Bringing a baby into the world is a special time for a family and especially for the mom-to-be. Feeling your baby grow and move inside you is amazing and what better way to capture these precious moments in your life than with maternity and new-born portraits.
It is a beautiful time to celebrate, enjoy and capture.
You want your belly to be big and beautiful, but you don't want it to be so large that posing and holding different positions for any length of time becomes taxing. Professional photographer Tracy Lopes suggests taking photos right around 36-38 weeks. That's when your belly gets really round, she says, but it's not too heavy yet. Of course each pregnancy and pregnant belly is different so use your own stamina as a guide.
Avoid background clutter
Just like professional photographers, style your backdrop. So think about what's behind you. When choosing your location, avoid standing in front of a messy living room -- or worse, a messy bathroom. Instead, lie mermaid-style on a solid-colour couch or tape some ironed white sheets to the wall and -- voila -- an instant studio backdrop. Or change things up and step outside: Pick a tranquil spot in your backyard or nearby park or beach to set up camp. We love the leaning-up-against-a-tree look, or, if you're at the beach, try a profile shot, where you're sitting up and looking out at the sea.
Turn off the flash
The on-camera flash will be a total wash-out. We suggest standing right in front of an open door or window to get great natural light instead. If you're shooting outside avoid midday sun. "The best times to go outside are early in the morning or an hour or two before sunset when there's that golden, sun-tanned, highlights-in-the-hair light," Lopes says.
Wear something tight and stretchy
The whole point of the shoot is to see the gorgeous belly, right? Tight, stretchy clothes will best accentuate all your great curves.
"Never wear maternity clothes," Lopes says, since their primary objective is often to feel good on, rather than flatter your shape. Lopes recommends trying some fitted tank tops in solid colours instead. "Skip the florals, plaids, and checks, you want to be able to look back at these pictures in 10 or 20 years and still think the photos look great. Whereas really stylized clothes can get dated, solid darks and neutrals are timeless."
Poses to Try
Here are a few of our expert maternity photographers favourite poses:
* Close up on the belly
* You lying on your back on a couch.
* Older sibling kissing the belly
* You holding older sibling (so they're sitting on the belly facing you)
* Sitting Indian style, facing the camera
* Working the S curve -- one hip out, one shoulder high, one shoulder low, hands relaxed. Think supermodel!
* Profile shot
* Any yoga poses you know (and can get into easily)