When should I call to schedule my Newborn session?
A few months before your baby is born! It is so important to plan ahead. Capturing your newborn within the first two weeks of life, while they are still sleepy and curled up, can make all the difference in your newborn portraits. Since we never really know when your little one will arrive, I will pencil you in on my calendar to hold a spot for you. When your baby is born I will move your appointment accordingly.If your baby came early or if your baby is already born, no worries! I always do my best to squeeze newborns into my schedule.
When is the best time to photograph my Newborn?
Newborns are best photographed within the first 2 weeks (ideally 7-10 days) of life, when they are still sleepy and can be curled up into the beautiful poses that are so well known for.
What should Baby wear?
I love to photograph newborns swaddled in wraps and snuggled up tight in buckets and baskets. I also have a beautiful collection of newborn hats, wraps, bows and headbands and cute clothing that coordinate beautifully with the blankets and props that I will use to style your images.
Lovely Light/Only In home Sessions
I ask that you open all of the blinds and curtains in your home prior to my arrival. This enables me to find the best source of natural light in your home, so that I can set up my “mini studio” in the best possible location. Nothing flatters like natural light, so I prefer to use it whenever possible. Go ahead and turn off all the lights and lamps in the rooms as well. It might seem dark but my camera can do magical things that the light will ruin later on! For this reason, sessions are normally done mid-morning to late-afternoon when window lighting is as its best. When I arrive, I’ll walk through your home looking for the best light and that is where I’ll do a majority of the shoot. I’ll also bring additional lighting equipment to help out when needed.
Most of the images I’ll be shooting work best if the baby is in a deep sleep. To encourage this, I recommend that you do whatever it takes to make sure baby is pretty exhausted. Warm bath, some massage and tickles might do the trick! Please, do your best to keep your little one awake for at least 1 hour before the photoshoot. I think it will be worth it in the end!
A well fed baby is a happy baby! Please feed and burp baby right before our session/30 min after the arrival to ensure a happy, sleepy (“milk drunk”) baby. I’ll also be more than happy to take as many breaks as needed to help him/her re-fuel. It’s tough work being a model!
I recommend that you keep your home a bit warmer than normal during the session. Please turn the heat up 30 min before our session to ensure that it’s warm enough.(Like a toasty 80 degrees or so.) I do the same if the session is at my studio.
Newborns are used to being all bundled up,warm and cozy…and then I come in and take off all their clothes for those adorable naked baby shots. They tend not to like that too much! Pushing up the thermostat is guaranteed to make the session flow more smoothly and help them sleep better. We may be sweating, but baby will be nice and warm…and that’s really all that matters! I also use a space heater to help keep baby in a steady warmth if it’s needed.
Please loosen your baby’s diaper and clothing at least 30 minutes before the session. This gives those little imprint marks time to disappear. (You baby will be naked with no diaper on in most of the shots, but I pose them so that all the “important parts” are not on display.)
Please do whatever you can to keep the noise level to a minimum during the session. If you have other children that might create noise, try to find a sitter or family member to take them away from the home for a few hours. If you have a noisy pet, you may want to do the same. I have a white noise machine, but it doesn’t always block out all the noises.
If you have children and would like them to be included in some photos, I will be taking those shots first since older sibling (especially toddlers) don’t have that much of a patience to wait till the end of the session. Only those being photographed should be present to help maintain a calm environment.
Patience is key
Newborn sessions can last anywhere from 2-4 hours. It all depends on baby’s mood and willingness to sleep. Unfortunately…this isn’t something I can predict! I take the baby’s lead ! Getting them to sleep before posing takes time and they may need to be fed or cuddled a few times first. In fact, I’d say that a good 50% of your session will involve feeding, diaper changes, and cuddling to get baby comfortable. If that doesn’t happen, within the time frame that’s okay! Wide-eyed newborn photos are beautiful too.
Please don’t panic if your baby decides to use my blankets (or me) as his/her own personal potty.This is natural and I expect it! Please don’t feel embarrassed or worry when this happens, because they all do it. I wash all of the baby props and blankets between each session with unscented baby detergent. (This is why I only schedule one newborn session per day!)
I have a stack of towels, extra wipes and blankets available for when things get messy.
I’m pretty comfortable holding and posing newborns. Your baby is in safe hands, I promise! I’m Mommy myself :) Newborn safety and comfort is my number one priority!
So yes! Feel free to rest and leave the room for a bit if you’d like. I’ve had parents who’ve used this time to take a nap and even run out for a quick errand. All totally acceptable to me! Moms tend to stress out because this is a new experience…and they aren’t used to the waiting game that is newborn photography.
They see their baby being fussy or having a difficult time getting settled and panic. I promise, I will take good images! Sometimes that best photos happen when baby doesn’t do what I want.
Just remember: Babies can sense stress and anxiety (especially from their mommy’s!) It’s super important that EVERYONE remain calm and relaxed during this session. Keeping the environment as mellow as possible is pretty much the only way I’m going to get the shots I’m looking for.