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Tattoo Artist Dad Celebrates Wife's Pregnancy By Painting Over Her Baby Bump
PHOTO BY cherlene mandap
  • You’ve perhaps already seen countless maternity shoot ideas and inspirations, but a work of art deserves a closer look. 

    Cherlene Mandap, a mom of four and a customer service representative, shares with Smart Parenting the maternity belly paintings by her husband Eman, a tattoo artist: “A painting will add spice to a simple belly-bump picture.  

    “Ginawa namin ’to sa four pregnancies ko, and sobrang nakakatuwa and rewarding ang experience sa ’ming mag-asawa.  

    “Instant bonding na rin lalo na ’pag nakita na namin ang outcome. And it’s a practical and creative way [bilang] remembrance ng [bawat] pregnancy.”  

    She vlogs about all her maternity belly paintings. “Ako talaga ang nakakaisip ng mga ganitong activity sa amin,” Cherlene says, “pero super thankful naman ako at supportive and always down [to do it ang] husband ko.” 

    Her husband painted a basketball for her first pregnancy to play up Cherlene’s bump.

    PHOTO BY Cherlene Mandap

    They assumed their second child was a girl, so they went with flowers. When they learned they were having another boy, they had another painting session and chose a panda. Unfortunately, they didn’t get to save the photos. 

    PHOTO BY cherlene mandap

    The next two pregnancies featured superheroes: Deadpool for the third and Spider-Man for the fourth. “Dahil natuwa kami sa movie na Spider-Man: No Way Home,” Cherlene says. “Plus, siya ang character na favorite ng mga kuya.”

    PHOTO BY cherlene mandap
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    PHOTO BY cherlene mandap
    PHOTO BY cherlene mandap

    Tips for your own maternity belly painting 

    Ready to turn your baby bump into works of art? Here are some tips if you're interested in doing this for your own maternity shoots:

    1. Schedule your maternity shoot when you’re at 31 to 35 weeks, advises photographer Sofia Genato of The Stork Studio. During this period, your belly already looks prominent. 


    2. Pick a subject for the painting that will spark joy, not just in yourself. Cherlene suggests your “[kids’] favorite characters, an imaginary portrait [of the] baby, a cute animal face, flowers, or objects na may sentimental value sa [inyo]. Puwede rin kung saan [ninyo] pinaglihi si baby.” 

    3. Use non-toxic and washable face paint. Eman uses the same medium when he does face painting for children’s parties, which is one of the services offered by their business Mandap Party Shop.

    You can buy affordable face paint at National Book Store. But if you prefer a high-end brand, Cherlene recommends Snazaroo, which is also hypoallergenic. 

    How do you celebrate and commemorate your pregnancy? Share your ideas in the comments section. 

    If you want your own maternity belly painting, you can contact the Mandap couple, based in the Malabon and South Caloocan area, at cheii.mandap@gmail.com 

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