Now that you’ve said “I do” to walking down the aisle, take time to savor your engagement before diving into wedding planning. One of the best ways to capture this time is with a romantic engagement photo shoot in New Orleans. From sweeping willows, to historic hotels and estates, to vibrant streetscapes, to the unmistakable French Quarter, New Orleans offers several picture-perfect backdrops for capturing your unique story.
We’ve helped thousands of couples walk down the ‘wed’ carpet, with luminous receptions and sun-kissed ceremonies. We know what it takes to do romance right in the Crescent City. Here are our favorite tips on how to capture the best engagement shots in New Orleans:
Why Engagement Photos?
Engagement photos aren’t just for filling your social media feeds. Your New Orleans engagement photos are for YOU and your partner. Not only will they mark your lifelong journey together, but you’ll have them to look at for the rest of your life.
There are some logistical benefits as well. Engagement photos are the perfect opportunity to work with your wedding photographer prior to the big day. They’ll get a chance to learn your style and you’ll get a chance to learn their technique. (In fact, most New Orleans wedding photographers include an engagement photo session with the wedding packages). You can use the photos in your save-the-dates, your invites, your wedding day décor, or to give as framed gifts for your parents and family members. Not to mention, post these images on your wedding website and guest book.
Pro tip: A New Orleans engagement photo session is the perfect time to trial your hair and makeup, too.
Keep It Real
Style and plan your engagement photos around who you are as a couple. If your favorite activity is hiking, consider a stunning nature trail. If you love nights out in the city, consider a sophisticated urban shoot. Ask yourself: What are your shared activities? What type of couple are you? What feels most authentic?
Find a Photographer That Fits
This is vital: Find a photographer you’re comfortable with. This is similar to dating, you need to have chemistry and a likability between you and your engagement photographer.
Think beyond the engagement shoot. This photographer will likely be shooting your wedding day, as well. So, it’s important that all three of you click. A good photographer will also be using your engagement session to experiment with flattering angles, lighting and poses before your wedding day.
What to Wear
After your wedding gown and tuxedo, your engagement photo outfits are the second most important outfit of all your wedding events. One rule of thumb: keep things simple. Wear solid colors, instead of distracting patterns and showcasing brand names. Resist bringing several wardrobe changes and props that you’ll have to drag around with you. Can’t decide between glamming it up or going casual? If you want choices, bring one casual look and another formal look that you can work with. Since engagement photos are a single session, you’ll likely be wearing one outfit for all the prints so that it is one cohesive story.
Set the Scene
The right location can take your photos from bland to brilliant. Choose a place that means something to you. Whether it’s a place you both enjoy, your favorite weekend spot or even where you first met.
Another creative idea: Choose something that is the opposite of your wedding. If you’re exchanging vows in a bustling city scene, opt for shooting in a lush green space, like New Orleans City Park.
If you’re getting married in a modern and sleek art gallery, choose a historic hotel with beautiful architecture and features for your engagement shoot. Hotels like Hotel Le Marais and Dauphine Orleans feature gorgeous, romantic details like brick-lined courtyards, wrought-iron gates, plantation shutters, and twinkling gaslamps.
Best New Orleans Engagement Photo Locales
A 1,300-acre park outside of downtown NOLA, City Park is a favorite of local photographers with its Southern charm, 20,000 centuries-old oak trees draped in Spanish moss, wildflowers and countless stone bridges to pose couples on. Some fave spots include the Peristyle, the Botanical Garden and the Popp Bandstand.
Adjacent to the French Quarter, Woldenberg Park offers a beautiful urban landscape with sweeping Mississippi River views as a picture-perfect backdrop. Time it right so you can even capture one New Orleans’ legendary riverboats!
One of the most photogenic locales in the city, Longue Vue Gardens is reminiscent of the French countryside with a stunning historic estate and eight acres of lush gardens. Plus, 22 fountains, live oak trees and statues all around.
This neighborhood of vibrantly colored street cafes, music clubs and gorgeous Creole, Georgian, and Classic Revival cottages mean your photos will POP. Creative couples love the Marigny for its chic artist vibe and block party ambiance.
Your Favorite Place
There’s beauty in low-key hangouts for your New Orleans engagement photos. These casual spots are where you’ll be most at ease and in your natural element. Think coffeshops, museums, ice cream parlors, libraries, bars, etc. Relaxed photos are the best at capturing you as a couple.
Just a few blocks from downtown NOLA, you’ll find the vintage brick warehouses and cobblestone streets of the Warehouse District. Get creative with the collection of studios, galleries, shops, offices and vintage signage that make up this eclectic and historic cityscape.
For the quintessential New Orleans engagement photo, nothing is more enchanting than the famed French Quarter. There are countless nooks and crannies, colors and textures, and stunning buildings mixing Spanish, Creole, French and American styles. No two engagement photo sessions are the same. The details are just as gorgeous – intimate lush courtyards, cast iron gates, plantation shutters, vine-covered balconies and colorful mansions and cottages.
Looking to capture the magic of the French Quarter without the noisy crowds in every photo? Duck into one of these historic hotels to capture the French Quarter’s signature old-world romance in a private setting.
Dauphine Orleans Hotel
Hotel Le Marais
Bourbon Orleans Hotel