Updated: May 2
Why should I have a Maternity Photoshoot?
So you've had that very surreal moment when that little stick shows up positive and the realisation hits, you're pregnant! Congratulations! This is such an exciting and unique time in life and I'm sure you're a bundle of emotions. This little precious life is growing inside of you and I'm sure you're super busy preparing for his or her upcoming arrival.
So now comes the question, is a maternity photoshoot really for me? Many mums-to-be shy away from having their pregnancy photographed for different reasons. No matter how much you might be jumping for joy about the imminent arrival of your little one there are still moments during pregnancy where you might not feel too glamorous. You might be fed up with having to sleep on your side, and just want to be able to have that glass of wine or jump in a hot tub. BUT... It is a time to be celebrated!
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For now, check out my 6 reasons below to find out why I think maternity sessions are so important.
This is a time to celebrate! Pregnancy is an incredibly unique (and quite short) moment in a family's life. You're preparing for a precious life to enter the world and you might only be really 'looking pregnant' for 3 or 4 months! Photography is considered by most people an essential part of a wedding day, making sure you have all the memories captured and don't forget any part of it, it's a wonderful time filled with love and family, and it is a huge moment in a couples life. It isn't any different for pregnancy!
From the moment you find out you're pregnant, your whole world begins to change, whether it's your first baby or sixth, another little person has entered into your family and life is going to look very different from now on. Maternity photoshoots give you a chance to make sure this short time in your family's history is captured so that you don't forget what it was like. Give yourself a chance to celebrate this little life that is about to come into the world, these photos will be like little heirlooms that you can pass down to your child when they grow up.
Feel amazing and treat yourself
Speaking from experience, very few women get that stereotypical 'glowing' feeling that we want pregnancy to be like. But stop that little thought in your head right now! You might feel a bit nauseous, tired and swollen, but these things that might make you feel like you don't 'look great' are not the things that everyone else around you feels or sees! We see an incredible woman growing a (or two or more!) tiny human inside of her and giving it all she's got!
Booking a maternity portrait session gives you a chance to have something fun to look forward to and to dress up for. You might even go and have a bit of a pamper to get ready for it. I 100% recommend you go all out! Have a manicure and a pedicure. Go and get your hair and makeup done, go shopping and buy yourself a new flowing dress, really treat yourself! This shoot is just as much about you, boosting your confidence and making you feel beautiful as it is about your future child.
No matter how you're feeling throughout your pregnancy, a maternity shoot gives you a chance to feel like the awesome beautiful Mumma that you are! It gives you a chance to feel empowered and helps you celebrate all the amazing things your body is doing to grow this tiny precious baby, it's an amazing reminder of how powerful you are and all that you are capable of.
"Birth is not only about making babies. It's about making mothers strong, competent, capable mothers who trust themselves and believe in their inner strength."
- Barbara Katz Rothman
Bond with your partner
Now, don't get me wrong, I know you'll have already done some bonding to be in this state in the first place! But this pregnancy isn't just about your baby, or even just about you and your baby, it's also about your partner. In the busyness of life and preparing for your baby to enter the world, planning, and shopping and figuring out maternity leave, potentially buying a new house or car or even just painting the 'nursery' (all of which are really exciting!) it can often be difficult to make sure you spend intentional time with your partner.
Remembering and cherishing the relationship that you have with each other is so important! A maternity photoshoot can give you a chance to be 'in the moment' and celebrate your baby together. As a mother and a daughter myself, I know I cherish the few photos I have of my parents when I was tiny and also the ones of myself when I was pregnant!
"Pregnancy is something to be celebrated its a special time in our lives, one that may only be given to us once so I wanted to remember how I looked pregnant. I also wanted to have a record of how my husband tenderly touched my stomach, it's a lovely way to involve dads a bit more in the pregnancy process."
- Rosey, BB Forum Member
Include siblings in the celebration
If you have children already they'll often feel very special being included in the photoshoot. Whether they are super excited about the imminent arrival of a new baby brother or sister or even if they're a little anxious, including them in the photoshoot with you, gives them a chance to be a part of something really exciting and to celebrate the baby with you! Kissing or hugging your belly and giving them a memory to look back on say to their future sibling: "I was there when you were in Mummy's tummy!"
Displaying these beautiful photos of you as a family in your house, whether in frames or albums will also give them something fun and happy to look at daily to remind them who loves them most and that they are incredibly important to you!
Professional shots are much better than 'at home' shots
You could easily take some selfies or get a friend or family member to grab some snaps and it might be a lovely photo, but getting a professional photographer can change that 'nice photo' into a piece of artwork that you'll cherish. Photographers take in to account lighting, the best angles, focus, and depth, and can transform something that could've just been a photo of you, into something that tells a beautiful story, a feeling, a piece of artwork!
It's not as expensive as you might think
Many people think you have to pay an arm and a leg for professional photographers, this often isn't the case! Most photographers offer packages with all the edited digital images from your session within the main package. This makes it quite affordable as you can then just order your prints or albums yourself.
So, now that I have told you why you should have a maternity photoshoot, let's move on to your next stage in life, your little one is here! Hooray! Continue reading to see the reasons for having a newborn photo shoot.
Why should I have a newborn photoshoot?
Becoming a first-time parent (or a parent again!) can be a complete whirlwind! Life has been completely turned upside down, for the better of course, but it probably won't ever be the same again. You might think that you have all the time in the world to have your children photographed but as I said earlier, time does fly! Newborns are only in that sleepy, cute, all curled up stage for the first 2-3 weeks of their lives and after that, their faces do change very quickly! This is why I recommend that you book your newborn session between day 7 and day 14 of their lives so you can make the most of capturing all those sleepy snuggly cuddles and nose scrunches.
Capture the details
By hiring a newborn photographer you will end up having photographs of all the tiny little details of your gorgeous baby that you would never be able to capture on the average phone camera. All those little things that you marvel at when they first come into the world, from their pouty lips, their chubby cheeks to their intricate fingers and toes, a professional photographer can capture all these details with their macro lens (just a posh way of saying close up lens) before they grow up and don't look anything like that anymore!
Savour the time
A day in the life of a newborn's parent is unlike any other in time in your life, your days are filled with moments of awe and wonder as they open their little eyes or wriggle their tiny toes. But your days (and nights) are also filled with figuring out feeding, nappy changes, washing 100 outfits, and most difficult of all, very little sleep! No matter whether you're breezing through this new mum and dad life or finding a little difficult you really will look back on it one day and wish you had savoured each moment. A newborn shoot will help you freeze those moments in time and help you treasure the best parts forevermore. Booking the photoshoot in advance just means that you won't need to worry about making sure you take pictures of everything, you're able to just trust the professional and be present in every moment yourself. I read this quote recently, and I thought it perfectly encompasses all of these feelings and thoughts:
"A baby will make love stronger, days shorter, nights longer, bankroll smaller, home happier, clothes shabbier, the past forgotten, and the future worth living for."
Show your little ones they're loved
There are so many ways we can show our little ones they're loved and this is one of them. Portraits with them are a wonderful tool that you can use to affirm they are wanted and loved, fill your house with great portraits of you, your partner, them, and their siblings showing them how much you cherish every moment of their lives. A professional will know how to show off the best of you and putting up professional portraits of yourself in your house that you see regularly and look great in does a lot of good for your self-esteem too!
One less thing to do
The days after your little one arrives can be a whirlwind of visitors, nappies, and sleepless nights. And all the time you are watching your tiny little one grow and worrying about 'capturing precious memories' when all you want to do is sleep, cuddle and repeat. Booking a newborn photographer ahead of time (while you're still pregnant preferably) takes that stress away from you and puts it onto a professional. You can relax knowing that you'll have beautiful pictures of your child and it allows you to spend the rest of your time focusing on enjoying your pregnancy and then, when the baby arrives, getting all the newborn cuddles you and your baby deserve.
So, to conclude... Should you have maternity and newborn photoshoots? Yes and Yes! I know I am a photographer so I am slightly biased, but these are very short-lived periods of your life, and if there's any part of your lives that you're going to want professionally photographed it's these!
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Remember, I'm always cheering you on!