How to prepare for a newborn baby photo shoot

Newborn babies are tiny for such a small period of time! It’s no wonder newborn photography is so popular. Below you’ll find advice and information for how to prepare for your photo shoot with me.

1. What age should my baby be to take newborn photos?

If you’d like the posed shots where the baby is a sleep in a basket etc, this is best done around 7-10 days when newborns are their drowsiest. It’s still possible to take these type of photos with older newborns, but since they tend to be more sensitive to their surroundings, they may not be as accommodating to being handled while asleep.

If you’d like more natural photos with the family and the baby is more alert, this can be done when the baby is any age.

A few weeks before the baby is due, I will be in touch with some dates to pencil in your diary. I ask families to get in touch within a day or two of the baby being born so we can finalise the photo shoot date once the baby arrives 

2. How do we get our baby ready?

For photo shoots in my studio, if possible, try to time the baby’s nap so that by the time they arrive at the studio they will have just fallen asleep. It’s not always possible to do this, particularly since babies love falling asleep in the car, so don’t worry if they aren’t asleep. There will be plenty of time during the photo session for them to fall asleep.

If I’m coming to your home, it’s great if you can feed your baby about 10 minutes before I’m due to arrive, so that about 20 minutes after I arrive, we can start your session. I normally take the first 20 minutes to bring my equipment to your home and have a look around for the best place to do the photos.

3. How do I prepare for a studio or an indoor photo shoot at home?

In my studio space, I’ll have a range of blankets, outfits and props. For most of the pictures I take, the baby may be partially or fully disrobed. For that reason, I turn up the heat in the studio so the baby is comfortable. I don’t mind getting hot as long as the baby is happy! I will also have some portable heaters set up. The room will be quite warm so make sure you layer your clothes. Otherwise, you’ll soon find the room uncomfortably warm!

For lifestyle pictures of the baby at your home, the photo shoot can take place anywhere in the house, but normally centres around 2-3 rooms. These are typically the ones with the greatest natural light since I tend not to use lighting equipment if possible for lifestyle photos. These rooms tend to be the main/baby bedroom, the living room and sometimes the kitchen. The one tip for preparing these areas is to remove any items which may ‘clutter’ the space and end up unwanted in the photograph. For example, remove any small items etc from the side tables beside the master bed. When we start doing the shoot, we will inevitably start moving some things around, but it will help if the rooms are as clutter free as possible.

4. How should we dress our baby and what should we wear?

For studio shoots, I will have hats and wraps to choose from for your baby. I highly recommend bringing toys and blankets that you’d like to have in the pictures. I love including something personal in the photos. I also recommend having a baby hair brush, muslins and wet wipes handy. Basically everything you’d also bring with you for the baby when you leave the house.

For lifestyle photos at home, I would suggest choosing 1-2 nice outfits for your baby. I suggest outfits are chosen based on sentimental value as well as aesthetics. Whatever outfits are chosen, try to have at least one that allows easy access to bare feet.

Regardless of where the shoot takes place, I always try to photograph tiny hands and tiny feet and more often than not, the mother or father’s hands will also be in those pictures. I recommend parents give their hands the once-over so they feel comfortable having their hands photographed. It’s also a good idea to avoid wearing heavy watches that will leave marks when taken off during the photo shoot.

As for what the adults should wear, I recommend neutral colours so that in the photograph, the baby is the focus of the picture. It’s also useful to bring a change of clothes for yourself – with something dark and something light coloured.

5. How long is the photoshoot?

I allow around 3 hours for newborn baby photo shoots because babies need some time to settle and it’s best not to rush them. This allows time for them to be changed, fed, burped and cuddled if needed.

6. Where is your studio?

The studio is located in the upstairs clinic at Maple Leaf chemist on Twickenham green (20 The Green, Twickenham, Middlesex, TW2 5AB, http://www.mapleleafpharmacy.co.uk).

Weekday parking is available by parking permit, so please let me know your vehicle registration number, make/model and colour and I will arrange for a parking permit.

To access my studio, come into the chemist and follow the signs for the clinic upstairs. Let the receptionist on the first floor know that you’re there and they will let me know you’ve arrived. If the reception is not there because it’s a Sunday, text me that you’ve arrived on 07828455576. Unfortunately, there isn’t any space to park buggies but I can help you carry it up the stairs to my studio. 

7. What happens once the shoot is over? When can we see the photos?

After your photo shoot, I go through each photo individually and select all the good ones for editing. Although I don’t have a maximum number I edit, for newborn photography I provide around 10 for every 30 minutes of photography. Within about a week to two weeks, I will send you a link for viewing your photos from an online gallery. You then have 7 days to choose which packages you want to order.

8. Still have questions? 

Feel free to ring me on 07828455576!

I look forward to photographing your lovely family!