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My friends are expecting their first baby. They asked me if I could do the shots of their "expectancy". I'm a hobbyist photographer. I mostly enjoy taking shots of landscape and architecture and I'm not much into people.

What would be the crash course of taking pictures of pregnant woman? I believe I should get down & dirty (i.e. get lots of practice) with portrait photography, but I believe there are some certain aspects of shooting that big belly too.

  • I'm not quite sure what you mean exactly by "down & dirty" in this context. I mean, I know what the term means, but I'm not quite sure of how you're using it. Can you clarify? Thanks! – Please Read My Profile Aug 7 '11 at 16:16
  • @mattdm - I clarified the term. Thanks for the notice! – Eimantas Aug 7 '11 at 16:18
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    Got it. :) It's also hard to get lots of practice for a specific kind of work before your first attempt at it. :) – Please Read My Profile Aug 7 '11 at 16:28
  • You seem new here. Welcome to photo.SE! – Reid Aug 7 '11 at 20:15
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  • You may want to ask them ahead of time what kind of maternity photos they are thinking of. For example, does the woman want to show bare belly, or clothed belly, or a mix of both? Are they going for candid/journalistic? Artistic? Lots of props? Humourous photos? Try to get at least one profile of the belly.

  • For women who want to do some bare belly pics, you may want to consider that while a pregnant belly is very beautiful, some women may be sensitive to things that the large belly highlights (for example, sometimes veins become more visible on a pregnant belly, etc.) You may want to consider a soft focus on the belly itself (if it's bare skin), to give it more of a soft "glow": vs. highlighting every last stretch mark.

  • Along the same lines, do everything in your power to keep things as flattering for the mother as possible. Pregnancy adds extra pounds all over the place, and while this is natural and beautiful (and temporary), do your best to keep the angles kind to her. (i.e. watch for double chins, fuller upper arms, etc.)

  • Don't know what your lighting situation is, but if it involves continuous lighting that gets warm quickly, keep in mind that might be uncomfortable for a pregnant women.

Hope this helps. Good luck!

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