Romantic photoshoot ideas

Foolproof, romantic proposal photoshoot ideas for couples who want to catch their special moment


Planning a surprise proposal photoshoot is one of our favourite ways to pop the question. Not only is it a super romantic way to ask your partner to marry you, but it also means you’ll have photos to commemorate the occasion forevermore! The exact moment you asked the question, and they said those all-important three letters back…

However, this process can be difficult to navigate, so we’ve prepared our top ideas for a foolproof, romantic proposal photoshoot, as well as some general tips for executing them perfectly!

What type of proposal would your partner (and you) like?

Before deciding on a proposal photoshoot idea, you need to be sure that your partner will love how you’re going to do it. For example, will they be delighted or mortified by a big public display of affection? (Of course, there are two of you in the relationship, and it needs to be something you feel comfortable doing too!) If they’re likely to want to be dressed for the occasion, our first idea might be the best for your proposal photoshoot…

1. Surprise them during a pre-planned photoshoot

A super simple proposal photoshoot idea is to actually plan a photoshoot with your partner. Agree to book a photoshoot together, but keep it secret that you’re going to get engaged during!

Ideas for explaining the planned (secret proposal) photoshoot

The first hurdle will be getting your intended to agree to a photoshoot in the first place! If planning a photoshoot just because isn’t particularly in character for you as a couple, prepare an explanation to cover you. Our favourite ideas are:

  • Christmas cards for this year
  • new canvases for your walls
  • getting their friends involved for a pals’ photoshoot, the tagging along
  • asking their parents to join you for a family portrait
  • if you have a good relationship, you could even ask their boss to put them in a promotional shoot at work

The idea here is to find a reason for a photoshoot, to begin with. If all else fails, try to convince them it was their idea all along!

Add extra romantic elements

If you want to go a bit extra with this proposal photoshoot idea, you could coordinate with your photographer to add some additional elements to your photoshoot. Why not incorporate signs or chalkboards? With the latter, the photographer could ask you to write something romantic on the board in secret and then reveal them to each other! Of course, the perfect thing to write would be ‘Will you marry me?’!

2. Propose in private, with a hidden photographer capturing it

This proposal photoshoot idea is basically where you get your photographer to act like a paparazzo.: That way, your partner won’t know they’re in front of the lens, but you’ll still get photos of the big moment, thanks to the photographer you’ve organised to secretly snap away.

Excuses for this proposal photoshoot idea

It’s funny, isn’t it, that planning a proposal often includes a lot of subterfuge! Again, this method requires some bending of the truth so that you don’t ruin the surprise. Also, it’s worth thinking about what your partner would want for their proposal. Essentially, don’t plan your proposal photoshoot under the guise of a dog walk if you know your partner would prefer to be glammed up when they get engaged; instead, why not choose a romantic meal that offers the natural opportunity to dress up?

Agree on a cue with your photographer

The major thing this proposal photoshoot idea hangs on is a cue to make sure they don’t miss the moment!

If they’ll be within hearing distance, you might want to agree on a particular cue word to prime them. Or, maybe it’ll be a hand gesture, or even getting down on one knee. Whatever it is, just make sure that you both know it and that they’re on the lookout for it.

With this in mind, you also need to make sure you give the photographer some specific details to make sure they’re in the right place at the right time! These include (but are not limited to): what you’ll be wearing, what you and your partner look like, where you’ll be and when. Without these, your photographer might miss the moment!

General tips for a surprise proposal photoshoot

Regardless of which idea for a proposal photoshoot you choose, there are some general pieces of advice you might want to consider:

  • make sure you’re wearing something comfortable – especially if you’re going down on one knee, you need to make sure you can do it comfortably!
  • on this note, practice getting down on one knee – this might sound silly, but you’re going to need to hold the position for 15-20 seconds to make sure the photographer gets the shot. Try it at home with a timer so that you know what it feels like!
  • pick a meaningful location – no matter the proposal photoshoot idea you choose, incorporating a location with a significant meaning for the two of you as a couple will make it even more romantic
  • ask the photographer for advice – they are experts in this field, and you should make the most of them. They’re sure to have some brilliant suggestions for locations to provide a beautiful backdrop, as well as useful information on lighting and timings.
  • in fact, choose your photographer carefully. You could get one who specialises in surprise proposal photos. Check out our tips for finding the perfect proposal photographer here              
  • stay relaxed – we know, we know – it’s not going to be easy. While it’s natural to feel nervous/anxious/excited/every single emotion in the lead-up to the proposal, you might give the game away. Just breathe, drop your shoulders, and try to enjoy the moment – and stay focused on your partner
  • make the ring the focal point – regardless of which proposal photoshoot idea you choose, you need to make sure the ring is front and centre for the photo

After your surprise proposal photoshoot

The fun doesn’t have to be over once you’ve pulled off your proposal photoshoot idea. Why not ask the photographer if you can include an engagement photoshoot after you’ve proposed to get even more pics of the special moment? Or you could plan a romantic meal for two to end the evening or even a celebration with loved ones!

A proposal photoshoot is one of our favourite extravagant proposal ideas – where else could you feel simultaneously like film stars and yet the only two people in the world? If you’re about to embark upon or are currently planning one, best of luck – and, of course, we can’t wait to see the photos!

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