Maternity Photography: A Keepsake for a Lifetime


October 22, 2023

Maternity photography, beautifully showcased by a momma in a rust-colored dress, being loved on by her two best men

Maternity photography is a special type of portraiture that captures beauty, emotion, and the bond between a mother and her unborn child. These photographs serve as a reminder of the incredible journey of pregnancy and are a special keepsake for a lifetime. What mother doesn’t want photographic evidence of her looking like a straight mom warrior?? Loaning your body out for nine months is no small task and, while many enjoy the experience, it’s still a time of sacrifice that should be celebrated and documented with maternity photography.

Maternity photography combined with family photos is the best of both worlds

While the experience of pregnancy is a fleeting one, maternity photography allows mothers to look back on this special time in their lives and remember the joy, excitement, and anticipation they felt as they awaited the arrival of their little one. Maternity photographs also serve as a tribute to the strength and beauty of motherhood and the transformative power of pregnancy.

Pregnant mom along with her husband and toddler son posed for their maternity photography session

There are many benefits to having maternity photography done. For one, it provides a unique opportunity for mothers to document the changes their bodies go through during pregnancy. These photographs can be a source of pride and empowerment for mothers, as they celebrate the beauty of their growing baby bump.

Young family of three pose for photos next to a fence with the backdrop of the setting sun

In addition to being a celebration of pregnancy, maternity photography also captures the special bond between a mother and her unborn child. These photographs can serve as a reminder of the love and connection a mother feels for her child, even before he or she is born. I think back to my three pregnancies and periodically wish that I could experience it one more time. We never wholly appreciate the season we’re in when we’re in the thick of it, do we? It often takes being out of that season for a period of time before we fully embrace what it meant to us.

Family shenanigans usually ensue during a maternity photography session, especially when the kiddos are allowed to run free

When it comes to planning a maternity photography session, it’s important to choose a photographer who is skilled in capturing the beauty and emotion of pregnancy. Look for a photographer who has experience shooting maternity photographs and who is able to put you at ease and make you feel comfortable in front of the camera. Working in obstetrics as I did for nine years of my nursing career, I feel a special affinity for pregnant women and what their bodies are doing. I love pregnancy. It’s so beautiful and miraculous and I adore showing pregnant women just how stunning they are.

Bringing books along to read is a great way to capture a toddler's attention during a maternity photography session

It’s also important to choose a location for your photo shoot that is meaningful to you. This could be a special place that holds personal significance, such as a park or beach that has special meaning to you and your partner, or a studio that offers a range of backdrops and lighting options. While I don’t shoot maternity photography in my own studio – it’s more geared toward newborns and babies – I do have a number of indoor spaces I can suggest and I always love shooting at outdoor locations.

Posed as well as candid shots are a staple of maternity photography

When it comes to what to wear for your maternity photo shoot, it’s important to choose outfits that are comfortable and that make you feel confident and beautiful. Loose, flowing dresses and tops that show off your baby bump are often a good choice, as are form-fitting dresses and tops that highlight your curves. Avoid clothing that is too tight or restrictive, as this can be uncomfortable and unflattering. I have created a session guide that goes into more detail about what to wear for maternity photography and I also am happy to give my opinion if you are stuck between multiple choices.

Zoomed in shot of a pregnant belly, beautifully draped by a rust-colored maternity dress

Props and accessories, such as flower crowns, baby items, or other personal possessions, can also add interest and personality to your maternity photographs. Consider incorporating items that are meaningful to you and your partner, such as a family heirloom or a special piece of jewelry.

Toddler dressed in earth tones hangs with his parents at his mom's maternity photography session

Ultimately, the most important thing is to have fun and enjoy the experience of your maternity photography shoot. These photographs will be a special reminder of the incredible journey of pregnancy and a keepsake that you will treasure for a lifetime. So, it’s worth the effort to make them as beautiful and meaningful as possible.

An expectant couple smiiles down at their young son as the sun sets behind them

Liz Viernes Photography is based near Rockville, MD, and specializes in maternity, fresh 48, posed and lifestyle newborns and first year milestone portraits.

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