With the upcoming arrival of our 3rd child, we recently had our our maternity photo shoot a couple of weeks ago. While I always look forward to our maternity photo sessions, I also know how stressful they can be. Through personal experience I have learned how to plan the best maternity photo shoot and have shared my top 10 tips in this post.
If you are looking for some pregnancy photo perfection, check out the tips below.
1. Hire a Professional Photographer:
I definitely recommend hiring a professional photographer that specializes in maternity photography. Be sure to do your research and choose the right photographer for you. Check out their website, view their portfolio, check their rates, and contact the photographer to ask questions. You want to be sure to pick someone you are comfortable with and whose style is inline with what you desire for your maternity photos. Also, look for photographers that offers packages that include newborn sessions or a discount on your newborn session. It is very beneficial to already have your newborn session planned and paid for before the baby arrives. This is one less thing for you to worry about.
2. Plan Ahead and Schedule in Advance:
Keep in mind professional photographer’s schedules often fill up fast (especially depending on the season of the year). You want to schedule the session when you are showing and have a distinct baby bump. However, you don’t want to schedule the session too late in your pregnancy when you may not be feeling your best (or when the weight gain starts to pick up). A common recommendation is to schedule your session around 35 weeks. Just be sure to do what feels right to you and don’t wait to until the last minute to schedule your session.
3. Plan the Perfect Wardrobe for YOU:
Every mom’s style and taste is different. Be sure to wear whatever makes you feel the most gorgeous and comfortable. Personally, I love to wear fitted maternity dresses and gowns that accentuate my baby bump. I purchased the pink maternity dress pictured below from PinkBlush for that very reason. It was super comfy but hugged my curves in all the right places honey! Most importantly, I felt so beautiful in it!
Keep in mind maternity dresses are often pricey. Therefore, something to consider is choosing a dress that will later double as a nursing dress that can be worn after pregnancy. Which is why I fell in love with this Navy Floral Maternity Dress from PinkBlush.
Decide if you want to show some skin and how much you are willing to bare. If want to show off your baby bump, go for it! Here are some wardrobe options that will allow you to show off your bare bump:
maternity gown that opens in the front
an unbuttoned shirt
a kimono with a bralette or bandeau top
a maternity skirt and bralette or bandeau top
4. Wear the Correct Undergarments:
No matter what you choose for your wardrobe, be sure to wear the correct undergarments. Try on your outfits ahead of time and choose undergarments that would be the most appropriate. You don’t want panty lines or patterned underwear showing in your photos. Also, did you know that maternity shape wear was a thing? Yes friend, there are maternity Spanx! My mind was blown when I discovered this fact!
5. Don’t be afraid to pamper yourself:
At this time during your pregnancy, you may not feel your best. So it is okay to do what you need to do to look your best (which in turn will give you more confidence and help you feel more comfortable in front of the camera). If possible, hire a professional makeup artist or get your hair done. If this isn’t in the budget, at the very least get your eyebrows waxed and get a manicure. There will be many images of you holding your belly bump so you don’t want to have chipped nail polish.
6. Choose Your Location Carefully:
Take the time to consider the location of your photoshoot. Decide whether you want to take photos at your home, outdoors, or in a studio. I have done all 3 options in the past and there are pros and cons to each one. When I was pregnant with my daughter I wasn’t feeling my best and I also had a 1 year old running around, so I chose to have the photoshoot at my home where I felt most comfortable. This turned out to be the best option for us.
Shooting outside allows for awesome scenery and the best lighting. However, keep in mind the weather at the time of the scheduled shoot. Consider your needs and wants and choose a location that works best for you.
7. Incorporate Your Family:
Of course, you and your bump will be the star of the maternity shoot. However, it is also so precious to include your significant other and children (if applicable). Take some time to coordinate the family wardrobe by theme and/or color. Be sure to bring snacks and something to keep your kiddos busy when they are not taking a photo.
8. Practice Poses:
Taking professional photos can often feel awkward and uncomfortable. Look to Pinterest (or Google) for some inspiration of maternity photos and poses that you like. Practice some of these poses in front of the mirror prior to the photoshoot.
9. Bring Props:
Props can be add a great personal touch to your maternity photos. Consider which props will mean the most to you and bring them along. Examples include a sonogram, onesies, a pair of baby shoes, something displaying the baby’s name, balloons representing the baby’s gender, etc.
Preparation is essential! Be sure to prep ahead of time. You don’t want to wake up the day of shoot and realize you can’t find your curling iron or the shoes you selected for the maternity shoot. True story, this has happened to me! Preparation also allows you to be more relaxed and calm for your photoshoot. Eat breakfast, drink water, and pack some snacks. The shoot may last awhile and can tire you out.