How to take flattering pregnancy photos at home
As someone who has been posing and lighting pregnancy photo shoots for over 15 years I know that there will be women out there desparate to record their pregnancy but currently unable to get to a photographer due to the lock down. So I wanted to give you a few very important pointers when asking your other half to take a photo of you and your bump, in order to make sure you look your best and don’t feel you look like a whale even if you may feel like one!!
The first thing you should be thinking about is the right pose. Now there is no one perfect pose and in fact I rather hate the ‘lets-display-the-bump’ kind of pose..you know the one, one hand on top of the bump and one underneath, looking down lovingly….hmmm…yeh not my kind of thing. Firstly, this kind of pose broadens your body and makes you look like a whale, and secondly you’re looking down which increases the risk of double chins being captured for all time! NOOOO!
So I’m going to break things down for you and by just doing a few things you’ll look 1000% better.
Arms and Hands
Firstly arms…so when we are with child, we are generally wider than we usually are…so in a photograph, we need to show our edges as it were… we don’t want the viewer (usually us!) to see our outline as larger than it actually is. So to avoid this you need to keep your arm away from your body in order to see the line of your back as you can see in this image. Apart from showing that you do actually have a back, it will show the curve which is very pleasing to the eye. Don’t bend your arm too much or it can start to look a bit contrived but a bit of a bend and you have improved your outline hugely.
Secondly hands – so to avoid the ‘here’s-the-bump’ display, you need to relax your hands as much as possibly… if you have naturally straight fingers then just force a slight bend in them, if your hands are tense then the image looks forced. The second point to note about hands is not to place them too far into your crotch as so many people do…it looks like you’re …well, use your imagination. I prefer to keep the hand out of there and place it just below the belly button or on your hip.
No matter how big your thighs get, and lets face it, it’s rare to find a pregnant woman who hasn’t put weight on around the bum area, you can help yourself in the photos with 2 things..
Firstly bend the leg that’s nearest to the camera. By bending your knee you are balancing the bump up top and creating a lovely curved backside which should mimic the shape of your pregnant belly.
Secondly crop your image at the slimmest part of your body, usually lower thigh or knee.. as your eyes move around a photo, you notice that if cropped at the widest part of you, that is what your brain will take as your width. So try to crop at a more flattering junction… see below for good and bad examples.
Hair and Clothing
Are you still with me? OK so the last thing to do when trying to make your form look smaller, is to think about your hair and clothing. Hair needs to be big and if possible slightly up so that your neck is visible…your neck is the slimmest part of your torso and so should be shown off. You can either put your hair up or simply turn side on to the camera, jujj (is that even a word?) up your hair as big as it will go and lift your chin..your neck will now look lovely and slim.
Clothing, should be non bulky for these shots, make sure the line of your back is visible as this is the most slimming effect, so wearing a dress or tight fitting top would be best. If you’re opting for a dress then do place one of your hands just below your belly button as this will give your bump a shape rather than making it look like you’re straight down from the widest part of your body.
A note on nudes
Now clearly I’m doing this for a living and there are thousands of ways to pose a pregnant woman, with and without clothing.. I love doing nudes and semi nudes and use materials to complement a womans shape and skin tones. I think if you have amazing lighting and posing you really do look amazing when you are pregnant.
If you want to try doing a semi nude shot, maybe top off..then use your arms to cover up as naturally as you can. Don’t grab a boob, but rather screen them from view by careful placing of arms and hands. Take a look at my portfolio for inspiration or make a booking to have your own gorgous pregnancy portraits captured at my studio or outdoors.
For more advice
If you’re wanting a bit more advice on clothing, lighting and posing then book a zoom session with me to make sure you get it right. I have a ‘pay what you can afford’ system in place so you don’t need to spend a fortune and I love talking to people …it’s been a wonderful way to spend my time over the last few weeks.
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