So we meet again
Longwood Gardens https://longwoodgardens.org/ is easily one of the more popular locations for engagement photos. Heck, I have even done day 2 wedding portraits here as well. And there is a reason... it is always beautiful and has plenty of space to avoid people if someone else is taking pictures in a space you wanted to use. The only 'problem' is that there are SO many options that you can't possibly use everything in a standard 2 hour session.
For this shoot, we decided to skip the Conservatory and spend our time at the Chimes Tower, the Main Fountain Garden and finally the Meadow. The Conservatory while incredible, always feels a bit busy for photos and we end up spending a lot of time waiting on the other patrons to enjoy their time at a spot before moving on. Longwood is more than gracious to allow portraits sessions so I want to make sure I abide by their rules and do my best not to intrude on other guests enjoyment.
The Main Fountain Garden area is quickly becoming one of my favorite areas. In most lighting conditions , the area looks awesome and the light colored stone can act as a fill card and bounces light back on the couple. I tried some thing a bit different this time and tried having the couple hold hands and run towards me. While it is difficult to pull off and have the couple in focus, I think it looks nice and brings a fun bit of energy to the photo and session. Portraits (whether it be engagement or weddings) can be a bit repetitive and so I find it helpful to get the heart beating and pumping some life into a photo.
We ended our session with the Meadow as I think this is the best spot for catching sunset. I grew up in a rather rural part of Pennsylvania and so I am naturally drawn to this type of terrain.
Above all else, what makes this session a success is the couple. They were both comfortable with themselves and comfortable with each other. This makes a huge difference. I will always help and work with couples to find poses and ways to interact which other that feels authentic, fun and works aesthetically...but its up to the couple to give that little bit of extra to make it feel real. I might even go as far as recommending to other couples to look at other photos and notice how they hold each other and how they stand, cross their legs, point their toes and nuzzle into each other. These two offered a 'Master Class' and I loved working with and getting to know them both.
Philadelphia Wedding Photographer