Planning for a Successful Newborn Portrait Session

Ah, newborns! The wrinkles, tiny toes, and sleepless nights. The first weeks of a baby’s life can sometimes be a little hectic and, let’s face it, outright exhausting. Here are my suggestions to make your baby’s newborn portrait session less hectic and exhausting.

Think Ahead

Ideally, you have met with and selected the photographer you will be working with before your baby is born. I am a planner at heart, so I find planning to be half the fun. Plan your maternity session for around 37 weeks. Don’t skip on a maternity session, trust me. You may be feeling larger than life and uncomfortable (I’m sorry!) but in 10 years you will love looking back at the beautiful pregnant body that brought a new soul into the world. Expect to schedule your newborn’s photo session within 6 to 10 days of giving birth. How do you schedule a session ahead of time when you do not know when the baby will be born? Usually I place dad in charge of this. Once mom and baby are home from the hospital, dad will send me a text or phone call to set up a time for the newborn session as soon as possible. BONUS TIP: Consider adding a “Fresh 48” session. “Fresh 48” sessions are short in hospital sessions that capture sweet memories of where baby was born.

It’s Your Photo Session Too

Even though your baby is the star of the show, do not think you will not be in a photo or two. Photographs of moms and dads holding baby are by far my favorite images created during newborn sessions. Do not fret too much about your outfit. Solid colored tops will work well to create a timeless image of parent and child.

Relax and Enjoy

Newborn portrait sessions typically last longer than 1 hour. Everything happens at baby’s pace. We may stop several times, as many times as is necessary, to feed baby, soothe baby, burp baby, and change baby. And that is perfectly wonderful. There is no need to rush. A hurried attitude will only lessen your (and baby’s) enjoyment of this time together. Take this moment and breathe it in!

By spending an evening or two thinking about the newborn session before your baby’s arrival you can eliminate in the moment stress of planning a newborn session while you are sleeplessly caring for a newborn. Ultimately, my goal is to help you remember these first hectic and exhausting days of your baby’s life. But with as much exhaustion will come an even greater dose of the most powerful joy you have ever felt. Do not miss this chance to remember. As you will soon find out, these days go by so darn fast. 

Check out this cutie's Fresh 48 and Newborn Portrait Session slideshow.