Winter Chicago engagement locations are tougher to plan out.
As a Chicago wedding photographer, I know firsthand how tricky it can be to shoot portraits during the winter months. The cold weather, shorter days, and potentially harsh lighting can all present challenges. But fear not! There are still plenty of gorgeous winter portrait locations in Chicago to choose from.
In this post, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite spots for taking stunning winter portraits in the Windy City. From picturesque gardens to cozy hotels, these locations will provide the perfect backdrop for your winter photo shoot. Just make sure to dress appropriately and bring along some hand warmers for those extra chilly days.
Without further a-do, here is our suggested list of Chicago engagement portrait locations in winter or inclement weather. These locations can also work for wedding portrait spots.
For any couple looking to get that lush garden vibe in their engagement photos, look no further than the Garfield Park Conservatory. There are multiple “rooms” at the conservatory with different themes like the Palm House (our personal favorite), Fern Room, Desert House, Aroid House, Horticultural Hall, and Show Room (which has different plant/floral installments throughout the year). The great advantage about this spot is that you can get many different looks and angles easily within an hour engagement session.
The Chicago Cultural Center is another perfect backdrop for clients that want drama and elegance to their engagement photos. Fashion inspired portraits that have an editorial flare would work well in this location because of the grandeur and opulence of the mosaic walls, grand staircase, and the Tiffany glass domed ceiling in the Preston Bailey Hall. Again, knowing Chicago weather, if the weather clears up during your engagement session, we can hop over to Millennium Park for some additional bonus photos.
We really like Chicago Union Station because the architecture is simply amazing. Who doesn’t love neoclassical columns?! There is a lot of natural light that spills into the main terminal area so the photos in this location turn out EPIC. The loggia right outside the station is lined with even more columns that give great linear perspective in the engagement photos. Also, the neutral color of the building allows you to wear whatever color you want! You can dress up or dress down and the photos will still come out great!
The photo above was taken on a cold November day at the cupola of London House Chicago. The cupola is located on the 23rd floor of the 452 room luxury hotel and gives sweeping views of downtown Chicago. Even if it is cold on your engagement shoot, take a chance and visit this location because the scene is amazing for engagement and wedding portraits.. Typically, the London House can even reserve the cupola for engagement proposals (and wedding ceremonies). We would highly suggest calling the rooftop bar to get permission to shoot there.
With over ten years of experience capturing sacred moments and an artful intuition for what it takes to get the perfect shot, time and time again, it’s our joy to create evocative, timeless photographs that are as one-of-a-kind as your story.
Maha Studios is a destination photography studio that delights in the vibrant traditions and rituals at the heart of South Asian and multicultural weddings.