Updated: Mar 11, 2020
Bringing a new baby into your home is one of the most exciting and one of the most stressful events in your life. A baby brings so much joy and so many moments to look forward to. But it can also bring with it a plethora of worries that you never thought about before you saw those two little lines.
All of a sudden, you're focused more on finding the safest car seat than you are about figuring out what to eat for dinner tonight. You're trying to work out how to afford $1000 a month for the best day care or deciding if your family can survive off one income while you stay home with the baby. You know you want photos to document every step of this new journey, but you don't have the time or energy to find a new dress, let alone find the perfect photography studio.
If any of these things sound like you, YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I have been there. I know your struggles and I sympathize with every little stressful thought going through your head throughout your pregnancy.
I'm here to tell you to SLOW DOWN. Take a deep breath and remember that your baby is going to be just fine because he is going to be the most loved baby in the whole world. The last thing you need to be worrying about is finding a photographer and planning the perfect newborn session. I know you can't imagine that getting through a full newborn photography session with a crying, poop-covered, hungry baby that seems to only sleep when it's time to be awake. Following the simple tips below will help make sure your newborn session goes as smoothly as possible so that you end up with images you'll cherish for many years to come.
1. Crank that heat up!
Babies get COLD! Their little bodies aren't capable of regulating their own temperature yet. Many shots that we capture during your newborn session include baby being nude or partially nude, as well as clothing/wrap changes. In order to help them stay in that deep sleep that allows us to easily pose them, it's important to keep the room that we're shooting in warm. I recommend keeping the temperature in the room/home between 76° and 80°. I know this is not a comfortable temperature for many parents, so be sure to dress comfortably and drink lots of water!
2. Schedule a feeding right before your session.
At the time of your baby's newborn session, you'll likely be feeding baby on demand, whether that's through nursing, pumped breast milk, or formula. It's not uncommon for newborns to fall asleep during a feeding. Making sure their belly is full at the start of the session means that we'll be able to get more shots in before they wake up or get fussy.
If you have young children that you would also like included during the session, we will try to get those images first. I am no stranger to the short attention span of a toddler, and I know firsthand the frustration it can cause for us parents. I make the session fun and exciting for these ages so that we have our best luck at cooperation and beautiful images. If possible, I recommend having a family member or friend that can take the sibling or keep them occupied in another room during the remainder of the session. This will help keep a quiet, relaxing environment for baby and parents. If this is not an option for your family, having one of the parents look after the older children while the other stays with baby is an excellent option as well.
4. What to Wear
I have a selection of wraps and props to use on baby during the session. If you have any special items or outfits that you would like included, please let me know. For parents and siblings that will be included in the session, I recommend simple, comfortable clothing. Neutral or light-colored clothing with no patterns works best with my style of shooting.
I know. This is not an easy thing to do when you have a little human depending on you for all of your basic needs. This is not an easy thing to do when you're only running on two hours of sleep because everyone tells you to sleep when baby sleeps, and baby never sleeps. But babies feel your stress and anxiety. The more anxious you are, the more difficult it is to keep them calm. During your session, I will treat your baby like my own little one. There will be tears and there will without a doubt be at least one poop or pee incident. I expect this, and you should too! Don't worry about baby making a mess because messes are easily cleaned. I am very skilled in getting babies to calm down and feel comforted. If baby is inconsolable or showing signs of being hungry, please feel free to give him another feeding. I schedule out 3-4 hours of time for my newborn sessions so we can take all the time we need for feedings and calming baby. If your baby uses a pacifier, make sure to have it handy. And I promise: No matter how terrible you think your session is going, we are getting beautiful shots that I know you will love.
Still looking for a newborn photographer in Tallahassee, Florida? Be sure to fill out a contact form to receive my welcome guide!