What is a Pre-Wedding shoot?

This is a question I’m asked quite a lot by couples usually when we are talking about their wedding plans and photography packages I offer.

If you’ve decided to read this blog is it because you’re not sure what it is and why you would have it? Either way I’m glad you’re here. Even if you know what one is and just want to see some nice photos!

A pre wedding shoot is a photoshoot with your wedding photographer any time from when you have booked them to a few months before your wedding day. Also known as an engagement shoot. It can be at your wedding venue or alternatively at a local venue nearby to where you’re getting married or where you live. It is a chance for you to meet your photographer before your wedding day and experience their photography style.

They usually last for an hour and you will receive some great couple portraits, personal to you and different from every other pre-wedding photoshoot. Perhaps to use as your save the dates if you book early, or use them at your wedding if you are having photos on display.


Locations I’ve photographed at are usually in Northamptonshire, with the exceptions of ones in Birmingham, Bristol and Peterborough. The Northamptonshire venues include East Carlton Park just outside Corby and Abington Park in Northampton.

It’s something I like to recommend, as since I’ve been offering them free with wedding bookings for 2021 and 2022 I’ve found them really beneficial. From a photographer’s point of view it allows us to find out more about your wedding and engagement, which is always exciting to hear! It gives you time to discuss photos you have in mind for your wedding day as well.

If you are feeling nervous to be in front of the camera all day at your wedding, your pre-wedding photoshoot will help calm those nerves. Your photographer will help you feel comfortable having the camera looking at you. This is something I really enjoy with my photography, helping you to feel relaxed and happy during your photoshoot.

Should you bring your dog to a pre-wedding shoot? Absolutely! Yes I would encourage this and look forward to meeting your dog if you do. There are many places they can go for a photoshoot so if you’re wondering if you can or not. Yes you definitely can!

So now you know what a Pre-Wedding shoot is and how great they are! If you are convinced you need one with your wedding photography package speak to your photographer!

Choosing your Wedding Photographer

Next on your Wedding Planning list is your photographer! Well that was next on our list after we’d decided on our venue (we chose Rockingham Castle for those who read my last blog post about Northamptonshire venues).
I spoke to a bride the other day about her wedding plans and surprisingly she had booked her wedding band first as she’d had her eye on that particular band for years! So there’s not a right way to plan your wedding, it’s all dependant on what is most important to you as a couple.

The main reason for booking your venue and then photographer as early as possible is that they get booked up fairly quickly. Particularly on the peak Saturdays during Spring and Summer.

I know there are so many questions you can ask your wedding suppliers. To keep it simple, when looking for your photographer, you may want to consider these few points:

Do we like their style?
Are they within budget?
Do they have enough experience?

Style is important as it draws you into a photographer’s images. Although there are a lot of wedding photographers available, they are all different and unique. Not only are you hiring a photographer for the images they can produce, but also you will be spending all day with them! So it’s always a good idea to meet them before your big day, whether that’s over a video call, meet up for a consultation, to arrange timings of your day (if it is possible) and even have a pre-wedding photoshoot. I like to offer both a consultation and pre-wedding shoot as I get to meet my couples before their wedding. That way I get to hear more about their plans, potentially visit their wedding venue and help make them feel as comfortable as possible in front of the camera.

Daisy & Adam had their pre wedding photographs at their venue the Aztec Hotel & Spa in Bristol.

Wedding photographers prices range on average from £500 to £2000, depending on the package you choose. The price incorporates all the prep work before the wedding day (emails, messages, meetings and consultations), the wedding day itself (10+ sometimes!) and then the hours of editing and culling afterwards.
Any packages cheaper than £500 may be from an amateur starting out so be sure to look through portfolios and ask as many questions as you can think of!

The amount of brides and grooms to be I have seen online ask for photographers with little experience or still studying in the hope they will save money on one of the most expensive parts (after venue and food) of their wedding day. Though you are saving money initially, is it worth it? Typically suppliers ask for an initial deposit to secure the date and the rest of the payment a month before the wedding. So there’s usually a lot of time to save for an experienced, good quality photographer with beautiful images that you love and will cherish forever.


It can become overwhelming when looking for suppliers and some may start to look the same as the next. So make a list of your top 5, then revisit these after a week or so and see if your top 5 still looks the same. Or has your favourite changed?
I saw our wedding photographer via a friend’s Facebook post of her own wedding. I looked through a number of other wedding photographers, no idea exactly how many, but narrowed it down to our top three. I couldn’t stop looking through our photographer’s images. Once he confirmed he was available. That was it!

Hope this has made your search for a wedding photographer a little easier.

Emma DB Photography