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10 Tips for Taking Maternity Photos That Don’t Suck

Confession: I’m a bit of a hater when it comes to maternity photography. They’re just a little “too much” for me. Too posed, too cutesy, too intimate, too exposed. It’s just not my style. That said, I think maternity photos can be really fantastic when they’re done right. My pre-reqs for good maternity photos? Pretty light and simplicity. If you stick to those two things you kind of can’t go wrong. That said … there are definitely some other tips that will help you have a successful maternity shoot. Here are just a few!

 

  • 1. Choose a photographer you trust 1 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    I cannot overestimate the importance of choosing a photographer you trust. Getting photos taken during pregnancy can feel a bit vulnerable (it does for me at least), so choosing a photographer that you feel comfortable with and whose aesthetic you trust can make all the difference. I'm lucky enough to be friends with my photographer. It made the entire process totally painless and dare I say... fun?!

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 2. Communicate your vision 2 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    Be sure to let your photographer know what your vision for your maternity shoot is. For me the vision was simple and natural and a bit photo-journalistic. I basically just wanted her to capture our everyday lives. It definitely helps to have a photographer whose aesthetic is similar to yours in the first place though. When you communicate what you're looking for, you're much more likely to get it!

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 3. Choose a comfortable environment 3 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    Photos taken in a studio or in a really cool location can be fun, but there's nothing quite like having photos taken in a space that you know and love. My most favorite family photos are the ones that have been taken in our own home. It's where we do life and it's filled with memories -- and that translates into the photos. There's also a level of comfort that can make the photos feel so much more authentic and help to capture the spirit of your family and your pregnancy. Photos don't have to be in your home though! Just choose a spot that is comfortable and personal to you -- maybe it's a favorite coffee shop, the farmer's market, or wherever! Get creative, but keep it comfortable.

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 4. Capture real moments 4 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    The less posey the photos are the better in my opinion. This photo my photographer snapped while I was just being silly with Fern is one of my favorites. If I had posed this I would've tidied up those rain boots strewn across the floor and cleared the breakfast dishes in the background, but I like that this captures our real life. My daughter loves taking her rain boots on and off all day long and I'm constantly tripping over them. I know that one day seeing them in a photo will make me smile. And those dishes are the result of our "pancake Saturday" family ritual, which I also love seeing captured.

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 5. Don’t try to reinvent the wheel 5 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    For some reason people feel the need to get overly creative and cutesy with maternity photos, but often simple is best. If props are your thing, then by all means, go for it! But don't feel pressured to reinvent the wheel with your maternity shoot. The end goal is to simply capture this beautiful chunk of time while you're growing a human!

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 6. Practice flattering angles 6 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    Let's be real ... for most women our bellies aren't the only part of our body that expands during pregnancy. For me, my arms and my face are where I notice a lot of weight gain, and it definitely makes me feel self-conscious. That said, working your best angles can make a world of difference. Practice in the mirror ahead of time. I know it sounds stupid, but you'll be glad you did. Also, let your photographer know about anything you're feeling a little less than confident about so they can help you work those angles too!

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 7. Take photos during the "cute window" 7 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    Unless you're Gisele or one of the other genetically blessed pregnant mamas out there, you are probably familiar with the "cute window" of pregnancy. This window looks a little different for everyone, but in general I would guess that it falls sometime between months 6 to 7. The "cute window" is that time during pregnancy when it is very obvious that you are pregnant. Your belly is cute and round and you don't just look like you ate one-too-many burritos. But, you aren't so far along that you've started getting puffy and uncomfortable. With my daughter I had maternity photos taken at 37 weeks and I hated them. It had nothing to do with the photographer who took them. I just felt big and awkward and miserable and it showed through in photos. This time around I had photos taken at 27 weeks and it felt so much better. That said ... if you still feel awesome at 37 weeks -- then you rock those photos mama! I for one, prefer the earlier approach.

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 8. Choose your outfit wisely 8 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    When you're choosing an outfit for maternity photos, I say go for classic comfort. Avoid crazy patterns as they can sometimes look weird on camera, and stick to simple, classic silhouettes. You can definitely jazz things up with accessories too. Overall, just choose things that you feel comfortable and pretty in, because discomfort will totally translate in your photos.

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 9. Involve your family 9 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    Little ones and your baby's daddy should definitely be a part of the maternity photo shoot experience! My husband isn't super into having his photo taken, so he was only in a few of these, but it was fun having him for those at least, and I love the ones of me and my daughter. Having other people in the photo also distracted me from the fact that I was having my photo taken, which made things way less awkward.

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

  • 10. Practice acceptance 10 of 10
    10 Tips For Taking Maternity Photos That Don't Suck

    You're pregnant and your body is changing. It's just a part of life, so try to stop obsessing over it and just enjoy this time for what it is. Sure my arms may be a little pudgier than I'd like in some of these photos and my jawline is slowly disappearing, but who cares? My body is growing a human and that's pretty rad and definitely worth documenting! Practice acceptance of your body and just enjoy these beautiful moments being captured.

    Photo by Coeur de La Photography

{All photos by: Photo by Coeur de La Photography}

 

Lauren Hartmann is the founder of The Little Things We Do, a blog about life and adventures in Portland, Oregon. Follow her on TwitterFacebookPinterest and Instagram or catch up on all of her posts here on Babble.

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