I’m excited to feature Spencer and Evan’s engagement session on the blog! This was my very first Washington DC engagement session. Although I’m going to miss shooting in NYC with my whole heart, I’m excited for iconic, elegant DC views like these. Spencer and Evan’s vision for elegant, yet dramatic DC photos were exactly what I have always imagined the Capital city to be. It was a joy working with them and bringing this vision to life!
I’ll let Spencer tell you more about their session – scroll down to read a little interview with her!
First names shared with permission.
PLEASE TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOU AND YOUR FIANCÉ!
Evan and I met on a summer night in 2013 when he was visiting my college for a birthday. We couldn’t keep our eyes off of each other that first night. He lent me his sweater to wear as we walked out that evening. He never asked for it back and when he came to pick it up, he admitted it was an excuse to ask me out. One month later he told me he loved me, 6 months later we moved in together, and 7 years later we’re getting married! I still have that sweater to this day and I will somehow figure out how to incorporate that old grey sweater into our wedding!
HOW DID YOU PLAN YOUR CLOTHING?
I knew we wanted dramatic DC elegance that would balance out the stark DC landscape. Alexis walked us through a great prep phone call where we reviewed the best colors and settled on red and black for that POP against the white of the capitol.
WHERE WAS YOUR SESSION HELD AND WHY? (WAS THERE ANY SIGNIFICANCE TO THE SPOT?)
We held our session at the United State Capitol building, as the Capitol is such an iconic building of the city we have chosen to call home. When thinking of statuesque views that would really weigh in to he grandeur we were aiming to capture in our photos, nothing felt quite as impactful.
WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE SESSION?
Besides Alexis just causing us to laugh every second and helping out with debauchery of sweaty clothing changes, I LOVED when Alexis had me strip the heels and run towards her together with the Capitol looming behind us. It was such a break from the seriousness of getting the perfect shot and made us feel so happy and at ease. Plus, it was the perfect cool down in the heat! Another aspect that wowed us was Alexis’ reference to a famous photographer who had made a name in his action shot portrait style; it was fascinating to hear Alexis scope in on these details of a profession that is so foreign to us, and to also hear her passion for her work drive through. Alexis isn’t just a photographer, she’s an expert on the subject of photography which shows in her work.
WAS THERE ANYTHING YOU WERE NERVOUS OR WORRIED ABOUT BEFORE HIRING A PHOTOGRAPHER? HOW DID YOU FEEL AFTERWARD?
We were nervous about formality. Evan and I are very goofy people who like formal photos and settings, but sometimes feel a little aloof with these wonderful professional photographers. Alexis’ work and quality of service had us nervous to meet her. She seems unreal in her profile and just on a whole other level. But, while being incredibly professional, she is also down to earth and down right friendly. That made everything so much better – the friendliness. After talking with her, we were completely at ease, formalities were gone, and we could truly relax and have fun with it all. I cannot express enough how important this was to us.
ANY FUNNY STORIES OR INTERESTING HAPPENINGS DURING YOUR SESSION?
One of my dresses wouldn’t zip up during the middle of the shoot! I was so upset and positive I’d have to leave the dress out of the photos, but Alexis was so quick witted and immediately assured me she had a number of poses that would completely mask the wardrobe malfunction. Boy was she right! You couldn’t tell in anything was wrong in any of my red dress photos, in which there were multiple of us dancing and actively engaging with one another!
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR OTHER CLIENTS BEFORE THEIR PHOTO SESSION?
TRUST the photographer! Every instinct Alexis had was spot on! There wasn’t a single shot style she didn’t nail or a detail she missed. If you aren’t sure about a pose or style, just know she is an expert at what she is trying to accomplish.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE ALEXIS EL MASSIH PHOTOGRAPHY?
The quality above all; this is apparent across all of her platforms and in the pictures she displays. We did our research beforehand and it was clear that Alexis would help bring our vision to life. What only solidified this further was her top notch level of communication – every meeting leading up to the interview was chock-full of information and afforded every kindness. We still look forward to every email from her and it really brings a smile to our faces!
I ALSO THINK IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE that Spencer is a talented artist herself. She did an incredible live painting to begin the session. I was lucky enough to watch her create magic and capture a few shots of the process. Evan helped a bit as well 🙂 Be sure to follow her work on Instagram at @spencergraceartplace!