These Photos Of Sleeping Parents-To-Be Are Beautifully Intimate

For her photo series Waiting, Jana Romanova spent five years documenting expectant young parents in Russia.

Taken in the early hours of the morning from atop a ladder, Romanova's pictures feature pregnant couples shot in their bedrooms during a private moment of slumber.

“I thought that if I tried to photograph expectant people sleeping,” Romanova says, “I would understand something new about their relationships, but in the end I was just fascinated by the trust of people who let me stay at their apartment and allowed me to photograph them in such an intimate moment.”

The complete photo series consists of 40 images, reflecting the 40 weeks of pregnancy.

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

“It started in 2009 when I took a picture of my sleeping friends, when their daughter was due to be born in one month. Amid the cravings and the body changes, the anticipation and the preparation, the joys and the aches, there is little time for quiet. And yet I found a moment in which parents were in complete rest (or maybe exhaustion?) together.” – Jana Romanova

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

“At that time, too, all my friends were getting married and starting families. All the talks were about babies, home-repairs, and how their lives would no longer be their own. I was desperately trying to get used to this 'new era' in my life. This is how Waiting started.” – Jana Romanova

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

“After making several photographs of my friends, I photographed friends of friends, and then I reached out to couples on social media. I was lucky to find really open-minded people who would agree not only to let a stranger into a house, but also to stay asleep while this stranger is climbing the ladder, making noise, holding a camera right over their heads, and – waiting.” – Jana Romanova

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

“I know the photographs and the format so well. Young couples, pregnant bellies, sometimes other kids, often pets, a duvet in disarray, and always something unique to them and their living space.” – Jana Romanova

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

“There was something charming and magical in their poses, in the symmetry of their bodies.” – Jana Romanova

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

“I realised that I was looking not only at different poses people sleep in, but also at things that surround them: their slippers, sofas, mobile phones, toys, laptops, Star Wars bedsheets – all this is telling an amazing story about the generation to which I also belong – about people who were born just before the fall of the Soviet Union, about young families in big Russian cities, about 'here and now'. But it also tells a story about something that will come.” – Jana Romanova

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

© Jana Romanova / Anzenberger / Via janaromanova.com

Romanova is currently raising money to fund a book of Waiting. Preorder it here.

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