Hayley + Mike booked me for their sunrise engagement pictures in Chicago, and I instantly fell in love with them! They moved to Chicago from St. Louis, Missouri three years ago, and were referred to me by a friend of a friend. Engagement photos were a priority for them, and they're having their wedding in St. Louis next summer. They’re both morning people, so when I suggested a sunrise session they were all for it! We met up for a North Avenue Beach sunrise engagement session - and it was AMAZING.

Chicago has so many amazing spots for photographs, and North Avenue Beach is definitely one of them! There are beautiful cityscapes, bright blue water, and a long, quiet beach (well, in the morning anyways).

After they had initially reached out, we started chatting back and forth and followed each other on Instagram. I noticed after a while that they posted a lot of photos and selfies wearing sunglasses, so I thought it would be cute to do some photos of them in their sunglasses during their session. I suggested they bring them, even though it would barely be bright enough to need them - LOL.

Hayley + Mike showed up at the crack of dawn for our shoot. They were wearing the perfect casual outfits that complimented the beautiful blue of the water and the pinky tones of the sunrise. Oh, and they also brought CHAMPAGNE to pop - at like, 6am. Love them! It was such a good idea, and made for some super fun photos!

Keep scrolling to see more fun, colorful photos of Hayley + Mike's North Avenue Beach Chicago sunrise engagement pictures!

woman in white tank top and sunglasses piggyback riding on her dark haired fiance in sunglasses at North Ave Beach
woman in white tank top and sunglasses piggyback riding on her dark haired fiance in sunglasses at North Avenue Beach
woman in white tank top and sunglasses piggyback riding on her dark haired fiance in sunglasses at North Ave Beach
blonde woman in white tank top kisses dark haired man in black and white shirt at North Avenue Beach Chicago pier

Chicago Sunrise Engagement Pictures

engaged man and woman wear sunglasses and smile in the wind and hold champagne at North Avenue Beach Chicago
man and woman in sunglasses pop champagne at Chicago North Avenue Beach to celebrate their engagement
blonde woman pours champagne from the bottle into fiance's mouth as he kneels at North Avenue Beach pier in Chicago

Chicago Sunrise Engagement Photographer

engaged couple in Chicago pops champagne at sunrise at North Avenue Beach pier
young engaged couple dances and pops champagne at Chicago North Avenue Beach pier during sunrise
young blonde woman kisses neck of dark haired fiance at North Avenue Beach in the morning
dark hair man pushes back hair of his blonde fiance while they sit at North Avenue Beach
blurry man and woman kiss at North Avenue Beach with the Chicago Skyline in the background
young engaged couple smiles at each other and wraps up in a red plaid blanket by the water at North Avenue Beach
close up of rose gold round diamond engagement ring on concrete
engaged man and woman link arms and laugh as they walk along the pier at North Avenue Beach in Chicago
young engaged couple kiss on the pier at North Avenue Beach, showing off Chicago's skyline

They weren’t lying when they said they were morning people! Hayley + Mike were both so happy and cheerful the entire time. We walked along the water’s edge while the sun came up, and gulls were flying everywhere while wind kept whipping Hayley’s hair around. Mike kept making her laugh, which I loved! I always have a good time with my couples, but Hayley + Mike were so much fun and totally down for anything I suggested. They are SO sweet together!


I know not everyone is an early bird, but if you're down for sunrise engagement photos, it makes for the most epic + colorful photos! It's also a great way to avoid big crowds.

man in blue denim shirt dips and kisses woman in white lace dress at North Avenue Beach Chicago
barefoot man and woman dance and spin around under the lights at North Avenue Beach
engaged couple spin and hug at North Avenue Beach
man with dark hair hugs woman with blonde hair in white lace dress from behind on North Avenue Beach
man hugs woman from behind and spins her around on North Avenue Beach during sunrise

Chicago Sunrise Engagement Photographer

man with dark short hair and beard smiles on North Avenue Beach
blonde woman in white lace dress smiles on North Avenue Beach Chicago during sunrise

I had contacted Plein Air Flowers in Chicago ahead of time and got them to make Hayley a colorful, pink bouquet for the beach photos. It turned out SO well!

I just had to take a few photos of Hayley’s engagement ring on top of the bouquet, because it was INCREDIBLE. Mike picked out the perfect, most beautiful ring - *ahem - future fiancé of mine, take note!*

hands with engagement ring holding a pink and orange bouquet of flowers
blonde woman in white lace dress softly smiling and holding pink bouquet on North Avenue Beach
close up round diamond engagement ring in a hot pink dahlia

Mike + Hayley goofed around on the beach for a few minutes, playing and laughing. Before we got ready to pack in it for the day, I got them to walk hand in hand along the water. The sun was just doing her thing behind them, casting the most amazing pinks and blues on the sky.

woman in white dress holding hands with dark haired man walking along North Avenue Beach at sunrise
dark haired man kisses blonde woman on the forehead while she laughs in the wind
engaged man and woman hold hands and laugh while they walk along the water at North Avenue Beach

Chicago Sunrise Engagement Photographer

young engaged man and woman hold hands and laugh while walking along North Avenue Beach at sunrise

This shoot was so much fun, and I’m so grateful that I met Hayley + Mike and got to capture a piece of their story together. If you loved these North Avenue Beach Chicago sunrise engagement pictures, you might also love this Montrose Harbor engagement session!

Looking for a photographer to do your own engagement photos?! I’m based in Chicago but travel worldwide - so contact me to start planning your dream sunrise session!