Engagement Portrait Photography in New Orleans
Michael Caswell Photography

Engagement Portrait Photography in New Orleans

This beautiful black and white photograph was captured in the final series of shots I did with this New York couple who had traveled down to New Orleans for their engagement portrait session. We spent most of the session walking around the historic French Quarter looking for interesting nooks and crannies to shoot in front of, and wound up finishing up by the river, with this particularly sweet and romantic shot being on the bride's wish list.

While most of the engagement portraits I shoot are for couples who have booked their wedding with me, I do on occasional have sessions with couples who are getting married elsewhere but want a New Orleans engagement portrait, as was the case with this couple.


The Moonwalk, which is a levee walkway along the Mississippi River, is a great location to get photographs with the river and the bridge in the background, or in this case the Steamboat Natchez. This area can sometimes be a bit crowded with tourists, however, in some cases that's not necessarily a bad thing, as the French Quarter is a bustling area and sometimes capturing that kind of activity in the image looks perfectly acceptable.

Though this photograph was composed to avoid having any random people in the frame, another nice shot that can be done here is of the couple strolling along, holding hands, and having some people in the background looks fine in this instance, as long as these people are far enough away to be sufficiently out of focus so that the visual attention is drawn to the couple in the foreground.

Engagement Portrait in the French Quarter

Here's another image from this session. Though no couple wants bad weather on the day of their engagement portrait, one significant benefit to having some rain move through the area prior to the session is that it gives the streets of the French Quarter that nice, slick, partially reflective look that really enhances photographs. A light overcast sky also makes for better light to shoot with.

Engagement Portrait in the French Quarter

In this shot, I simply directed them to stand in the middle of the street and dance around and talk with each other for a few minutes, pretending like I wasn't even there. Though we occasionally had to pause and move out of the way for cars to pass, the result was a wonderful series of very natural looking images that capture their personalities much better than a simple posed look at the camera kind of photograph.

On this particular street, which runs behind St. Louis Cathedral, the common shot is straight down the middle of the street with the couple standing in front of the Cathedral centered in the background. Though I've done that shot many times before as well, for this image I thought that the shooting at an angle, with the fa├žade of the Bourbon Orleans Hotel and flags captured softly out of focus in the background would be more visually interesting.

Location: New Orleans, Louisiana.