It took me a few years to find my way with newborn photography. In the beginning of my KMH career, I always felt compelled to offer everything for everyone. I struggled to find inspiration and just didn’t feel like I was up to par with the normal style of studio newborn portraits. Baskets, props, tutus, and uber-posed baby portraiture were just not… well, me. I almost gave up on offering newborn photography. When I discovered lifestyle portrait sessions, I found a way to incorporate my love of natural, simple, beautiful moments and the fulfillment that comes along with photographing joyful emotions.
Those real moments – that’s what I’m passionate about, and my goal during every newborn session is to give you real memories to hold onto… What your baby was like as a little newborn, how you were as a new parent, the wonder, awe, and new family experiences. Your session is meant to document all those beautiful things.
What is it?
It’s in your home, and it’s an intimate portrait session with you, your partner and your new little one. For the setting, we use your bedroom, nursery, living room, etc. It’s about documenting this new life, new addition, new family. It’s about simplicity, light, and love in its purest form.
In most cases, you want to do a newborn shoot 6-10 days after the baby’s birth (the sooner the better). The littler they are, the better chance that they will still be sleepier, calmer and more comfortable.
It takes time – most newborn sessions need to be two hours due to having to feed, change, calm and cuddle in between poses and locations. Babies will not be told what to do, haha! Many times, we just go with the flow and accommodate their needs throughout the shoot.
Here are a few tips and pointers to prepare for your lifestyle newborn shoot:
- Before I arrive, make sure you keep the house nice and warm and open up all the blinds prior to the shoot. We don’t want any cool air hitting the baby when he/she is sleepy.
- We will probably use your nursery, living room and bedroom if there is nice natural light, so make the bed and tidy up the surrounding area that morning.
- Grab your plain white/netural onesies and set them out. And if you have special or sentimental swaddle cloths, blankets, quilts, or other things you like that are simple and neutral/pastel, you can grab those too.
- When I arrive, I’ll take a look around your house and then you’ll want to plan on feeding the baby right before we shoot so we can make he/she all comfy and cozy and easy to pose. Don’t feed right before I arrive, as we want to save the instant sleepiness for the right moment. (Of course, if the baby needs to eat, do what you need to do – we also want to avoid upsetting them.)
- You will probably have to feed the baby halfway through again if he/she wakes up or gets uncomfortable.
- For parents, I recommend coordinating your outfits in soft, cozy materials that are more neutral. You don’t have to be super matching, but think fresh/clean/simple. If you want to get some inspiration for clothes for you as well as for the baby, check out my Pinterest newborn inspiration board.