Outdoor or Indoor?? What to think about When Planning your Maternity Photos

by | Jun 12, 2023 | Locations, Maternity, Sessions

You’ve got options, mama!

(And lots of ’em)

First of all, before we talk about locations for your Maternity Photo Session, I have one thing to say… congratulations! I know I’ve got this all over the maternity photo pages of my site, but that doesn’t make it any less true. You did the thing, and I’m proud of you!! And now you’ve got that glow we just HAVE to freeze in time!! Okay now that the congratulations are out of the way…

When you’re booking your maternity photography, there are a ton of big decisions. What are you going to wear? Who are you going to work with? When in your pregnancy will you have your photos done? But the question we’re going to address today is a big one: where should you have your session?


Minneapolis Maternity Session Location Choices

We have options, after all. We can take your images in your home, in the studio, or outdoors. Those are the basic options. There’s others, of course – we could get really-super-extra and book an exclusive location for your session (and if that’s something you’ve been thinking about, totally reach out, because I want to talk about it!) But essentially, we’ve got those three base options.

And choosing can be difficult! I get it. But, there are some questions you can ask yourself to weed down the options, and that’s what we’re going to go over today.

Questions to ask yourself:

When you’re trying to choose a location for your maternity session, I recommend thinking about the following questions. Not all of them are going to be relevant to every mama-to-be, but I invite you to consider them anyway!

1. Where will you be most comfortable?

The biggest question to ask before Maternity Photography is “where will you be most comfortable”. This is because let’s face it… pregnancy isn’t always glamorous. And not all of us feel glamorous under normal circumstances. So, think about spending your session outdoors. Is that something you feel personally comfortable with? Could you pull your sassiest faces potentially in public? Can you imagine yourself leaning into the glow?


2. What season is it?

Season is a big one, because… I don’t have to tell you how cold it gets in Minneapolis. If you’re going to be at the peak of your pregnancy during the winter months… I hate to break it to you but this might be the make-it-or-break-it question for whether your session can take place outdoors. If it’s going to be cold, are you cosy with the cold? Can we work around it with wardrobe options? Sometimes the snowy landscape vibe can be super cool in maternity photos (or in portrait photos in general) but it comes down to whether you’re going to be comfortable for the duration of a session in an outdoor space, in the freezing cold.

3. How do you feel out in public in a maternity gown?

Not everyone wears gowns for their maternity sessions. In fact, if you want to wear a pair of maternity bell-bottoms and a sweatshirt, I’m all for it. Tee shirt and a skirt… it’s all you, mama. But what I’m getting at, is whatever you plan on wearing… are you comfortable with wearing that in public? Because if not, it might be best to have your session in a more private location, where people won’t be looking at you. During your session, if we’re in public, there WILL be people observing! I mean, you’re gorgeous, who wouldn’t want to look? The question becomes whether you’re okay with that, or not.


4. Does the Maternity Photographer you’re looking at offer both options?

Another big question to ask when you’re choosing a location for your Maternity Photo Session, isn’t actually a question to ask yourself! It’s a question to ask your photographer. If you’ve chosen someone based on their portfolio… do they offer sessions in the location that you’re leaning toward? If you really, really want to work with a specific photographer, then you might end up having to stick with outdoor if they don’t have access to a studio space. Likewise you might have to stick with studio if they don’t offer outdoor. Or… you could work with someone like me, who offers both! (Was that plug too shameless? We’re on my blog, after all…) Since I offer both locations, there is even the opportunity to include both for you. It all comes down to what you want!

Pregnant woman in a translucent lilac gown standing in front of the sea

7. How are you with like… walking, and stuff?

The final consideration about location for your Maternity Photo Session is all about you! These sessions take place at a different point in pregnancy for every mom, however, I recommend having the session after you have an obvious bump, but before getting around is vastly uncomfortable. (Unless you’re one of those lucky women, who don’t end up having that problem… my fingers are crossed for you.) But we all know, every pregnancy is different, and the experience of every woman varies, with each baby. So a big consideration is how you’re dealing with things like walking around. If walking is getting difficult, or if you’re struggling with morning sickness etc, maybe it would be best to stick with an indoor location, or even your home. There’s nothing wrong with staying close by in case you just need to be horizontal.

When all else fails….. talk to your Maternity Photographer!!


I promise I’ll help you decide.

Hopefully all of these questions have helped weed down the process of choosing a location for your maternity photo shoot! But if you’re still having difficulty choosing, or you want more details about the locations that I personally shoot at, just reach out! I’d love to talk to you and answer any questions you have about my process, or locations available for maternity photography.


xoxo, Jessie

Jessica Strobel holding multi-colored doughnuts over her eyes, smiling wide

Hey! I'm Jessie - 

And I'm so glad you're here!



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