Celebrating one of life’s most cherished moments, pregnancy, has become a creative and joyous endeavor. From elaborate gender reveal parties to festive baby showers, each event uniquely honors the upcoming arrival of a new life. Among these celebrations, maternity photo shoots have gained popularity, offering a chance to capture the beauty and anticipation of this special time.

Bethany Karulak-Baker, a commercial beekeeper, wanted her maternity photo shoot to reflect her unique lifestyle and profession. Rather than opting for a traditional shoot, Bethany, who was over eight months pregnant, envisioned a daring concept involving thousands of bees adorning her belly. The idea was to create a ‘bee beard’ effect, symbolizing her deep connection with her work.

However, there was a significant concern – Bethany’s allergy to bees. Despite her love for these creatures, she admitted, “I often get hives that can last up to six weeks, causing extreme discomfort, although they are not life-threatening.” After thorough consultation and approval from her doctors, Bethany embarked on this unique photo session. To ensure utmost safety for both herself and her unborn child, the decision was made to use artificial bees.

The photo shoot required meticulous planning, including ensuring the right temperature and carefully positioning frames filled with faux bees to achieve the desired aesthetic effect. The result was a stunning depiction of around 10,000 bees across Bethany’s abdomen, a symbolic representation not captured within an office setting but in the heart of nature.

The photographs quickly gained widespread attention, with Bethany receiving an outpouring of support and admiration. She shared, “The response has been overwhelmingly positive, filled with kindness and love.” The shoot also became a platform for women to share their experiences with pregnancy challenges, including miscarriages, like the one Bethany had previously endured.

Bethany’s journey was more than just a photo shoot; it was a statement of resilience and courage. She hoped that her story would not just be seen as a woman with bees on her belly, but as a narrative of bravery and strength. Her wish was for her children to recognize their mother as a hero, a woman of courage and tenacity.

For the Karulak-Baker family, the shoot was also an opportunity to promote their commercial honey business, attracting new customers and spreading awareness about the importance of bees. Despite some misunderstandings about bees and beekeeping, Bethany remained undeterred, facing any skepticism with the same bravery that defined her journey.

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