YOUR NEWBORN SESSION
Please read the following information and, if you would like to book, contact me on 07765 718415 or through my Contact Page.
When to Book - To avoid disappointment, please book your newborn session with me as early as possible, ideally whilst still pregnant. I will then reserve time for your sitting based on your due date, allowing flexibility in my diary should baby (as they often do) decide to arrive early or late. I ask that someone contact me within 48 hours of baby's arrival to confirm your session date to enable me to juggle my diary commitments if necessary.
If baby has already arrived please still get in touch as due to the unpredictable nature of due dates, I may well have some flexibility in my diary and be able to fit you in.
What to Bring - Prior to your session you will be sent a PDF booklet full of information about your session and what to bring with you, which will include everything you need for baby in relation to feeds and nappy changes, plus any props you would like included in your session. The PDF contains additional detailed information and guidance on how to prepare.
Safety - Your baby's safety is my number one priority and it is a subject I am passionate about. Over the years I have strived to raise awareness of this important issue through my blogs and social media. I have had articles published both in the UK and internationally on the subject of safe practice during newborn portrait sessions and appeared as a guest blogger promoting safety to new parents for the Small Steps Parenting Community and the Baby and Newborn Photography Association.
In order to ensure baby's safety during a session, I will ask mum or dad to assist with some poses for example, to safely support baby in the creation of 'composite' shots, an example of which can be seen here. As you can see above, this tiny baby was fully supported by daddy and the resulting images put together carefully in Photoshop to create the final photograph.
Age - The age of your baby will determine what poses I use. In order to create those gorgeous, curly poses most newborn photographers will tell you that your session ideally needs to take place before baby is two weeks of age. The argument will be that after that time, your baby will begin to lose their newborn appearance, and be less likely to fall into that deep newborn sleep that allows us to gently position them into the poses we use.
However please don't worry if we miss that window of opportunity!
With longer hospital stays or exhausted parents I fully understand that sometimes, things just don't go to plan and I regularly photograph 'newborns' of three, four weeks or older. It is true that the older a baby gets the more wakeful and less flexible they may be, but if I have to photograph your little one at an older age it just means that I might need to rely more on natural lifestyle type images rather than tiny newborn props and poses.
Personally, I love 'wide eyed' newborn photographs and am always amazed at a young baby's ability to give me some amazing eye contact. Even in sessions where little one has absolutely refused to sleep for more than ten minutes, mum and dad have still ended up with a set of gorgeous photos! Session Length - You need to be aware that newborn shoots take time. I only ever book one newborn session per day and shoots are relaxed and baby led allowing time for feeds, nappy changes and comforting cuddles as needed. It’s not unusual for a full newborn session to last four hours and it is for this reason, and the fact that generally speaking newborns seem a little more settled in the mornings, that my sessions all start at 10.00 am. Please try and avoid booking any other commitments on the day of your session. If you do have any time restraints, please let me know as soon as possible. Once we have confirmed a date for your newborn shoot, you will receive an advice booklet designed to ensure your session runs as smoothly as possible. It is very important that you read this booklet carefully to prepare for your session.
Flaky Skin/Red Spots/Birth Marks - Please don't worry if your little one has flaky skin or blemishes. All images are professionally processed to ensure the subtle removal of any little imperfections. With regard to birth marks, I will always ask whether you would like the mark removed completely, left as it is or simply softened slightly in the final image.
Clothing Choices As very young babies are so easily swamped by clothing and in order to show off your baby's flawless skin and tiny features, I photograph newborns in just their nappies with a skin toned cover or my lovely simple wraps. Of course if you have a favourite outfit you really want your baby photographed in, bring it with you and we will work it into the session.
For adults/siblings choose clothes that are not heavily patterned or brightly coloured - such clothes will draw attention away from your faces (and of course baby) in the finished photos. Family groups look great if you are all dressed in complimentary colours. I make no excuses for saying that black is my favourite colour for portraits and these two images demonstrate why - the viewer's attention is naturally drawn to the brighter areas of the image, i.e. the faces!
Mums are often concerned about their post-pregnancy shape and, having had three children myself, I can associate with that! If that applies to you, the most flattering thing to wear for those lovely family shots are dark colours with long sleeves.
Finally, my studio will be lovely and warm for your newborn session so I would suggest wearing layers for your comfort. It might also be a good idea to bring a change of top, just in case your little one has any accidents mid-nappy change or post feed!
Thank you for reading. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to get in touch through the contact section of my website or on 07765 718415.
Lorraine Jardim LBIPP QGPP
Ellie J Photography.