MATERNITY SESSION GUIDE
I’m so excited to photograph you and the little one you are cooking up! Let’s talk about how the session is going to go.
Right off the bat, let me lay it all out… I often hear how expecting moms say they feel strange in their new changing body. It is ok to feel like that! Pregnancy is beautiful and you are growing a tiny baby inside of you! How magical is that? I'm not a mom yet, so you might be thinking, "Oh what does she know?" And you are right! I don't have any idea what you are experiencing. I have an outsider's perspective. But I can tell you that what I see is beauty. That big round belly with a mini human inside is quite the miracle and it should be photographed in all of its glory.
So, know that I am here for you. And I will do my very best to make you feel wonderful, relaxed, and extra confident throughout your session.
Let's get planning!
"What is the optimal time through a pregnancy to have my photos taken?"
Every pregnancy is different so it varies. Usually, I advise scheduling your maternity session between week 28 and week 34. We want you to be photographed with a big beautiful belly, and still be as comfortable as you can possibly be.
Scheduling for the last few weeks can be slightly tricky. You never know if that sweet bundle of joy might want to make an early appearance.
However, if you’re in the homestretch and haven't yet had your photos taken, that's ok too! There is still time to get beautiful photographs of this special moment in your life.
"What should I wear?"
When I photograph pregnant women, I really want to show off their beautiful forms. Choose a couple of outfits that accentuate this new perfect curve of your body. Form fitting tops with cozy cardigans or long flowing dresses are great choices. As for colors in maternity shoots, solids work best. I have a fun little Pinterest board with ideas and examples for you (just click the link!): OUTFIT GUIDE. The most important thing when picking an outfit, however, is that you are comfortable with what you are wearing, feeling confident and beautiful.
"Can my husband and children be included in my maternity session?"
Absolutely! This is an important moment in your family's history. They are most welcome!
In this case, the session will most likely comprise 50% all you and your bump, and 50% you and your loved ones.
“What happens during the session?”
We'll meet at our designated location and chat for a bit. This is a moment to breathe, relax, and get into the flow of things. If there are children in the session with you, I will take some time to get to know them so they do not think of me as a stranger but as a friend. Some children need a little more time to warm up to a giant camera pointed at them (well, who are we kidding? Adults need that too! Hence the initial chatting!). I do not push kids to do anything they do not want to do. Sessions with children will always be smoother if children are allowed to be children. I'd say, in photo sessions, about 80% of kids do not want to be told what to do, especially if that means standing still. So, I'll start by letting them be themselves. As they warm up to what's taking place, natural poses will just happen. If you look around and think things are out of control... trust me... I'm loving it! Those are the moments to capture! I want you to feel relaxed and not worry about kids misbehaving.
During your session, I will guide you into some poses so you do not have to wonder how to stand or where to put your hands. If your significant other or children are in the pictures with you, then I will have you interact with each other. This allows me to capture real emotions and expressions. The truth is though... the poses are not what I'm really looking for. It is the little moments between them that really make great images. The ones you will end up loving forever.
“Where do you photograph maternity sessions?”
Although I am trained and proficient in artificial lighting for photography, I really do prefer natural light. Most of my sessions are done outdoors. Either at a park, a client's backyard, or in urban settings.
I also love sessions at home. Your home that is. That’s where clients are most themselves. Nothing beats the comfort and privacy of your own home. The only important thing to keep in mind with this option is that your house has to receive a good amount of light through the day. I don't bring flashes to these sessions.
It's up to you and your vision for the shoot as well. We can photograph outdoors or at your place... or even split the session between the two!
To help you pick a location, I wrote a fun little blog post about it:
FAVORITE LOCATIONS IN AND AROUND DC