Guest post from Ana Brandt of Anamaria Brandt Photography:
As a Maternity/Newborn Photographer, the one question I hear over and over again is, ” When is the best time to have pregnancy photos taken?” The answer to this questions varies so much, but potential maternity photo clients always need guidance related to timing.
After having three children of my own, I know that the body changes often from one child to the next. To help my clients feel more comfortable with scheduling their sessions, I wrote a quick, 28-page guide, which includes examples of my photos of clients at various stages in their pregnancy, between 22 to 39 weeks.
While we usually advise our clients to schedule a session between 28 and 32 weeks, you can plainly see in the guide referenced below, it truly does vary by body type. Give your clients a general guideline, while reassuring them that it’s still OK for them to have a session if they’re outside of the recommended time frame.
Before a client even schedules a session, I am often asked why people have pregnancy photos taken in the first place. As an adopted child, one thing I know for sure is that the reason I capture my own images is to leave a part of my own personal legacy behind for the next generation. Each client that chooses to photograph this time in their life is making the decision to preserve a part of their personal legacy, which becomes part of their history. By focusing on the reasons why we take pregnancy photos, you can ease the nerves of even the most camera shy clients.
Once a client decides to move forward with a maternity or newborn session, it is so important to make them feel comfortable, confident, and prepared before their shoot. I prepare each client with a pre-session brochure, which I send via snail mail. That way, they can bring their brochure with them while shopping or looking around for inspiration. It really doesn’t take long for you to create these – just think of what a client would know before the perfect session – and your client will be thrilled with how prepared and supportive you are. Our pre-session brochures include information such as:
- Session fees
- Ideal time to photograph pregnancy
- What to wear
- What to expect after the session (time frame for image delivery, product sales, etc.)
- Ideal time to photograph newborns (we suggest between 7-10 days after birth)
- Nursing moms food list
- Packing list for shoot day
- List of items in the studio (wraps, props, etc.)
Once your clients know when to schedule a maternity or newborn photo session, why the images should be captured, and how to prepare for shoot day, they’ll arrive for their session confident, relaxed, and looking amazing. Plus, since you have exceeded their expectations at each step in the process, there’s a great chance they’ll be your clients for life!