Most pregnancy photo shoots happen 6 to 8 weeks from your due date, so there’s almost no room for error if you don’t like the finished result or the photographer makes a mistake. It may be tough, if not impossible to schedule a re-shoot before the baby’s birth. Here are my five tips to help you make the best choice when selecting a pregnancy photographer:
1) Do Your Research Start gathering names and looking at portfolios on the website. Trust yourself, if some photos take your breath away, that person is the first person to call. If you weren’t personally referred by someone who has used the photographer and can recommend his or her work, ask for several referrals to contact. These may be already posted on the photographer’s website. We post testimonials on our site as clients send them in, unless they are from a celebrity like Jeff Probst from Survivor which we thought was pretty cool.
2) Look for Experience Look for someone with extensive experience, or even better, specializes in pregnancy photography. Someone who is experienced in photographing the pregnant female form can obtain the most flattering poses for a pregnant woman’s body, such as the position of the shoulders, the angle of the belly, avoiding double chins and deemphasize other areas of the body which have expanded during pregnancy, such as hips, legs and arms.
3) Pricing If pricing is an issue, when inquiring about prices be sure to ask what the session includes. And be sure to ask about print prices. Our photo sessions usually include one or more prints, but be sure to calculate that into your budget.
4) Editing Your Images Find out if the photographer is involved in the editing process. Looking at hundreds of images of yourself pregnant is overwhelming. The photographer should be able to expertly guide you to the best and most unique photos, as well as suggestions for cropping and finishes.
5) Film or Digital Ask if the photographer uses film or digital. I recommend film, because I love gelatin silver prints. They are becoming increasingly rare and these prints are the photos that are found in museums from 200 years ago. Film prints are also archival whereas digital prints will most likely fade over time. Film is often more expensive than digital, but the quality and longevity is worth it. But digital may be the perfect solution for you if you only want an album or some jpgs. So you may want to ask.
6) Preparation Ask how to prepare for your shoot. We recommend a few things to our clients to do. And we always like them to bring a few special maternity outfits that they feel good in.
7) Who is the Photographer? If you are speaking to the studio manager you might want to ask to speak to the photographer personally to get a sense of who she or he is. Consider both artistry and personality. Finding someone whose work you love and with whom you would love to work with is key to capturing beautiful images of your pregnancy on film to keep forever.
8) What happens to the images? Be sure to ask what happens to your images after you order too. We archive all of our negatives and digital files because clients will often call us years later and ask for images.