Preparing for your newborn session
This is meant to be a helpful list, not a strict set of rules. These suggestions will help your session go as smoothly as possible.
1. If you're nursing, try to avoid spicy food and caffeine for at least 24 hours prior to your session as it can affect baby. Some babies are sensitive to lactose and soy so if you can stay away from those as well, I definitely recommend it.
2. Try to keep baby up for 2-3 hours prior to the session if possible so s/he will sleep better for posing. Awake babies can be difficult to pose and will usually want to spend the session eating.
3. If you live quite close to the studio (10-15 mins), please give baby a full feeding before leaving the house. If you are far from the studio, try to time your feeding so baby can eat upon arrival at the studio. We want him/her to start a sleep cycle once the session begins, not before if possible. If baby must be fed before your arrival at the studio, try to give only a light feeding.
4. Give a diaper change right before you leave the house. A loose fitting diaper will help prevent skin creasing and redness. Dress baby in clothing that can be buttoned or zipped to avoid pulling a tight neckline over the head in case s/he is sleeping when you arrive.
5. Bring extra formula or milk if you bottle feed. You may be surprised how much your baby will eat during a session. Even if you breast feed, but are okay with baby taking a bottle, please bring one just in case. I'm very hands on and prefer if Mom handles baby as little as possible during the session. They tend to want to wake up and continue to eat if they smell Mom. I'm happy to help with diaper changes too!
6. I suggest bringing a book, kobo reader, tablet, laptop or anything else you may want to do or catch up on. You are welcome to watch movies in my parent lounge. If you'd like to bring food or take a nap during the session, that's fine too. I have a full coffee/tea bar so you won't need to worry about stopping for coffee on the way! I even have decaf :)
7. Don't forget the pacifier. I use them for every session. They will usually help fussy babies to settle quickly and will be removed immediately once baby calms. Sometimes even just having one for a few seconds makes a huge difference. I do have some on hand just in case.
8. My studio is quite warm in order to help the babies stay sleepy. I'll have a heater going through the session so be sure to dress in layers if you tend to get hot.
9. Try to trim baby's nails if they are raggedy. It's not mandatory but they photograph much nicer. I know some doctors advise against it so the choice is yours.
10. I ask clients not to bring their other children, family members or friends to the newborn session. If you've booked a newborn family session with sibling posing, I ask that the other children only attend while they are being photographed. Sibling shots are done in the first or last hour of the session.
11. For parent, sibling or family shots: I recommend wearing (or bringing) solid colored, neutral items that coordinate with each other, but don't match exactly. I recommend not wearing all black as it can overwhelm newborns with fair skin. If you want, bring a few options (one long sleeve, one short sleeve, one tank, etc) and try to avoid collars, prints, logos and bright colors. The simpler, the better. We want the focus to be on baby and the family, not the clothing. It's always a good idea for parents to bring an extra shirt if you'd like photos of yourselves holding your baby naked. If a sibling wears a skirt or dress, be sure to have something like leggings or tights covering underwear to ensure they won't show.
12. For boys who will be circumcised, it's best to either schedule the procedure for after the portrait session, or allow at least 4-5 days between the procedure and the session. If the session takes place too soon after the procedure, the diaper may have to remain on and posing options may be limited. Baby may also cry more if uncomfortable.
13. Please try to arrive on time. If you know you will be late, call or text as soon as possible to let me know. If you are late, it may cut into your session time.
If there's anything I've forgotten or something you're unsure of please contact me!