Newborn safety is a very important subject with all the photographers there are nowadays. I do not photograph newborns often but when I do get the chance to photograph them, I absolutely love it. I mean what’s not to love. The little pouty lips while rolled into a tiny ball and that little yawn you get after moving them into a new position. They’re the sweetest little things. A lot of people don’t realize that you have to be very careful with newborns. They are completely reliant on you. They do not know how to hold their head up and support themselves nor hang from a tree branch and catch themselves if they fall. A lot of people try to get all these amazing shots but disregard the safety of the newborn. No picture is worth putting baby at risk!
When I do photo shoots, I usually only do the basic poses plus the head in hands as long as baby will let me. It takes a lot of practice and took me a little bit to get. But what you really have to master is photoshop & layers. Most photos of newborns nowadays with the poses you could never expect a baby to do are composites. Hands holding and placed in different areas of the photo so in the end, you can merge all the photos together for one seamless photo.
The whole point of this post is just to bring awareness to so many photographers. As much as we want to get ‘THAT AWESOME SHOT’ you must put safety first and find a way to do it!
Tips for Newborn Photography & Safety:
- Keep the area warm. Whether you have a small heater or keep the house warm, it will definately help when photographing the newborns. They are used to being in a tummy for 9 months. The second they are undressed they get upset and cry if they do not feel warm and secure.
- Always have a second pair of hands around to help you get the shots. I mean you can’t take the photograph and hold your hands up and get the shot you want! Mom or Dad or an assistant should always be there to help with those shots.
- Photograph within the first 2 weeks. The earlier the better. Babies sleep most of the day when they are first born. During this time it makes it easy to switch up poses and keep baby asleep.
- Be ready to spend 2-4 hours with the newborn. Between getting the shots you want, switching out the props and feedings it can take quite awhile. Some poses take a few minutes for baby to relax into.
Included below is a composite of my last newborn session with Jaxon. You can see mom held baby from underneath, then above so I merged the two together to create the final image.