The Best Proposal Photoshoot Tips for Nailing the Moment

Say yes to these expert tips – from yours truly!

bride proposed to in front of cathedral

Originally posted on The Knot

You’ll spend days, weeks, or even months planning the perfect proposal for your loved one, but the moment will be over in an instant when it finally arrives. Even with a private proposal, you can savor the moment for life by organizing a proposal photoshoot. And the end result is walking away with priceless photographs you can both cherish forever, making the careful planning process worthwhile. 

New York City-based photographer Ash Fox has captured over 1,500 proposals, and has since taken over planning duties for her clients as well. From scouting locations to helping organize special post-engagement celebrations, she works with her couples to create an experience they won’t forget. After documenting the moment for so many clients, she now shares her expert advice with valuable proposal photoshoot tips that you need to know for your very own engagement. All you have to do is be present when you pop the question. 

Simplicity Is Beautiful

While some couples might enjoy a flashy engagement, simple moments have the potential to be more meaningful. “There’s been a real turn back to basics these days, which I actually prefer,” Fox tells The Knot. “Most of the guys I work with just want a raw and simple-but-beautiful moment in a beautiful location. They want the proposal to be about them and not a whole over-the-top thing.”

She adds that while a flamboyant gesture might sound fun, it could take away from the entire love story in the first place.

“The beauty of the proposal is that it’s totally about the couple, and their love and commitment to each other.”

Make it Intimate

While most couples will want to celebrate with their loved ones after their engagement, a large group could ruin a proposal photoshoot. “I think it’s really nice to keep that moment intimate between the two of you,” Fox advises. “When I’ve done a proposal with a big group of family and friends, [everyone else] gets excited and jumps into the photo. They don’t realize they’ve messed up the photo he’s planned for weeks or months.” 

Celebrate with everyone else after

If you want to include family and friends in the moment, consider arranging a small gathering after the proposal photoshoot. Unless a family member is integral to the proposal (say, one party’s child), Fox suggests hiding other family members nearby to let them gather once the proposal ends. “Instead, surprise the couple after the proposal,” she suggests.

“Sometimes you can do a double surprise by proposing first, and then revealing that your friends and family are there.” 

Adhere to This One Tradition

proposal near Brooklyn bridge

While Fox encourages her clients to be creative with their proposal ideas, she urges them to keep one aspect of the entire gesture traditional. 

“Some people these days don’t get down on their knee,” she says. “But it makes for great photos because, if you’re standing, you can’t tell who’s proposing.” 

Hide Your Proposal Photographer 

In order to maximize the element of surprise, Fox reiterates the importance of hiding the photographer during the proposal photoshoot.  “A lot of times I’ve done proposals where I’ve pretended it’s a regular photo shoot,” she reveals. “We’ll spend a couple of hours together, and sometimes, she doesn’t realize we’re scheming right in front of her! Other times I’m in plain sight, but I just look like a tourist with a big camera.”

Hire an Expert

If you’ve scouted a beautiful or sentimental destination, ensure you have a true professional – like me! – to capture your special day with your loved one.


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