How to Choose a Newborn Photographer

Obviously I want you to choose me if you're looking for a newborn photographer. I have been photographing newborns for 9 years, and absolutely love it! I love watching these babies grow and photographing them year after year. It is such a huge perk of my job. Some of you may feel overwhelmed trying to decide among the masses of photographers out there. Don't just choose based on price. You want to love the photographer's style of photography, experience, their attention to safety and cleanliness, and the way they conduct their sessions.

Style

Just like everything else in life newborn photography changes and evolves over the years. 15 years ago people didn't have their newborns photographed, and now it's more common than not. There are many different styles of photographers for newborns. There are those that are experts in intricate poses and sets. There are lifestyle newborn photographers who don't pose the baby at all, but just photograph them as they are. I have adopted a little bit of both worlds. I find so much beauty in both ends of the spectrum, and I try to incorporate them in my newborn sessions. 

Most newborn photography you see shows the baby asleep. There are many reasons for this, but mainly it's because newborns are unpredictable. It's difficult to get good eye contact through the camera, and we don't like to talk about it much, but babies do go cross eyed a lot. When they are sleeping their faces are peaceful and beautiful, but when they are awake their eyes are so beautiful and reflect so much personality. I love to photograph newborns awake for at least some of the session.

Really check out your photographer's portfolio. Do you love what you see? Do you want to see your baby photographed in that style? A great place to look for professional photographer is in the The Professional Photographers Association and The National Association of Professional Child Photographers list of photographers. These are the photographers who care enough to keep learning and growing as a photographer. 

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Safety

When you are selecting a newborn photographer please think of the safety of your baby first. There is no image worth injuring your child. You may see some poses on the internet that look amazing, and you're not sure how they pulled it off. Most likely the photographer used Photoshop to achieve that pose. It's NEVER safe to hang your baby from a tree branch, dangle on a shelf, or hold herself up with her own hands. Safe photographers will use photoshop composites to do this. I personally stay away from anything that is unnatural or will hurt the baby's body in any way, even by accident. I think babies look best in their natural poses anyway.

Newborns are usually photographed in the first 2 weeks after they are born. This is a vulnerable time for your baby. You want to keep them away from anything that could get them sick. Make sure your photographer washes her hands, camera equipment, and anything the baby comes in contact with before the session. Does she have her immunizations up to date?

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Location and Comfort

This session was photographed in my studio, but you might also want to consider a session in your home. It can be so personal and custom to only your family having it at your home. When I suggest this to some clients they shy away from it saying their house is too small or not nice enough, or they don't want to clean. I've done newborn sessions in studio apartments and mansions and it honestly doesn't matter. It's my job to make you look good. All I need is light (I bring my own in case you don't have it) and your baby and I can do it. Don't ever worry about cleaning for me. I have 4 kids of my own. I know what a well lived in house looks like.

I also discuss with my clients the best way to prepare for the session. I have found that sessions are much shorter and go smoother when the parents do some simple things to prepare. Nobody wants a 5 hour newborn session. That's just too long, especially when you're recovering from birth. My sessions only last about 1-2 hours, and that includes feeding and diaper changes.

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