The first two weeks after the birth of a baby can be the most exhausting/exhilarating days of your life. Your world gets turned completely upside down, but it’s cool because you are now living with an adorable new citizen. Yay! I am not a “Let’s put the baby in a bucket!” kind of newborn photographer. I like to capture your newborn in their natural environment so your pictures will always feel timeless. An in home newborn lifestyle session means you don’t have to get everyone ready and then load up all your belongings in a diaper bag and head to a studio for an appointment time you can’t possibly keep because your life is now being ruled by a tiny, adorable dictator. If you are interested in capturing the first few days of your newborn’s life with an in home lifestyle session, I have some tips for you. Listen up!
1.Book your session BEFORE the baby is born.
I know. I know. Due dates are just guesses and most people don’t have any idea when their baby will actually arrive. Doesn’t matter. Here’s the thing: It’s recommended that newborn portraits be taken within 10 days of birth because that is when babies are at their most sleepy and cute. The problem is, you will also be at your most sleepy but feel like you are the least cute you have ever been. I promise you that you will regret it if you don’t capture this moment in time, even if you feel gross. SO . . . if you have booked a session way in advance of feeling tired and gross, you are more likely to stick to your plan and get your newborn photos and be super happy you went through with it. I suggest booking a newborn session within 10 days of the baby’s due date and adjusting as necessary.
2.Watch the light.
If you have dreams of everyone snuggling up in the bedroom, make sure you choose a time for your session when the natural light in the room is at its peak.
3. Babies are bossy. Be flexible.
Did you see the movie “Boss Baby”? Well, I didn’t, but I’m assuming it’s about a newborn baby who doesn’t care about any appointment times its parents make. Newborn babies are the bossiest humans on the planet. They don’t care what plans you have, so it’s important to be flexible. I usually give my clients a window of time for their session so we can be flexible with feedings, diaper changes, and naps.
4. Feed the baby right before the photo session.
Your baby will be sleepy and happy and easy to work with after he or she has been fed. So will you. So will I.
5. De-clutter the portrait space.
Don’t feel like you have to deep clean your whole house before your portrait session, but it’s a good idea to de-clutter the actual portrait space. These portraits should be all about the baby and his or her new family, so stash the knick knacks somewhere else for a couple of hours.
6. Have special blankets, swaddlers, and toys on hand.
I think it’s so sweet when babies receive family heirloom blankets or special toys from family and friends. Have them on hand so they can be included in your session!
7. Get in the picture!
I have had three babies. After each one I felt like I had been run over by a truck and I would never sleep or wear jeans again. I know you don’t feel like getting your picture taken when you just had a baby. Please benefit from my age and wisdom and trust me when I say that you will want to document the sweet relationship you have with your new baby.
8. Keep it simple.
As you can see from these portraits, simple white blankets and clothing creates a clean look and keeps the focus on the people.
9. Turn your portraits into a keepsake album.
As your child grows up (way too quickly) you will be so happy to be able to turn the pages of an album filled with his or her first moments. My kids love looking through their baby books and seeing how thin I was and how much hair their dad had. Ah, memories!
For more newborn portrait session tips and inspiration, visit my Pinterest board!