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Newborn Session Guide

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Newborn Session Guide

Congratulations on the arrival of your precious bundle of joy! These first few days with your newborn are truly magical, but they pass in the blink of an eye. I’m deeply honored that you’ve chosen me to capture these fleeting moments for you. Here’s my newborn session guide to help ensure your session goes smoothly:

When to book your session:

Photographing a newborn is possible at any point during their early days, but for those beautiful, sleepy, and curly images, it’s best to schedule your session when your baby is between 8 and 14 days old. Make sure to book your session well in advance of your due date, as my schedule tends to fill up quickly. If you have a baby boy who has recently had a circumcision, it’s advisable to wait for at least seven days after the procedure to schedule the session.

What to expect:

Newborn sessions can vary in duration, typically lasting between 2 to 4 hours. The entire focus is on ensuring your baby’s comfort and safety, including keeping the room cozy at approximately 72 degrees. We will take breaks as necessary for feeding, burping, and diaper changes.

The session typically follows this order: family photos (including individual shots with mom and dad), sibling shots, and then individual shots of just your baby. After the family and sibling photos, it’s best if either dad or a previously arranged caregiver can take older siblings away. Kids have short attention spans, and their presence might disrupt the rest of the session. I’ll have water or tea and some light snacks available for your comfort.

Preparing your home:

Choosing the Right Room

  • Lighting: Select a room with ample natural light. Large windows are ideal. We can supplement with artificial lighting if needed.
  • Space: Ensure there is enough room for a small setup. I will bring props and equipment, so a bit of cleared space is helpful.
  • Temperature: Newborns are sensitive to temperature. Keep the room warm (around 75-80°F or 24-27°C) to keep the baby comfortable.

Decluttering and Cleaning

  • General Tidy-Up: Clear any clutter from the area where the session will take place. This helps create a clean and serene background.
  • Sanitizing: Wipe down surfaces and ensure the area is clean. Newborns have sensitive immune systems, so a clean environment is crucial.

Preparing baby:

Before the session, please ensure your baby’s fingernails and toenails are clean and trimmed. Plan to feed your baby just before the session to ensure they are full and sleepy. A well-fed baby is usually more cooperative.  Use a wet cloth to remove any remaining food or milk residue. Wipe away any nasal mucus or eye discharge. The cleaner your baby is, the easier it is for me to capture beautiful images.

Bring extra bottles of milk or be prepared to breastfeed your baby during the session, as newborns often cluster feed in their first few weeks of life, and we want your baby well-fed and sleepy.

Other items to bring include extra diapers (more than you think you’ll need), spare changes of clothing, a blanket or two, your baby’s favorite toy or stuffed animal, and a pacifier if your baby uses one. Please inform me before the session if your baby has any health concerns, such as a healing circumcision, diaper rash beyond the initial stage, body rashes, or any cold symptoms. We may need to reschedule the session for your baby’s comfort and safety.

 Newborn session guide.

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What to wear:

  • Baby: Dress your baby in loose-fitting clothes to avoid marks on their skin. Simple onesies or swaddles are perfect.  I typically photograph your baby with just a diaper and/or a cute bum cover to capture details like fingers and toes. I have a variety of outfits, wraps, headbands, and hats to choose from, or you can bring your own.   A fresh diaper before we start can help keep the baby comfortable and content.

  • Mom and Dad: Opt for neutral and simple color palettes. Avoid busy patterns or graphics. A classic button-down shirt or polo works well for dad. Ensure well-groomed nails and consider shaving or neatly trimming facial hair.

  • For Mom: Feel free to use a gown from my Client Closet or bring your own outfit that makes you feel comfortable and beautiful. A light, subtle application of makeup can enhance your features. Trim and clean your fingernails and remove any nail polish.

  • Siblings: Ensure clean hands, nails, teeth, and faces. Clean away any eye discharge or runny noses. Avoid giving kids food or candy that could stain their lips, teeth, or tongues for a couple of days before the session. Make sure younger siblings have a nap beforehand. You can bring snacks as “bribes,” such as cereal, crackers, or non-staining candy. However, please avoid chocolate—unless it’s for me. 😉

During the session:

Newborn sessions can take time (usually 2-3 hours) due to feeding, changing, and soothing. Patience is key to getting the perfect shot.  Try to keep the house as quiet and calm as possible. This helps keep the baby relaxed.  I may need some help from you to position the baby or hold a prop. Your involvement is invaluable.  Your baby’s safety is my top priority. If at any point you feel uncomfortable, please let me know.

After the session:

I will review, cull, and edit your session images and then load them to a private gallery for your viewing and digital download.

 

I’m excited to be part of this special moment in your life and look forward to creating timeless and beautiful images of your newborn and your family. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

 

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Newborn session guide.