Best Time for Your Engagement Session


As summer is winding down and fall will be here in Cincinnati before we know it.  Fall is an amazing time to get together with your love and schedule your engagement session.  Often couples thing bright sunlight is the best time to capture these romantic images, in full transparency, it’s harder to those beautiful dreamy photos in the middle of the day.

There is power in choosing the best lighting and/or time of the day for your engagement photos.  As with any wedding decision, there are pros and cons… and here they are!

Just knowing the pros and cons of why choosing the right time for your engagement session is not enough.  Today, we’ve put together our top tips for planning and choosing the best time for your engagement photos!

  • Golden Hour:  You may have heard this term from time to time, especially when researching photography.  Essentially, it’s the time the sun is setting and normally has a beautiful golden glow to it.  The sun is not harsh or above your head, resulting in a beautiful lighting around you and on your face.  This is the most common time of the day for engagement sessions.  Ideally, we like to book these sessions to start around 2 hours before sunset time.  By starting at this time, it’ll not be Golden Hour just yet, but your session will end during this time.  Why end at this time you may wonder?  Well… at the end of your session, you’re so much more relaxed and enjoying yourselves thoroughly.  Meaning your golden hour photos will be AMAZING!
  • Sunrise:  By the name, you can easily tell this time of day is early in the morning!   Even though it says sunrise, it actually will begin before the sun peaks over the horizon.  It’s almost the reverse of Golden Hour with the same benefits, beautiful glowy light.  Sunrise sessions are great for morning people, busy locations, or maybe a location where sunrise is part of it’s mystique.  Unlike Golden Hour, you do not start a sunrise session 2 hours ahead of time.  Um… who wants their photos done in the dark?!   The recommendation is about 30-45 minutes before sunrise.
  • Date:  Depending on your availability and life, you will want to reserve your date early.  Every photographer is different, but we normally only capture one session on a day to ensure you have the best lighting possible.  Therefore, if you wait till the last minuet to try to book your session, you may not get the day you want.  Also, when deciding on your date, you may want to consider what time of day will work for you.  If you need a later session time, then summer will be better than winter (hello… it gets dark early in December). 
  • Sunset time:  As you’re trying to decide on a time to start, and you’re not doing a sunrise session, this is the key information you will need!  Once a date is set, you’ll want to know sunset time.  As the time you start is all depending on this time.  To find sunset time, simply google “Sunset time on DATE”.  Viola!
  • Arrive Early:  Time is the most important part of your engagement session, because once it’s too dark or maybe too bright for those sunrise sessions, the session will be over.  Therefore, it’s imperative you arrive on time, if not a few minuets early.   It’s always nice to have a few moments to get your bearings and settle in before getting all lovey dovey. 

Planning your engagement session should be an exciting and fun time!  Knowing the best times to have your photos done will ensure you get all those Pinterest worthy photos you’ve been oogling for the past few months.  Now, you have another tool in your toolkit to get exactly what you dreamed of.

Happy Planning,

Nicole & Ryan

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