Newborn photography creates timeless treasures for you to look at and enjoy for years! How often do you find yourself on Pinterest swooning over those beautiful new babies all molded and posed as they make their official debut? Maybe you ever have an entire board of ideas just for your own baby still growing inside. Believe it or not those perfect little images take a lot of work! Trust me! Babies don't always like to cooperate during these sessions. Sometimes they get hungry or tired. Sometimes they just plain don't want to be posed! Don't worry! There are plenty of things you can do to ensure a smooth session and beautiful photos!
Tip #1: Plan ahead!
It's best to start planning your session before you give birth! Sometimes I book up 2 months or more in advance. This is true for a lot of of other photographers as well! I recommend booking in your second trimester to ensure availability.
How can I book when I don't even know when my baby will be born yet?
I consider newborn sessions to be an on call type of situation just like birth! I realize that at any time between 37-42 week you could give birth. I plan accordingly. I never book more sessions than I can handle at any given time. If you have booked with me I give you my word that your session will take place within the first two weeks of your baby's life. You will never have to worry about being pushed aside due to me being over booked!
Please don't delay in letting me know you have given birth!
While I don't expect you to call me the second your baby has been handed to you it is best if you are able to inform me (text, call, email) within the first 24ish hours after! This will ensure that I am able to schedule your session during the most optimal time (3-8 days old).
Tip #2: Days 3-8 are the Best!
Newborn sessions need to take place within the first 14 days of life!
If you want those sleepy posed newborn photos you really have to have them done within the first 2 weeks. Ideally, within 3-8 days. After 8 days new babies begin to stretch out more. They are less sleepy and a lot more likely to protest being squished and posed.
What if my session ends up being after 14 days?
If for whatever reason your session ends up taking place after the first 14 days of life I recommend going with a more lifestyle based session (which I LOVE). Lifestyle sessions typically include the entire family. Lifestyle sessions are often more laid back and really capture the story of your family!
Tip #3: Know what you want before your session!
I offer both posed newborn and lifestyle newborn!
What speaks to you? Your photographs should match your own personal style. You can even choose to have some of each style! I want you to love your photographs!! Spend some time thinking about what your perfect session looks like! If you see something in my gallery you love please share that with me! Feel free to add me to your Pinterest board as well! I LOVE Pinterest!
I have a lot of prop options for your posed newborn session! I might be just a little addicted to purchasing props for newborn sessions! You will have the chance to look through what I have and decide what you want. If nothing really grabs your attention let me know!! Maybe you have a very specific idea in mind! Share it with me!! Let's plan your perfect session together!
Tip #4: Warm babies are usually happy babies!
Your baby will be naked for a lot of the session and won't be happy if its not warm enough. I recommend cranking up the heat to around 75-80 degrees about 30 minutes before the session. I do bring a heating pad with me that works wonders if needed! I pay very close attention to your baby so they don't become overheated!!
Tip #5: Feed, burp , change and have your baby ready for a nap before the session begins!
Most newborns really aren't on any kind of schedule but when your baby is fed, burped and sleepy it's ,much easier to get them posed! If you are able to keep your baby awake prior to the session that helps a lot!!
Newborn sessions typically take between 90 minutes and 4 hours depending on the type of session you have chosen (lifestyle is typically shorter) as well as the needs of your baby! This allows for much needed breaks for your newborn. You will have time to feed and soothe your baby as needed. No need to rush or panic! A lot of these breaks are the perfect opportunity to grab those lifestyle shots!
Tip #6: You might need to step out of the room (or at least move to the back of the room).
This one is so hard. As a new parent you want to be as close to your baby as possible! I totally get it! Sometimes it can make it hard for your baby to relax into a deep sleep when you are too close by. Your baby can smell you nearby and most likely will want to be picked up and held! Sit back and relax! Go grab a snack or take a little time for yourself! I know its way easier said than done though!
I would never allow your baby to become emotionally distressed all in the name of a great photo. I have a number of tricks up my sleeve when it comes to soothing your baby into a deep sleep. If it becomes apparent that your baby needs you I will hand your sweet one right over!!
Tip #7: Pick neutral clothing
If you are planning to have your family involved in the session I recommend sticking to a more neutral color pallet. Avoid wearing super bright colors and clothing with patterns, pictures and logos. All of these things will pull focus from your newborn and most likely won't translate into your photos as well as you would like. If you would like some advice on planning outfits for your session please don't hesitate to reach out to me!!!
Tip #8: Your baby will poop on you, me or the props (maybe even all three!)
Expect this! It almost always happens. If not poop then pee. Most likely both. It's just a hazard of working with tiny naked humans! I recommend planning a back up outfit for every family member you want involved in the photos just in case. I always carry extra props (and water proof pads) with me for this very reason!
Tip #9: Keep Calm!
Sometimes sessions that involve young children can be stressful and may not go the way you had expected. Maybe your baby is super fussy or maybe an older sibling just isn't having it. That's totally normal! Hiccups like these happen a lot. Try your best to relax and just go with the flow. Your baby as well as your other children catch on really quick when you are stressed and will often become more stressed as a result. Expect some hiccups, that'a another reason why newborn sessions take longer than most! Everything will work out and you will end up with beautiful images!
Tip #10: Lighting is key!
I ask that you open all curtains and blinds in the room(s) where you plan on taking photos. The more natural light the better!! I do have travel lighting equipment that works well but natural light is always the best!!
Just some final words!
Newborn sessions are done in the comfort of your own home! This is great for you! You just had a baby and traveling can be so exhausting. I have traveling studio equipment that makes it all so easy! If you are worried about space in your home please know that I am able to work in some pretty small spaces! Furniture can always be moved around (don't worry, I will move it all back) if need be!
Colorado is such a beautiful state! If the weather is warm enough and you would like a lifestyle newborn session outdoors I am certainly open to that! I have soooo many great location options!