Whether it's on a professional level or just for preserving family memories, newborn photography plays a big role in family history. It's something that kids will enjoy in their adult life, just like many of us have a laugh over our photos from when we were a few weeks old. Newborn children aren't the easiest subject you will photograph, but these hacks should make the process a lot easier.
It's not like doing a portrait session for someone. You will be shooting portraits of the baby, but it takes more than that. It's something new for the family as well, especially if it is a first child. They're just starting to get an idea about parenthood and small rituals like baths and changing clothes can be captured in emotional images. So it's best to alter styles. Shoot candid portraits, studio portraits but also try a documentary approach.
"Hunt" the smiles
The thing about newborns is that they don't smile that much. In fact, most of them spend very little time doing it so getting a smile can be a challenge. Identify smile triggers. It can be a toy, one of the parents, a sound or a face made by someone. Whatever the case, you need to pay attention to the little one's gestures and moods. Obviously it takes a bit of time so don't start a newborn session thinking you're going to finish it in less than a few hours.
Props can help a lot. Use anything you think will look good and make sense Toys, pillows, fabrics and funny baby clothes are just a few ways to add some extra fun to your photos.
Scout the location
You should take at least 10-15 minutes to check out the place and see what the best spots are for the baby. Look for places near windows and clean backgrounds. Also take into account that you will need some room to setup lights in case you're using any.
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Wait for him to sleep
During the photo shoot, schedule awake time and sleeping time. Sleeping babies, especially deep sleepers are easier to pose, not to mention they are extra cute when they sleep. It is recommended that you speak to the parents and learn about the baby's schedule before the actual shoot.
Newborns can be fairly unpredictable and they can turn their face away from you just when you thought you nailed the perfect angle. That's just one reason why you should always be looking for more than one angles. Change height. Shoot from above or get down to the baby's level. Alter composition rules as you experiment new angles .
Above all, newborn photography requires patience. Not all babies are the same. Some cry and scream all day, others make it seem hard to do something that disturbs them. Adaptation plays an important part in this type of photography, but at the end of the day it pays off.