Newborn – Preparing for your shoot
Doing a newborn photoshoot can be very exciting but many don’t realize that newborn sessions are very unique to any other type of photo session. The environment needs to be very calm and peaceful. The more people that are there will be distracting so its wise to only bring the parents to keep the tension in the room down as newborn can sense this. Most other photo sessions can last from 30 minutes to 1 or two hours while a newborn session can last 3-4 hours so parents need to be aware of the time investment involved in the session. Don’t worry as we hope to keep you relaxed through most of the session and ask for your patience.
The more that you prepare for the shoot the more successful it can be. Here are some things to follow:
If you are nursing, try to avoid eating anything spicy (i.e. pizza, hot sauce, etc.) that might upset baby’s tummy for 24 hours preceding your scheduled session.
Bring a pacifier for the baby. Please inform me prior to your session if your child has any special needs, such as reflux, colic or fussiness so we can accommodate accordingly. I ask that you bring a pacifier and extra bottles of pumped milk and/or formula for your session, even if your child does not typically use them. It is important that we have access to various soothing options to make sure your session runs smoothly
The studio will be kept at 85 degrees to keep your little one warm while in their birthday suit, so I recommend dressing in layers so that you can remove some if you get too warm.
It is crucial to keep the baby awake for the majority of the morning before the shoot ( at LEAST 90 minutes, better for 2 hours). Without this, I spend too much time getting them to sleep and not as much time photographing them. If you need to give the baby a bath to help keep them awake or get them naked, those are some tricks to use.
The baby needs to be fed as much as possible during the 12 hours that precedes the session. This is especially true for breastfed babies. Feeding the baby an extra time or two (yes, I know it lasts 40 minutes) will help amazingly with getting them to sleep deeply. This will allow for baby to sleep as deeply and as long as possible. If you are already supplementing – the feeding just before the session is one to do this for. As formula sits heavier on the belly and they sleep better. However, I am a strong advocate for breastfeeding and would in no way say to do this if you are not already needing to supplement. After you keep them awake and give them a good feeding, allow the baby to fall asleep in the car on the way to the studio. This will put them into a deep sleep so they are ready to go when they arrive.
If you live more than 30 min. away, and from the studio, and are strictly nursing, I will ask you to arrive then give your baby a FULL 35 min. feeding before we can start the session. Please keep this in mind when arriving and be sure you arrive on time or feel free to come a little early if you wish to nurse. Just let me know if you want to come in early.
Bring extra clothes for yourself in case he or she uses the bathroom on you, it happens often.
Dress baby in loose fitting clothes to avoid any lines on skin – a simple button-up sleeper is best. I prefer items that we don’t have to take over their head.
For the most part, you will be able to relax.
When you arrive, please leave them in their car seats. They will be warm and cozy and asleep. Taking them out will cause the baby to be alert and awake.
You may want to bring something to work on (Thank you cards or a book you’ve been wanting to read. )
Additional items that we ask for is that we prefer that you do not bring any additional cameras or take pictures with your cell phone. Remember that I’m providing you quality edited photos and any additional photography could be distracting or affect the newborn.
Try keeping your newborn awake before the session as it makes all of the difference in your session and the poses we are able to get!
Some mothers think that they do not need to keep baby awake because baby sleeps all day, but you have to remember they sleep all day at home, swaddled, or while nursing etc. They will be naked while being messed with and posed etc. so we need them in a deep sleep that is why keeping them awake is a MUST for the most successful session.
You can contact me for any other questions.