Newborn Photography Tips
We asked our Facebook fans a little while ago for their best tips for photographing newborns. You guys delivered! Along with that, we asked for some of your best images you've shot of newborns and we got a really good response from that too! We decided to include our favorite shots as well as all of your advice for today's post. So, if you're just starting out with photographing newborns, want to get started, or are even a seasoned pro, take a look at the tips and these adorable babies sent in by you guys!
Patience and a space heater!
Full belly and keep the room nice & toasty along with sounds playing.
Allow yourself tons of time. Time for feeding, changing, cleaning up, more feeding, more cleaning up, crying, etc, etc.
Warm room/ space heater. Make sure the space the baby will be in is warm before you put the baby down.
If you use props, make sure they represent the families personality.
Be prepared to get wet. Bring an extra set of clothing for YOU just in case.
White noise app on your phone!
Bring a few of those doggy pads for underneath everything. They help keep the mess to a minimum.
Use parents as assistants/spotters!
Natural light is your best friend! Never use your flash. Too hard on that delicate skin and it usually ends up looking cheap.
Make sure the environment is safe. No crazy hanging the baby from a knapsack pictures. Newborns can get seriously hurt that way.
Composites are super easy as long as the images are taken correctly. If you can work with layers, you can do composites.
If photographing a naked baby if possible fold a cloth diaper under them so it doesn't show this will help protect your floor drop or other props.
And don't forget wipes!
Make sure you know what the family wants. Are they looking for more candid, in home kind of pictures or studio. I went to a shoot once thinking it was a lifestyle shoot, but they were expecting me to pull a portable studio out of my bag!!
Don't forget the little details! Hair lines, wrinkles, eyelashes, etc.
Ask the parents about schedules or routines.
Over shoot! They're only this little once and parents won't complain if you over deliver. Plus, you'll be more likely to get hired again by the family if you make a good impression.
Find out what kind of editing they want. Some want those red bumps and marks edited out, but other families like to remember exactly what their baby was like. Find out and conform to the family's preferences.
Make sure YOU eat before. It might be a while before you eat again.
Know when enough is enough. I've tried to plow through meltdowns, but we ended up having to reschedule for later in the day because the little one was so sad!
Use a space heater, but don't have it too close to the baby. It's amazing how sensitive their new skin is!
Shoot from different perspectives. The mom has probably taken a few hundred pictures by this point. Do something different!
Don't short change yourself. Newborn sessions take a lot of work and patience. Make sure you charge accordingly.
Relax and shoot what you weren't planning on shooting in between sets and while parents are caring for baby!
Hand sanitizer! Make sure you put it on before handling the baby.
For a studio session, try to schedule it when the baby is 5-12 days old.
Be patient with binkies. Sometimes it take 3 or 4 tries of getting it out before you do it without tears.
Follow the baby's cues. They are the star of the show!
Get an idea of poses you want to do ahead of time. Babies are flexible, but too much tweaking them with cause lots of sadness.
Use texture in your shots! A lot of bold, bright colors can be distracting, but texture is something subtle that doesn't take away from the baby.
If the baby is breastfeeding, keep mom on the other side of the room. Babies will sometimes smell their mom and insist on being help by them!
Don't use a strobe! Natural light is best.
Make sure the baby is awake before you arrive. You want their belly to be full and for them to be sleepy when you get there.
Warm snuggly blankets.
Keep props minimal and have the main focus be the baby.
Thank you so much to everyone that participated in this post. We really think we have the most talented fans and we're so grateful you're willing to share your tips and your beautiful work with all of us.