8 sensational locations in and around Kalamazoo MI that will give your maternity pictures a magical background

Kalamazoo Michigan is full of gorgeous scenery. When you’re looking for that perfect spot to have your maternity pictures taken, it can be hard to narrow all the possibilities down. I’ve been doing pregnancy photos for many years in the area in every season, and I’m going to give you an insider’s help to find your perfect spot. Complete with examples and seasonal tips, here are my 8 top choices for pretty locations in and near Kalamazoo for a maternity photo session.

Asylum Preserve

maternity photography locations kalamazoo

Of all the pretty locations in Kalamazoo MI for a maternity photo session, this is the one I use most often. It’s close to everything, but feels out of the way the minute you step on to the trails. It has lots of variety in backgrounds and is picturesque at any time of year. In the spring there are areas of beautiful delicate wildflowers. In late May/early June there are pockets of purple phlox that are stunning. Fun fact: the patches can be in different areas of the preserve from year to year, and differ in the amount of bloom, too, depending on the weather conditions that year.

wildflower background for maternity photos kalamazoo

Fall brings colorful leaves and golden grasses. In late fall, the grasses are still tall and make a lovely organic backdrop.

The light is beautiful morning and evening, but at sunset on a sunny day it is magical.

pregnancy photos Asylum Preserve Kalamazoo

Asylum Preserve information and map

Al Sabo

Maternity pictures in Al Sabo Preserve, Portage MI

Al Sabo is another nature preserve, located in Portage. It has two areas that provide very different backgrounds for maternity pictures. One is above- a grove of very tall, very upright pine trees in rows. It’s unique and very striking in pictures. These work pretty much year round.

The other areas are open fields with mature trees behind them- great for those pretty backlit sunset images. There is also a bit of color in some spots in the fall.

sunset maternity pictures at Al Sabo Preserve in Portage MI

Al Sabo is also a beautiful spot in winter time. If the snow is on the trees, there are plenty of pine trees in open areas that are glorious when snow covered.

Snowy maternity picture at Al Sabo Preserve

There are miles of trails throughout Al Sabo, but you can walk to these areas in about a quarter of a mile on very easy trails. There is a good sized parking lot, but keep an eye out as you’re approaching it on Texas Drive- it’s not well marked and comes up quickly.

Al Sabo information and map

Milham Park

Milham Park in Kalamazoo has a picturesque creek, bridges (both wooden and stone), and lush trees for most of the year. I have two favorite times here. The first one is the hour just after sunrise. The sun gives you gorgeous backlight on the banks of the creek- perfect for highlighting your baby bump.

Milham Park location for maternity pictures

The other time that Milham Park really shines is in the fall. There are auburn, red and yellow trees scattered throughout the park, and so many beautiful spots with colorful backgrounds. When a mom-to-be wears a fall colored dress, it’s a beautiful combination.

Maternity photosessions Milham Park

If you’d like to include your dog in your maternity pictures, Milham Park is a good choice for a location. The parking lot is close to most of the scenic areas, so it’s easy to include them in some of the pictures and then have them go relax in the car if it’s temperate enough that day. One note- the park is home to many geese, so if they’re reactive to birds, it may not be the best choice for them!

Milham Park information and map

Oshtemo Park

At first glance, this seems to be an unlikely park for a photo session. In certain spots at the right times of year, though, there are gorgeous backgrounds. If you take the path east of the parking area and go through to the back of the Oshtemo library on the west side of Kalamazoo, there’s a big field that has been planted with wildflowers. In late May-July, there are many types and colors of wildflowers. The sun sets right behind the trees on the west of the field, and the light is just lovely. Bring bug spray, though!

maternity photo in wildflower field Oshtemo Park
wildflower field location for maternity pictures Kalamazoo

Oshtemo Park information and map

Those are my favorite pretty locations in Kalamazoo MI for a maternity photo session. If you’re up for a short drive, you can get to the following locations in under an hour.

Beautiful maternity photo session locations a short drive from Kalamazoo

Leila Arboretum

Battle Creek’s Leila Arboretum is a park-like setting with many mature trees. It’s lovely any time of year, but it is at its very best in spring when the trees are flowering and the hillside of daffodils is blooming.

Pregnancy photo location with spring flowering trees- Leila Arboretum
Maternity photos in spring flowering trees at Leila Arboretum
Spring location for maternity photos with flowering trees- Leila Arboretum

There’s plenty of parking and the flowering trees are very close to the parking area, so you don’t have to do much walking to get a beautiful background. The only downside is that peak flowering time is short and a bit hard to predict- you need to be ready when the trees are!

Leila Arboretum information and map

Grand Mere

Grand Mere is a beachside park along Lake Michigan in Stevensville. This is a challenging spot to reach, but if you are up for it, it’s a gorgeous stretch of beach and a bit wilder looking than others. The dunes between the parking area and the beach are large- good for backgrounds and a climb!

grand mere couple maternity photography

Grand Mere information and map

Tiscornia Beach

maternity photo location in SW Michigan- dunes at Tiscornia Beach

Tiscornia is a beach and park located along Lake Michigan in St. Joseph. Since I discovered it, this has been my favorite beach. It has it all- big sandy beach, dunes with grasses, a few trees and a lighthouse for background. Even with all this, it has never been crowded when I’ve been there. There is an admission fee, but it’s well worth it. This is a beautiful beach with smaller dunes, a boardwalk and abundant parking. There’s also a bathroom with changing rooms. There is a huge amount of lakefront, and it never seems to be crowded. It has nice areas of dune grass and a lighthouse as bonus backgrounds.

maternity picture location in SW Michigan- Tiscornia Beach

The following pictures were taken on the beach in December, proving that sand and sea work even in the winter (if you’re willing to brave it)!

Winter location for maternity pictures- Tiscornia Beach

Tiscornia often has spectacular sunsets, too, which make a gorgeous background for those final images of the evening.

Tiscornia Beach at sunset for beautiful maternity pictures

Tiscornia Beach information and map

Jean Klock Park

This is a beautiful Lake Michigan beach in St. Joseph MI with smaller dunes, a boardwalk and abundant parking. There is a huge amount of lakefront, and it never seems to be crowded. It has nice areas of dune grass, too.

Jean Klock Park maternity photos

Jean Klock Park information and map

There you have it- choice locations for every season, all within a short drive of Kalamazoo.

I recommend doing maternity pictures at 32-34 weeks. As you can see, there are locations available for every time of year. If you’re pregnant and interested in a maternity photo session, contact me with any questions or to schedule. Email at ellendykstraphotography@gmail.com; call me at 269-267-7083. I’d love to talk with you!

Serving Kalamazoo & Portage Mi
will travel throughout southwest Michigan
1920 Brentwood Ave, Kalamazoo MI 49008
Phone: (269) 267 - 7083Email: ellendykstraphotography@gmail.com

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