Maternity photography with SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

Maternity photography with SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

- SIGMA Nordic

Photographer: Lotta Polviander. SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

A pregnancy is a special time in life and something that many wants to remember with photos. It might just be portrait photography, but with some specific things to keep in mind in order to get as beautiful photos as possible. 

- When is the photoshoot going to take place?
- Is the photos being taken in a studio, at home or outside - and what about lighting? 
- How do you highlight the belly in the best way? 

The questions might be many, but don´t you worry! We´re taking you along this pregnancy photoshoot with Finnish photographer and SIGMA Nordic Ambassador Lotta Polviander where she tried out the new SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art. We´re also giving you some tips and tricks along the way to get you started in the best possible way.

Photographer: Lotta Polviander. SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

When to take maternity photos?

It is often said that somewhere between week 30 and 35 is best for a maternity photoshoot. At this time, the mom-to-be has a beautiful belly, and hasn´t gotten to the point where she might feel too uncomfortable and too tired to enjoy posing for a shoot. But, a maternity photoshoot can happen at any time during a pregnancy, of course. 

Photographer: Lotta Polviander. SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

Where will the photoshoot be?

Is the photoshoot going to take place in a studio, at home or outside? It is important to think about how the lighting is going to be like. Some moms-to-be prefer to be outside, in the nature, for natural, beautiful surroundings. In this case, you need to think about the best locations for the photoshoot, and the best time of the day for it. And, of course, also prepare for any type of weather. 

Maybe the mom-to-be prefers a more controlled environment like a studio for her photos, or maybe she wants to be in the comfort of her own home for a familiar atmosphere. If you are at home, it is important to think about lighting, and how to take advantage of the natural lighting in the best way possible.

Lotta Polviander shot these maternity photos at home, and by shooting the mom-to-be in different locations close to a window, she could use the natural daylight for beautiful photos. The bright aperture of the SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art is also very helpful when the lighting isn´t at its best. 

"- I loved how sharp, soft and fast the lens was! I usually don't shoot portraits aperture wide open, but I used F1.2 almost the whole session, and I think it worked beautifully! Usually, if I am having a portrait session, I keep aperture close to F1.8-2, but with this lens it was fun to test to shoot aperture wide open. Of course it depends on how close I am to the subject, but with this session it worked perfect", Lotta says. 

Photographer: Lotta Polviander. SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

How can you highlight the belly in the best way? 

The mom-to-be is the star of these photos, with her beautiful belly in the spotlight. You can highlight the belly in many different ways; with clothes, lighting, posing and props, for example.  

Do you have your own wardrobe with pregnancy dresses and other clothes to lend out? Or maybe the mom-to-be wants to bring her own clothes, if that makes her feel more confident and secure. 

Lighting can also hightlight the belly, by turning towards a window, for example, or the contrast between a background and the belly. Try out different poses, both from the side and straight forward. 

Partner and/or siblings
Is the partner going to be in the photos as well? Try out different poses together, and make sure to include some photos where they keep their hands on the belly too! The mom to be can keep the hand closest to the camera underneath her belly, with the other hand placed on top of it for a beautiful pose. Maybe there are siblings who should be in the photos as well? Remember that children might not be that patient, so keep it easy and quick. 

Using different props in the photo can be fun and add something to the photo. Flowers are a popular prop to use in maternity photos, but it can also be an ultrasound photo, baby clothes or shoes, or why not a furry family member (a dog, perhaps). 

Photographer: Lotta Polviander. SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

Prepare as much as you can.

Like before every photoshoot, you need to prepare. Locations and wardrobe, as mentioned, are two things. But also finding out answers to questions like what the mom-to-be expects out of this photoshoot? Does she have any wishes? Any specific types of photos that she´s looking for? In any specific constellations? Maybe she has inspiration photos to show you. 

What do you need to bring to the shoot for everything to work smoothly? Extra batteries, maybe an extra camera? A tent for outfit changes if you´re outside. Extra lighting? The right lens equipment, like the SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art, but other options could be the portrait master SIGMA 85mm F1.4 DG DN | Art, or the versatile SIGMA 24-70mm F2.8 DG DN | Art

Photographer: Lotta Polviander. SIGMA 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art

Make the mom-to-be feel comfortable, and guide her. 

Not everyone is comfortable in front of the camera, and it´s your job to make the mom-to-be feel as comfortable and beautiful as she can, for her to be able to be herself. If you can´t meet up before the photoshoot, make sure to give her a call to talk it over and get to know each other a bit better. Will it help by putting on some music in the background?

Help her out by giving directions on how to pose. Where is it best for her to turn to catch the light in the best way? Should she look down? Up? Into the camera, or down at the belly? Where does she need to put her arm, what should she do with her head? This will make the mom-to-be feel more comfortable and help you get even more beautiful photos.

Lotta Polviander
Wedding & Family Photographer and SIGMA Nordic Ambassador

Lotta Polviander is a professional wedding and family photographer living in Tammerfors, Finland. Lotta loves photographing people in different situations, full of emotions, such as weddings and family sessions. She loves authentic moments and always sees little magic between people and loves to capture all that beauty, love and connection in relationships!

Website  |  Instagram

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