Planning Your Newborn Photography Session -
Erin Martin Photography South Florida Newborn Photography Session

Planning Your Newborn Photography Session

July 25, 2018

Newborn Session

You want beautiful, stunning photos of your newborn that you’ll be able to cherish for the rest of their lives. After all, your baby is only little for such a very little while! Unfortunately, even in sunny Florida, from Miami to South Beach, Boca Raton, and the surrounding area, you may be nervous about taking your little one out so early. Here’s the good news: when it comes to your newborn photography shoot, my first priority is your little one’s safety and comfort. I’m here to work with you on what to wear (for both you and baby!), the props and design you want from your pictures, and safely posing some of those amazing newborn shots you’ve been hoping for. Are you ready to get started? Check out some of this key information to help you make the most out of your newborn shoot.

Erin Martin Photography South Florida Newborn Photography Session

Choosing the Best Time for Your Newborn Session

One of the biggest questions I hear from many of my clients is, “When should I book my newborn session?” The key to this is “newborn.” Ideally, you want to book your newborn session to take place when your baby is under two weeks of age. After two weeks babies are a little harder to settle. Issues like colic and baby acne can start to flare up, making it harder to get the dreamy pictures you’re hoping for.

As a photographer, I’m well aware that babies arrive when they please, making it hard for you to set a date for your newborn shoot ahead of time. Don’t worry! You can contact me at any point during your pregnancy and give me an estimated due date for your baby. We’ll put a tentative date on the schedule, and I’ll make sure that there’s room in my schedule for you. Then, when you come home from the hospital with your brand new little one, we’ll set a real time and date for your session that’s suitable for you. It doesn’t matter if your baby is a little early or they show up later than anticipated. We’ll find a spot in that two-week window for your newborn photo shoot.

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Your Session Location

I conduct all of my photography sessions in my studio. This allows for several key advantages:
You don’t have to worry about cleaning up your home for a stranger when you’re trying to adapt to a newborn with a challenging sleep schedule.
There are no bugs or other uncomfortable elements like you often find outdoors—which are doubly inconvenient when you have a tiny newborn to protect.
I have control over the temperature to help keep your baby comfortable! Many of my clients’ favorite newborn poses include a naked baby, and I often turn up the temperature in my studio a little to help maintain baby’s comfort during the session.
All of my props and lights are on hand, so I can create exactly the effect you’re looking for in your pictures. There’s nothing for me to forget, since it’s all right there already!

boca raton portrait session erin martin photography

Session Timing

Working with newborns presents a number of unique challenges when it comes to session timing. You’d love to schedule your newborn session for naptime, when your baby will be drowsy and happy, but not every baby is ready to settle into a schedule when they’re that little! Babies may also get fussy or need to be fed partway for the session. In order to allow for this, I plan for each newborn shoot to take 3-4 hours. That’s plenty of time for feeding, cuddling, and comforting throughout the session.

 

Sibling and Family Shots

coral springs newborn session erin martin photography

You want to capture your entire family with your new bundle of joy—and with good reason! You’re welcome to have siblings take a few shots with baby as well as a full-family shot or shots of Mom and Dad with baby. I do, however, recommend that young siblings only stay for a short amount of time if possible. Having someone on hand to take younger siblings back home or away to play can pose a number of advantages for your newborn shoot.

You’ll be able to focus on your newborn instead of having the distraction of a sibling.
Your older child may quickly grow bored and frustrated, especially since it’s their baby brother or sister who is primarily in the spotlight.
A frustrated older child may create a scene. It’s important that we have a calm, relaxing environment for your baby, and young siblings may—in spite of your best efforts—create exactly the opposite.

Choosing Your Wardrobe

Erin Martin Photography South Florida Newborn Photography Session

Most of the time, I photograph newborns either naked or wrapped. That means there’s no need to worry about what they’re going to wear! Of course, if there’s a special outfit you want your newborn photographed in, we can fit that into our session. Make sure you mention it to me ahead of time so I’ll know exactly what shots you want. My newborn guide will also help cover details like what outfits are appropriate for siblings and parents so that you can arrive at your session dressed and ready to go! Do bring along a change of nappies for your baby: you’ll be there for several hours, so you may need extra changes on hand.

When it comes to clothing for you, opt for simple clothes with plain patterns. Bright designs or huge logos can detract from your pictures. Make sure you bring a change of clothes for everyone who’s not baby. Newborns can be unpredictable when it comes to bodily fluids, and you don’t want your photos ruined because of an accident. Surprises often occur during the nappy-free portion of the shoot!

Arriving for Your Newborn Session

Ideally, you want to arrive for your newborn session with a little one who is full and sleepy for their photo shoot. Sleepy newborns often nap through most of the session, making it easy to get them in all of the poses you want. Of course, that’s often easier said than done when you’re dealing with a tiny little one! I usually find, however, that parents who follow my detailed newborn guide suggestions are able to be in and out of the studio in about two hours. In general, however, you should allow at least three hours for your photo shoot, since you can’t guarantee when baby will get fussy or have other problems.

Selecting Your Props

South Florida newborn session erin martin photography

I have a huge selection of props: hats, wraps, headbands, buckets, bows, backdrops, and more. You can check out my extensive collection or browse through my gallery, which will allow you to make plans for the pictures you want most. If you plan to bring a prop of your own to the session, please discuss it with me ahead of time. Typically, I encourage parents to just come with a sleepy baby. Keepsake items like quilts or knitted hats are often a great personal addition to the session. Other props, however, may not be safe or I might avoid them because they don’t photograph well, which can interrupt the creative process.

The Process

South Florida newborn session erin martin photography

Once you book your date and make a deposit, I’ll send you my complete newborn guide. It has lots of tips and tricks for a relaxing session. I can’t stress enough how important it is to follow this guide! My extensive experience in newborn photography can provide you with advice that can be the difference between a stressful 3-hour session and a relaxing 1.5-2 hour photo session.

I also want to chat with you about the colors and décor you have in your home and what types of poses you want. I want your pictures to go well with your taste and your existing décor. When I get a feel for your sense of style and what you like, I can prepare the layout of your session.

After the Shoot

After your shoot, I’ll upload edited images to my client album site within around 2-3 weeks. From there, you’ll be able to download high resolution images, order prints if you like, or simply view your photos at your convenience. Galleries are password protected to help protect your family’s privacy, but you can share your password with anyone you like! I’ll also email you a link of the high resolution edited images and low resolution images for web sharing via Dropbox. Please note:

I request that you use the mages displaying my logo for any type of web sharing.
Dropbox links will be active for about a month, then taken down to make room for new sessions. You can’t count on these to be backup for your images!
I highly suggest that you burn your images to a disc and save them on your computer so that you’ll have plenty of copies in locations you can trust.

Just like I talked to you and walked you through all the important details before the shoot, I want to sit down with you again after the shoot. I’ll print out your images, edit them, and walk through the gallery with you. We’ll discuss the prints you want, which ones you love, and the other details of your session.

Safe Newborn Practices: My Top Priority

Your newborn’s safety is the most important thing in the world to you—and it’s at the top of my priority list, too! Your newborn  will be treated with the highest level of care throughout the session. The room we work in is very warm, and there will be time throughout the session for feeding and cuddles. I never use props or poses that would put your baby at risk, and I will always pose your baby with the utmost care. I choose simple poses that your baby would naturally hold and be comfortable in. Your precious little bundle’s safety and well-being is my absolute number one priority throughout the shoot.

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