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How to Take Beautiful and Memorable Maternity Photos

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Maternity photos are a wonderful way to document the exciting changes ahead of you. Check out these tips and tricks to get the best shots.

1. Get creative! Try out different angles to find what looks and feels best. Experiment with standing, sitting, and lying down. Pictures shot from above can be extra flattering and can minimize anything besides the belly that you don't want to showcase. Pictures shot straight on are an interesting break from your typical side shots.

2. Wait until your belly is big – but not too big. You want your belly to show, but if you wait too long, you might find posing to be exhausting. A good time to aim for is around 30 weeks. Ditch the bold patterns and keep your wardrobe simple. Tight, stretchy clothing will highlight your belly best.

3. Keep it natural. Shoot a series of photos while your partner or a friend stands nearby to make you laugh and smile. Your natural radiance will show through in photos that don't look too posed. Resting your hands on your belly may seem cliché but it's a very natural position for a mom-to-be. Plus, this can draw attention to your tummy and give you a place to put your hands.

4. Pick a location you love. Nature shots are de rigueur, but don't be afraid to pose downtown at your favorite cafe if that is more your speed. Natural light is most flattering early in the morning or an hour before sunset. Home is always a comfortable option and one that is easy to set up to your specifications – just be sure to avoid any background clutter for a nice, clean shot.

5. When posing as a couple, get as close as you can to create an intimate portrait you will treasure. Try to focus in on your emotions so you don't feel awkward in front of the camera. Your excitement will show on both your faces. If your growing baby has siblings, you can take a sweet family photo. A snap of big brother or big sister interacting with your belly will melt your heart. Just remember that you'll have to keep a toddler entertained while you set up the shots.

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