Jesse Salter + The Story Behind

You know when you see that shot? OH, THAT SHOT. Jesse Salter’s gorgeous maternity image featured today stopped us dead in our tracks and we couldn’t help but scan that gorgeous profile again and again. Everything down to the composition, the tones and the casual pose of the mom to be had us itching for more. If you’re looking for some gorgeous images of moms to be to spark your creativity, look no further than Jesse’s feed.

Can you tell us “The Story Behind” this shot?

This was a studio maternity session. This is mamas second baby. I did her last maternity session outdoors so this was a nice change from the first session. She tried on many dresses from my client closet but this dress was most impressive. In the studio I have floor to ceiling windows with sheer white curtains that make for gorgeous backlit shots like this. This is a shot I’ve done many times but its never created such a stunning silhouette quite like this one. I asked my client to raise her arms and place her hands in her hair. This exposed the silhouette completely and also revealed more of the strappy back of the dress. However, I didn’t want any part of her face hidden behind her arm. I then had her tilt her chin slightly towards the ceiling. This not only created the perfect window for her head but also allowed the light to stream beautifully down her face. It was a moment when all things aligned and the magic created is one I’m super proud of.

DSLR, iPhone, instant or film?

DSLR- Canon Mark IV

What speaks to you about this image? What specifically made you press the shutter?

The silhouette revealing her gorgeous belly. Growing life. Motherhood. The moment I realized the light through the dress exposed that perfectly shaped belly of hers, I just knew this shot was going to be THE one.

Did you have any lighting challenges/How did you light the image?

Backlit shots can always hold a bit of a challenge. However, for this particular image I didn’t use anything but window light. Not a flash or even a reflector. I slightly overexposed and took a few test shots to get it right but that’s about it.

Did you use any special techniques – freelensing, prism, etc?

This isn’t a special technique but just food for thought- I intentionally overexpose for a shot like this. I’ve blown out my whites/highlights and I’m okay with that.

Was this photo happenstance or did you visualize it prior? If so, how did you envision the image and set up for it?

This is a shot I’ve done several times in my studio. However, not with this mama nor with this particular dress. I didn’t realize the light through this dress would create such a magical silhouette. I was elated it did!

Did you use a preset to edit this image, your own selective edits or a combination of both?

Yes! I’ve created a custom preset that marries the style of LXC and Phil Chester into one.

We can’t imagine a more perfect dress for a maternity shot! Where did you nab it?

I purchased the dress off Amazon for only $23! #score

Follow along with Jesse Salter of Overland Park, Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri here: