PREPARING FOR YOUR
Newborn sessions are my joy. These sweet brand new little angels are my muse and photographing them simply and genuinely makes my day. Your baby's comfort and safety is my top priority. I patiently and delicately work with newborn babies taking as much time as needed for capturing cuddly poses. The full Studio session is held at my ‘in home studio’ and usually takes about 2.5-3 hours followed a 1 hour reveal and order appointment. Lifestyle sessions are done in the comfort of your home and last about 1 hour ($100 setup fee applies). I hope this detailed guide will help you to prepare for your baby's session and help answer any questions or concerns you may have. Note: Newborn pose and prop guide is listed near the bottom.
GETTING ON MY CALENDAR AFTER BIRTH
1-2 days after birth, simply call, text or email me to let me know baby has arrived and together we will select the actual date for your newborn session within the first 5-14 days.
Login to your client portal and complete (or update) the newborn questionnaire. Your questionnaire responses are critical to helping your photographer prepare props a few days in advance of the session.
MUST READ TIPS FOR A SMOOTH SESSION
ARRIVE ON TIME at 10:00 am sharp! 30 minutes late or more will be rescheduled if there is availability on my calendar or canceled if there is no availability. I usually have other tasks or other sessions in the afternoon so late arrivals will not have time extended.
MY BABY IS CRANKY THE MORNING OF THE SESSION: If your baby is fussy the morning of the session, ‘usually’ a full feeding, burping, diaper change, and snug swaddle with a gentle rock will calm your baby. If colic is of a concern, check with your doctor about mylicon or other gas relieving supplements.
MILK & FEEDING: Bring a minimum of 3 Bottles with ‘pumped’ breast milk or formula. Consider this, if you cannot pump 1 ounce of breast milk, your milk is not fully in and as such your baby will be hungry during the session where they are burning more than normal amounts of energy. A full baby = a sleepy baby, and we need a very sleepy baby in order to achieve those sweet, flexible poses. Pumping will help us determine how much baby is getting at the session. Please give your baby a "full feeding" 30 minutes prior to arriving to the studio. They will likely fall into a deep sleep on the car ride over and sleep through the first set of pictures before needing another feeding. If you are 1 hour or more away from the studio, please stop along the way and feed your baby. This way he/she will be full/burped and fall asleep prior to arrival at the studio. This step is very important. Otherwise, we spend too much time of the session time feeding or getting your baby to sleep. Breastfeeding moms: Be sure to avoid spicy food or foods that cause allergies or gas a few days before your session. Please let me know if you would like a list of troublesome foods for breastfed babies.
*First Time Moms: I 'highly recommend' if you’re solely breastfeeding to pump and bottle feed your milk for your baby's session. Rest assured, your baby will not become addicted to a bottle at the session. Pumped milk in a bottle will quickly satisfy your baby's hunger allowing your baby to sleep well and reduce session time. This is especially helpful if your milk is not fully flowing as is the case with many first time moms who are breastfeeding. Be sure to acquire a ‘very slow flow nipple’ such as with the “Doctor Brown’s” brand. Milk should have a very slow drip when turning the bottle upside down. If it’s a fast drip, your baby could choke.
PACK IN BABY’S BAG: In addition to pumped breast milk or formula, wipes, diapers, hair brush, and a Pacifier (whether or not your baby uses one). I can assure you, your baby will not become dependant on a pacifier at the session, but I can promise it will help keep him/her calm between poses and relieve the natural sucking desire to avoid over feeding. If your baby’s skin is peeling, consider virgin Coconut oil (my preference), Aquaphor or Vaseline. If your baby has a neck or diaper rash check with your doctor or pharmacist for over the counter ointments you can use and bring with you to the session for reapplication as needed. If your baby is gassy, consider digestive aids such as Gripe Water or Mylicon for gas.
DRESSING BABY: Dress baby in loose fitting onesie that does not need to be pulled over the head. This helps to avoid disturbing baby when getting undressed. No tight fitted socks as they tend to leave creases and red marks around the ankles. This will show in photos so please avoid the socks until after the session. Beyond what baby is wearing to the session, you are not required to bring any clothing to the session. If you have something you'd like your baby to wear, please send me a photo before the session. Please be aware the studio temperature is a warm 80 degrees. I will also have a small heater to keep baby warm and a soothing white noise player which often mimics the soothing swooshing sound in the womb or the ocean.
SHOTS/CIRCUMCISION: We will not photograph baby on shot day. If your baby has shots the day before and is still wearing a band-aid, please remove it 1 hour prior to your arrival to the studio. Also we prefer not to photograph boys until 4-5 days after circumcision as some posing may further irritate the area.
FINGERNAILS: Some poses will have your babies hands next to their face. To avoid face scratches, Be sure baby's fingernails are trimmed or filed a day or two before the session. There are specially made baby trimmers for this or some parent choose to bite the nails.
FOR PARENTS: Newborns with their Parents can make some of the most sweet and tender photos and your children will ‘love’ seeing them as they grown up. While optional, I encourage you to take photos with your new baby. Parent photos are done at the very beginning of the session so please come dressed prior to arrival. Moms, no worries. I photograph you with your baby from flattering angles without showing your postpartum tummy. What to wear: A white/tan/black or grey short sleeve shirt is suggested for Dads while the same colors with a tank top, cami, blouse or dress is suggested for Moms. Solids only please, no busy patterns, logos, quotes, or faces on clothing please. For more artistic shots, Dads may choose to remove their shirts and Moms may choose to be wrapped in a scarf, wrap, strapless dress or other stretchy material available in my studio. If you plan to have your photos taken skin to skin (baby naked), please bring an extra shirt/blouse in case your baby has an accident on you. Otherwise we can photograph you with baby wearing a diaper cover or swaddled. Because you’ll be in our studio for several hours, I highly recommend everyone eat a good hearty breakfast before you arrive and bringing snacks and drinks for each family member as you will be here 3-4 hours! As much as my goal is for baby to be comfortable, I also want you to be comfortable and at ease too!
FOR SIBLINGS: Sibling photos (if applicable) are done immediately after parent photos so please ensure siblings are dressed prior to arrival and ready on arrival. Suggested colors for tops are Cream, Ivory or White, Grey, or Light Blue or Pink. (without patterns or logos) with khaki or denim pants or denim for boys is and neutral colored dresses for girls. The more texture the better (knit, lace, etc). They’ll be barefoot, so no need to look for clean shoes. For young siblings, please bring toys, videos, movies, snacks to keep them occupied when not being photographed with their new sibling. **Due to the length of time involved with newborn sessions, we may ask that your spouse/partner take the older siblings home or out for something fun to do while we finish up with the individual newborn shots. If your child is comfortable playing games on your phone or ipad or watching a movie uninterrupted, this is ok as well.
PARKING: Upon arrival, please park in my driveway along the left side for your safety and your vehicle’s, especially if it’s raining or extremely cold out. I want you to have close, easy access to the walkway from the driveway. DO NOT park on the street.
SAFETY: Safety is my number one priority when handling your baby which is why either mom or dad will be my spotter/assistant. Eyes must and will be kept on baby at all times. During the session I will pose, and potentially feed and change your baby, but don’t worry I have plenty of experience handling newborns. I will never put your baby in an unsafe position. I will hold and care for him or her as if my own. There will be times when I ask for a parent’s assistance. C-Section Moms, I would prefer dad’s assistance for your safety.
NOTE: VIDEO OR CAMERA DEVICES OF ANY KIND ARE NOT ALLOWED. THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO SMOKING IN OR OUTSIDE MY HOME STUDIO.
SESSION FLOW: The newborn session takes a full 2-3 hours. Family members who will take pictures with baby will be photographed first so please arrived dressed and ready. Afterwards, I work with your baby for his/her solo photos. I usually ask mom or dad to be my assistant at times during the session swapping out props, clothing, or with poses. When not needed, parents are welcomed to sit back, relax, watch TV, read, or feel free to connect to our wifi for your online needs. Please be aware the studio temperature is a warmed to 80 degrees using a small heater for baby's comfort. I will also have a soothing white noise player which often mimics the soothing swooshing sound in the womb, or the ocean.
ORDERING YOUR PHOTOS: Immediately following your session, we will review your ‘unedited’ photos in person together. You will choose the ones you’d like for me to edit based on your pre-chosen package. This usually takes an additional hour or less. If you desire to purchase additional digitals, an album or other print items, please be sure to review the price guide in your portal’s ‘links’ section prior to the session. Payment for additional items ordered is due the day of the session at the order appointment.
Most digital and print orders are back within 2 weeks from the time. Canvas, Frames, Albums, etc. can take up to 3 weeks. Once your final products come back from my lab, I will inspect their quality, package them, and deliver them to you for your convenience within 25 miles of our studio! If shipping is necessary, shipping and handling fees will be billed to you prior to shipping.
NOTE: Any subsequent orders must be completed within 7 days via your online gallery. There is a de-archive fee of $75 for me to re-upload your digitals if you miss the 7 day window. I strongly suggest buying a USB drive to make a backup copy of your photos.
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to capture these precious moments in time for your family. It truly means the world to me and I know your photographs will create unforgettable memories for generations to come. Please do not hesitate to let me know if there is anything I can do to make our time together go smoothly.
NEWBORN POSE GUIDE
Below are some examples of the newborn poses. A variety of poses can be done on a posing blanket, fur, or in a prop. The props shown below consist of bowls, baskets, baby beds, buckets, etc. I have many different kinds, sizes, and colors. I always set up 1 posing blanket, 1 flokati fur, and 2 props for my smallest package. Larger packages will get more blankets and props. I also do a mixture of wrapped, naked, and clothed photos for variety. If you don't see something below or on my instagram/facebook page that you are interested in, please email or text me a screenshot or make note on your newborn questionnaire.
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