You said ‘Yes!’ when he popped the question, so now you need to mark the occasion – and what better way than with an engagement photo shoot?

Engagement photos are perfect for save the dates or invitations, and a great way to test your photographer before the big day. Today’s couples are taking full advantage of talented wedding photographers to make fun and exciting engagement photos.

The key? Making it meaningful. Use these ideas to make your engagement photos stand out.

1. Go on Location

“Studio shoots are not en vogue,” says Nicole Ettenhofer, director of marketing for Chicago-based George Street Photo & Video. Get outside and really tailor your pictures to what you and your fiancé love most.

Love hiking? Head to the woods for your photo shoot. Or, see if there are some nearby fields of flowers in which to frolic. Even playing in a local park will produce fun, personality-filled shots.

2. Showcase the Destination

For destination weddings, show off the city your guests will be visiting. Amelia Hale of amelia + dan photography in Charleston, S.C., recommends shooting near iconic or unique local scenes.

When Hale’s clients want to highlight Charleston’s assets, she suggests locations that feature large oaks, Spanish moss, Palmetto trees, large houses or cobblestones.

3. Grab a Prop

Props can break the tension and help you forget the camera’s there, says Ettenhofer. “Mr. and Mrs.” signs or a wooden ampersand are classic ways to send a message.

4. Go for a Ride

Grab your bicycles and have your photographer take action shots of you rolling along your favorite bike paths. You’re sure to capture some fun and silly moments!

5. Visit a Sweet Spot

Let your tastes shine through by having your picture taken in your favorite coffee or ice cream shop. Don’t forget to get permission from the store manager before you start shooting.

©CTW Features