The first question every expecting mom asks me is when they should have their maternity photos done.
The typical suggested time frame among all professional photographers is between weeks 30 and 35 of pregnancy. Though you should consider your own personal pregnancy when planning the timeframe. Especially when there are other factors and concerns involved.
When there are safety concerns or you have a high risk pregnancy.
Your pregnancy can be considered high risk for any number of factors. Your health, baby’s health, previous pregnancy histories, and multiple pregnancies can affect when you’d want to plan your session.
if any of those factors apply to you, then the recommendation is to have your photos done sooner rather than later. You may consider having photos as early as 25 weeks to avoid overexerting yourself later in pregnancy, or simply if you are at risk of being put on bed rest or delivering prematurely later in your term.
When you have your heart SET on getting maternity photos
If you would be absolutely heartbroken if you never got the chance to have photos done, I recommend staying on the earlier end of the timeframe. Even the most “normal low risk” pregnancies can deliver earlier, babies come at their own time! As I know very well with one of my own two weeks early and the second right on his due date.
To take advantage of feeling amazing and having energy before the last few weeks of pregnancy.
The end of the second and beginning of the third trimester are said to be when you feel the most energetic. Some pregnant women say that is when the “nesting” phase happens. A burst of renewed energy and excitement can really help you out during your maternity session!
When scheduling or weather plays a part.
When you are hoping for an outdoor maternity session during anytime of year, it’s best to plan for an earlier timeframe. New Jersey weather is known to rain or snow at the drop of a hat, so if your session needs to be rescheduled you don’t want to be coming too close to your due date! I once photographed a sunset maternity session at week 37, and mama went into labor the very next morning! Now that’s cutting it CLOSE!
Leave yourself some wiggle room so you don’t have any added stress on your plate.
Book your photographer EARLY!
I joke that I’m often the second person to find out about my clients pregnancies, right after they tell their partner! I’m pretty darn good at keeping the secret, in fact I have a few right now that I bet you don’t know about 😉
I recommend being booked in by the start of your second trimester.
The reason to book early? Well, for a few reasons
To give yourself time to plan and to fully utilize your photographer’s know how and skill set! I send my clients all kind of planning help, wardrobe assistance, choosing just the right timing location, and vibe that suits them. It doesn’t take time to choose and order wardrobe for yourself. Try on outfits and have extra time to return and exchange as well.
To make sure there’s room on their schedule for your session, especially if you’d like a weekend. The good photographers are usually booked 3-6 months in advance on weekends.
To get a package for your maternity and newborn photos together. I offer a “bump to baby” package including maternity and newborn photos at a discounted rate when booked together!
It’s always a good idea to talk to your photographer about your newborn session plans and ideas right alongside your maternity session. This way, if baby decides to make an early arrival you’ve already got a game plan in place. There’s nothing worse than scrambling to pull everything together when all you really want to do is snuggle and rest with your baby.
Would you like to chat more about your maternity session ideas and plans? Please feel free to CONTACT ASHLEY and get the conversation started!
Ashley of Renee Ash Photography is a Maternity and Newborn photographer based in Sussex County New Jersey and serving the tribe state NYC and Eastern Pennsylvania areas.
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