Pregnancy Portrait: This is Ursula

Pregnancy-Portrait-Cape-Town-Maternity-Photography-002-by-Leah-Hawker

I met Ursula a number of years ago and was thrilled to be commissioned to shoot a series of pregnancy portraits of her as well as capture some family moments afterwards with herself, her daughter and her husband.

Ursula was pregnant with her second child, and in her third trimester when we worked together. The pregnancy portraits we shot were very simple but bold. I lit her with one light, set back, to just highlight her silhouette plus  a little bit more detail created by a poly board on her other side.

Pregnancy-Portrait-Cape-Town-Maternity-Photography-001-by-Leah-Hawker

There is a decadence in the profile of a pregnant women which I love. The shapes are so beautifully abundant. Every line of the female body becomes enhanced so that a series of interconnected spheres take over the body.

Heavily pregnant women, especially when shot in this style, remind me of the Venus of Willendorf, a paleolithic sculpture associated with fertility and childbearing (picture below).

venusofwillendorf

Ursula and I also shot a few images with her young daughter in an embrace, the  resulting image I find to be a special reflection of motherhood.
Together their bodies become a knot of warmth, love and nurturing.

Pregnancy-Portrait-Cape-Town-Maternity-Photography-004-by-Leah-Hawker

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