Planning a photoshoot in the Washington DC area to celebrate your recent engagement? If so, then congratulations! First for your betrothal, of course, but also for picking one of the best places in the world for engagement sessions! Just like the Nation’s Capital has some of the finest wedding venues around, it also boasts of the greatest engagement photo locations imaginable. The diversity of choices is downright jaw-dropping! There are the famous monuments and museums, if you want a typically “DC” setting. The rolling hills of Northern Virginia are perfect for engagement photo session with a more pastoral vibe. Lakes, rivers, forests, cityscapes, iconic buildings… You name it, the DC metro area has it! The region even has farms where you can have your photoshoot. And if you are still considering where to do yours, give some thoughts to those locations. Why? Because farm engagement photos can be absolutely magical!
Before we get into the reasons why you should think about doing your engagement photoshoot on a farm, let’s quickly talk about where you can find such locations near the Nation’s Capital. Obviously, it is pretty much impossible inside the District. Yes, there are a few gardens there that might allow engagement sessions. And there are certainly places like the U.S. National Arboretum and United States Botanic Garden that have very pastoral feels. But to get the kind of atmosphere you can only find on a farm, you have to leave DC itself.
That means, of course, traveling to Northern Virginia and suburban Maryland. Fortunately, both areas offer great options for getting farm engagement pictures. The only catch is that you might have to drive pretty far from the city to find them. (The Washington DC metro area is one of the country’s largest, after all!) If you’re looking in Northern Virginia, you will probably need to search the areas west of Leesburg. In Maryland, that means going out past Gaithersburg.
(A quick tip about scheduling a farm engagement photoshoot: always get permission first! Whether a commercial establishment or an agricultural facility, a farm is by definition private property. Which means you can’t just show up and start having your picture taken. So be sure to call the owners beforehand to make sure that professional photography sessions are allowed. Or better yet, ask your engagement photographers to do it!)
As we mentioned above, the areas in Northern Virginia and Maryland with farms are not very close to downtown DC. You are looking at an hour’s drive at a minimum. Which might make you wonder whether it is worth doing. We can tell you from experience, though, that the kind of pictures you will get from a farm engagement photo session are worth driving double that far to get! Here are three factors that make those engagement images so stunning:
Let’s start with the most obvious. The main reason couples like you pick a farm as their engagement photo location is the opportunity to work Mother Nature into the images. Do you like the idea of pictures of you and your future spouse with rolling hills and a blue sky behind you? Or amid swaying fields of yellow and green crops? Or tucked among towering sunflowers? Do you dream of images of the two of you embracing in the shade of a large, leafy tree? Or kissing as the setting sun turns the heavens to fire in the background? Or walking together by a babbling brook? An engagement shoot on a farm gives you the chance to get all of these?
Naturally, you do not have to go to a farm to take engagement pictures in nature. Parks and wilderness areas give you the same possibilities, of course. But the natural beauty of farm engagement photo locations has an extra something special that you cannot find in those other sites. Something that adds another layer to the images of you and your future spouse. Namely, the old-fashioned charms of rural living. The weathered wood of the fences, the classic red color of the barns, the little touches that remind you of simpler times… All of them give a certain quaint vibe to your engagement photos and make them the kind you are going to adore!
Another element in farm engagement images that you cannot get at other rural locations is a dazzling array of colors. In our experience photographing couples in the outskirts of the DC metro area, you really only get three colors at most outdoor shoots. You get the green of the landscape, the blue of the sky (hopefully!) and the brown of the tree trunks. The Washington DC region typically does not get truly stunning leaves in the autumn. And outside a couple of special gardens, it also does not have colorful wildflowers. No, most rural engagement photo locations in Northern Virginia and Maryland give you the same greens, blues and browns.
Farms, by contrast, give you a beautiful new hue that will really make your engagement photos spectacular. Crops, particularly corn and grains, add rich yellows to the scene, giving images of you and your future spouse a whole new dimension. That makes the pictures so much more compelling and unforgettable. And if you go to one of the many specialized sunflower farms in the Washington DC metro area? Then you will get some yellows with a vibrancy that will blow your mind!
The final thing that farm engagement images give you is the chance to pose with some really sweet four-legged friends. You probably already know that Maryland is famous for its horse-breeding industry. So if you are a horse lover, an engagement session at one of the many equine farms in that part of the DC region can be a great idea.
What you might not know is that Maryland is also home to several alpaca farms and that those can be absolutely awesome spots for engagement photoshoots. We had the pleasure to photograph a destination wedding at an alpaca farm in Germany, and we can tell you that you will not find sweeter, more adorable additions to your betrothal images.
We took this particular photo at a farm in Northern Germany during a destination engagement photoshoot. In our opinion, it is a great example of the kind of glorious pictures you can get at this kind of location. The colors, in particular, really stand out. The rich, deep blue of the sky contrasts beautifully and pleasingly with the lighter, more muted yellows of the field. At the same time, the darker, less obvious greens of the trees on the horizon form a perfect transition area between the two main color zones. And all three of those parts of the frame perfectly complement the clothing this couple is wearing.
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Location: Kirchhorst, Germany.
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