How I discovered that not having a maternity photo shoot wasn’t a good idea.


Ok, this is a hard one, but they say being honest pays, so here I go: I have barely any pictures of my pregnancy.

First of all, I want to make some things clear: I believe that pregnancy and giving birth are a few of the most empowering, beautiful, unique things that only we, women, can do. We are badasses, goddesses, and we should feel and be treated like that.

But also, I want other women to know that it can happen and it’s ok: most of us don’t feel comfortable with having a big belly, period.

It’s a big change, it happens super fast, we have a lot of hormones messing with our body, we feel a lot of pressure from social media, tv, and magazines telling us that the nice-little-belly-that-tinny-women-have during their pregnancies is perfect, but as soon as possible we have to “get our body back” (as if our body has gone away).

Selfportrait with a big pregnant belly at my own house, looking down a little shy because I wasn't feeling very happy with my body
yes, people, that’s me

During my pregnancy, I thought maternity photos should ALWAYS look like this: a woman posing, caressing her round belly, smiling at the camera. And because of that, I didn’t want pictures of my pregnancy. I hate posing, I don’t feel myself while doing it and I also don’t when looking at the pictures.

It was hard to feel pretty, it was hard to look at the camera, I hated my body and on top of that, everybody was asking for pictures!!

And then one day, something happened. I was lying on my couch and my cat did what she does every time somebody leans back: she got upon my stomach looking for my hand to pet her.

When my husband saw that, he took the photo.

And I loved this picture. I still do.

It’s not from a maternity photoshoot, it’s the image of a moment. An intimate, cozy, tender moment.

I discovered that a good way of having pictures of this moment, in case we don’t feel like goddesses, but love and enjoy this season of our life, is having a photoshoot where we are keen to capture the moment, the connections, but not the perfect pose or the perfect smile.

I started offering that to my clients. And I made another discovery:

If you have young children… and especially if you have wild, badass children, unposed spontaneous photography fits them perfectly.

There are many moments you’re children will crave when older, and they will absolutely adore having those memories to see and remember how their young years were.

And pregnancy is not an obstacle to having a photoshoot in which you simply spend quality time with your children. It will be beautiful for them to remember how their family was before the new member enters into their routine and habits, and it will be even more beautiful for you, to see how things were during that time, how your family evolves. How your everyday life has completely changed.

Pregnant mom sitting on the couch in her living room. She's with her two kids, kissing her boy while hugging him. Her daughter is hugging her. Picture in black and white. Amsterdam family and newborn photographer.

Today, I have very few pictures of my pregnancy. It makes me sad, I feel guilty about that (even when I shouldn’t) and I remember those days with so much love and I feel so empowered about having had the blessing of being pregnant and bringing a new person into this world.

I encourage women to have a photo shoot of their pregnancy. No matter the style you chose, you will love the pictures later. It’s a unique moment.

And even when it’s hard (believe me, I know, I’ve been hospitalized 3 times because of hyperemesis gravidarum), pregnancy it’s still life, it’s power, it’s one of the most magnificent things that happen in the world and you are fortunate to have that.