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Engagement Photography

Ryan Smith Photography’s couples portraits including engagement, anniversary and surprise proposals.

As a professional photographer with over a decade of experience in Myrtle Beach, I specialize in capturing fun, candid, and creative moments for couples. Whether it’s a surprise marriage proposal, an engagement session, or an anniversary, I believe that photography should be relaxed, enjoyable, and authentic. I handle every aspect of the process, from scheduling appointments around sunset for the best lighting to taking and editing the photos myself. Having grown up in Myrtle Beach, I know all the best photo spots in the area, and I love using its natural beauty to enhance my photographs.

My style as a Myrtle Beach engagement photographer

What I do is different from a traditional in-studio portrait, and I use a mix of posed and photojournalist styles of photography. While I will suggest poses, I typically take around 200-400 shots in an hour or so session, trying to capture my couple’s real romance and natural expressions. I have many typical poses and fun ideas I like to suggest for couples, but I always love to incorporate any ideas you may have as well. I’ve even had clients show me their favorite Instagram or Pinterest pictures, and I’m always happy to try and recreate them.

Lift into the air in front of the sunset - Huntington Beach State Park
Giving her a spin - Caledonia Golf and Fish Club

What makes my engagement photos stand out from other photographers in Myrtle Beach?

I prefer clear, crisp, and clean images using the best prime lenses and an expert understanding of lighting and flash. Some photographers say they can take the best pictures any time of the day. I’ve been doing this for over 15 years, and nothing compares to sunset. This is why I only schedule one engagement photo session daily to take your pictures at the ideal time and lighting. You will see the difference in my photo galleries.

I use the same equipment as at weddings, like high-end prime lenses and powerful off-camera lighting. This looks different from ordinary “natural light only” engagement pictures. It’s like a combination of an in-studio portrait balanced with the beautiful natural light from the sun. You will see the colors of the sunset and the sparkle from off-camera flash in my subject’s eyes. I include a reasonable amount of artistic and general touch-up Photoshop work at no charge.

Surprise Proposals

I also specialize in photographing surprise marriage proposals on the beach (or anywhere else you like). I can give you help and suggestions to make this go smoothly and make it a moment you won’t forget. In addition to photographing the proposal, I do an engagement photo session immediately after to capture your joy from the event. I added a recent blog post here that goes through my usual process and tips to make your proposal unforgettable.

Jumping for joy during the surprise proposal - Huntington Beach State Park - Myrtle Beach

Latest Engagement Sessions on Instagram

All-Inclusive Engagement Photography Prices for Myrtle Beach

Since my prices change over the year and I can offer discounts depending on availability, I now send my price list on request. I have very reasonable prices, so please click below and let me know your available dates, and I will send you more info. Thanks!

Sunset Photo Session
Full-resolution digital files with copyright release
Credit for ordering prints

More Details

Location: This engagement session can be anywhere on the Grand Strand, from Pawleys Island to North Myrtle Beach. I travel to many more locations, but there may be a small extra charge. I like to plan the sessions about an hour or so before sunset. I only do one photo session daily to capture your pictures in ideal lighting. You will see the difference between my work and photographers who do sessions in harsh light by checking out my engagement gallery and my blog. View sunset times here. Keep in mind I can’t guarantee beautiful colors in the sky. Sometimes, it will be more overcast or a flat sky with no clouds, and sometimes, the sky will just have a bright glow if shooting into the sun, but I will always ensure my subjects look great and are properly exposed. This is another reason I recommend the state parks for many background variations. You can see examples in my galleries.

All-Inclusive Package: There are no sitting fees or other charges just the one set price I will send you on request. I typically take 200-400 shots in about an hour or so. This includes downloading the full-resolution digital files from the session (with copyright release), perfect for making your own prints of any size. These are not “straight from the camera.” I adjust each picture for color, lighting, and artistic quality. You will also get a print credit for ordering prints through your gallery. For example, a $75 credit could get you one 16×20 and four 8×10 prints. Shipping is not included and varies from $8 for standard prints and up, depending on product and location. Check current print prices here. If we do the pictures at one of my preferred State Park locations, I also have passes for two cars to get in at no charge.

Deposit: To book your photography, I request a $200 deposit, deducted from your total session price, that can be paid by CashApp, Venmo, Check, or Credit Card. Please see the Q&A section for details. This deposit is refundable up to 3 months from the session date. After that, I can’t refund the deposit for cancellation, with the exception of rain. If it rains and we can’t reschedule during the week, you will get a full refund. Rain is often in the forecast in Myrtle Beach, and it ends up nice at the session time, so I can’t cancel based only on the forecast.

Most of the questions people ask me about the photo sessions I’ve answered on my Q&A page. Please click below for much more detailed information.

Latest Engagement Reviews – Click here for more

Devon Holt

We hired Ryan for our engagement session and for our wedding photographer. We recently had our engagement session with him and got our photos back within two weeks and they turned out great!

Tyler Cook

Ryan was excellent in helping me plan my proposal to my now fiancée at Huntington Beach state park. He was very accommodating and answered all of my questions. The photos he took turned out phenomenally (we were(...)

Lauren Kamb

Ryan Smith is an excellent photographer, and my fiancé and I had a great time working with him! Ryan did a great job of making my shy fiancé feel comfortable, which made a huge difference throughout the shoot,(...)

Travis Altschul

The pictures turned out great! Ryan was very thoughtful and made the experience very enjoyable. 10/10 would recommend.