Winter Maternity Portraits

I take a lot of advanced selfies. Well, hubby claims I take a lot…I feel like I display a lot more self-restraint than he gives me credit for. =D

You can learn more in my selfie tips tutorial or be impressed with my fake sunset selfies, but the point is: advanced selfies are my specialty. So when it came time to take maternity portraits, I assumed it would be no big deal and exactly the same as all the other selfie attempts.

I was wrong.

Technically, everything is the same. Camera on a tripod. Interval timer for the shutter release.  A lot of outtakes.

But finding poses that flatter the bump? Feeling confident in front of the camera with such an altered profile? Knowing what to wear when nothing really fits the expected way?  Very very hard.

I now have an immense appreciation for what my maternity portrait clients are experiencing, and a few tips (from personal experience!) for my maternity portrait clients.

Black really is the most slimming color known to man.

Two days before my maternity portraits, I took professional headshots that needed to be timeless. Baby bump does not equal timeless, so I wore black to minimize the bump. How did I not factor that when I chose to wear a BLACK dress for my maternity portraits? Not sure. But wear black sparingly and intentionally.

I had a hard time finding angles to show off the bump, despite my dreams of a flowing black dress on a snowy landscape.

Bring multiple outfits to your maternity session.

I have given this advice to clients for years but didn’t follow it myself. Bringing multiple outfits to your maternity session isn’t just about having multiple looks in your gallery, it’s about making sure you end up with photos that you feel amazing in.  I ended up not loving the look I originally picked out, and didn’t bring a second outfit so my backup outfit.

I was unsure of my outfit (it didn’t swish like I expected it to — snow is heavy on the hem!), so I ended up putting on John’s sweater and leaving on the snowboots and leggings I had been wearing under my dress. Outfit number two was a bit haphazard, but I ultimately loved the alternate view of my bump!  (And it makes for a great story. :-P)

Pop your bump.

If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent years of your life figuring out which angle you like the best on yourself in your photos…and that probably doesn’t involve accentuating your middle. 😉  BUT. This is exactly what you’re celebrating with your maternity photos, so popping your belly is exactly what you need to do. I didn’t realize how natural it was for me to pose in ways that minimized my middle; maybe you will experience that too?  It takes some effort, but take the time to pop that middle!

Laugh. A lot.

You’ll hear more about this in my “how to look amazing in photos” tip sheet, but the most flattering thing you can do is smile…and laugh…and revel in one another.  BE happy, FEEL happy, and you’ll LOOK happy.

Touch and snuggle. Like, a lot.

See point #4.  Happy people snuggling is basically the recipe for success.

And, most importantly, know that this season of your life is worth documenting and even if you don’t feel as beautiful as you look.

If you’d like more tips, see: what to wear for maternity photos or how to prepare for a photoshoot or how to pose. 

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