Barbara's Maternity Session (36 Weeks)

Barbara is another Michelin expat living in France.  Both Barbara and her husband work for Michelin, so I didn't get to see Barbara as much as the other wives.  I really regret not making more of an effort to get to know Barbara better, because she is super sweet.  She and I also share a lot of interests, like blogging and cooking.  You can check out Barbara's family's adventures out on her blog- Footprints in the Sand. I took pictures of Barbara's oldest son when he was 7 months old.  Nathan stole my heart with his curly brown hair and big brown eyes.  Completely. Smitten.

I was really glad that the timing worked out so that I could take maternity photos of Barbara during her second pregnancy.  And, secretly, I was hoping that little Noah would time his entrance to the world while I was still in France, so I could also do newborn photos.  Noah decided to make his grand entrance on the same day we flew back to the US.

Photographing a toddler is challenging.  This is probably the reason that for my photography business I say I photograph newborns thru one year olds.  Don't get me wrong.  I LOVE photographing toddlers.  They are adorable and hilarious and full of energy.  But, you can't exactly guarantee a session is going to go well.  So, when you have paying clients, I just don't feel like I can guarantee them enough shots- not including the back of the head as the toddler runs screaming from the camera...  My camera is fast, but toddlers are faster.  During this session, Nathan wanted nothing to do with me or my camera.  We were at the park.  He wanted to run and play and, well, be a toddler.  No worries, we improvised.  And honestly, no posed picture can compare with this:

Look at that sweet face!

But, back to the real reason for this session.  Barbara and her beautiful belly.

A is for Addison

I follow a lot (I mean A LOT) of photographers on facebook.  And I follow a lot of blogs aimed at photographers (usually, specifically, newborn photographers).  One of my favorites is TML Focus.  And when this post came across my newsfeed, I fell in love!  An ABC themed maternity session?  Um, yes please! I had an upcoming maternity session, and immediately emailed the link to see if the family was up for the challenge.  The M family agreed and it was so much fun brainstorming ideas for each letter.  The more we planned, the more in love with the idea I became.  We decided we would turn the photos from this session (and add pictures from the future newborn session) to make an ABC book the family could read together.  I loved how personal each letter was becoming.  For example, I was stumped for the letter 'X'. No problem. The mom is an x-ray technician and said she would bring some x-rays. Perfect! U? Oh, they have an umbrella from a trip the two of them took to Paris they wanted to use. Great! L? The family business is Little Debbie. I mean, come on! The afternoon of the session, the weather was perfect. Everyone was on time, and we got to work. This is when I realized I probably hadn't really thought everything through. The first challenge was the fact that this session involved the soon-to-be big brother. This kid was amazing, but doing a picture for all 26 letters, is a lot to ask of a 6 year old! Challenge #2 was lighting. By the end we were running out of light, and still had more letters! And did I mention 26 letters? That is 26 set-ups! I think I must still have some pregnancy brain myself to think this was a realistic idea. I think the biggest problem is that when I do a session, I try a lot of things. Some work. Some don't. Normally, this isn't a problem, because there are enough choices, that if I end up not using some pictures because I didn't like how they turned out, no problem. For this session, it mattered! I couldn't just not use the letter 'O' pictures. What kind of ABC book would that be?! Luckily, I was happy with 90% of the set-ups, and knew I would be able to re-do some when we had our newborn session together. (and ps- I could be wrong, but I am really convinced that the maternity session from the link above must have done their pictures in at least two different nights).

I am not going to post all 26, but here are some of my favorites. I really, really want to show you 'S is for Smile', but I don't know how the mom feels about having her belly posted on the internet. She requested we do something similar to the original post, so take a look and you will get an idea (except in ours, both the dad and son had a smiley-face balloon).

A is for Addison.

B is for Brother.

D is for Dad.

H is for Hugs.

J is for Jumping.

M is for Mom.

O is for Onesies.

U is for Umbrella.

X is for X-Ray.

Z is for zzz.....