Welcoming a new life into the world can be an incredibly special and magical experience. As you embark on this beautiful journey towards parenthood, documenting your pregnancy with a maternity shoot can be a wonderful way to preserve the memories of your growing bump. To help you make the most of this precious moment, we reached out to Mikaela Ryan, a specialised maternity photographer and owner of Kirra Photography. Mikaela focuses her lens on capturing the joy and beauty of families during their path to parenthood and beyond. In this blog post, Mikaela shares her expert advice on when to book your maternity shoot and provides invaluable tips on how to ensure you capture the essence of your growing bump.
When to Book Your Maternity Shoot
Timing is crucial when it comes to scheduling your maternity photoshoot. Mikaela recommends that bumps are best captured around 32-36 weeks. "Mama is generally feeling well at this stage, is confident in her bump, her bump is showing and she isn't feeling too uncomfortable like in the final month." This timeframe allows for your belly to be beautifully rounded while ensuring you're still comfortable during the shoot.
So when should you be thinking about reaching out to your photographer? Mikaela says it's best to make a booking with a photographer early in the second trimester (14-20 weeks) to guarantee your place. If it has slipped your mind and you are further along (not to worry!), always reach out as a place may still be available. Keep in mind that every pregnancy is different, and if you're carrying multiples or have any special circumstances, it's best to consult with your photographer as early as possible to determine the ideal timing.
Choose a Meaningful Location
Selecting the right location for your maternity shoot sets the stage for capturing heartfelt moments. Mikaela suggests considering locations that hold personal significance to you and your partner. Additionally, your photographer can assist you in determining if the lighting will be ideal for the chosen location. It could be your home, a favourite park, or a place where you shared special memories. By choosing a location that resonates with you, your photos will reflect the unique story of your journey.
Dress to Highlight Your Bump
Your outfit plays a significant role in accentuating your beautiful baby bump. Mikaela advises opting for form-fitting dresses, empire-waist tops, or wrap-style outfits that highlight your curves. Flowing fabrics can create a sense of movement and add an ethereal touch to your photos. Consider soft, pastel colours or earthy tones that complement your skin tone and the location's surroundings.
Additionally, some photographers, including Mikaela, offer a studio wardrobe where clients can borrow outfits. This option is especially great for maternity sessions, as it allows mothers-to-be to avoid the hassle of searching for a dress or spending money on something they may never wear again.
Embrace Natural Lighting
Natural light has a magical quality that can enhance the warmth and radiance of your pregnancy photos. Whenever possible, Mikaela suggests scheduling your shoot during the "golden hour" — the hour just after sunrise or before sunset. This time of day provides soft, flattering light that adds a dreamy atmosphere to your images. If an outdoor shoot isn't feasible, large windows or a well-lit indoor space can also provide beautiful natural light.
Incorporate Meaningful Props
Including meaningful props in your maternity shoot can add depth and symbolism to the images. Consider bringing ultrasound photos, baby shoes, or other items that hold sentimental value to you. These props can create a connection between your growing bump and the precious little one you're eagerly waiting to meet.
Relax and Be Yourself
One of the most important tips Mikaela emphasises is to relax and be yourself during the shoot. Embrace the natural joy and excitement that comes with expecting a child. Trust your photographer's guidance and allow them to capture genuine moments of connection between you, your partner, and your baby bump. Remember, these photos are a celebration of your unique journey, and by being authentic, the images will reflect your love and anticipation.
Booking a maternity shoot is a wonderful way to commemorate the incredible journey of
pregnancy. Mikaela Ryan, from Kirra Photography, has shared her expert advice on when to book your session and provided valuable tips on how to capture the essence of your growing bump. By following these recommendations, you'll be able to look back on these precious moments with joy and delight, reliving the beauty of your path to parenthood and the anticipation of meeting your little one. Cherish this special time and enjoy every step of the way.
You can find Mikaela Ryan of Kirra Photography contact details by clicking here.