Do you only capture your growing baby belly with a quick weekly selfie? Do you wish you had pictures taken during your first pregnancy and plan to do so this time around? Although the chances are that you already made your formal pregnancy announcement to friends and family, there is still plenty to celebrate. Professional maternity portraits are not just about highlighting the baby belly but capturing your glowing smile, loving relationships, and the beauty of your growing family. These photo sessions do require sensitivity and careful planning, but these ideas and tips will help ensure yours is a success:
Choose the Right Timing
Three trimesters may seem interminable right now, but these moments will go by quickly. Many mothers have told me that they regret only having one or two casual snapshots of them while they were pregnant. When you look back as your little one enters toddlerhood, I guarantee that you will be glad that you had professional photos taken! To get started, we will try to plan your photo session at a time in your pregnancy that you look and feel your best.
Although you can schedule a photo shoot anytime during your pregnancy, many photographers recommend booking a session around the beginning of the third trimester. Many women have a beautiful, full shape at this point, but still have enough energy to move around or get up and down easily. I have also photographed women within a month or so of this range, so it is really up to you! You can also consider the season and current weather when deciding whether to book immediately or plan a month out. I love photographing pregnant mothers outdoors, which brings together both their natural beauty and the beauty that is bringing new life to the world.
Creativity is Welcome
There are certain “standard” poses that many pregnant women are keen to have, and I am happy to oblige. At the same time, however, I love taking a mix of shots, both formally posed and more lifestyle or casual. These could include different angles, abstract shots, traditional portraits, close-ups, and more. I will also take both close shots, to highlight your happiness and capture details, and wide shots, to capture you against a stunning background.
Tips for Clothing and Preparation
Your clothes can help dictate the style of a maternity portrait session. For example, bright colours feel fun and lively, while more neutral tones feel calm and harmonious. Either way, plain-coloured clothing photographs much better than stripes, dots, or big prints. To enhance your silhouette, try a form-fitting blouse or dress that has some stretch. Try to avoid t-shirt length sleeves; otherwise, sleeveless, long sleeve, and spaghetti strap tops all photograph well. Finally, feel free to add a pop of style and colour with a scarf or some jewellery.
In addition to choosing your outfits, there are a few other things you might do before your session:
- Drink plenty of water for healthy, glowing skin.
- Avoid wearing too much makeup, as I will use the camera to highlight your features.
- Moisturize any skin that may show, including knees and elbows. However, apply lotion at least an hour before the session so it does not glare.
- Consider booking a manicure or applying some light-coloured polish for close up shots of your hands around your belly.
Gauzy fabrics can be gathered easily to show off your figure, but you can also show your bare tummy for some shots if you would like! To avoid any clothing or elastic marks, be sure to wear loose-fitting clothing to your session.
Feel Free to Bring Your Family
Including your partner or children in your maternity portrait session will help make your session even more about emotions and relationships than your current figure. The tender relationship between partners, in particular, is incredible to capture on film and something that you will cherish for a lifetime. In addition to portraits alone and as a couple, you can also include your children snuggling up to you, further reflecting your growing family. Another popular choice is to bring along the family pet, which may indeed become quite a jealous “sibling!”
Above all, I want to help capture images that will bring you back to that beautiful, exciting, and whirlwind time in your life. Your pregnancy is miraculous and unique, and something you will want to remember. Focus on the excitement and joy of your pregnancy, and let those emotions show on camera. Give me a call today to talk about scheduling a session, and be sure to let me know when your little one arrives!
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