SEATTLE fine art

Lena Porter




Your Guide To Seattle Maternity Photography

Hi, I'm Lena.
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From ideas to location, poses and outfits, planning your Seattle maternity photography session takes a lot of thought and intention.

Here is everything you need to plan for your maternity photoshoot.

Maternity photoshoot ideas

  • Just you — soak in a little alone time and take photos of just you in your element
  • With the family — bring your significant other and any little ones to combine maternity photos with family pictures (pets too?)
  • Outdoors at golden hour — my favorite time of day to take maternity photos
  • In home — a more everyday, lifestyle version to capture life now, before it changes (think: in the nursery or in the light-filled living room)
  • At the beach — toes in the sand and walking along the shore, maybe hand in hand with your little family with the sound of their sweet laughter in the air
  • In your favorite dress, your partner’s jacket, or even in boudoir attire
  • With a few tasteful props, like your ultrasound photo or fresh flowers

Maternity poses

I’m not one for strict posing; I much prefer prompts and casually elegant strolls through the field or at the oceanside. However, if you want a few ideas to come prepared with, here are some simple prompts that always photograph beautifully.

  • The side silhouette — the best way to capture the full round belly
  • Holding hands with family
  • Walking with a flowy dress trailing behind you
  • Your other children holding, kissing, or embracing your belly
  • Holding your belly and looking down
  • Your partner interacting with you or your belly

How long should a maternity photoshoot be?

I’m not one for rushing these moments and, ultimately, this comes down to you and your photographer. Would you rather get in and out without taking the whole afternoon? Or do you want time to settle in, enjoy yourself, and relax in front of the camera?

My maternity photoshoots are untimed so you can have it either way, but I would say the average maternity photoshoot is 45 minutes to an hour.

When are maternity photos taken?

You should take maternity photos in the 7th or 8th month, or between 28 and 32 weeks. Find more timing details here on the post, Q&A: When To Take Maternity Photos.

Where to take maternity photos

The options are quite simple, but of course, you’ll need to select the specific location based on your area and preferences.

  1. In a studio
  2. Outdoors (field, city, beach…)
  3. At home

With my clients, we typically photograph in a studio or in one of my highly recommended outdoor locations at the field, or at the shore.

Maternity photo locations near Seattle

My top recommendations include the following:

  1. Fort Steilacoom Park
  2. Washington Coast (Ocean Shores, WA or Seabrook, WA)
  3. Cannon Beach, OR

How do I prepare for my Seattle maternity photography shoot?

Booking, scheduling, planning — to be able to show up and just relax on the day of your maternity photoshoot, I recommend the following steps in the months and days leading up to your session.

  1. Find a photographer with an editing style and approach that you like (Less posed or more? Do they offer hair and makeup? Can you imagine their style of photos displayed in your home?)
  2. Schedule your maternity photoshoot for a day and time between 28 and 32 weeks
  3. Book a hair and makeup artist, if you choose to do so
  4. Find 1-2 outfits (plus comfortable shoes and accessories), and perhaps a backup option just in case the fit isn’t right. Usually a long, billowing dress with slight texture and a neutral palette is just perfect.
  5. Block out the entire day of the photoshoot so you aren’t rushed or stressed.
  6. Get your nails done the week of the session (optional)
  7. Confirm the arrival time with your photographer
  8. Eat well and stay hydrated prior to the photoshoot
  9. Arrive early and enjoy yourself


Should I get my makeup done for maternity pictures?

Every single one of my clients that has worked with a hair and makeup artist really appreciated not only how confident and beautiful they felt, but how nice it was to be pampered before the session. It relaxed their nerves and helped them feel energized for the photoshoot.

However, I know some women prefer to do their own hair and makeup, afraid of looking too unnatural or “glam” with a professional hair and makeup artist. However, professionals can give you a natural, very you look that doesn’t feel overdone.

I include access to the area’s top hair and makeup artist for my local maternity sessions so you don’t even have to worry about finding a hair and makeup artist, let alone wondering how it will turn out.

What to wear for your Seattle maternity photography session

At least two outfits are recommended to add variety to your images. It also helps pace out the photoshoot. Usually a long, flowing dress with neutral tones and no bold prints is the best option. Flats are ideal for shoes, or even barefoot if the location allows.

My local clients have access to a full client wardrobe with gorgeous, high-end dresses to choose from.

Maternity photoshoot dress

Here are some of the dresses included in my wardrobe, and some ideas to inspire you if we don’t get to work together.

Seattle Maternity Photography wardrobe
Maternity Photography Wardrobe

Maternity photos outfit ideas

  • Long, flowing dress
  • Lace or a neutral color
  • Denim jeans and a button-down top or even a jean jacket
  • Your partner’s favorite jacket
  • Boudoir attire (lingerie, bra with jeans, robe)
  • Form-fitting, but comfortable dress

Examples of maternity photos

Here are some maternity photo examples to inspire you. Pin your favorites and share with your photographer!

Outdoor Maternity photos

Maternity photos with family

Maternity Photos with husband

What to caption your maternity photos when sharing online

I love this question because I ask myself this all the time when sharing on my photography Instagram. What almost always seems to work is simply sharing from the heart or telling a story. Here are some prompts to help you.

  1. What are you excited about?
  2. What made you want to take photos?
  3. What was your reaction when seeing the photos?
  4. When is the due date? (“Coming soon on…”)
  5. What was the day of the session like? Any specific memories you can share?
  6. Reminisce a little bit about motherhood, life, change…
  7. And, of course, tag your photographer.

Loving this guide? Share with your friends, and see more like this on my blog.

Planning your own Seattle maternity photography session? I’d love to work with you. Say hello and let’s talk about what you have in mind.

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Hi I'm lENA

Welcome to the blog, a place for helpful parenting resources and planning tips for couples. Stay a while and say hello!

Learn more