why should I do a maternity photoshoot london and how can I prepare?

In September 1974 my mum, Lolly Stirk was 8 months pregnant with me and had a maternity photo shoot with her good friend and photographer Rosemary Adams. The photos are, and have always been, absolutely extraordinary to me. Witnessing my Mum's stunning beauty at 26, carrying me so proudly, always fills me with love and is a big part of why I do the work I do today. A moment in time that will never be repeated. These photos are priceless to me and my family.

pregnant woman lays on blue couch wearing red kimono with arm over head maternity photoshoot london


Many of my muses say they were very nervous about getting in front of the camera, let me reassure you that this is normal, and it’s my job to make you feel relaxed and comfortable. It’s always such an honour to work with pregnant women, to have them place their trust in my hands to capture the strength and vulnerability of their pregnancy. Looking after and guiding my clients is my highest priority.

Some of my clients say that they feel at their most gorgeous and uninhibited whilst pregnant, with thick pregnancy hair, glowing skin, and a beautiful round bump. Others feel self-conscious about their bodies, saying that water retention, baby weight, and many other factors are putting them off getting in front of the camera. Every woman is different.

One thing I can absolutely say is that not one of them has ever regretted a maternity photo shoot, however they were feeling at the time.

blonde haired woman sits on couch in striped jumpsuit at maternity photoshoot london in sarah stirk photography's studio
woman cradles pregnant belly while wearing delicate pearl gown at maternity photoshoot london with sarah stirk
pregnant woman in yellow kimono poses with hands over her head while staring into the camera in london studio photoshoot

when to book your maternity photoshoot london

Your body, while pregnant, is going through the most incredible process. You’re creating another human! However you think you might look, I am here to say that this time is always worth commemorating, and it’s my job, through positioning, lighting, and making you feel relaxed, to get the most glorious portraits of you and your bump.

Timing wise I usually advise somewhere between 28-36 weeks. The aim is to capture that moment when your bump is nice and round, but you don’t feel too heavy. I have photographed women well outside of this time frame, so it’s just a guideline, and depends totally on how you feel.

I would advise drinking lots of water the day before your shoot. being well-hydrated can really help with skin quality. A good night's sleep can work wonders for how you feel. Moisturising hands and feet can help get rid of dry spots. Keep makeup to an absolute minimum as foundation and blusher can make your face a different colour to your body. Concealer and mascara are fine.

pregnant tattooed woman looks towards camera while sitting during maternity photoshoot in london
woman holds purple kimono delicately over pregnant belly at her maternity photoshoot in london studio
tattooed woman holds pregnant belly while sitting on couch wearing a red kimono in london

what to wear for your maternity photshoot. do you have to be nude?

You can be as clothed or as nude as you feel comfortable with. It is so important to know that you are in control, it’s your shoot and we want to get the portraits that you want. Some clients have a very clear idea of their shoots and know that they want to remain clothed, which is absolutely fine. We can discuss the best options from my wardrobe, and any ideas that you may have before your shoot. I love it when clients bring their own pieces from home and add a very personal touch to the session. Have a look at my previous blog post ‘What to wear for your photoshoot’ for tips on outfits.

This is your session. It’s about getting the images that you want. I can’t wait to collaborate with you and capture this extraordinary time in your life.

pregnant woman lays on blue couch during maternity photoshoot london with sarah stirk photography

Please don't hesitate to get in touch to discuss your photoshoot.