Are you pregnant? I've been dreamily looking at a whole lot of amazing pregnancy photos on Instagram and Pinterest but I'm too shy to get a photographer involved (not to mention the cost!). So I've pulled together a bunch of amazing maternity photoshoot ideas you can do at home! The best thing is, you can get your hubby involved or your mum or a friend and have some fun. Most of these can be done in the comfort of your own home so you can play around with timing (and take advantage of nap time if you have other children).
[ Try cropping your image to accentuate the curves and focus on your belly. Image credit: Beyond the Wanderlust ]
When to do my maternity photoshoot?
If it's just you, you can really do this whenever you want, however most photographers recommend between 32 and 37 weeks. I'm assuming this is because a) your belly is big enough to create a nice shape and b) you are less likely to cancel the shoot because you've gone into labour! If you're just playing around with these different styles at home you can do it whenever you want (or whenever you have the energy).
[ Matching underwear and high contrasting light accentuates your curves ]
Plan your outfit in advance. Maybe it's some nice lace underwear or a matching underwear set (black works well or skin coloured to hide under sheer dresses), or a maternity dress. Think about what you want your photos to look like and prep those items. If you're going nude, wear loose fitting clothing (and no underwear) for an hour or two beforehand so you don't have lines on your skin- trust me, you'll see it!
[ You can find lots of lovely maternity dresses or capes online. Play with textures and add filters to get the best out of your images. Image credit: Beyond the Wanderlust ]
[ Matching underwear and a nice robe can help add a bit of glamour to your photos! Image Credit: @annaopsalofficial on Instagram ]
If you want props, maybe fresh flowers (why not pick straight from your garden if you can), milk or bubbles for a bath, or your ultrasound picture get them ready in advance. If you're doing this solo (maybe with your phone or DSLR) prep your tripod or a chair or table for your camera to sit on. If you're using your phone consider getting a bluetooth shutter button from ebay so you can click away without running back to reset the self timer.
Do your hair and makeup! That's right ladies... get yourself all prepped as if you were doing a photoshoot with a professional! You want to look your best and get the most out of this.
[ Plan your outfit and do your hair... pretend its a professional shoot and you'll get the best photos. Image credit: Barefoot Blonde ]
Posing for your Maternity Shoot
First thing first... get on Pinterest and make yourself a board with all the ideas you want to try. Then write a short list of the poses: standing, kneeling, sitting, lying etc. Candyfields Photography has put together a great guide for posing (you can see it here) which will really help you picture how to best position your body to get the best out of your new curves. Why not print it out so you can look at it on the day.
[ Don't forget to get in close or crop your images ]
[ Try sitting poses and pair them with snuggly knits for a soft homely style of photo. Image credit: Pinterest ]
[ The placement of you hands and feet can make a huge difference in how your body looks. Play around with different poses and see what looks best. Image credit: Michelle Popp Photography ]
The High Contrast Pregnancy Shoot
This is your typical studio or indoor shoot. It requires a bright light source like a window or a lamp and a fairly dark room. If you're posing against a window you could get away with wearing tight clothing if you'd prefer that. The subject (pregnant lady) should stand in front of the window and DIY photographer should focus the camera on the subject to get maximum contrast. Play around with poses such a cradling your belly, looking up/down etc. Have fun with it and see what you come up with.
If you're setting yourself up with a lamp try and use one that is adjustable so you can do both standing and sitting poses. Grab a cushion or two and a sheet for the ground and set yourself up in a dark room. You want to keep your backdrop as consistent (and dark) as possible so sitting in front of a blank wall or curtain with a sheet on the ground works well. Hang a matching sheet against a wall too if you can. The idea with this shoot is your skin lights up and provides the contrast so if you're feeling game do this shoot in the nude, or in a matching set of underwear. Matching black bra/undies works really well to highlight the curves of your body.
Play with different camera angles. Get your helper to stand on a chair above you, or get down low. Play with the positioning of your hands and legs to frame/cradle your belly and bust for the best results. Don't forget you don't have to look into the camera. Try looking up or down, or even turning your head away. You may decide to crop these images later so you want a variety of poses.
Tip: If your helper isn't super creative or is a bit nervous taking photos just tell them to take heaps... they can move around and snap away as long as they pause long enough to get you in focus (there's nothing worse than the perfect photo ruined by being out of focus!!). you can edit/select the good ones later.
[ Stand in front of a window and play around with the shape your body makes. Image credit: Jessica Jane Photography ]
[ Try using dark clothes against a white wall. Image source: Somewhere Devine ]
The Milk Bath Pregnancy Shoot
You can use a few things to get the milky water: milk, oats or a milk bath from a specialist bath/cosmetics company. Milk is the easiest, but if you have a lovely bath soak, then make use of that and relax while you're at it!! The next thing is greenery and/or flowers! If you have a garden full of flowers then go crazy: things like Camellias or Roses are perfect with their beautiful petals and whole flowers. If you don't have a garden (or it's winter!!) then why not ask your local florist if they have broken flowers or bags of petals you can use. It's much cheaper than buying long stem roses just to pull apart.
A few things to check before you jump in! If you have a bathroom with great light or near a window then choose a time of day when the light is good but you're not in direct sunlight. Clean your bath (or at least the immediate surrounds...). Get rid of those bath toys and put out your fancy candles etc. Grab a chair for your photographer helper. Most of your shots will be from up high so they need to be higher than you (obviously be careful near slippery bathroom floors!).
[ Mix it up with flowers, fruit and leaves- whatever you have in the garden! Image credit: Anthony Maxwell Photography ]
Get your kids involved!
Do you have other children? Some of the cutest pregnancy photos include siblings! It's a great memento of those last few weeks before the baby arrives for the older children too.
[ Matching clothes and a soft setting is the perfect way to capture you and your children together. Image credit: Wild Whim ]
Don't forget to have fun with it! Get silly and have a laugh... it will help you not feel self conscious and will probably produce the best photos.
[ Image Credit: Наталія Раїник ]
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