The one regret I hear over and over in my studio is, “I wish I had done maternity photos, too! I know now that it’s a moment I can’t get back, but I was just too uncomfortable with the weight I gained and my pregnancy side effects!” First off, it’s completely understandable to hesitate, at the very least, over the concept of bearing your pregnant belly, not to mention the rest of your changing body, for a photoshoot. As a mom of two, I totally get it! Our body goes through so much during pregnancy and it’s certainly not uncommon to experience less-than-desirable side effects that make the thought of posing for professional photos a little uncomfortable, to say the least. But what I can guarantee you is that the moments captured from your maternity session will fill you with so much happiness and nostalgia for years (and even decades) to come, that any temporary discomfort is one thousand percent worth it. 

To make sure you don’t miss out on this moment of a lifetime, here are five expert tips for how to rock your maternity photography session.

1) Show your confidence and love!

Trust me when I say that 10-20 years from now, when you look at these maternity photos, all you will see is love and joy instead of what you might be seeing now (he weight gain and the stretch marks). You will instantly remember the flutter of feet and re-experience the sensation of a heart so full it might explode! BUT (and I put but in capital because this is my most important tip), you’ll deprive yourself of this sweet nostalgia  if you’re too nervous, shy or self-conscious in front of the camera. At that moment, allow yourself to feel beautiful (because you are!) and embrace the miracle inside of you! It’s an honor that not all women get to experience, so wrap that baby bump with love, show your partner how much you care and most of all have fun with it!  

2) Preplan poses! 

Creating a vision board in Pinterest is the best way to show a photographer your style, level of comfort with showing off some skin and poses that you know you’d feel beautiful in. The more planning you put into your maternity photos the better it will turn out, and the better it will show in your final portraits!

3) Focus on your partner!

This tip is actually for both of you. Most men don’t love having their portrait taken. Your wedding may have been the last time he was in front of the camera, so he could be a bit camera shy. By showing him your excitement during the maternity photography session and your devoted love, it will relax his nerves and allow for more natural expressions. For you, focusing on your partner will take some pressure off being photographed and will allow for more candid moments—so don’t be afraid to steal a kiss, laugh together and wrap yourself in his arms!

4) Put yourself in an S shape!

😂😆🤣 I can see your face right now, “What the heck is this woman talking about?!” Trust me, women (pregnant or not should) never stand straight onto the camera. The saying “a camera adds 10 pounds” is not a wise tale, but it doesn’t have to be that way if you know how to stand! By turning slightly sideways, away from the camera, kicking out your front leg and hip in the direction you’re turned, and turning your front shoulder in the opposite direction you’ll put your body in an S shape. This shape will also help accentuate the baby bump. See the example I included here.

5) Rock those curves!

Again, embracing your pregnancy body for your maternity photos is so important. Too many maternity fashions today are all about hiding the baby bump, but your maternity photography session is the time to show it off! Tighter maxi dresses, button-down white shirts and even a cute bra and jeans are great ways to highlight your belly! The whole point of maternity photos is to flaunt that belly, so be sure to arch your back and pop out your bump more than you normally would! Remember, photoshop will absolutely help nip and tuck or soften areas, but it cannot change the self-confidence you show in front of the camera!  

Including these five tips in your maternity photography session will ensure you absolutely love your portraits! You can see more examples of these tips being used in portraits on my website. To take it one step further, I recommend capturing your maternity photos between 32 and 35 weeks of pregnancy. This way you have a defined belly, but you aren’t at the point where you are so uncomfortable on your feet and swollen to the max.

If you’re interested in capturing your maternity portraits, let’s chat! I would love to hear all about your pregnancy! Please take a moment to fill out the contact form below so I can reach out and say hi!