Having a newborn baby is one of the sweetest times of life. Although it can be stressful, this time with your newborn baby will be over in the blink of an eye.
Knowing how to photograph newborns is quite different than snapping a picture of an older child or taking a selfie. Newborns are tiny, can’t support themselves, and are ready to eat every hour on the hour. Because of this, DIY newborn photography can be tricky.
If you’re up for the challenge of taking some newborn pictures yourself or are looking to hire a professional, here are a few newborn photography tips to keep in mind.
Be Patient and Remember You Have Time
One of the best parts about newborn photography is that these little humans aren’t going anywhere quickly. Taking a photo of a sleeping newborn can happen anytime over those first few weeks of life. If you’re worried that you have to take an elaborate photo shoot at just five days old, remember that they will still be a newborn at week two.
Be patient with yourself and get acclimated to your new baby before you jump right into a social media-worthy extravaganza. Newborn babies are generally quite sleepy for the first few weeks so don’t go crazy trying to do this all too quickly postpartum.
Another thing to keep in mind is that, when you’re ready to start snapping some photos, don’t worry if you have to do so in multiple sessions. Newborns have diaper explosions, spit-up, or can just be fussy. You can try again later in the day or in a couple of days if you need to reset and do some laundry before continuing.
Don’t Forget the Lighting
Good lighting can make or break a photo. Your adorable, precious newborn is what you want to see most. Make sure you have a well-lit space before you start taking photos.
For parents trying to DIY newborn photos, remember that some of the best photo lighting comes from the sun. Take advantage of the sunlight and take photos near a window or in a room with a lot of natural light.
The best part about natural lighting is that it’s free. There’s no expensive equipment necessary. Play with angles here as well. Soft shadows and highlights are great if you can have the light flowing down from their head at a 45-degree angle.
Happy Baby Equals an Easy Photoshoot
As adults, doing anything when we are hungry is never good. Keep this in mind for your newborn as well. A hungry newborn isn’t going to be super photogenic. Newborns sleep much better on a full stomach.
For peaceful sleepy pictures of your little one, try to do a feeding right before you start to take pictures Once your baby is properly fueled up, they are far more likely to sleep through a lot of the photoshoot.
You also want to make sure your baby is comfortable. Skip the crazy outfits or uncomfortable props. The number one rule for how to take newborn photos should be to keep things simple when it comes to their clothing.
A baby is more comfortable when they are warm too. Make sure to turn the heat up or the air conditioning down while you’re taking photos. Newborn photos are often shot in just a blanket so keeping the house extra warm will help keep them cozy and happy.
It’s All in the Details
Don’t forget to focus on the little things when you’re taking photos of your newborn. Newborn pictures can include so much more than just your baby in a blanket. Focus on their little details as well.
Take close-ups of your baby’s tiny hands and feet. Zoom in on their little cheeks or their eyelashes. Those little body parts only stay little for so long. These are also the body parts you’ll miss kissing the most as they grow.
Cherish those little baby parts by focusing on them for a few shots. You’ll love how little their feet were when you look back on these pictures.
Don’t forget that you don’t always have to take photos of your newborn inside. Not only will the outdoors provide you with great natural lighting but you’ll also have some great backdrops. That golden hour time frame just after sunrise or right before the sun sets is great.
Outdoor spaces are also generally free so that’s a nice perk. Even if you live somewhere colder, venturing out for just a picture or two can be a really cool way of capturing the season they were born in.
Dress your baby appropriately, and don’t overthink it. Warm or cold, your baby will be just fine for a few minutes. Just bundle them up or find some shade.
Get The Whole Family Involved
If this little bundle of joy isn’t your first, get your older children involved in the photoshoot as well. This includes the family pet as well. Your kids will love getting involved in what you’re doing and being with the baby.
The moments you capture of the whole family are priceless. If your kids are younger or toddlers, don’t waste too much energy on the perfect pose either. Young kids don’t have long attention spans so whatever you can do to keep them interested is great.
Remember to put yourself in some photos as well. As your children grow, they will cherish the pictures they have with you. Take turns with your partner, use a tripod and a timer, or hire a professional if you want to get the whole family in a photo.
Newborn Photography Tips
Taking the time to snap photos of your newborn will always be time well spent. They only stay new for so long, so capture this special time.
A few newborn photography tips to remember are to be patient, make sure your baby is comfortable, focus on their little details, and get the whole family involved in the action as well. Enjoy this special time and you’ll love looking back at all of the special moments you captured.