Newborn Session Frequently Asked Questions
There are newborn session questions that are frequently asked, this post should help answer them for you.
How do I book my session?
We can’t know exactly when your baby will make their appearance so we don’t book an actual session date until your baby is born. Get in touch when you are past your 20 week ultrasound to book your due date month. Before your baby is born we will plan your session and talk about images and colours you love. When your baby is born get in contact with me and we will schedule you in for the first available weekend.
Is my baby too old?
It’s true that younger babies are easier to pose and sleep much longer and deeper than older babies. For this reason some newborn photographers will not photograph babies who are older than 14 days. This timeline is sometimes impossible for parents to meet. If they suffer complications during delivery or if their baby needs a stay in the NICU they could go past 14 days old.
Even a baby who is discharged in a day or two may come down with a cold. The parents or myself could get sick. In this case the session will be delayed until we are all healthy. For the various reasons you might not get your session in before 14 days. I have done sessions at 2 days, 4 days, 14 days, 30 days, 45 days, 90 days. I have even shot all the way up to 1 year, 2.5 years, and 5 years. Beautiful images can be created at every age.
To help you prepare and to know what to expect
Newborn sessions are my specialty and I just love being able to capture your first moments with your new baby. Part of having a successful session depends on preparing for your session. Prepping your session before you come helps me transition faster and get you more images in your gallery. There are ways you can prepare at home for a smooth session.
What should I bring?
Newborns love heat and our studio space is HOT. Bring something comfortable to wear such as yoga pants and a tank top for after your photo with baby. If you’re bringing a sibling please bring them entertainment, spare clothes, special incentives. Here is a guide for helping prepare your older children for the session.
My baby won’t take a pacifier, do I still bring one?
Even if your baby doesn’t use soother at home they will likely use one for their photos. Pacifiers help keep your baby asleep while they move from pose to pose. This means that they might sleep longer and be able to get more images for your gallery.
What should I wear?
I tell parents to wear something they feel comfortable in, something that makes them feel good and is a bit fancier than their everyday clothes. I prefer when families are dressed in similar shades, all in light colours such as cream, or all in dark colours such as black. The room is hot so I also suggest that you bring something comfortable you can wear after your photos such as a tank top and leggings.
Do I need to bring clothes for my newborn?
I have a large selection of baby outfits, hats, headbands, and wraps for your baby. You don’t need to bring anything along! However, if you would like to include a sentimental item I would love to create something special for you! Please send me a photo of your item so I can plan how to best use it in your session.
Can I keep my baby on a feeding schedule?
During your session we want your baby sleepy and content. Newborns who are hungry are unsettled, cranky and sensitive to stimulus. For this reason I ask that you feed your baby on demand whenever they show hunger cues such as rooting, hand sucking, fussing or late cues such as crying and back arching. Full babies are happy and sleepy babies!
Do I have to use formula during my session
I have heard some photographers say that breastfed babies are harder to work with and so they ask parents to bring bottles or formula to their newborn session. Some photographers even say that babies can smell their mom’s milk and get restless and unsettled due to this. They say having a breastfed mother near the newborn makes it hard or impossible to get good photos.
This is completely false. I know this because I have photographed breastfed, bottle fed and formula fed babies that were no different from each other. I also know that having a breastfeeding women near a baby doesn’t interfere with their session because I have been a breastfeeding mother and a newborn photographer at the same time. These misconceptions are harmful to new mothers because they make them feel bad for having maternal instincts to comfort and care for their baby. A mother’s proximity to their baby is a good thing not a bad thing. Don’t ever let a photographer put you in a separate room so they can photograph your baby. If you want to lie down on the couch and get some much needed rest please do but you are always welcome to be close to your baby.
Can I take pictures too?
First outings with baby are really exciting! I know you want to take photos and record this event. I need to have the space to move around and to ensure your baby is safe so I ask that you please don’t take your own photos during your session. Don’t worry! You will receive your images in 1-3 weeks time.
Can I request specific shots?
I want you to love your photos so I encourage you to look through my portfolio and send me images that you love. Together we will make a wish list of images. I will recreate as many of them as I can during your session. When recreating images it’s important to keep in mind they won’t look exactly the same as the baby, fabrics etc will look different. Also keep in mind I must work around your baby’s mood and sleep cycles so I can’t guarantee I will complete the whole list but I will try my best.
How do I prep my baby for the session?
There are a few things you can do to help ensure a smooth session. You can start by waking your baby up 1-2 hours before your session time. Undress, play with and bathe your baby. Dress them in a button or zip up outfit for easy dressing. Also make sure they have a nice full feeding before you leave your house.
What if my baby pees or poops during their photos?
Since your session is at least 1 hour long your baby will very likely make a dirty diaper. Many of the shots I take are clothed or wrapped which allow me to keep the diaper on. We will work around messes where we can if baby is still happy. Bring spare clothes for your older children and for you and your partner as you may need them. And if your baby does pee or poo try not to worry! everything I use with a naked baby is machine washable so there’s no need to stress!
Do I have to be in the photos?
You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. It is completely natural to feel out of sorts after having a baby. You might not feel your best, and you might not accept the way you look. However, I know that one day you will treasure the photos you take with your newborn. I urge you to just take a few photos and try to be kind to yourself. I wrote a blog if you need further convincing please have a read.
If you have other questions that I haven’t addressed here please get in touch. I would be happy to answer them to the best of my abilities. You can contact me here, or leave your number and I can give you a phone call.
What are you doing to ensure your studio is clean and safe?
I have taken every step that I know of to keep my studio safe for you and your baby. This includes keeping the studio a healthy space only, cleaning thoroughly, screening clients and myself before each session, air circulation and HEPA air filtration, limiting visitors to immediate family only, wearing a face mask and cleaning my hands frequently. Please visit this post for more details.