It feels like an age since I had a baby girl in the studio so when Miss Harley came in at 15 days new it was love at first sight – well for me anyway 🙂
Look at those cheeks and those rosebud lips. Absolute perfection!
Mum had mentioned in the pre-shoot questionnaire that she loved flowers and fairies but was happy to be guided by me. I didn’t have anything fairy related for a baby but flowers, flowers I could do.
I had been wanting to use this sunflower composite for ages and this was just the excuse I needed (just in case you’d thought I’d somehow shrunk the baby or found a humungous sunflower!!).
She looks very peaceful in her sunflower slumber but soon she was wide awake and looking straight at me!
So I used the fact that she was awake to my advantage to try out my new mugshot style. These are simple black and white images that focus on expressions. My plan is to also offer them at my 4, 8 and 12 month grow with me sessions and I think it will be cool to see how their little personalities develop over the year.
In terms of wall art, black and white images are timeless classics.
When two become three
Miss Harley’s parents weren’t sure they were up for being in the images at first but they soon came around, especially for a silhouette image that focuses purely on their connection and love as a new family unit.
I just adore these images so much 🙂
Up, up and away
Harley was a total dreamboat to work with. Even when she decided that she was done with sleeping she just watched me with her big blue eyes, quite content. Our session was over far too quickly. I made good use of the time mum and dad needed to put on their coats to get as many snuggles with Harley as possible. And yes if I’m honest there may have been some head sniffing going on as well!
First we had each other then we had you now we have everything.
First baby of 2020
Baby Sebastian was 19 days new when he came into the studio on the 2nd day of 2020 and completely stole my heart.
Years ago I worked with his mum’s bestie (if by work you mean meeting for copious cups of tea and bitching about the place we worked at – then we worked hard!). She got in touch to buy a newborn photoshoot as a baby gift. That’s the perfect BFF right there!
Wide awake club
I’d established with mum that Sebastian was most sleepy in the afternoon so that’s when we booked the session. However, as I always tell parents their baby will always choose the day of their photoshoot to change their routine. Sebastian was no exception! But that’s okay because I get beautiful wide awake images for their gallery as well as sleepy ones. Plus it means I get more time snuggling with the baby as I attempt to get them to nod off. Win-win!
What the heck are you doing to me?
I thought with one of the backdrops I was using my mohair teddy bonnet would look super cute on Sebastian.
And it did, but I also love his angry expression in this image. It’s like he is totally mad at me for daring to put him in the hat!
Being a model is exhausting
Eventually being fed and swaddled started to work its magic.
Master Sebastian decided my bucket prop was the perfect place to take a little power nap.
Look at those pouty lips and perfectly kissable cheeks. Baby perfection right there!
Family is a beautiful word
I always ask mum and dad at the beginning of the session if they want pictures of them with their new bundle of joy. A lot of parents are self-conscious and not sure if they want to be in front of the camera. Being parents is all-new, as is not getting much sleep. Sebastian’s parents were no exception. I always say the same thing. These images are not for you, they are for your baby when they get old enough to understand – you want them to see how loved they were as soon as they were born. I ease them into it with a silhouette image like the one at the beginning of this blog and then if they want to stop there it’s fine. But I’m delighted that Sebastian’s parents then choose to have images taken with him individually and together as a family unit. I think Sebastian is going to adore these images when he is older and be in absolutely no doubt about how utterly loved he is.
It is not like me to start a baby post with an angry rant, but please bear with me. Mums, especially brand new mums are made to feel guilty about everything. Are they breastfeeding? Is the baby eating enough, sleeping enough, going to the toilet enough? Have they got them too warm, too cold? Are they stimulated enough, too much? it goes on and on. What they absolutely do not need is baby photographers telling them their new bundle of joy is too old for newborn photos!!!
Imagine being made to feel like you’d ‘missed’ an important milestone in your new babies life because you didn’t get them photographed as soon as you come out of hospital? I know that newborn babies can be easier to photograph in their first two weeks of life and as professional photographers we all love that. But, if mum has had a difficult labour or has lots of stitches she may not be ready to leave the house right away. Add to that being parents for the first time doesn’t come with an instruction manual. That first couple of weeks whizz by.
So when Callum’s mum came to me asking for newborn shoots for her baby who was 3 weeks old, after being told he was too old. I was more than happy to help. Because making sure my clients get a great experience and memories to treasure is the most important thing. ***Climbs off soapbox – rant over***.
Meet baby perfection
Introducing Master Callum.
Look at all that hair! Those pouty lips. Kissable cheeks. Button nose and eyelashes. Utter perfection! Mum and Dad had waited a very long time for this little dude to come into their lives. He was absolutely worth the wait and you could see they were utterly besotted with him. As was Gran who came along to watch this first milestone as well.
Look into my eyes
Callum was a very good boy sleeping between feeds. But he also treated us to some time awake. I love capturing your baby both awake and asleep. Callum’s facial expressions were hilarious and I had great fun capturing as many of them as possible.
Just hanging around
To be fair, he was pulling the cutest faces when he was sleeping as well.
He looks very pleased with himself in this one!
With his photography shoot being right at the end of November I had to introduce a little Christmas magic into Callum’s session.
Luckily he had fallen into a deep sleep so he couldn’t object to me turning him into the cutest little elf you ever did see!
Have your ELF a Merry Christmas Callum (sorry, not sorry!).
Second baby girl in a sea of boys, break out the tutus!! I was very excited to meet little Miss Millie when she came to my studio last week at just 8-days-new. She was utter perfection and clearly I wasn’t the only one to think that. Mum, Dad and big sister Hailey were all totally smitten with the new arrival into their family and into their hearts.
She sleeps all the time
If I had a pound for every time I heard that I would be rich! Very often coming into the studio is the first big change in routine the new baby has and they don’t always settle at first. Despite the warm temperature and good feed on arrival ( I do love it when mum’s read the prep guide I send out 🙂 ).
I don’t mind though. I think it’s nice to capture a gallery of images for parents with both wide awake and asleep images. Meet Millie – isn’t she beautiful?
A Swaddled Baby is a Sleepy Baby
Once I get them all swaddled up like a little burrito they usually nod off and Miss Millie was no exception.
Big sister Hailey was super helpful during the session. She picked out outfits for me and kept checking that I was looking after her little sister. She even picked out the lovey for Millie to cuddle in the next image.
Excellent choice Hailey!
Mum had organised big sister and little sister t-shirts for Hailey and Millie to wear and they were so cute. At age 7 Hailey was brilliant to work with for the sibling poses and took great care of her little sister.
Hailey also picked the prop I was going to use for Millie. She had the choice of a tin bucket or wooden bowl and I think she made a great choice with the bucket. Miss Millie was super content to be in there wrapped up in wool. She was deep in the land of nod just giving us the occasional sleepy smile.
Family is everything
I captured some lovely images of the whole family together but this is my absolute favourite. Whilst it might not be the most technically perfect I love the expressions on everybody’s faces. They are all utterly in love with the newest addition to their family.
Being able to capture moments like these is the greatest honour of all.
I have the best clients! I know I say it often but I really do. Back in May, I had baby Kenzie in the studio with her big brother Rhys. Well, her family liked her pictures so much that when her Auntie wanted baby photos they booked me 🙂
It’s a Girl!
Kenzie was the last baby girl I had in the studio. Since then it has been a run of newborn boys. And whilst I love photographing all babies. The parents of baby boys have been reluctant to let me try out some of my cute new outfits on them! (when you see them you’ll understand why!)
To say I was excited to meet six-day new Hannah was an understatement.
Just look at those deliciously squishy cheeks. And those pouty lips are just swoon-worthy!
Hannah bought her big sister Daliah with her. She was only two but I can honestly say hands down the best-behaved two-year-old I’ve ever had in the studio. New baby sessions are my longest sessions at around two hours long and that is a long time for a little person to sit around. I usually recommend one of the parents takes siblings to the park or out on errands if they get restless. But Daliah was happy playing with the studio toys and checking what her baby sister was up to.
When it came to her turn to get pictures with her new baby she was good as gold as well.
With siblings as young as Daliah I usually only do the above pose as having them both lying on the floor means that the baby is safe from falling anywhere.
But Daliah was so still and good at taking direction I asked mum and dad if we could try Daliah holding baby Hannah? I made sure they were just out of shot ready to dive in if needs be. But we needn’t have worried.
Daliah did better than some six-year-olds!!
Unicorns! Unicorns everywhere!
I mentioned earlier my new outfits that are ‘apparently’ not for baby boys 😉 Well one of them is a unicorn outfit and mum and dad were happy to indulge me. SQUEEEEEEE!
Hannah was awake at this point but she was so chilled. I think she liked being a baby unicorn!
A bucket load of cute
Shortly after being a unicorn took its toll on Hannah and she fell fast asleep. So asleep she didn’t even notice me popping her in some props to add some variety to her gallery including a bucket.
Again because it was my first baby girl in AGES I had to break out the flowers.
I like to adapt my favourite silhouette image when there are older siblings and Daliah was happy to go up on dads shoulder for this shot.
Hannah slept through it like a champ.
All too soon my time with this gorgeous family was up and I had to let them out of the studio! But not before I captured them as family.
Baby Hannah is very lucky. She has been born into a family that is completely besotted with her. And if I’m honest – I was too!
Last week I was lucky enough to have not one but two teeny tiny baby boys in the studio. First up was baby Max on the Monday and then later in the week baby Joey came to visit with his big brother and big sister.
Max couldn’t wait to meet his mum and dad so he arrived a full month early! He came into the studio at six weeks new (two weeks adjusted).
He had the most amazing big blue eyes that he kept pinned on me at the beginning of the session. I had to include this image as he looks thoroughly pee’d off with me here!
It’s a Wrap
He loved being swaddled though, and soon fell into a nice deep slumber allowing me to capture all sorts of beautiful images for his doting mum and dad.
We’re a Family
Not only was Max eager to meet his parents, they were very eager to meet him. He was the wonderful result of two long, hard years of IVF. To say they were besotted was an understatement. It was absolutely beautiful to see.
Fly me to the Moon
I never like to promise I’ll be able to create a composite image as it depends on all sorts of factors on the day. But mum and dad has seen one of my moon composites and really wanted one, especially as Max’s nursery is decorated with a moon and stars theme. I was determined to succeed for them, especially as I had a new moon composite that I was itching to try. I think it worked out pretty darn good 🙂
I’m the Little Brother
Next into the studio was 11 day new baby Joey. His family travelled over an hour to get to my studio after a recommendation from someone who’d had a Christmas Mini session with me. No pressure then!
Joey brought with him his big brother Roman (nearly 4) and big sister Millie (9). Mum and dad really wanted some nice images of all the kids together. Normally I like to wait until the baby is fast asleep when dealing with young sibling like Roman but Joey was having none of it. I don’t think he slept the entire session. I needn’t have worried though as Roman and Millie were two of the best behaved older siblings I’ve ever met. They let me pose them with Joey in a whole variety of different ways. They were so careful with him.
Of course, it also helped that they were both very photogenic 🙂
Although Joey wasn’t for sleeping he was quite chilled out. He was just looking about, taking in all that was going on.
I’d love to know what the little dude is thinking about in this image.
Rolling with it
In every newborn session I try to offer at least one prop set up. I actually found this vintage trolly cart at the Gardening Scotland show and have been dying to use it ever since. I would never normally use with a baby that wasn’t in a deep sleep. But Joey was so chill and I had mum spotting close by that we rolled with it (see what I did there!).
I thoroughly enjoyed my week of baby boys but I’m wondering where all the girls are hiding? Desperate to break out the headbands!
Many say don’t do it, but I personally love the challenge of working with little people and furry friends. Mum Nicola got in touch to book a photoshoot for her new arrival and asked if his two year old sister Millie could be included as well his furry sister Kira.
I always make sure that animals are well trained before I let them anywhere near children in my studio. If I think there will be any risk at all I take the photos seperately and composite them together in Photoshop in the editing process.
I didn’t have to worry about 11 year old Kira though. She was as good as gold and was just happy to sit wherever she was placed.
Millie, on the other hand was not into modelling for me at all on the day the family came in for the shoot.
But I was determined to get a shot of the three of them for mum.
Is it my finest shot? No! But hopefully it will become one to treasure for the family.
I also managed to snag this one before she was up, off and exploring again.
Be still my heart
Dad, Josh took Kira and Millie out for a while to burn off some energy. I always suggest this in my prep guide when there are older siblings as I have lots of play parks close by.
That left me time with 3-week new baby Scott. Fast asleep and smelling delicious (yes I grabbed a sniff when I was swaddling him – sorry not sorry).
Isn’t he just perfection?
Mum didn’t want an overly proppy or posed baby photoshoot so I kept the wraps and backgrounds nice and neutral.
Even when baby Scott decided to wake up he was quite content to lay back and pull all manner of adorable poses at his mum and I.
Making me work for it.
Millie was super cute with blonde hair falling in natural ringlets and the roundest, bluest eyes I think I’ve ever seen. I desperately wanted to get some more photos of her as the camera loved her. When she came back from her walk I perservered.
See what I mean? Face of an angel.
Kira the bodyguard.
After family photos it was a wrap. But as we lay Scott down to get everyone’s belongings collected Kira was immediately over to make sure he was okay.
Again not technically perfect, but I couldn’t resist grabbing my camera and documenting the sweet moment.
Although I think she may have just been inhaling in that gorgeous newborn scent like I had!
Don’t get me wrong I love all newborns and cuddling with babies is one of the best parts of my job. But I have had a run of baby boys in the studio lately and haven’t been able to use all the cute headbands that I had a bit of a spending spree on after Christmas.
As a result, I was overjoyed when I found out Sunday’s baby was a girl 🙂
Baby Kenzie was just 13 days new when she came into the studio. Surprising her Mum, Dad and big brother Rhys by arriving over a week early!
Rhys was only 3 years old but he was so well behaved. Especially once he spied the lollipop tree in my studio. I always like to start with sibling shots as then if they get bored one of the parents can take them to the park, etc.
It looks like Kenzie already adores her big brother judging by the way she is looking up at him.
Three-year-olds can be a bit tricky to pose with new babies. They can be unpredictable and have quite a short attention span. Not a good combination when holding a baby! That is why I usually start with them laying on the floor. There is nowhere for the baby to fall!
Rhys was a total champ though so I knew we could try a slightly different pose – with mum and dad poised to catch baby, of course.
One day Kenzie will be able to look at these precious memories. She will know just how loved she was by her big brother as soon as she entered the world.
Content with being swaddled and enjoying the tropical heat I keep the studio at for a newborn session, Kenzie soon drifted off into a nice deep slumber. Allowing me to get my headband and bonnet fix. But my favourite image of her is with my sheep lovies surrounding her.
Don’t make me angry
Unfortunately for me, the deep sleep came to an abrupt end once we unwrapped her! Don’t get me wrong I plan shots for both awake and asleep babies as you never know how they are going to be on the day.
I couldn’t resist taking this image. She looks so mad at me!
It didn’t stop me from stealing lots of cuddles from her though 🙂
“People who say the sleep like a baby usually don’t have one.” – Leo J. Burke
Like all other baby photographers, I love a sleeping baby to shoot. They curl up well into those adorable snuggly poses and look impossibly cute in all manner of bonnets and costumes in bowls and other props.
I have lovingly created guides for parents bringing their new bundle of joy to a session to help them prepare as much as possible for a sleepy session. The parents diligently read these guides and follow them to the letter. Yet on the day of the shoot….
Introducing 4-month new Alex. He was fast asleep when he arrived at the studio but as soon his car seat touched the studio floor. BAM! He was wide awake.
After his feed, which he demolished in record time, I swaddled him nice and cosy. “they usually drop off once fed and swaddled”, I confidently said. Alex just opened his beautiful eyes even further.
The most important thing to note is that as long as the baby is comfortable I will get gorgeous pictures wide awake or fast asleep. It is nothing to get stressed out about.
I even decided to have some fun as he was so alert. Ever since I had got them at the Photography Show I had been dying to use my new sheep props. I love the look he is giving me here!
Chilled out little dude
Alex was super chilled out on my sheepskin cover. He was very content just to lay there and watch what I was up to and to make sure mum and gran were close by in case he needed a little snack.
He was most disgruntled when I had the nerve to move him from his favourite spot. It was at this point that mum caught me sneaking a kiss to the top of his head and I wasn’t even embarrassed. I mean look at him? You would totally do the same in my position!
Gran’s magic cuddles
After a long cuddle with Gran, the unthinkable happened Alex fell briefly asleep. Not a proper deep slumber but enough for me to pop him a prop to give mum another look for her gallery.
Baby Charlie has a cool uncle. Fact! How do I know this? Well because he purchased a gift voucher for Charlie’ parents at Christmas for a Newborn photo shoot at my home studio 🙂
Typically to get those swaddled, squishy baby pictures that a lot of parents want the baby needs to be about two weeks or under. I like to describe it as before they start to unfurl! Charlie was 10 weeks new when he came into the studio. During the pre-shoot consultation, his parents said they didn’t want wrapped or prop styled pictures. In fact, Charlie’s mum said, “we’ll be happy if we get one nice family one and one of Charlie’s smile”.
When two become a family
Not only did I get more than one lovely family shoot, as well as pictures of mum and dad individually with Charlie. I also managed to get some of this cheeky chaps cool expressions. What a little dude!
Capturing this baby boy smiling wasn’t an issue because after he’d had some milk and a nappy change he was all smiles.
A proper Charlie
Being 10 weeks old baby Charlie had a whole range of facial expressions that he was happy to share with us. I just loved this one 🙂
As usual, the two-hour session went by in a flash and after some snuggles, with his photographer, baby Charlie left the studio.
In other news…I’m an Auntie again 🙂
On the 22nd of January, my newest little nephew was born. At 8:55 pm, weighing in at a whopping 9lb 6oz baby Teddy entered the world.
Due to work commitments, it took two weeks before I could get to see him. TWO WHOLE WEEKS people! Finally, I packed as much of my studio as I could fit in my car and made the 320-mile trek down South to get my snuggle on!
He is my brother’s third son and he wanted a picture of all the boys together. Okay, I thought what are my options here? I swaddled Teddy nice and snug, but who to hold him? As my eldest nephew (12) is on the autism spectrum I thought it might be easier if they all lay on the floor and for my middle nephew (2) to have Teddy resting on him. But no, my usually easy going middle nephew was obviously still reeling from no longer being the baby of the family and definitely DID NOT want to hold the new baby!
You definitely have to be aware of all the family dynamics when posing siblings. My eldest nephew surprised us all by being willing to hold the baby but I knew I had one take and that was it.
Lucky for me I got an image my brother and sister in law were happy with. Phew! Straight after that take middle nephew jumped up and was out of there!
Teddy by name
As soon as my brother told me my new nephew’s name I knew I had to use my teddy bear bonnet on him.
I know I’m biased, but have you ever seen a cuter Teddy? I don’t think so.
The eagle-eyed amongst you may notice a new logo on this image. The Digitally Altered logo is a safety initiative created for Photographers (specifically Newborn Photographers) to easily mark and identify images that have been digitally enhanced, altered, combined or stitched together in post-production to create imagery that would otherwise be unsafe to reproduce straight out of camera. If someone clicks on it they will get the following info.
“If you have been directed to this page by another photographer or you have seen this logo displayed on another artist work, it means that the image you have seen has been created by combining 2 or more images together digitally to ensure baby’s safety. The Photographer wants you to know that this image was created safely and that no baby was put into a dangerous position during the creation process. They also want to ensure that for those wanting to recreate a similar image or style, to not do so without further investigation into how to do it safely. “
I think this is a great initiative and I will be using it going forward on any image I manipulate to allow newcomers to the industry, parents and creators alike to understand that the image/s they are viewing requires further investigation into its creation process before trying to replicate it on a real baby.
Just hanging around
Back to the gorgeous Teddy.