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Let’s say you’re seeing/dating/with someone you think is pretty rad. You’ve discussed a future together, marriage, are on the same page about oh-so-many things, and you feel the time is right to get married. Woohoo! Congratulations, first and foremost! But…now what? Where to even start with planning a proposal? How does one plan a proposal?

Atlanta Wedding photographer YouAreRaven writes about planning a wedding proposal

Chapter One: Brainstorming & Planning

Let’s start here, with the initial brainstorming and planning. I’ll assume at this point you know your partner pretty damn well, so let’s walk through a couple of easy questions to help shoot some laser focus on the options. Pew pew!

Atlanta GA alternative wedding photographer YouAreRaven

Where should it happen?

Is your partner a private or public person? Do they like attention or prefer privacy? How do they feel about showing emotion in front of people? {And for that matter, how do YOU feel about these things?}

Where would you feel comfortable popping the question? A quiet night at home alone or with the furbabies or out in the city with a grand gesture?

Would it mean a lot for your partner’s family/friends to witness the proposal? Or would you two rather share excited calls with them later after basking in the moment alone?

Is there a location that’s special to the two of you? Somewhere that holds a lot of meaning? Somewhere you met or had your first date or realized you were in love?

Atlanta GA wedding photographer YouAreRaven photographs surprise proposalsurprise proposal photographed by alternative Atlanta wedding photographer YouAreRaven

How should you ask? 

Try not to overthink this part: there’s no wrong way! What’s important is that whatever you want to say comes from the heart. You don’t even have to say anything, honestly. If you’re concerned about getting choked up or too nervous or shy to speak, you can let a little note do the work for you! Honestly, it’s likely that both of you will be so excited that you’ll forget what was said anyway!

All that matters, in the end, is that you’ve presented the idea of marriage to your partner in a way that feels right for the two of you.

Proposal photography by YouAreRavenengagement ring photographed by Georgia wedding photographer YouAreRaven

Chapter Two: To Capture or Not to Capture


This might be the time to consider having a photographer hang out nearby to take photos during these moments. I adore proposal photography and sneaking around like a super spy trying not to be seen or found out while capturing the emotions in real time is a HELL of a lot of fun! Whether you hire someone to photograph your proposal or have a friend come along with their phone, you’re sure to treasure those photos later.

There are some benefits to hiring a professional for proposal photography, though. Hiring a photographer, who will typically be a stranger, often means the whole event is slightly easier since the person being proposed to won’t recognize the photographer. But if you have a friend come along, you’ll want a reason for their presence, which can complicate things. PLUS if you bring a third party with you to hang out nearby, the moment won’t feel as intimate.

Whenever I’ve done proposal photography, I stay back as far as I can while getting those great shots in order to preserve the privacy of the couple and the intimacy of the moment. I’m not there to infringe, just to capture things naturally, a bit like a wildlife photographer. 😉 What’s even greater is that since I’m already there, we can slide right into an engagement session from the proposal!

Proposal photographed by ATL Georgia wedding photographer YouAreRaven


If you’re still feeling undue pressure or can’t figure out a way to make the plan make sense with someone there to capture the proposal, don’t sweat it! It’s going to be an amazing and emotional moment for you two regardless of if you have images to look back on or not.

wedding proposal photographed by Atlanta wedding photographer YouAreRaven

bride admires engagement ring photographed by Georgia wedding photographer YouAreRaven

Thinking of popping the question? I’d love to photograph your proposal! Reach out and let’s get started planning together.

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