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Syracuse Newborn Photography TIPS
If there is one thing that I love, it’s photographing newborns. A newborn photography session can be challenging, but it’s so very special to capture a baby’s life when they just days old. There are so many factors that have to come together for the session to go smoothly… and if there’s one thing both photographer and parent must have for the session, it is patience. A session can go quick and be done in an hour, or it may take 2 hours or longer, but regardless it’s important for everyone involved to stay patient – the end result is totally worth it.
The following contains some tips that I have found helpful when approaching a newborn photography session.
1.Younger the Better.
Try to book your session as soon after birth as possible. I prefer to shoot newborns anywhere from 1-10 days. Waiting a couple days can give mom and dad a bit of time at home with their new edition is to be expected. Of course, a photography sitting can take place at any time, but when the are just days old, they tend to be less fussy about having to be moved around.. As your baby gets older, they can become more fussy when moved. At 10 days they lose a lot of the deep sleep and tend to wake up more easily. I find that the first 24-36 hours are best, if possible. It is best if I arrive at their sleepiest time – so keep an eye on their “new” schedule and we will figure out the best time to come (it is beneficial if it is within daylight time) In addition once they hit 2-3 days old they can sometimes begin to exhibit newborn acne, flaky dry skin, redness and patchiness around eyes/ears/nose and feeding blisters on their lips. The older they are the harder it is to keep them asleep as I move them in order to pose them. Around 2 ½ to 3 weeks is when baby acne can set in too so it is good to try and get them before that happens. That being said I will take a newborn at any age. If the parents are game for trying so I am as long as they understand I cannot promise a lot of shots.
2. Keeping Newborns Warm Is Essential.
This is crucial if you want a good sleepy baby which I recommend for newborn photography sittings taking place in the client’s home. Space heaters are good if you have one. If not, turn up the heat in your house (80-85 degrees). A good rule of thumb is if you are hot then you need to turn up the heat. So please, an hour or so before our scheduled session (if at your home) please warm up the room and don’t hold back on keeping the room extra toasty… this is especially true if we will be photographing your baby in the nude. If we will be photographing your baby in the nude, please that diapers can leave marks on the baby’s bodies for some time. If possible, find an alternative to elastic diapers for 20 or so minutes before our scheduled session. Another, but less desirable option, is to make sure the diaper is loose.
3. Use Music or White Noise To Help Calm The Newborn.
At the studio, I have music if need be. If we are photographing in your home, then a white noise machine or app for your phone can be a wonderful tool to help calm the baby!
4. A Fed Newborn Is A Happy Newborn
Making sure your baby is fed just prior to the session can be of tremendous help. If we need to take a break during the shoot to feed your baby, that is fine as well. After the baby is full, make sure they are burped really good. Gas can take a sleepy, happy baby to an uncomfortable and irritable one. Have some extra milk or formula on hand if traveling to the studio or on location.
In addition to the above recommendations, there are some things that parents can do before the session to get things going on the right path. Here some ways that you can do to help to make sure our newborn photography session goes off as planned.
- Newborn portraits are unique in that they can’t be scheduled months out. If you are scheduling your birth, let me know that as soon as possible.
- Call me as soon after you deliver as possible, so you can arrange a time for the session. Ideally the session should take place within 1-10 days after birth.
- If the session will take place at your home – do not worry about the state of your house. You just had a baby – I do not care if dishes are piled up the sink and clothes baskets are running over.. I honestly do not care about how clean your house is. We don’t need a lot of space. I will help move furniture if need be.
- Collect any items you want used in the session beforehand – family heirlooms, toys, blankets, etc. I have some props, but personal items will add to the uniqueness of your session.
- Decide if you’d like pictures taken with your baby, or if want pictures of only the baby. I can do both, but it may require a longer session/package.
- Make sure the baby has a full belly before I arrive.
- Be patient. If the baby gets fussy or alert, don’t stress out. A baby can sense your anxiety and we want to keep the environment as mellow as possible. We will try and get the baby comfortable again, but if that just doesn’t seem possible, we’ll take a break or we’ll work with what he’s giving us. If we start to run over by a significant amount of time (30 minutes or more) we may have to choose a longer session/package.
- Be assured that if there is ever a point where you’re uncomfortable with the poses, simply let me know. I only want to do poses and shots that you are comfortable with.
- Keep wipes handy
- If you breastfeed and can, have at least one bottle pumped for feeding.
- A majority of the pictures will work best if the baby is asleep so anything you can do in advance to encourage this is recommended.
- Syracuse Maternity Photography Studio
If you have any questions or concerns feel free to contact me.
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