Getting Ready for a Newborn Lifestyle Session
I’ll be honest with you: I love shooting newborn! Nothing brings me more joy than being able to capture lifes biggest miracles. These precious moments are like no other you will ever experience.
A newborn baby can be one of the most exhilarating and challenging experiences as a parent, especially during the first few weeks. Let me tell you: it’s perfectly normal to feel confused or worried over details or getting things right. Trust me, I’ve been there before!
Here are some tips to get you started and ready for a newborn lifestyle session.
1. Prepare room for light (and love)
When I say “room,” this could be your master’s bedroom, the nursery, or any other rooms that feel comfortable and happy to shoot in. All we need to make sure is that these rooms have decent amount of natural light; we usually schedule our sessions when it is the brightest in your home. What times does this usually happen? If you aren’t sure, you can try turning off the lights in these rooms and observe for a day or two.
Another important thing to consider is the house temperature. We want the space/s we’ll be working in to be lovely and warm for the baby as there is a huge chance they won’t have clothes on. If it’s a hot day, making sure the room is cool and comfortable or make sure the air con/portable heaters are working in the rooms we plan to shoot. Remember, bubs are very sensative little things!
Also, don’t worry about cleaning your whole house! Relax, You just had a baby and so your place is likely chaotic. Instead, focus on tidying up the rooms we would feature in your photos. Pop away stuff on your night stand that might look messy in your photos. For bedroom shots, I would recommend using a plain/neutral bedspread over a crazy patterned one. Anything to fashion forward will likely date and distract from the stars of the show.
2. Dress for comfort not just style
That’s right! For the baby, a large part of the session will be done nude. However, we can certainly do some shots with a simple little outfit on. Be sure that you pick something out that fits well and is comfortable to them. A plain onesie, a muslin swaddle, or even just diaper - simple is usually best. Always have a couple of pieces you are happy to shoot in, babies are reknown for ruining there outfits.
For the parents and the rest of the family members, I would also recommend wearing something comfortable, classic and flattering. Avoid wearing clothes with prominent logos or writing. Stay away over patterned, conflicting colours or flashy clothes. We want the emphasis to be on you and the baby- not your clothes.
Instead, choose clothes that have similar color palettes (Eg. neutrals, whites and blues, tans and whites, etc
3. You cant control a newborn but….
We unfortunately cant bribe a newborn (unlike kids and toddlers) but we certainly can try and manipulate to make the most of the session. On the most part, we want bubs sleepy and comfortable for a good part of the session. I would recommend feeding your baby not long before my arrival so your baby would have some sleepy and milk drunk relaxed photos.
If you have toddlers and other kids in the house, consider their nap times as well. If you have another young child, it might be worth bringing over an in law or sitter just to keep them occupied while the baby has their photos done. We want everyone happy, relaxed and cared for during the session. So if siblings or pets are involved in the session, we would usually take care of those photos first. That way, they could go and play for the rest of the session.
4. Make it personal.
As a lifestyle photographer, I don’t bring props, extra lighting equipment and alike. However, I suggest to have some nice cheese cloth or jersey wraps available to drape over those bubs to cover the nappy or to wrap him up burrito style for some solo photos. You can also change the look of the photo’s quite easily by having a lovely throw rug available to pop on the bed.
5. Great things take time.
There will be so many emotions during the shoot— excitement, wonder, amazement, and love. A typical newborn lifestyle session lasts for two to two hours and half. This is purposely longer to accommodate all your baby’s nursing needs.
So don’t worry if we need to break from time to time. In fact, these little breaks can be perfect opportunities to capture candid moments with your family.
Remember: at the end of the day, this is all about your baby, your growing family and capturing the beautiful, indescribable first weeks of parenthood. Capturing these beautiful moments are lifestyle photography is all about