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Inspire: newborn edition

Thursday, February 09, 2012Morgan



Inspire: maternity edition
Inpsire: child edition
Inspire: cake smash edition



Newborn sessions can be very stressful if you aren't prepared for all the possibilities!  There are a few things you should keep in mind throughout the time you are preparing for and photographing your tiniest clients.


  1. Age. Now most clients consider newborns to be anywhere between birth and 2-3 months in age, in photographer speak it means just a few days old. There is a reason for this - new babies (less than 10 days old) sleep and sleep HARD. They are also easy to pose and are still very bendable, since they are fresh out of Momma's cozy belly where they were cramped in a tiny space. This time is also before the baby acne shows up, as well as colic trouble and other digestive issues that would keep bub awake and grumpy.
  2. Hot. Knowing what I just mentioned - baby was in Momma's belly for 9 whole months where it is toasty! Once baby comes out they can't regulate their body temperature so keep it warm wherever you are holding the session. If YOU aren't too hot - it isn't hot enough ;)
  3. Accidents happen. Be prepared - bring an extra set of clothes in case it does. Keep wipes handy, as you will most likely need to clean up some sort of mess throughout the session (and some can be quite hilarious). Inform the parents that it is OK - when it does happen they will be embarrassed and unsure, just make sure to tell them ahead of time...and have them get an extra set of clothes on hand for themselves as well if they will be participating.
  4. Safety. Although these tiny little people are flexible and seem easy to photograph they are in fact probably the most difficult. You want to keep in mind that babies ARE in fact just small, teen tiny, people - they can be hurt, they can be uncomfortable and they can die if you aren't cautious. They aren't props or invincible - keep them safe and don't try anything unless you are 100% sure that the baby will be fine. Start small with easy bean bag poses - baby will let you know when you're pushing it too far.
  5. Listen. Baby will be vocal and visual throughout the session - watch for the cues. Sneezes, coughs, flailing, reflexes - if baby is uncomfortable they will let you know. If the baby isn't comfy in person it will show in the images.
  6. An extra hand. If you don't have an assistant - ask Mom or Dad to help out with certain poses and to keep baby happy. Also great for set up changes and for grabbing the wipes quickly when poop happens....because it will.
  7. Tick tock. It will be a long process - make sure the parents know this. It can take anywhere from 45 minutes to 4 hours! It all depends on the baby, your desired set ups and your experience. So have a game plan when you go in there, get the 'money shots' first - then move on to the optional, and often more creative shots for last.
  8. Details. Don't forget the detail shots! Tiny hands, lips, toes, baby rolls - oh I love tiny baby rolls ♥! I try to first set up an easy shot on the bean bag after baby is calm and cozy to get the detail shots first - then move on to other poses and variations.
  9. Keep your cool - and have them do it too. I will say this forever - babies smell fear and anxiety. If you are anxious, nervous or fearful - they will be too - same goes for anyone else there with you. Babies read the atmosphere and take their cues from it. So breathe, be patient and if possible take a workshop or mentor with someone experienced before you give it a go so you will be as informed and calm as possible for the best tiny people sessions :)

This Inspire edition was photographed by Morgan Kervin Photography as intended for educational purposes and to inspire other photographers to step out of the box and create wonderful memories for their newborn clients.

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