On the Shoot (Newborn Session) :
- Mom & Dad talk: As I refrain from knocking down the door to get inside to see that wittle bitty baby, I take a moment to mentally prepare in the driveway. Once I contain the excitement I go in and talk to mom and dad. I express my excitement and appreciation and tell them what to expect for the day. After that, I bring in my props.
- Finding good light: Once I have all my props unloaded in the house I go on a hunt... a hunt for light! Good, natural light. I check in front of all the doors and windows throughout the house. Before I go into the house I check to see what side the sun is on. The sunny side guides me in determining the best window or door to use as my natural light source.
- Moving furniture: Yes, I rearrange the house. I apologize in advance to mom and dad for turning their once nested house upside down. In an attempt to capture good photographs they gladly sacrifice. I move any furniture out of the way in order to set up shop. I've even moved a dining room table (Wanna see? Find the baby on the scale photo from this post)
- Set up shop: Now that I have my naturally lit spot in front of a door or window chosen, I set up my bean bag and blanket backdrop. The bean bag is essential! I was so thankful when I stumbled across a newborn photography blog that shared that secret. I use the back side of dining room chairs to hold up the blanket. I'm hoping to invest in a backdrop holder soon.
- Finding walls/floors for backdrops: After I've gotten the bean bag in place I do more hunting. I look for other spots to take photos. I check for walls and floors that would provide adequate backdrops for photos using baskets/buckets. Be creative and have fun with it.
- Heater: Before I get the baby into position I set up a space heater in front of the bean bag. I do this because cold babies = crying babies. Sometimes, I undress the baby in front of the heater as well. They like it to be as similar to mommy's womb as possible. It's not a bad idea to have mom and dad crank up the heat an hour or two before the session. Be prepared to get your sweat on.
- Handling the baby: OH, my favorite part! Once everything is in position and I have a plan, I warm up my hands (after they've been washed, of course) and get the baby ready for the session. When handling the baby I do everything slowly and gently. Babies do not like to be cold, so when I move them from place to place I keep them close to my body, just like mom. Sudden movements can easily disturb their sleep. Every movement during positioning must to be soft and slow. I do a lot of "shhhhing" to keep the baby calm. It works!
*** Warning: There is a 99% chance you will get pooped or peed on, possibly both :)
Check out Mr. Colson. He was such a good baby. Congratulations Kristy and Brian, you are so blessed to have such a beautiful baby boy. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to capture his first days of life.
Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post on my editing process and techniques.
If you have any questions about what I've shared, please leave a comment. I hope to have another FAQ post soon :)