Get Your FREE Branding Photoshoot Workbook + Checklist

Preparing for a Newborn Portrait Shoot

jen vazquez photography newbornPhotographing your newborn is so important as they change so quickly during the first couple weeks.  I know from experience that after giving birth a mom tends to be sleep deprived and hormones are all over the place.  Remembering how they looked and slept isn’t always easy with all that going on.  Having professional photographs is a must to remember every single yummy part of your tiny miracle.

  • WHEN TO SCHEDULE:  We recommend that you schedule your newborn session PRIOR to your baby’s birth.  This ensures a spot on our calendar. Contact us during your second trimester and we’ll pencil you in.  Then, shoot us an email or have a friend or family member call and leave us a v/m soon after you deliver so we can arrange a time for the session.
  • BEST TIME TO SCHEDULE:  Newborn sessions must be scheduled within the first 14 days of life, as this is the time when they still like to be curled in a ball, like in the womb. However, the absolute best time is between 3-7 days after their birth. This is when they sleep the best and we are able to get the poses that are the most successful and cute.
  • WHERE IS BEST? The majority of our newborn sessions take place in your home or even at the hospital the day after baby is born. If the weather is warm enough and you’re comfortable with the idea, we can take the session outdoors, often times at a park nearby or your backyard.  Also, don’t be worried that you aren’t sleeping, let alone able to clean and de-clutter your home.  We can work in very small spaces and get great shots.
  • LIGHTING:  We ask that you open all the blinds and curtains in your home prior to our arrival. This enables us to find the best source of natural light in your home quickly.  We prefer natural light as it warms the skin and looks better than flash photography.  For this reason, sessions are normally done early morning or late-afternoon when window lighting is as its best.  When we arrive, we’ll walk through your home looking for the best light and where we’ll do a majority of the shoot.  We’ve had many times when we’ve done shoots at Grandma or a friend’s house so everything is easy for mom.
  • WARM IT UP: We recommend that you warm up your home 30 minutes before we arrive to around 80 degrees or so.  Newborns like to be warm and when we have cute naked pictures, they sometime will get a bit cranky.  Pushing up the thermostat is guaranteed to make the session flow more smoothly and help them sleep better.
  • BABY PREP:  A tired and just fed baby is a happy baby so please feed and burp baby right before our session to ensure a happy, sleepy or “milk drunk” baby.
  • HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?  Newborn sessions are typically 1-2 hours long. It all depends on baby’s mood and willingness to sleep, which we are unable to predict. Don’t worry, we have patience!
  • RELAX!  I’m very comfortable holding and posing newborns. I have 4 children ranging in ages from 12 up to 26 years old, very patient, and have been called the “baby whisperer” in terms of working with newborns.  From personal experience, it would be a great time to get that shower that is almost impossible in those first couple of sleepless weeks.  A large part of a newborn session is diapering, feeding, rocking, and cuddling the newborn.  If baby gets fussy, don’t worry – we guarantee at least 3 great shots. Just a reminder, babies can sense stress and anxiety, especially from their mommy’s, so sit back, relax and let us take the lead to get the shot.
  • BABIES POOP!  Babies poop and since they will be naked in our session, chances are they will poop so don’t panic.  It happens in every session and chances are it will happen with yours.  We wash all of our baby props and blankets between each session with non-scented baby detergent.  It helps if you would be able to have a stack of towels, extra wipes and blankets available for when things get messy.
  • PROPS!  We have baskets, blankets, hats, and headbands and will be bringing them.  You can also use any of your baby’s items.  Let us know about these items prior to your session when you schedule the appointment as we will plan for your outfits prior to arriving.
  • LET US KNOW!  If there is ever a time during the shoot that you are uncomfortable or feel nervous about a pose, please let us know right away.  This is your baby (that you “baked” for 10 months and delivered!!), and we want to make sure that you never feel concerned!
  • WHAT SHOULD MY HUSBAND AND I WEAR?  If you would like to take photos with your baby (family), we always recommend wearing solid colors and/or doing skin-on-skin poses.  We’ve done poses cuddling in mom and dad’s bed (cream or white bedding is the best) or on the couch or rug.  This is something we can discuss prior to the shoot, so you can prepare.
  • BOTTOM LINE:  Relax and have fun – this is a time in your brand new baby’s life that will be recorded for you to relive for many years to come.  The more relaxed and the more fun you have, the better the photographs will turn out!