Here’s the Best Time to Take Maternity Photos

Pregnancy is a beautiful chapter in a woman’s life, and one that passes by all too quickly. Many women wish to capture the magic of the experience with a maternity photo shoot. But when exactly is the best time to take maternity photos?


When you’re expecting a baby, there may be moments when it seems as if being pregnant is going to last forever. Yet, many women looking back on the course of their pregnancies often realize that the months actually flew by all too quickly.

To preserve the beauty, there’s now a rising trend among expectant mothers to capture the precious memories of pregnancy with a maternity photo shoot.

These photo shoots may seem casual, but it’s critical for moms-to-be to pick the prime timing to perfectly capture that pregnancy glow.

The Perfect Time for a Maternity Shoot

Photographers and other professionals recommend taking maternity photos between the seventh and eighth months of pregnancy. According to professional photographers, women who wish to take maternity photos will want to do so when their bellies are big and round, but not too big.

“If you’re looking to use your maternity photos for your custom baby shower invitations, you can take your photos as early as 28 weeks,” says Shutterfly. “This will allow you to use your photos at the very start of month eight for your baby shower.”

Women may still feel energetic enough at this point and most will have a very round, but not too heavy belly that’s perfect for pictures.

Expectant mothers should try to avoid photo shoots after 35 weeks, says Shutterfly, as baby bellies may become too cumbersome after this point and may also make it difficult to pose or hold different positions for long periods of time.

Are you pining for the maternity photo session of your dreams? Do your research and be prepared. Here are five tips to follow for a fantastic maternity photo shoot.

How to Get the Perfect Maternity Shoot

1. Find the right photographer.

My photo shoot. Photo: Stephen Anderson

It’s important to do your research when looking for photographers for your maternity photo shoot. Be sure to find someone you can be comfortable with.

At the end of the day, you may even want to enlist your husband or friend to take the pictures. Instead of paying a photographer to take my maternity photos, I chose my husband to be the man behind the camera.

I wanted a magical and ethereal feel to the photos, so we picked a quiet spot in a section of woods on his parent’s property. The shoot was really relaxed and fun, and our pictures turned out beautifully, as I had hoped they would.

2. Simplify the scene.

“Always check the foreground and background of your shots for distracting features,” says Darren Rowse at Digital Photography School. “One such common mistakes is the sight of trees or poles coming out the head of people.”

You don’t want to have a bunch of distractions during your photo session. Ditch the clutter and household messes and find a place that is clean and serene. Simple backgrounds have been said to work best. Or, head out to a peaceful and pretty place in nature.

3. Choose the right wardrobe.

The right wardrobe is also important. Form-fitting garb is usually the best bet for maternity photos, as this type of clothing will flatter and accentuate womanly curves.  Women should aim to wear something that flatters the shape.

While maternity wear is comfortable, you want to look special for this photo session and will want to make sure to ditch the  maternity clothes for the day.

“Clothing can also depend on the location and type of session,” says Leah Cook at Clickin Moms. “If you’re somewhere urban then maybe boots and bright colors are in order.”

Feeling a bit brave? You can also wear nothing. Some women choose to pose nude or drape themselves with sheer fabrics.

4. Use natural lighting if possible.

Make sure your maternity photos are not taken using a flash; otherwise, the pictures may be washed-out. It has been recommended by professional photographers to use natural light instead.

“Avoid camera flashes,” says photographer Michele Wanke. “Instead, supplement with natural light or studio lights. One way to include natural light during a studio shoot is to have your subject sit or stand near a south-facing window.”

5. Have Fun and Be Creative

Another important tip, maybe the most important one of all? Have fun and be creative. Pregnancy is such a beautiful time in your life and you will want to make the most of it. Have fun! Enjoy the moments, relax and feel free to get as creative and unique as you wish with your maternity photo shoot.


Rhonda Mix

Rhonda is mom to a bright and sweet little girl. She enjoys writing for work, writing for fun and reading when time allows. Also passionate about travel, she has a fondness for Taiwan - where she once lived in a previous chapter of her life. She looks forward to all the adventures ahead and exploring new places with two of her biggest loves - her daughter and husband.

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