Parents—especially first-time parents—of newborns often have questions about how to best prepare for their little one’s newborn photography session. Whether the session is in-hospital, in our Murrieta studio, or elsewhere, a little preparation can go a long way. There are some things you can do that you might not have even thought to ask about that can make a big difference in how your newborn’s photographs turn out. At the very least, following these tips will make your photography session less stressful and a more enjoyable experience for you and everyone involved.
The Best Age for Newborn Photography
In my years as a newborn photographer in Murrieta, I have found that the best age to photograph a newborn is 7-9 days old. This age is best for several reasons:
- Babies at this age are still very “pose-able”, and allow us to work with them as long as they are warm, dry, and have a full tummy.
- Baby acne usually has not come in yet.
- Colic usually hasn’t shown up yet.
- If mom is breastfeeding, her milk has come in by this time, and baby is receiving larger, more satisfying feedings.
- If a baby boy was circumcised, the area has had enough time to heal to allow him to be posed comfortably.
Feeding Before Your Newborn Photography Session
We recommend feeding your baby right before your newborn photography session, so he or she has a nice full tummy. Depending on your distance from our Murrieta photography studio, you could either feed your baby right before you leave your home, or you can come in a few minutes early and feed him or her in our comfortable lounge area. Since our newborn photography sessions last about two hours, we will usually take a break at some point to “top off” your baby if he or she begins to get fussy.
If you are nursing, make sure that you avoid any spicy foods or caffeinated beverages the night before your session. These can leave traces in your milk, and can upset your baby’s stomach or cause them to be fussy and to not fall asleep during their session.
The Best Clothing Choices
We provide everything you need for your newborn to wear—hats, blankets, headbands, etc. Of course, you can bring in your own special items for your newborn to be photographed in or with, but we also have a large selection of items here in our Murrieta photography studio. You can see some examples in our newborn photography gallery.
For anyone else that will be included with your newborn in the photography session (mom, dad, siblings), we recommend they wear solid white, black, or grey clothing. This way, everyone in your images will match, and there will be nothing in the image that will distract from your beautiful family. We do provide some clothing options for mom that you are welcome to use in your session.
Since we usually photograph your newborn “diaper-free,” there is always a chance that someone’s clothing will get soiled during the shoot. It is a good idea to bring along additional clothing—at the very least, so you have something clean to wear on the drive home).
A Word About Including Siblings in Newborn Photographs
I love capturing moments with babies and their proud big brothers or sisters! These make for some of the sweetest photographs. However, younger children tend to get antsy during the two-hour session (understandably so), and can take mom’s attention away from the baby or make the baby fussy. If you choose to include siblings in your newborn photograph session, I recommend that you arrange for someone (like dad or a grandparent) to bring siblings in separately at the end of the photography session. We’ve tried it all, and this arrangement seems to be the most successful.
The “Extras” Offered in Our Murrieta Photography Studio
We know that some things can get forgotten or overlooked when you are preparing for your newborn photography session, so we always stock extra wipes, diapers, cloths, pacifiers, and other baby essentials in our Murrieta studio. We also provide a warm heater for baby, dim lighting, warm blankets, white noise, and snacks and water for the family. Newborn photography takes time and patience, and we want you and your baby to be as comfortable as possible.
Even with the best preparation and ideal conditions, there are some babies that just don’t want to sleep during their newborn photography session—and that’s okay! The important thing is that you are capturing these moments while your babies are small. It’s a time you can never get back.
If you have any questions about newborn photography, or if you would like to make an appointment at our Murrieta photography studio, contact us today! We are looking forward to hearing from you!