I may be biased, but I think we have the most beautiful fall here in the Seacoast. So, whenever a maternity client contacts me and needs her session in the fall, I’m SUPER excited! I have this resource on when to schedule your maternity and newborn sessions if you’re currently in the research phase.
It’s no secret that maternity portraits are some of my favorites to capture. I love documenting such a special time for you and helping my clients plan this session. I’m here to help you with all the planning, including wardrobe and location. We have so many beautiful spots in our area, but I’ve rounded up my top five favorite maternity session locations.
The Top Five Maternity Session Locations
Wagon Hill in Durham, NH – This farm is a beautiful location that features tall fields and deep and rich fall colors for your portrait backdrop. Many locals also love the iconic wooden wagon on the farm for that country feel. See more about this location on their website.
Town Landing in Durham, NH – This picturesque location is stunning in the fall, with lush fall colors overlooking the water and boats. This location also has a beautiful waterfall that’s perfect for photos. Plus, it’s perfect for an expecting mama with convenient parking next to Three Chimney’s Inn. See more about this location here.
Fort Foster, Kittery, Maine – There’s so much to love about this location! This is perfect if you love the sea and want photos with the beautiful pier and lighthouse. Sunset sessions are always a fav for me. Did I mention that it’s dog friendly!? See more on the website.
Vernon Family Farm – Of course, Vernon Family Farm makes the list! This beautiful farm features a stunning wildflowers field and fall foliage that is perfect for a maternity session. In fact, every year, I’m able to offer Wildflower Mini Sessions that book up quickly. If you haven’t heard of Vernon Family Farm, check out my blog feature with one of the owners.
Hampton Beach State Park, NH – This location is perfect if you’re dreaming of a white sand beach backdrop. The beautiful seagrass makes a pretty background too. This beach tends to have fewer crowds which is nice for a maternity session. For tips on a beach maternity session, check out my blog here.
At-Home Maternity Session
Maybe you’re dreaming of something a little cozier. An at-home maternity session may be perfect for you. At home, we can capture you and your family where you are most comfortable. It also offers an opportunity to capture boudoir maternity photos to show how beautiful you are!
Seacoast Maternity Photographer
You really can’t go wrong with any of these locations for fall maternity photos. If you’re unsure or have questions, please send me a message here. I’m always happy to help a mama out. Did you know I have an online community for Seacoast moms? Join The Village for Seacoast Moms by White Wave Photography on Facebook. We’d love to have you!
If you’ve followed me for a while, you probably have heard of Vernon Family Farm. Not only am I an avid supporter of their mission, but I love being able to photograph clients on this picturesque, working farm.
This amazing farm is run by Nicole and Jeremiah Vernon, along with their adorable kids. Nicole was gracious enough to allow me to interview her for my blog, and I’m so excited to share that with you below. I have a special partnership with Vernon Family Farm and am so proud of all they’ve accomplished over the last ten years. If you’re local to Newfields, NH, I highly recommend you stop by the farm.
Here is my interview with Nicole! Some responses were edited for clarity.
Can You Share Your Business Name, What You Do and Where You’re Located?
My name is Nicole Vernon and I am co-owner of Vernon Family Farm which is a family farm that
was started by my husband Jeremiah and me approximately a decade ago, 8 years ago to be exact. We are located in Newfields, New Hampshire. We are a pastured livestock farm that focuses on non-GMO pasture-raised chickens.
As we continue to grow, we are diversifying and raising different crops and animals on pasture. For example, we are expanding our sheep operation and raising beef cattle. We are also in the beginning stages of growing some veggies again—garlic this year! Our niche is non-GMO pasture-raised chicken. We have a farm store on the property, what used to be an old blacksmith shop, that my husband renovated and restored to its current state. We are open daily, year-round. Our goal is to make local food as easy and accessible to the public as possible. That’s one of the main reasons we are open every day of the week so people can shop the way they are in the habit of shopping.
What is the Mission and Vision of Vernon Family Farm?
Our mission statement is a two-part mission statement: thriving pasture, thriving community. First, there’s “thriving pasture”—we aim to preserve open space while improving the environmental health of our pastures. We try to do that in harmony with our farm’s needs. If the pasture is in good health, the land will provide, and if the land can provide, the community will thrive. In part, a thriving community is attainable when there is understanding, transparency, and appreciation between the consumer and the farming community.
We encourage people to directly interact with local food, know your farmer, shop and connect with the people responsible for your food. In our opinion, the two ideas are so incredibly interconnected.
Do You Have Some Popular Items at The Farm Store?
Chicken! Vernon Family Farm has really created a name for itself regarding chicken. We saw an opportunity when we first started working at the farmer’s markets. We noticed that chicken, for being the number one consumed protein in the United States, just wasn’t available the way it needed to be. No one had chicken cuts, boneless breasts, drumsticks, or wings. You know, the cuts of chicken you purchase at a grocery store? Nobody had these popular cuts we love and have all the time in our freezers. Jeremiah wanted to do chicken the way people wanted chicken. By doing so, we also made sure we maximized what was raised and continued to use the whole/entire animal—not letting anything go to waste.
When you walk into our store and come to our farm events, chicken is the most popular item both on the menu at Vernon Kitchen and in The Farm Store. Boneless breast and tenders are super popular and we also have value-added products made by our sister
company Vernon Kitchen. The value-added products that are popular are our varieties of broth, chicken pot pie, soup, rotisserie chicken mac and cheese, and rotisserie chicken. We have all the cuts of chicken available. We also have feet, organ meat like liver, heart, necks, and once in a while have bones available to purchase. Besides the feathers and beaks, we use the entire animal.
Most people know us as a pasture live-stock farm and chicken is number one on the list. Other meat tends to be next, beef, pork, lamb, bison, elk, etc. We like to offer a one-stop shop for locals. We work with 30-40 other local vendors and small farmers in our area. We don’t grow every single item in our farm store, but we do work with an incredible network of farmers and growers that allow us to be so diverse in our offerings. Without them, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do. It’s a team effort.
Do You Have Any Signature Events?
We have a concert music series that begins at the end of May and goes through October. Our events feature our chicken on the menu and live music at The Farm. It’s an opportunity for people to connect to local food in a way that is maybe more comfortable for them? Our events are inviting and are a wonderful way to get new people to The Farm. You get to see the animals roaming in the pasture, and you get to interact with the local community in a way you might not have at a typical venue. Plus, you get the sights, sounds, and smells of a local farm. We market it as a truly authentic experience.
Our events focus on local food (every chicken dish is made with our chicken) and local, live music in an outdoor setting. We have our fried chicken events which are our signature events that happen on the 2nd Saturday of the month and the 4th Friday of the month. Another really fun event we have is an event that happens in October called Fire and Ice. It’s a Vernon Family Farm tradition. We have a fire spinner that comes and does a fire show in addition to live music and good wholesome local eats. Courtney, our fire spinner, has been coming to the farm for years to perform. The “ice” portion of this event was when we used to make farm-inspired popsicles, super popular but currently on pause. We do hope to bring those back. It’s really an event geared toward kids but all are welcome and everyone has a blast.
Can You Share About the Wildflower Sessions?
Jennie is a friend and also a photographer who first approached us about photographing her clients with the signature hale bales in the background. People love getting their pictures in a field with the sunset and with hay bales behind them. She invites a lot of new customers to the farm that wouldn’t have known who Vernon is and it’s a win/win situation on many levels.
About two years ago, we received a wonderful grant to install a half-acre wildflower meadow with the purpose of encouraging pollinators and naive pollinizers. The blooms start in early May and last all throughout our event season through the end of October. Every month the wildflower meadow changes because there are new flowers in bloom.
Jennie has really cultivated this beautiful awareness of this space through her photography and photo sessions. Jarrod Fowler helped us install this wildflower meadow. He is an expert in this field. He is a pollinator conservationist and entomologist who was instrumental in the architectural design, installation, and cooperative maintenance of the wildflower meadow.
How Can Readers Support Vernon Family Farm Farm?
If readers are local, they can come shop at Vernon Family Farm located at 301 Piscassic Road
Newfields, NH 03856. Maybe look at your grocery list and see what you can buy at The Farm versus the grocery store. Additionally, if readers aren’t local, they can share our content online. We are on Instagram and Facebook.
Family Photography at Vernon Family Farm
Honestly, I’m always excited when my clients have their session at Vernon Family Farm! It’s a beautiful location with lots to offer, plus, I love getting to show my clients around. Not only can you schedule your family photography session with me at Vernon Family Farm, but I offer limited Wildflower Sessions every year. Click here to see the next Wildflower session date.
If you’re an expecting mama, you’re probably in the midst of planning all the things for your new baby! From researching baby monitors to decorating the nursery and choosing a name, there’s a LOT that needs to get done to welcome such a tiny person into your family.
One of the things you’re probably thinking about is when to have your maternity and newborn photos taken? I’m here to answer those questions and provide you with insight into why.
When Should You Schedule Maternity Photo Shoot
So, when is the best time to schedule your maternity photoshoot? I recommend having your photos taken between 31-35 weeks of pregnancy. This way, your bump is perfect for photographing, but you aren’t quite at the over-it stage of pregnancy! Of course, please let me know if you have a special circumstance such as multiples or any other situation. I totally understand and am happy to work with you! Your photos will still be gorgeous.
The answer to when to actually contact a photographer and schedule your maternity photo shoot is as soon as possible! This way, you can be on my calendar well before you reach 35 weeks, and we don’t have to worry about fitting you in! For tips on how to have your best maternity session, look here.
My best piece of advice is not to wait until your baby is born. To be able to provide a full-service newborn session experience for clients and ensure my availability around their due date, I can only take on a certain number of newborn sessions. If you contact me after your baby is born, I might not have availability.
I highly recommend scheduling your newborn session as soon as you can, and, preferably, you can schedule your maternity and newborn sessions at the same time. This way, you’re all ready to go and don’t have to worry about finding a photographer while you’re navigating life with a newborn.
Special Circumstances in Newborn Photography
Just like with maternity photos, there are special circumstances that I want to address. If you need more time to recover from birth or your baby had to spend time in the NICU, it’s okay to take newborn photos later. Please reach out and let me know how I can help you.
Multi-generation family portraits are a beautiful way to preserve your family’s history to be passed on for many generations to come. Photography has come a long way over the past century, so while many of us don’t have photos of our great-grandparents and relatives, now we have an incredible opportunity to capture generational family portraits through family photography.
As a newborn photographer, I’m privileged to capture a baby’s first professional portrait. I get to meet this new baby and wonder what she will look like as she grows up and what she’ll do with her life. As a multi-generational family portrait photographer, I meet families and learn their stories as I capture the portrait that will carry on the legacy. It’s pretty amazing.
When I meet with a potential generational family portrait client, the objection that I usually hear is that they’re worried about coordinating such an event. Let me share a few tips for planning a multi-generation family portrait!
Planning a Multi-Generation Family Portrait
Decide Why – First, decide why is this important to you. It may seem silly to think about this, but having a clear why will help you plan the rest of the steps. Is this important for you to preserve your family’s story? Show off your beautiful family in your home? Decide this and write it down if you’d like to have a visual of your why!
Choose Heirloom Portrait Artwork – Now that you have your why let’s talk about the what! What will you display after the session? Are you dreaming of a family gallery wall? Or every family member displays the same portrait in their home? Perhaps you want an album with each family along with the multi-generational portrait. The important thing is that you have a plan for these special portraits. Don’t let these sit on a flash drive or social media. These deserve a special place in your home!
Get the Whole Family On Board – Now that you have the why and the what, we need to get the who involved! It’s time to get the entire family on board with this portrait session. If you run into any resistance, you can share your why and what. You can say this is important that you preserve the family legacy, and you want every family member to receive a framed portrait. It’s much easier to get everyone on the same page!
Plan the Date Accordingly – The tricky part may be scheduling the date, especially if you have family members living out of town. Start with what dates work for you and see if you can find one that works for everyone. Some families coordinate this with a big milestone such as a major anniversary or other family events. You don’t have to, but it could be an option.
Find a Photographer You Trust – Finally, find a photographer that you can trust with such a special portrait session. This is definitely not the image you take with a phone or a friend with a camera. You’ll want a professional photographer to guide you through the planning process with ease and can handle managing multiple families at once.
Seacoast Generational Family Portrait Photographer
Family photography is more than just taking a photo; it’s preserving your family’s legacy. My stress-free portrait process means that once you book with me, I handle all the details for you. As Professional Photographer, I have the skills and techniques to make sure that each member of your family feels cared for throughout the session.
Finally, if you’d like to schedule a time to chat, please click here! I’d love to meet with you.
Let me start by saying I love a good DIY. There is a time and place for that; however, your newborn portraits are not that time! Your sweet newborn is only this small for such a short period of time. It’s a short window to capture these precious moments before they’re gone.
If you DIY or hire someone “with a camera” you will not end up with the images that you want. There’s so much more to taking a photo than the camera. It’s about the experience, style, technique, and passion that the photographer brings to her work.
I also believe every photographer needs her start, however, this isn’t the session to trust a newbie. Newborn photography is a specialization in the industry. Newborn photographers undergo special training so that they can safely capture your newborn portraits. Please allow me to share more about why you should work with a trained and experienced newborn photographer.
Newborn Photography Training
Newborn photography training is not one-and-done. There are new techniques being introduced all the time. Techniques that result in better, safer portraits that your family will be able to cherish forever. When hiring a newborn photographer you can ask about any specialized training to know that they are committed to newborn photography. Over the years, I have studied under some world-renowned newborn and birth photographers such as Kelly Brown, Monet Nicole, and most recently Danielle Hobbs. Danielle’s Simple & Pure Workshop in Florida this past fall was a game changer for me and I am excited to offer more baby-led posed sessions in my studio.
Why Trust a Newborn Photographer
There are three main reasons why you should trust a newborn photographer to capture your child’s first official portraits.
Number one is safety. As a newborn photographer, I never force your baby to pose or put the baby in an unsafe condition. We are very much baby-led during our newborn portrait sessions. We head into the session knowing that we’ll have to adapt to what baby is okay with. Trained newborn photographers know and love this as it results in beautiful portraits. In some cases, if mom has a certain pose in mind (such as older siblings holding your newborn), we can use PhotoShop magic to make it happen.
Again, every photographer needs her start, but you generally get one shot at newborn portraits, so this is when you need to work with an experienced photographer whose work you love. (Don’t worry about new photographers, they can gain experience as associates.) You want a newborn photographer with a portfolio of newborn images that you love and know you can trust.
My final piece of advice is to work with a trained newborn photographer that you like and can trust. You should feel comfortable asking any questions about the session and feel supported throughout the process. Being able to work with brand new babies is a gift that I truly treasure and never take for granted. Each newborn photography session is a special experience for me. If you’re interested in learning more or scheduling a session, let’s set up a time to chat here!
Finally, I also invite you to join my online community The Village for Seacoast Moms to get the resources, encouragement, and support that you need.