Your newborn photoshoot – What to expect

by | Oct 9, 2019

So you’ve done your research. Looked at photographers in your area and came across me. You looked at my website, liked what you saw and we chatted about how I work and what you wanted from your newborn photoshoot. You may have popped along to the studio for a look at my many props & outfits and had a chat in person (I love it when clients do this!) And then you booked. Thank you for choosing me to create beautiful images of you & your baby. You made a great decision.

So what happens next?

Around 3-4 weeks ahead of your due date, we will have a 20-30 minute telephone consultation. This is an opportunity for me to chat with you about styling of the photoshoot. I aim to produce a gallery of images that will fit perfectly onto the walls of your home, so the colour palette key. Most of my clients purchase a few pieces of wall art to display in their lounge or nursery, so understanding the colour palettes used in your home os also key.

The consultation call also gives you an opportunity to tell me about any of the poses or shots that you particularly would like me to aim for. There are no guarantees with babies, as they’re the boss on the day, but together we will plan for your preferred images.

Baby is finally here. Congratulations!

When baby arrives, let me know and we’ll arrange a date for the photoshoot. I normally aim to get baby into the studio with the first 2 weeks, however, every birth and baby is different, so your newborn photoshoot will be scheduled with that in mind. 

Once your date is confirmed, I’ll pop through a preparation document, which gives you tips on how best to prepare baby for the session. A sleepy and content baby makes for a relaxed and enjoyable photoshoot for you and baby, so it’s really important that you follow the advice given in the preparation document.

It’s the day of your newborn photoshoot!

So, you’re here. Bleary eyed and exhausted but high on that amazing new baby smell and still living off adrenaline. 

Come in! Sit down and take the weight off your feet.

Tell me about the birth. How are you feeling? What about Daddy…How are you holding up?

I like to take some time to let you all settle whilst we chat. It’s important to tell me if there were any complications with the birth as this can affect Mum and Baby. Comfort and safety is key throughout the shoot, so if Mum is still sore or struggling to stand for long periods I always take this into account. Has baby had their hips checked? This is so important to know as hip dysplacia would mean that certain poses would not be possible or safe for your baby.

I regularly train with experts in Newborn Photography and safe posing is paramount. And it’s so important to me that I feel confident in posing your baby and know how to check that baby is posed in a way that ensures they are safe throughout.

The session will take 3-4 hours. This is due to the time to settle baby and to allow plenty of time for feeds where needed. Comfort is equally as important as safety, so during the newborn photoshoot the studio is kept at around 28 degrees. This is for the comfort of baby as they will mainly be in their skin and will feel the cold more. For this reason, it’s good to wear light weight clothes and always bring some spares just incase baby chooses to give you a wet or smelly treat during your photographs!

The Newborn Photoshoot

Before you arrive, I will have taken time to prep and have all of my chosen props and outfits etc ready, based on our consultation call.

I start off my sessions with parent, sibling & family shots. Some Mummy’s feel self conscious and don’t want to be in the shots. Please rest assured that you look amazing and your baby / child / grandchildren will look back on these images for generations to come, long after your stopped caring about how you looked in that photograph. 

If baby is nice and settled when they’re undressed, then we will try for those natural shots of Mum & Dad holding baby in their skin. This comes with a risk of being drenched or covered in baby poo, but it’s so worth it for those stunning images! Baby will be wrapped for images with a sibling, unless they are older and very confident in holding them. Sibling shots are generally taken from above for younger siblings, with their arm around baby, or with baby on the beanbag and big brother(s) / sister(s) behind. Again depending on baby, there may be an opportunity for brother or sister to sit besides baby in a prop too.

Focus on Baby

With Family & sibling shots complete, it’s time to put all of the attention on baby. If a younger brother or sister has come along, this is the time that I ask you to have a family member take them for some fun elsewhere. As much as they love their baby, they soon grow frustrated at being in a very warm confined space and boredom kicks in. 

I start by photographing baby in floor props. This could be a bucket, a bowl, a bed or a crate. I have many! Very often I will wrap baby for this part. There are many styles of wrapping… Believe me I have watched many a video tutorial and I’ve practiced a lot of them! I often start with a style called the potato sack, as this is such a snug wrap that it sends baby off into a dreamy sleep. As we progress into prop number 2 I will slowly unwrap them. 

Why do you use wraps? 

Wrapping is a tool used by all newborn photographers. There are varying degrees of wrapping, from a full potato sack with just head and hands on display to a loose wrap that just holds baby’s legs and arms in place, but shows more of baby’s torso. These tools are much needed to settle baby and take them back to the feeling of being warm and compact like in Mama’s belly.

Once we have completed the prop shots, I will move baby over to the posing bed. I aim to shoot on at least 2 different colours or style of backdrop, giving variety with use of bonnets, hats, floral halos, tiebacks and fabrics. There are a couple of poses that we aim to achieve. I wonder if you can guess which is which? Here are the pose names… Side Lie, Taco, Head on Hands & Tushie Up.

What happens after your Newborn Photoshoot?

Newborn images take a little more editing than other images. Even though my aim is to get the image perfect in camera, newborn skin is often red and prone to flaking and sometimes baby acne, so each image is delicately edited to refine their beautiful skin. Where siblings are included, there may be a need to composite an image. This means that we take 2 images and merge them together seamlessly with the magic of photoshop. This is often the case should your other child not want to sit with baby, we will take a shot of baby in a prop and then brother or sister set next to the prop on their own and merge to 2 together. This method is also used for some posed shots where I will have a hand supporting baby in 2 different places on each shot and then merge the images together.

Editing a newborn gallery of 20-25 images can take up to 4 hours. The whole shoot from preparation to completion, including your viewing session usually has 11 hours of my time dedicated to it. This is commonly misunderstood and a reason why people are so shocked at photography prices. But that’s for another blog, another time!

Your Viewing Appointment

Around 10 days to 2 weeks after your photoshoot you will return to the studio for your viewing appointment. This is your opportunity to choose your preferred package and wall art. Having spent time in the studio, you will have seen lot’s of examples of the type of wall art I have to offer and may already have an idea of your favourite that you have envisioned taking pride of place in your home.

It’s really helpful to think about where you would hang your wall art and measure the space ahead of the viewing appointment. Wall art credit is included in some packages, however this is valid for just 3 months from the date of your package purchase, so it’s good to put your order through at your viewing appointment. I have lots of expertise in this area and can help guide you in your decision, making the best choice for your home.

How long do I have to wait for my images?

You will choose your images on the day of the viewing session and should you go for a package which includes digital images on a USB, you will walk away with them on the day. I also include a slideshow of your images with most of the packages and a Facebook cover collage, which will be included on your USB.

Wall art orders typically take 3-4 weeks to arrive. Prints generally around a week. I will let you know when your order is complete and arrange a time for you to pick the order up.

Ever wondered how a maternity photoshoot is styled? Brooke is offers the best maternity photographer on the Sunshine Coast and has a great blog about styling of a maternity photoshoot. Have a read!

Newborn Photoshoots are booked soon after your 20 week scan. I tend to book up well in advance which limits my ability to take last minute bookings, so please do book early to avoid disappointment. 

If you’d like to chat about your photoshoot, please do get in touch. I look forward to hearing from you


Baby & Newborn Photoshoots

Serving clients in Haywards Heath, Burgess Hill, Horsham, Uckfield, Lewes, Brighton & East Grinstead