Pregnancy is one of the most remarkable experiences women can face. For this reason, you're going to want to remember it. Many opt to create a pregnancy journal to record their thoughts and emotions throughout the journey. However, if you're a more visually-minded person, taking photographs can also give you an outlet for self-expression. By documenting your pregnancy through pictures, you'll be able to preserve precious memories and provide your baby with a lasting memento of your experience while you were expecting. Here are a few ideas on how to do just that.
Collect your ultrasound pictures
The closest you'll get to meet your baby before the actual birth is at your ultrasounds, and you can collect the photos taken here. While it's definitely natural to be excited about those pictures, don't forget to prioritize allowing your healthcare professional to collect the needed information, like your baby's growth and development, any anomalies, the position of your placenta, and your baby's size. Once that's taken care of, feel free to enthuse about your baby's cute poses as much as you like.
For better pictures, drink lots of water before the scan. You might even want to chomp on some ice! This will encourage your baby to move and make seeing the structures behind your bladder easier. Once your ultrasound is over, you'll have the option to take your sonogram pictures as keepsakes.
Take regular photos of your bump
Your body will change as your baby grows, and recording that process through daily or weekly photos can give you an interesting perspective on your pregnancy. Doing so can be as simple as snapping a mirror shot with your phone—however, you may also want to build a physical album or scrapbook and add printed photos to them. After all, there's nothing more satisfying than creating a work you can hold and flip through with loved ones. If that's the case, you may want to move away from using a phone or digital camera, and instead use a film camera, a charming, fully analog device that pushes you to calculate the shots you truly want and cherish them. Today, you can easily get common film formats like 35mm film or instant film cartridges. You won't be alone in this endearingly old-school practice, either. The reality TV star April Marie famously showed her pregnancy progress via film camera, to the delight of her fans. As one of them put it, you can't replace true polaroid pictures. Consider getting the Fujifilm Instax Mini 12 for your own photos. It has a close-up mode, automatically adjusts to ambient light, and even has digital integration for easy sharing.
Capture experiential milestones
You'll also have monumental moments you'll have to take photographs for, even if they don't follow a particular schedule. These are your pregnancy milestones and can include the first times you tell someone you're pregnant, buy baby clothes or furniture, hear your baby's heartbeat, or wear maternity clothes. You might even want to record milestones you didn't anticipate, like if you decide to gobble through five buckets of popcorn to soothe a pregnancy craving. Keep your camera handy for these moments, and ask your loved ones to be ready to shoot spontaneously when you ask them.
Schedule a professional photo shoot
The trend of maternity photoshoots was popularized back in 1990 when Demi Moore showed off her baby bump on the cover of Vanity Fair. Since then, expecting moms have excitedly jumped on board the pregnancy photoshoot train, with styles ranging from sleek, professional photos to more casual day-to-day photographs. Considering that the visuals of many of your pregnancy moments will be out of your control, this can feel very empowering.
If you want to try this out yourself, our guide to planning your maternity shoot suggests creating a cohesive vision your photographer can happily adjust to. Want forest-themed pictures? You and your photographer can spend a day in the park, capturing photos at golden hour. Want something both fantastical and homey? Your photographer can bring drapes, props, and portable lighting equipment to your house, and you can experiment with finding the right lighting ratio to add dimension or use an Altura flash diffuser to soften brightness for a luminescent glow.
Your pregnancy will be filled with memories you'll want to remember and share. Documenting it with photographs can help you look back on them for years to come.
About the Author:
Rachael Joseph is a stay-at-home mom training to become a licensed planning family consultant. She lives with her partner, three beautiful kids, and two cats.