Newborn Session FAQ
Tips to Prepare You For Your Newborn Session
with Casey Irey Photography
Know Your Style – There are two types of newborn photography – posed/studio & lifestyle. I love both for different reasons. However, it is important to make sure you know what type you'd prefer to do so there are no surprises during or after the session. Generally, I try to incorporate both styles in my newborn sessions. The focus in the studio session is on shots of the baby looking perfect, usually in blankets, wraps, hats, & headbands posed in 'mold-able' positions. Lifestyle sessions are more relaxed. There may be some posing but the intention is to capture more natural images of the baby and their home. Personally, I value both types of styles so I approach it as a posed session, but use the breaks in between poses to get my lifestyle shots. The breaks do not have to be wasted time for you. Have the feeding take place in the best light and you have yourself a great opportunity for some lifestyle shots. For both sessions, I prefer to use natural light, so sessions must be scheduled during daytime hours.
It's All About the Timing – Your session should be 'scheduled' within the first 10 days of life to make sure baby is super sleepy and able to be posed more easily. Make sure you tell me your due date so I can pencil you in, then e-mail me soon after you've delivered so I can officially book a date for you. For both sessions, I prefer to use natural light, so sessions must be scheduled during daytime hours. Because newborn babies have so many needs, sessions can last anywhere from 2-4 hours. Remember, they'll need to be fed, diapered and rocked to sleep constantly, so please allow room in your schedule for this.
Props, props and MORE props – Although you may have scoured Pinterest and found 10 different poses you'd like your new baby to have, I only plan 3 different major setups (based on the client’s preferences and expectations) and that’s all. Each pose takes a while to coordinate. I am often inspired by something the client owns as well, such as a blanket knitted by Grandma or something else that’s special to mom and dad. If there's a particular set-up you've seen me use before or one that I may be able to recreate, please let me know weeks in advance so I have time to plan. Otherwise, you can just trust my photography expertise!
Snug as a Bug in a Rug – Although I am totally open to my clients and their ideas for outfits, etc., for newborn sessions, my primary 'look' I aim for is a natural, rustic, neutral palate with mostly naked shots. This means a lot of natural woven wraps to make baby look snug and warm, with matching blankets, etc. I use a white noise machine to lull fussy babies to sleep. I also keep the furnace higher (during the winter months) or use a space heater nearby to make sure baby stays nice and cozy. It's a good idea for you as parents to dress in layers to prevent you from over heating!
Siblings – If the baby has older siblings, I try to make the sibling shots my very first priority and then let them go play while we finish the session. Toddlers simply don’t have the attention span to sit quietly and wait for you to call on them for their picture so I will get their poses done first while they are curious and excited about your visit. By the time the session is over, they are usually open to participating again and that is when I try to get some lifestyle sibling shots. If they don’t want to participate, I’ve found promises of ice cream & candy have magical powers! (as long as that’s ok with Mom & Dad).
Mom, I'd like your picture, too! – After I had my babies the last thing that I wanted to do was have my picture taken or put much effort into making myself camera ready. I know firsthand how hard it is for a mom to get in front of that camera. But I also know how important it is. Remember, you will treasure it and so will the baby years from now. The important thing is to keep mommy/baby poses easy and without much effort needed on behalf of the mother. Chances are, you're still uncomfortable and in pain and possibly even recovering from a surgery so being gentle is crucial. If you absolutely don't want to be in the photos, just let me know and I wont pester you at all!
If you DO want to be in the photos with your new bundle of joy, here are some tips: Keep it simple. Throw in a little color if you’d like, but skip the busy patterns. (And please don’t feel the need to match everyone in white shirts and jeans – there’s simple…and then there’s boring!)?For moms, we suggest cotton knit camis and knit tops.?We’re also big fans of skin-on-skin portraits with you holding your baby against you. They’re so simple and timeless!. So if you want some portraits like this with your newborn, consider a strapless top or tank as an alternative. For dad, your hands, and possibly even your feet, MAY play a major role in this session, so it’s important that you tend to them too!? Even if you aren’t planning on participating much in the session, you’ll still be handling your baby a bit, so it’s a good idea to trim and tidy your nails and apply lotion to any dry skin. Long or short sleeved knits are best. (Make sure there isn’t too much bagginess in the sleeve.) Undershirts also work well.? Make sure your t-shirts are free of logos or too much writing.
Expect the Unexpected – Even though I plan and plan and plan for weeks ahead of my newborn sessions, sometimes it doesn't always go as planned. Sometimes baby just doesn't want to cooperate and is extra fussy. DON'T worry. I will get you the shots I can and I promise you they will still be beautiful!
What to Bring – As stated above, I have hundreds of props, various head bands, etc. to use during the photo session. However, if there's a special blanket or another prop you'd like in a photo please bring it. Make sure you have plenty of food (if you're not nursing), diapers, wipes, and a nice warm blanket to keep baby warm in between shots. Most importantly, bring some patience with you. It'll be a long session, but totally worth it in the end.
Thank you for choosing me to take your photos!