Capture the Moment: Maternity Photoshoot Ideas for Surrogacy

Capture the Moment: Maternity Photoshoot Ideas for Surrogacy

Worldwide Surrogacy Specialists


Beyond the medical procedures, legal processes, and contractual paperwork, there's a very important part of your surrogacy experience to address: the celebration of your new baby

Maternity photoshoots have become an increasingly popular way for intended parents to celebrate their pregnancies, their surrogate, and the newest addition to their family. They allow parents to recognize the important role surrogates play in expanding their family, and memorialize the awe-inspiring process that resulted in their new baby.

Whether you hire a professional or conduct the shoot yourself, here are a few creative approaches to your surrogate pregnancy maternity photos. 


Aaron Huniu Photography.png

Aaron Huniu Photography

Even if you have a gestational surrogacy, you can take a traditional approach to your maternity photos.

One of the most popular poses for moms-to-be and their families is the classic "Touch of a Loved One" pose, in which mother cradles the pregnant belly to show a sense of belonging and security. There are a number of unique approaches you can take as an intended parent or surrogate: 

  • Have you and your partner (and your older children, if you have them) place your hands on your surrogate's belly
  • Have both you and your surrogate place your hands on your own bellies
  • Have one parent place their hands on the other's; the other parent places their hands on the surrogate's

There are countless ways to incorporate other family members, other hands, and other placements into the shot. Don't hesitate to get creative when showing what your surrogate - and your future child - means to you. Looking back, you'll be thankful that you did.

Play with the forefront, background and focal poses of your shot. Have you and your partner in the background, looking toward your surrogate in the foreground to create a sense of connection and awe.

As an expectant couple who turned to surrogacy, this is a particularly emotional pose. Having a surrogate who allows you to expand your family is nothing short of awe-inspiring.



There are countless ways to represent the beauty of surrogacy photographically. If you or someone you know has a creative side, consider incorporating artistic elements into your approach.

Here are a number of creative takes on surrogacy photoshoots:

  • Use paint or graphic design to draw arrows, symbols, or equations around you and your surrogate (I.e. Parents + Surrogate = [name of baby], Parents + Surrogate = [heart], etc.)
  • Use chalk to create whimsical settings on the ground; lie down and pose to make it seem like a backdrop

Paint images on the stomach of your surrogate (i.e. storks, hearts, earth, angels, etc.)

Don't hesitate to incorporate props into your photoshoot. Family heirlooms, flowers, chalkboards, ultrasound photos...the possibilities are endless.

Toy blocks, for instance, provide a vibrant way to tell a story?showing your surrogate, and your child to be, the emotion behind why you chose surrogacy and how excited you are to expand your family.

You don't need paintbrushes or Photoshop to take a creative approach. Strategic subject placement is a popular photographic technique to create
illusion, or to conjure certain emotions or associations.

Here are a few examples:

  • Have the IP and surrogate stand shoulder-to-shoulder, with the surrogate further from the camera so her belly sticks out beyond the IP's
  • Find a clearly defined shadow, and have the IP stand next to the surrogate so their shadows align?it'll appear as if the IP is the one carrying the baby
  • We've all seen week-by-week fruit comparisons. Have the IP hold the corresponding fruit for each week beside the surrogate in each weekly photo.


Surrogacy is an emotional process?so finding time to laugh is important. Take a more humorous approach to your maternal photoshoot, to keep you, your surrogate, and one day, your baby, laughing well into the future.

Here are some phrases you can incorporate into your photoshoot on a shirt, on your surrogate's stomach, or during post-production using an image editing software:

  • "Just babysitting"
  • "This one's for you"
  • "It's not's theirs!"
  • "I'm the stork"
  • "Made with Love (and science)"
  • "It might take two to tango, but it took three to make this baby"

Play on Words

Bun in the oven. Pea in the pod. Eating for two.

The idioms surrounding pregnancy offer a number of opportunities for word-play, which can be a way to be light and playful, or visually emotive, depending on the route you take.

Here are a few examples:

  • Their pea, my pod
  • Spelling out words with the family, in which the surrogate's belly is the "O"
  • LOVE
  • HOPE
  • HOME
  • JOY
  • Their bun, my oven
  • Carrying her/his mommy and daddy's heart's underneath mine

Regardless of what approach you take, maternity photoshoots are a wonderful way to honor your surrogate, and commemorate the process that made your new baby possible.

The surrogacy journey is challenging for everyone involved, and choosing to honor your surrogate in a family photo shoot is a touching gesture. It may seem like a small token of appreciation, but if you and your photographer get creative, it will show how grateful you are to your surrogate.

Years down the road, you can look back at your photo shoot with your child and show them the woman that carried them for nine months. She may not be their mom, but she helped you create the miracle that is your child.


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