience and professional coverage for your wedding day and I don’t want to give you anything less than my best!

  1. Our time together during an engagement session functions like a rehearsal for your wedding portraits!

    That’s right… the rehearsal for your wedding day *photos* happens months in advance of the actual rehearsal dinner fun. 😉 The connection we make helps me learn the quirks and unique gestures that you and your fiance have together; it helps both of you become comfortable around me and in front of the camera. This helps me capture you both in the most natural, flattering and authentic poses at both the session as well as your big day!

    Helpful hint: if you really want it to feel like a true dry run, try coordinating your session with your hair and makeup trials; it will allow you the chance to see how they show up in photos and BONUS… you’ll feel extra glamorous and confident! 🙂

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  2. The timing for an engagement session is generally early on in the process when stress levels are low and excitement is high. (#whycanteverydaybelikethat?)

    It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the wedding day details, planning, guest count decisions, etc, that another reason I enjoy engagement sessions is that it’s time for you and your love to be in the moment with each other with no additional stress of the next planning deadline to occur or finding time to make sure you are in touch with Aunt Martha from California.  It’s just you two in a place that’s full of meaning to you!

    Helpful hint: the location of your session is next in importance to taking engagement photos in the first place!! This is where the fun begins! Are you envisioning an urban look to your photos? Maybe downtown along the waterfront?

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    What about exploring a historic cobblestoned street?

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    Or a more natural garden aesthetic?

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    Maybe a local flower farm?

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    golden, glowing love on a farm

    Or a cozy, woodland look?

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    rainy days can be just as gorgeous!

    Or a timeless and classic historic mansion?

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    a timeless and classic engagement at Hampton Mansion

  3. This moment in time is unlike one that will ever happen again. It’s the beginning of your family’s love story.

    Think about it; your life’s path has now been forever altered in the best way possible. You deserve to to have gorgeous, timeless photos to share and show to your loved ones years from now. Sharing how you both looked, felt and even what you wore when you officially began your journey together is so important. It’s not a phase or a season you’ll ever get back and I’m pretty sure your kids will love looking through your engagement photos while hearing you tell your version of the proposal story. Heck, I’ve heard my parents story 17 times but I’ve yet to see a photo from that period in their lives… and I so wish I could!

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  4. Bringing your pet to the wedding may not be feasible. So furry friends are welcome at your engagement shoot and actually… ENCOURAGED!

    Your little fur-baby plays such a large part in your life and they are generally absent on your big day for logistical reasons (although I’d LOVE it if they were there! Who is planning to have their pet included in their wedding day and/or ceremony!? Let’s TALK!!).  So, I love when my couples include some time during their engagement photos to involve their pets. Let’s be honest, when was the last time all 3 of you got behind the camera together? Those first ‘family’ photos become just as important a keepsake as your wedding ones!

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    pups always steal the show!

    Helpful hint: feel free to bring Max with you but since dogs aren’t able to understand all the benefits of a 60-90 minute engagement shoot, plan to have a family member or friend available to hand them off to once we’ve taken some key shots. 😉

  5. My FAVORITE compliments following engagement sessions are from the grooms telling me how they weren’t expecting to have so much fun during the shoot!

    I sometimes receive comments from my brides that the groom-to-be is a little bashful or uncomfortable in front of the camera.  Well, this is obviously a GREAT reason to have the session. Practice makes perfect, right? It’s a wonderful test run in front of the camera looking into each others eyes and forgetting about everything else.  My job is to make this easy for you and capture those easily forgotten candid glances, the nose wrinkles when he makes you laugh and then cracks up himself…

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    a Univ. of Maryland College Park engagement

     

  6. Focused time with your bling. Since your fiancé spent a ton of time (and $$$) on it!

    Everyone asks to see the ring once you’re engaged and I love taking a few moments to showcase your new sparkly bits! New, antique, unique, I love seeing them all and learning more about your proposal story and why that specific ring was chosen by your fiancé.

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These are just a few reasons why I not only enjoy capturing your love during the time you’re an engaged couple, but also why I feel it is so, so important.  Just like our first meeting, the engagement session is a powerful way for our relationship to grow as we gear up for your wedding.  We spend so much time together on your wedding day, it’s almost fitting that we have a fun photo ‘date’ before the big day!
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a Federal Hill park engagement

xo,
Naomi

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mandi + miles | legg mason wedding | baltimore wedding photographer

I always love to hear the words my couples use to describe their wedding day vision when we meet for the first time… I’ll never forget when Mandi + Miles answered “modern, fun… a really good party for our guests” and oh yeah, a touch of classy rowdiness. 😉 Which is exactly how I’d describe one of the most memorable moments of their Legg Mason Tower wedding (heck probably of our 2017 season): when Mandi ICED Miles…!!!

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And he took it like the champ he is. 🙂

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Since their first date was in July and they got engaged lakeside in Orlando in July, they obviously had to get married in July. To have a July wedding in Baltimore takes a certain tolerance for heat and humidity, but this year was different: it was absolutely beautifully temperate with a slight breeze off the water.

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Hold up… let’s backup to the start of the day with the most exquisite Martina Liana wedding dress, rich emerald details and the BEST groomsmen gifts ever!

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Custom personalized bobbleheads for the win!!!

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When it was time for the first look, the sun was out, and so were the most adorable lovebirds…

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A wedding at the Legg Mason Tower in Harbor East means incredible harbor views out of the glass walls and a ballroom easily transformed into an intimate and romantic space with the use of draping, beautiful uplighting and patterned table linens that pulled it all together.

 

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Charlotte, you seriously give Mandi a run for her money with your sense of style!!

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Speaking of style… #squadgoals x 1,000!!

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In case you wanted me to try, I don’t have enough words to describe how hard the ladies of Lemon & Lime Event Design worked to setup the 180+ calligraphy-ed champagne escort cards (gorgeously done by mlc design!) quietly in a matter of minutes… they are wedding wizards and always laughing, smiling and dancing throughout the organized chaos! I love, love, love working with them and can’t recommend them enough. To all of my #urpbrides, do yourself a favor and HIRE THEM.

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Capturing Grandmas that party: reason #32,798 why I love this job.

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Another vendor recommendation comin’ at ya: Go-Go Gadjet will ROCK your party and keep people talking about the *concert* I mean… wedding dance party they attended, for MONTHS to come!!! They were insanely entertaining but I’ll spare you more words about the drum show part of their performance and instead, let the photos speak for themselves. 😉

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Congratulations again Mandi + Miles!!! We loved being a part of your wedding day and can’t wait to get you back in front of the camera next July for your anniversary photos… think Go Go Gadjet’s free to do a mini anniversary concert? 🙂 Thanks for being so much fun, so carefree and so in love… cheers to keeping the party going for many, many years to come!

xo,
Naomi

the best vendor team in all the land:
venue: Legg Mason Tower | Harbor Events
planning + design: Lemon + Lime Event Design
production: Event Pro
videography: Just Hitched Wedding Films
band: Go Go Gadjet
flowers: Steelcut Flower Co.
wedding paper goods: minted and mlc designs
wedding dress: Martina Liana
dress boutique: Garnish Boutique
bridesmaid dresses: Bella Bridesmaids Baltimore
groom’s attire: Tuxedo House
dessert: Flavor Cupcakery
hair and makeup: Up Do’s for I Do’s
photo booth: Bmore GIF Lab
linens/rentals: Select Event Group
ceremony music: Hill Chamber Music

 

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mary pat + jonathan | cylburn arboretum engagement | baltimore wedding photographer

I always love when couples with a deep connection to Baltimore, return here to get married. It reminds me of our love story a bit: planning a September wedding from afar, where the main goal is for everyone to have fun!!

Mary Pat is originally from Baltimore and still has a large amount of extended family in the area. These lovebirds currently live in Boston, so when I found out they’re working with Courtney of Moore & Company Event Stylists to help execute their wedding day vision, I knew this was going to be not only a fun wedding for their guests, but a rewarding and amazing experience to be a part of as their wedding photographer!cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0005
With a love of being outdoors, Mary Pat and Jonathan’s Cylburn Arboretum engagement session was such a gorgeous location to capture their joy and adorable love! Not to mention, how amazing is Mary Pat’s coral dress?! It was the perfect pop of vibrant color among all of the light pink crepe myrtles and greenery.cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0003cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0012cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0006
Cylburn’s historic mansion is one of my favorite pieces of architecture in Charm City; both elegant and approachable, it is surrounded by the most colorful and lush gardens.cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0011cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0007cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0001cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0008cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0009cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0002I had the best time getting to know you both a bit more and love that you were such troopers as we strolled around the arboretum on one of the hottest nights of the summer! I can. not. wait. for your wedding at Frederick Douglass Maritime Park in Fells Point… kicking off the start of a busy fall wedding season at a waterfront ceremony on the pier is my kind of idea of wedded bliss!!cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0013cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0010cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0014cylburn-arboretum-baltimore-engagement_0015Cheers to officially starting married life together on the water among cool breezes and golden sunsets… so honored and excited to capture your wedding day!!

xoxo,
Naomi

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liz + steven | university of maryland | college park engagement | baltimore wedding photographer

So much of Liz and Steven’s love story can be found in Maryland even though they currently live in Atlanta; having attended high school and college together, their love has steadily grown over the years. It was an absolute joy to explore the campus while hearing all about their memories as students. These sweethearts are University of Maryland Terp fans through and through!!

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How cute are they?! Golden locks and glowing laughs while enjoying a perfect summer night on your alma mater’s turf… pretty sure it doesn’t get much better than this!

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We found our way up to their season ticket seats within the stadium and took a few minutes to revel in the fact that we had the stadium all to ourselves – it was pretty incredible!!

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It was so much fun to see them having fun on their home turf, where it all began…

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The light at the stadium was absolutely gorgeous, but it was time to explore the rest of campus!

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I was in awe of all of the gorgeous spots we found together – and every time, these two got cuter and cuter with their expressions!

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We ended at the M… for Maryland or Marriage, I’ll let you decide. 😉

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I adored our time together and am so looking forward to your wedding in Baltimore next June! Cheers, lovebirds!

xo,
Naomi

 

 

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