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Newborn FAQ's

Newborn sessions are unlike any other session. They can be unpredictable, messy and sweet all at the same time. Like a lot of photographers, my passion for newborns grew when my boys were born, especially my little one.

Here are the top questions I {and I'm sure other photographers} get asked about newborn photography...

1. What age do you photograph newborns?

My personal answer to this is between 5-10 days after birth. I've gone over that {up to two weeks} but never younger. The first couple days babies are just learning to breastfeed and sometimes the mother's milk hasn't come in yet, which can make the babies cluster feed and just not sooth as well. Newborns in the 5-10 day old age range are still sleepy and easy to squish into those super sweet poses.

2. When should I book my newborn session?

Book as early as you can. Your photographer will pencil your date in their calendar and then you know you have a spot around that date. I sometimes have due dates on my calendar months in advance.

3. How long will the session take?

That depends on your baby! Typically sessions take 2-4 hours. I've had babies who don't make a peep the whole time and we get the session in 2 hours. I've had babies who fight the sleep and or just don't want to be posed and take a little extra time. I tell every mom that I always get all the shots I need, sometimes it just takes longer. Most of my moms tell me how patient I am, but that comes with the job! If baby isn't having it, the photographer may suggest to reschedule a couple days later and try again!

4. Where does the session take place?

My newborn sessions take place in my in-home studio, but many photographers will travel to your home. I used to travel and it always felt like I was moving in, so now that I have a studio, I do all my shooting here. I don't have to worry about messing up mom and dad's house.

I also offer outdoor sessions in the warmer weather months. My best babies have been outside babies because the temperature make them sleepy and you can just pick them up and move them from place to place.

This little guy (below) took no time because he was so sweet and snuggly. He was outdoors in August...very nice and humid!

5. What should we wear or bring?

Nothing! Your photographer typically will have all the props, blankets, etc. that they need. If parents have something really important to include than I have them send me a photograph of it ahead of time, so I can plan my "set", but we spend a lot of time picking out outfits, setting up props and making sure everything is perfect. Every photographers style is different so this is a good one to ask!

Newborn portraits should be classical and timeless.

6. What safety precautions do you use and how do you keep our newborn comfortable?

Babies like heat, noise and like to be swaddled. {That's how they were in your belly}. The studio will be set to about 80 degrees and I use a heater to directly warm up the space I will be shooting in. A white noise machine or iphone white noise app will usually be playing.

Newborn safety is huge. Hands should always be supporting babies neck. Your photographer will always keep hands on baby while posing. Some photographers have an assistant for baby safety. I always ask mom or dad to sit near to baby in case they would startle or move.

Everything is sanitized before baby's session. Everything should be wiped down, all the clothing and props should be clean and hands freshly washed!

Additonal Safety Tip!

****Some of those sweet poses you see are composites. Meaning that they are two images together in Photoshop. Your photographer may not be able to recreate every Pinterest photo you see!****

7. Naked baby...yes or no?

I love butt shots {does that sound weird? lol} but with being naked comes pee and poop. It's inevitable. I do leave the naked shots up to the descretion of mom and dad. Some parents like it and some don't. I also wash everything after the session, so it was going to be cleaned anyway!

8. How should I chose a photographer?

Find one that you like their style. That you can see yourself in. That you can see those photographs being plastered all over your walls. Do you like outdoor? Find one that does fantastic outdoor work. Do you like black and white? Find one that does a lot of black and white. Do you prefer color vs. organic? Find one in your style.

I hate to say it, but good newborn photographers, like the really good ones, aren't going to be super cheap. These are the ONLY photographs you will have of them at this stage in their lives. You want them to last forever. Take that into consideration.

Chose a photographer that is warm and welcomes questions, that goes above and beyond for you. I tend to chose people to work with that are nice to me...being nice is helpful!

9. What are your favorite poses?

I like prop shots and I really like babies in buckets. I think my favorite is hands under the chin.

10. What are the best and worst things a parent can do?

The BEST thing a parent can do is to allow the photographer to do their job. I tell my parents that their job is to sit in the rocking chair and relax. Take a nap if you want, play on Facebook, write thank you cards... I will give baby back to mom if they need to be fed, but I try to do all the soothing and posing.

The WORST thing a parent can do is worry and get upset because baby is crying. Sometimes they grumble and get upset for a minute but your photographer will be able to settle them down.

Another thing that the parents need to do is read my prep packet and follow the instructions. It makes everything go so smooth...I promise!

If you can other questions you'd like to ask a potential newborn photographer or myself, add it in the comments!!

As always,

XOXO - Danielle

#newborngirl #newbornboy #newbornphotographer

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