Best Engagement Photo Locations in Kansas City

As a Kansas City engagement photographer, I’m well acquainted with Kansas City’s best locations for engagement photos, wedding photos, and more. Today, I’m sharing a little about what I consider to be the best engagement photo locations in Kansas City.

No matter what area of Kansas City you prefer, there are many stunning backdrops for your engagement photos. The key to the perfect location for your engagement photos is to find a setting that will provide a nice backdrop and showcase the two of you.

Good, even lighting matters, but your professional engagement photographer in Kansas City should be adept at off camera flash in the event that additional lighting is needed. As a rule, some of my favorite times to shoot are the first and last hours of daylight. The light is golden and glowing, and gives that dreamy look we all love.  

Engagement Photographer Kansas City

When choosing your engagement photo location in Kansas City, be sure to consider factors that affect your session, such as traffic and weather, and allow plenty of time to accommodate fluctuations in both. 

1. Downtown Kansas City

Downtown Kansas City has so much to offer every couple who is planning their engagement photos. From beautiful architecture to stunning fountains, interesting sculptures, city streets and more, it’s no surprise that many couples opt for a downtown location for their engagement photos. The Crossroads District is home to the stunningly beautiful Kauffman Center, as well as various enchanting, hidden spots tucked between historic buildings. 

Hip coffee joints, sidewalk cafés, city streets, and unique shops all inspire one-of-a-kind engagement photos that spark of Kansas City. In the northern part of downtown, the Rivermarket area boasts plenty of interesting backdrops with vibrant plants and wares guaranteed to add interest to your KC engagement photos.

2. Nelson Atkins

When it comes to clean lines, neutral tones and classic “Kansas City” vibes, the Nelson Atkins is a clear winner. The vast grounds provide a variety of backdrops, from green spaces and trees, to perfectly manicured landscaping, to interesting sculptures. Many of my couples love engagement photos on the lawn at the Nelson, on the steps leading up to the building, and near the large, stately pillars on the east side of the building. 

While there is no facility fee, your Kansas City engagement photographer will need to sign in with the security desk to comply with the Nelson’s photography policy. It goes without saying, but the sculptures are works of art, so it’s important to be respectful and courteous…read, don’t touch the sculptures, please.

3. Liberty Memorial

The Liberty Memorial proudly overlooks Union Station and downtown Kansas City, and the unmistakable skyline views available from the wall make it a natural engagement photo choice. Regal staircases flank either side of the wall, leading down to an expansive lawn and view of Union Station. 

Classic spots for Kansas City engagement photos at Liberty Memorial include along the wall, the staircase, and on the lawn below the memorial. In the fall, trees turn beautiful shades of red and gold and offer brilliant autumn foliage to brighten photos with a natural pop of color. 

Engagement Photos in Kansas City

4. Unity Village

For those who want a truly unique setting for engagement photos in Kansas City, Unity Village is a great choice. While Unity Village is located near Lees Summit, the beautiful architecture and thoughtful design feel like something from a different era and provide an incredible setting for photos with the one you love.

Unity Village does require a photography pass for professional photography sessions on site, at a day rate of $100. Professional photography is permitted so long as it does not take place during a scheduled event or wedding on site. 

5. Union Station

Kansas City’s Union Station is another iconic choice for your Kansas City engagement photos. The historic train station is home to impressive architecture and gorgeous natural lighting, making it a wonderful location for indoor engagement photos when the weather is not cooperating. 

Union Station does require a photography permit, which can be purchased at the security desk on site. During the holiday season, this permit fee is usually waived, but be sure to confirm before planning your engagement session at Union Station. I recommend to always do your research and make sure you are prepared in advance!

6. Shawnee Mission Park

No engagement photo location list would be complete without a strong contender for a natural outdoor location. Shawnee Mission Park fits the bill in a number of ways. From the beautiful lake and many walking trails, to lovely little bridges, tall prairie grasses, and wildflowers, it’s no wonder this natural space made my short list of engagement spots in KC. I love to take engagement photos at Shawnee Mission Park in the summer and fall months, but there isn’t really a “wrong” season for this photo location.

What are some of your favorite photo locations in Kansas City? Are there any I missed that I should add to my list? Let me know in the comments below!

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