Spring is just around the corner and if you are expecting a little one, you may be thinking that an outdoor maternity session would be a perfect venue for your maternity portraits.
Having been a full-time professional photographer for over 8 years now, I’ve photographed many expectant moms in studio and outdoors.
For the past few months we’ve been having maternity sessions inside the studio where the mamas-to-be can stay warm. Although I love in-studio pregnancy portraits, I always look forward to spring and booking outdoor maternity portrait sessions. There are so many gorgeous backdrops in the GTA and surrounding area and I am happy to travel and come to a location near you for your outdoor maternity portraits.
The Cherry Blossom Festival will be taking place soon. It is expected that the blooms will arrive early this year as we had a mild winter with plenty of precipitation.
Downtown Toronto has many beautiful locations. Some require permits to visit and others are upon to the public.
Whether you’re planning on hiring a professional maternity photographer or taking your own portraits, it’s usually best to head out first thing in the morning (just before or right at sunrise). This is the ideal time for outdoor pregnancy pictures when the light is especially soft. You can capture silhouette images against the sun rising and the light is very soft first thing in the morning when the sun is low to the ground.
Usually, I have an assistant attend with me for outdoor maternity portraits. My assistant helps me to carry all my gear so I can focus my attention on capturing stunning portraits. We have over 25 maternity gowns available for maternity sessions at Chandra Lee Photography. Moms are always asked which colors they would love to wear for their session and 7 or 8 gowns are brought to your outdoor session to choose from.
The gowns flatter your pregnant figure and add a beautiful touch to your portraits. I always find that my clients love the choice of the custom gowns over their own wardrobe.
Having your hair and makeup done for your session is always recommended. Some expectant moms choose to do their own hair and makeup and others decide to make an appointments at a salon prior to attending their session.
While it may be a bit harder to change outside for a maternity session than in-studio, a pop up changing station makes it easier and provides for privacy where a public washroom may not be available.
In addition to bringing all of the photography gear, pop up change station and a selection of gowns, portable reflectors are also brought to your session to use to reflect the light in a flattering way or diffuse the sun above you if the sun has risen quickly and we want to soften the light.
External flash units are used to create a beautiful fill light and catch lights in the eyes of our subjects.
If you enjoy a backdrop with stunning architecture, a floral garden, a blossoming park of cherry blossoms, a beautiful field with long grass or perhaps even an estate winery, we have the perfect place in mind!
Your partner is always welcome and encouraged to attend your session. If you’re expecting baby number 2 or 3, all members of the family are welcome to join your session.
Just as the first hour of sun rising is an ideal time for pregnancy pictures, just before sunset can be equally as beautiful. Depending upon the location chosen and the location of the sun, it may even be possible to capture a silhouette image of the sun setting behind you.
Wear comfortable walking shoes to your session. We often walk a bit throughout the parks and having comfortable walking shoes to wear is a must. If you want to wear high heels for your portraits, you can bring them with you in a carry on.
Prior to your session, you receive a maternity session preparation guide that sets out the time, date and location for your session. Also included is a Google map link to help assist you in finding the location and some other helpful suggestions.
Wearing a strapless bra to your session is always recommended. This helps to create more shape and is most flattering for maternity portraits. We then don’t need to worry about tugging in the straps of your bra into the gown. It’s also recommended to bring undergarments in at least two shades of black and nude or white. If you’re wearing a black gown, you probably don’t want to be wearing white undergarments or black undergarments with a white gown.
Some parks are very busy near sunset and it’s best to arrive early to find parking. We’ll let you know if a particular location you’ve chosen is especially busy. Sunrise is always the best time for downtown Toronto maternity photography when only early morning joggers, dog walkers and a few early risers are out and about.
If you’ve been thinking about having professional maternity portraits taken, it is best to contact the studio soon. Weekend dates are limited and fill up quickly. Weekends are when we travel into downtown Toronto and the surrounding area for outdoor portraits in the spring and summer months. Only 2 sessions can be booked per day either at sunrise or just prior to sunset.
If you’re located in the Durham Region (Ajax, Whitby, Oshawa, Bowmanville, etc.), evening sessions can take place at an outdoor location near you just prior to sunset.
The cherry blossom season if fast approaching and is always a favorite location for pregnancy portraits. The blooms only last for 5 days. We keep an eye out on the bloom predication watch each year to give you some idea of when the blooms will blossom. For this reason, it’s best to keep an open schedule around the time of the cherry blossom season if you wish to have the blooms in your pictures.
Contact the studio today to schedule your maternity portrait session and to find out more information. You can reach us at 905.449.2200 and we look forward to hearing from you!