What to Expect at Your Newborn Photoshoot

Newborn African American baby sleeping on his side with his hands under his cheek on a white blanket

You've scheduled your newborn session, and you can't wait to get precious photos of the new addition to your family. But this may be your first newborn photo session, and you may not know what to expect.

Newborn photos are different from other portraits and require a little more thought and care. Below are a few things to consider to better prepare you for your newborn session.

Getting to the studio.

Most new families take a car service to the studio, or they drive themselves or walk. There are a couple of parking lots on 37th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues or another one on the south east corner, entrance on 38th Street at 7th Avenue.

When to arrive.

Please arrive as close as possible to your scheduled time. I understand that having a new baby can be a bit hectic so please text or call if you will not be on time. If you are running late, please try to relax so that the baby does not pick up on the anxious energy.

What to bring.

The baby will generally be photographed with no clothes on or with a diaper, so you don't need to bring anything for him unless you have a small momento that you'd like to include in the portraits. Most people choose to keep the images pure and simple. I also have a selection of clothing that your baby can wear at the studio.

Do bring your full diaper bag, plenty of diapers, extra formula if you are bottle feeding and a pacifier if you have one.

Since most of my family images are against a white background, I recommend that the parents wear light colored clothing, very pale pastels, whites, creams or very light neutrals. Avoid strong patterns or prints. I do have some clothing options for mom at the studio.

Clean up baby.

Gently clean off any flakes of skin or eye gunk with a washcloth. Use baby trimmers to trim the baby's fingernails and change them into a fresh diaper. Make sure baby looks fresh and clean before the photo session begins. Avoid dressing the baby in any tight clothing on their way to the studio since they might leave red marks, loose onesies work well.

Be prepared for feeding.

When you arrive for your photo session, be ready to feed your baby on demand rather than to a schedule. Babies tend to eat more when they are at the studio. You'll want them to be full and content, so they can more easily fall asleep and be posed for the photos. Don't forget to burp baby well after feeding. A gassy, fussy baby is uncomfortable and harder to work with than a content one.

Anticipate messes.

Babies have no concern for when they pee, poop, or spit up-or who they do it on. Don't stress the mess. I expect it, and you should too. Everything that I use with your baby gets washed after the session. It might be a good idea to bring an extra set of clothing for yourselves.

Dress lightly.

The studio will be warm, in the low 80's, so that the baby will be comfortable when naked. Dress in lightweight clothing or in layers so that you are comfortable during the session.

Be patient.

Don't stress out when things aren't going as you thought they should. Your newborn will be able to sense your anxiety and frustration and may become stressed as well. There is no such thing as a good or bad baby, there is either something bothering them or they are content. If there is something bothering them, we just have to find out what it is.

When you add siblings or other family members to the mix, things definitely become more interesting! If your other children are acting up, gently direct them and encourage them to pay attention.

Trust your photographer.

A professional photographer will know how to pose your newborn safely and how to work with every other member of the family. Be open to ideas and trust my expertise and ability to get you the images you want.

 Places to eat near the studio.

I will have some snacks and drinks at the studio but if you need something more substantial there are many restaurants and fast food options near the studio. You can order in or they are within easy walking distance for lunch after your newborn's session.