If you are visiting my website blog today because you have booked a newborn session with me and want to know what happens next then you are in the right place. If you haven't booked yet and are just researching then I am sure you will also find this helpful.
So, your gorgeous baby has finally arrived after a long nine months of waiting. The newborn phase passes so quickly so you want to capture it perfectly - before you know it your baby will be smiling, crawling, walking and talking! You’ll probably treasure the photographs from your baby’s first year the very most since they grow and change so much during this time.
You may have spent a long time researching and chatting with different photographers in Somerset and I feel honoured that you have chosen me to capture memories of this very special time. You’re now probably wondering what happens next.
Firstly, please let me assure you that your baby is in safe hands. I have completed extensive training in Newborn photography and the safe posing and handling of newborn babies. I take newborn safety very seriously. This is always my number one priority during the session.
I have been photographing newborn babies for over 5 years and have literally photographed 100’s of newborns in this time.
I am a member of a professional body called BANPAS (Baby and Newborn Photography Association) They heavily promote safety in newborn photography. They have a great website with information on there aimed at parents of babies. You can view their website here.
I am a Mum to 3 children myself so I understand that handing your precious baby over to someone you have only just met can be a rather daunting experience.
I encourage the parents to sit close by and watch me work. Occasionally I may ask for one of you to help me. This is because some of the props I use for your session might involve me being more than an arm’s length away from your baby and I’ll need one of you to sit very close by and watch while I take the photographs I need.
You can help the session run more smoothly too with some planning.
Firstly, newborn sessions last 2-4 hours, sometimes longer, so please do not plan anything else on the day. Newborns cannot be rushed and sometimes some extra time is needed. Patience is definitely the key to a great newborn session.
Please pack your bags in advance. You will be less likely to forget something you need. Please remember to bring plenty of nappies and some spare clothes for baby AND yourselves just in case.
Mum and Dad are a big part of the show!
If you prefer not to be shirtless, I ask that is possible you bring a plain, tight fitting v neck t-shirt to wear with a good, snug pair of jeans. If possible, avoid wearing tops with logos. A simple, white collared shirt with sleeves that can roll up is also nice.
A loose-fitting tunic top works well. Keep the colour neutral and design simple. Also, bring a strappy vest in either nude, white or black. Please use very natural colour nail polish (or none) as your hands will make their way into the images.
Please consider bringing an extra outfit, in case your baby decides to go to the toilet whilst we are taking photographs of you holding them. Just as they encourage at the hospital, skin-to-skin contact creates the most beautiful images and these are the pictures you and your baby will cherish most in the years to come!
If you have older children please bring them along too to be photographed with the baby, I just ask that due to the length of the session, please if possible, arrange for another family member to take the older one’s home once we have done their photographs with the baby. This will usually be done at the beginning of the session. Children do tend to get bored and to get the best from the session noise would need to be kept to a minimum. Please dress them in neutral plain colours which match Mum and Dad.
If you are breast feeding, then I advise avoiding certain foods before the session. The list of foods below can sometimes make newborn babies windier and cause colic like symptoms.
Please avoid the following foods on the day before the session:
Foods containing Citric Acid such as:
Tomato based sauces
Please also avoid the following vegetables:
Please try as much as possible to keep your baby awake, try a bath and a massage, tickling toes and try not to give your baby a dummy for the few hours beforehand (if you use one). This will ensure those squishy, sleepy pictures we all love!
This is perhaps the most important part of preparing your baby for an easy session but of course if your baby is very tired and needs to sleep or feed, please let them. Your baby will normally fall asleep in the car on the way to see me, but will usually wake up when undressed once you have arrived. We then feed your baby and usually do not have to wait long after that for them to fall into a deep sleep. That is when we get those beautiful, dreamy newborn poses
If your baby could wear clothing that has popper fastenings rather than over the head as it will help keep them sleepy when we undress them.
Newborn sessions typically last between 2 and 4 hours and sometimes longer if your baby is a light sleeper, very alert or hungry. The easiest way to ensure a sleepy baby is the willingness to nurse/bottle-feed on and off during the session, so bring extra bottles if you are bottle feeding.
Due to the time it takes to complete the session, I do offer tea, coffee and water, I would suggest that you eat before leaving and bring along some snacks, especially if mum is breastfeeding.
The temperature at the studio is fairly warm, I will be dressed like it is Summer and you should too. I do this to keep your baby warm, snug and sleepy. As a result, some babies to get hungrier than normal so if you are bottle feeding, bring a few extra bottles along.
Settling your baby enough to pose them and take photographs may take time. A good 50% of the session will involve feeding, soothing and settling your baby. It will all depend on your baby’s mood and willingness to sleep. Unfortunately, this isn’t something that can be predicted so since your baby will pick up on any frustration in the room, please don’t worry about it. It’s super important that everyone in the room remains calm and relaxed. And if sleep doesn’t happen at all then providing they are settled we can photograph them in some poses suitable for an awake baby instead.
Some babies are extra fussy and sensitive to touch, these babies will always be harder to photograph but not impossible. Please don’t worry if your baby isn’t cooperating. I have picked up several tips over the years that will help to settle even the most unsettled baby. The session is entirely baby led, we will go with what your baby is most comfortable with, occasionally this might mean that some poses will be missed out and replaced with poses your baby is happier and more comfortable with.
Please don’t panic if your baby decides to use my props, blankets or me as their own personal potty. As you can imagine, this is something that happens at nearly every session so I expect it. Please don’t be embarrassed. All props and blankets are washed after each session anyway.
I want you to spend this time feeling comfortable and at home. I am privileged to be able to document this incredible time in your lives and really look forward to getting to know you and your brand new baby!
Once I have received your questionnaire back, you will be booked in for your Ordering appointment. This is when you will see the photographs taken at the session and place orders for any products you would like. More information about the ordering appointment is available here.
If you have any questions at any time, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me.
Bye for now