The Newborn Baby Photoshoot Trend & How You Can Create Beautiful Baby Pictures
Over the past few decades, newborn baby shoots have become increasingly more common, with much of this being started by acclaimed photographer Anne Geddes. In the years before the internet became popular, Geddes sold close to 20 million books focused on baby photography and helped to launch the niche.
Since then, the area has become more popular as parents look to document the first few weeks of their child’s life. Throughout this time, there have been a variety of changes to the niche, with photographers planting their creative stamp on the images.
Alongside this has been the unique images and looks that parents have demanded with their newborn baby shoot images. This has meant that many professional photographers may have felt somewhat overwhelmed if they consider entering the niche.
While there are a variety of shots and pictures that are timeless and will continue to remain trendy, there are others that will come and go as time passes. This means that photographers should have a sturdy foundation to start their shoot with while also giving them room to be creative.
Behind The Rise Of The Newborn Baby Shoot
For the first few years of the newborn baby shoot trend, it was primarily just for holiday cards and baby models. This is no longer the case as parents now share photos of their children on social media almost constantly.
Throughout this time, there have been a variety of different looks and images that have been popular. The prevailing trend at the moment seems to be homespun and dreamy images, such as the type that you might find on Pinterest.
During this time, many photographers have recommended taking the photos between five and ten days after a baby is born. This is because parents will be able to enjoy the newborn look of their child for the rest of their lives. Alongside this, babies in their first few weeks may pose much better than you might expect.
Combined with photo-editing software, photographers have been able to create a significant number of landscapes and settings for the child to pose in. Throughout this time, there have been a few shots that have proven to be quite popular, and which show no signs of going away.
Perhaps the most notable of these is what’s known as the Froggy. Though this takes a large amount of composite work, it can be much more visually appealing than many others, especially for parents. With this photo, the baby lies on its stomach with its elbows propped. Their heads will then rest in their hands.
This is a photo that almost every parent gets at some point or another and is often used as part of the birth announcement.
The trend of photographing newborns is a distinctly millennial one, as the generation tends to photograph almost everything. While many of these may be somewhat trivial, the majority of people these days have their most important moments photographed, such as their wedding days.
This has made it natural for new parents to have their baby professionally photographed not long after they’re born. Social media has played a notable role in this, as parents want to share beautiful pictures of their child as much as possible.
While many of these may be taken by the parents on a smartphone, there are some occasions that they may want done professionally. This is especially true when it comes to newborns.
Alongside this has been the influence of celebrities, who have made pregnancy and childbirth much more glamorous. This was started by actress Demi Moore and has continued with the likes of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, up to Kim Kardashian, and much more.
This glamorisation is something that many parents look to replicate, especially among their social circles. While having a child is naturally a special occasion, professional photos help to increase this and allow parents to share it with many more people.
While there isn’t any real data about the number of newborn baby shoots compared to several decades ago, many industry experts have shared their insight into the topic. According to many, the area has become much more popular in the past five to ten years.
This would dovetail perfectly with the ongoing rise of social media, as well as the increasing influence of celebrity culture, among other factors. Before this, many people would only see the occasional baby photographer at industry events, but they can now be spotted almost everywhere.
Technological advancement in the photography world has also played an influence in this. In decades past, it was often difficult to photograph a newborn and create an image that everybody would love. This is no longer true, as professionals can remove any unattractive qualities of a photo, such as shakiness.
Professionals can also even out a newborn’s skin tone, which can often be slightly unappealing the in days following their birth. With a few small touch-ups, many parents will now be able to enjoy images that are accurate and are visually beautiful without having any awkward spots or an uneven skin tone.
This has meant that professional photoshoots have been able to paint a picture of a newborn that actually sleeps instead of the sleepless nights that affect every baby and their parents. Much of this chaos is why many parents will want to have pictures taken in the first place.
The days and weeks following birth can often be hectic, which means that many people, especially mothers, may not accurately remember them in the future. With how quickly a child can seem to grow, this means that they can often never look the same as they once they, which means that parents may forget it.
This is avoided through photoshoots, which allow parents to set these priceless and precious moments in stone and enjoy them for years to come.
The Gear You’ll Need For A Newborn Baby Shoot
Many photographers may believe that they’ll need specific gear for photographing a newborn baby, this isn’t completely true. In contrast, you should be able to use what you already have, although you’ll need to make sure that you bring along specific things.
The first of these is a macro lens, as you should want to capture the detail of a baby’s face and features. The macro lens should be perfectly suited to close-up shots, as well as full-length images, both of which will then come out sharp and appealing.
Alongside this is a portrait lens. There aren’t any specific lens’ you should bring, so it’s recommended that you bring along the ones that you typically rely on.
Lighting gear is another obvious choice to bring. While it’s recommended that you use natural light as much as possible, you’ll still need to use a reflector and other devices. If you need to use extra lighting, then you should aim to keep this as minimally as possible.
You’ll also need to bring a variety of toys and props, although many of these can depend on the age of the baby. These can often be crucial for keeping the child engaged and happy while you’re taking photos, which will then result in better photos.
You might want to invest in a backdrop, although you shouldn’t need to spend too much on this. In many cases, you can use a plain white bedsheet for both portraits and full-length shots. This can provide a significant amount of contrast for the images and ensure that all of the focus is on the newborn.
Blankets may also play a role in this, although these should be meaningful. In many cases, you’ll be able to speak with the parents about any of these they want to include. For example, many may want to add a baby’s first blanket in the photos, which could also extend to the toys that are in the pictures.
By having each of the above, you should have everything you need to create beautiful and engaging photos that everyone in the family will enjoy for years.
Ideas For Photographing The Babies
When it comes to ideas for photographing a newborn baby, many people may struggle. This is because there are many obvious pictures that you can take, although many of us may want to put our creative stamp on the shoot.
These don’t have to be mutually exclusive, as you’ll be able to put a unique twist on some of the most common. There’s also the fact that many parents will want certain images and moments captured, which means that you should be prepared to take some of the following photos.
Capture Their Age
Although much of this can be subtle, babies change almost daily. Over time, these changes build-up, and they can be almost unrecognisable from what they looked like months beforehand. This can make it vital to capture their age when you’re taking photos.
While many parents may write the child’s age on the back of the printed image, there are a few creative ways that you’ll be able to work this in. One of the most common is to have colourful numbers that you can include in the picture.
In the majority of cases, you may want to include the baby’s age in days, especially if they’re only a few weeks old. For special occasions, such as birthdays, then you may not need to use too many of these.
You could also set up regular photoshoots celebrating every week or month, which can mean that parents will have a scrapbook of their baby’s changes and growth over several months.
Mom & Child
Photos of the mom and child are a no-brainer, as they’ll have a connection that many will want captured for eternity. As the mother will be easy to direct and work with, these photos should often be much easier to take than the child on its own.
They may also want a few nursing shots taken, although this is something that you’ll have to work out beforehand and be prepared for. Alongside this are images of the father and the child, as well as the trio.
Bring In The Siblings
If this isn’t a person’s first child, then bringing in the siblings could be mandatory. Similar to including the parents, this provides a picture that everybody will want to be framed. Parents will more than likely want sibling photographs taken.
You may need to take some precautions when taking these photos, depending on the age of the children. This is because children under a certain age may not be able to hold a baby for too long. By being careful, however, you’ll be able to take some engaging photos that last a lifetime.
Generational photos have been popular for years, and there are a few reasons behind this. One of the most prominent is that they can be some of the more visually and emotionally pleasing for family members. Everyone will want a picture of as much of the family as possible, as they’ll be able to cherish it for years to come.
Regardless of whether these are candid or posed, if you’re able to be there to take one of these photos, then you should do so. These are the photos that every client will want to keep, which can make them some of the most important to capture.
While it can be difficult to do so, it will be well worth the investment once you see the smile on a client’s face.
Milestones are what everybody looks forward to, especially with their children. In the first few weeks and months after their birth, a baby will have quite a significant number of them, such as the first time they try a particular food, or when they start crawling.
These are things that many parents may want to be captured in a photograph. While it may not be possible to take a picture of the first time of each, you may be able to replicate it within days of it occurring. This could be something that parents will want to be done, as it will allow them to remember the initial memory better.
Pictures of the first time a baby tries a particular food have also proven to be popular. This is something that you’ll be able to photograph and which could provide a significant number of creative and entertaining photos.
Tips For Baby Photography
Many of us may not have worked with babies before, especially newborns. This could mean that many photographers may not know how they should photography them effectively. There are several tips and tricks that you’ll be able to take advantage of.
The most obvious of these is to get down onto their level, which is something that can be applied to almost every portrait that you take. Doing so ensure that you can capture as much detail as possible when photographing them.
You should also get as close as possible to the baby to fill the frame with them. This doesn’t mean that you should be too close; instead, it means that you should ensure that the newborn is the central focus, and there are minimal distractions in the frame.
Alongside this is keeping the background as clutter-free as possible; parents will want their child to be the focus, which means taking as many objects out of the background as possible. While this could be difficult for more candid shots, it can be worth the time it takes. One quick workaround is to ensure that you frame the image effectively.
Though you may inevitably use lights when doing the photoshoot, you should aim to use as much natural lighting as possible. This should mean that you keep the windows and doors open to allow a significant amount of sunlight in. While this may not always be possible, it’s highly recommended when you can.
This will help you catch the light in their eyes, which could prove to create much better photos during the shoot.
While the majority of newborns will sit still for most of the photoshoot, this isn’t true for those who are slightly older; once they’ve learned how to walk or crawl, they’ll want to do so as much as possible. This shouldn’t be a negative when you’re taking pictures of them.
Instead, switch over to your camera’s continuous or burst mode and take a variety of photos of the baby in motion. Though few of these pictures may be used, those that are could prove to be quite unique and appealing.
Taking advantage of each of the above tips will give you the best chance possible to creating unique newborn photos that every parent should love. If you’re starting in the niche, then it’s recommended you stick to each of the types of images we mentioned above.
Though it can seem overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be. Like many other niches, the more practice you have, the more confident you’ll be. Newborn baby photography can be much more similar to other forms of portrait and candid photography.
This means that you’ll be able to rely on the skills that you already have; you’ll simply need to harness them in a slightly different manner than you usually have. Though all photographers will need a large amount of patience, this is especially true with newborn babies.