A photoshoot for your newborn is a way to capture and preserve memories of a very special time in your life. Your baby will never be that small again so take the chance and immortalise these moments. The photos you can get from this photoshoot can be displayed in your home, shared with friends and family, or become a family heirloom.
Essentially, a newborn photoshoot is a wonderful way to capture the beauty and innocence of your baby’s first days.
That said, while I would suggest having a professional help you with this shoot, know that you can do it by yourself too!
With that, here are some things to keep in mind so you can create stunning newborn photos that you’ll definitely cherish for a lifetime.
1. Choose the right lighting
Lighting is crucial when it comes to newborn photography. Soft, diffused lighting is ideal, as it will help to create a gentle and dreamy atmosphere that is perfect for capturing the delicate features of a newborn. Avoid harsh, direct lighting that can create unflattering shadows or cause the baby to squint. If possible, try to shoot near a window where there is natural light, or use soft box lighting to create a gentle and even light source.
2. Create a neutral backdrop
Creating a neutral backdrop is essential when it comes to newborn photography. Neutral colors such as white, beige, or gray provide a beautiful, timeless backdrop for your photos and help to draw attention to the baby’s delicate features. Avoid using bright or bold colors that can be distracting or clash with the baby’s skin tone
3. Use props to add interest
Props can add interest and personality to your photos, but it’s important to choose them carefully. When it comes to newborn photography, less is often more. So, avoid using too many props or those that are too large or busy. The focus should be on the baby, not the props. Look for props that complement the baby’s features and add a touch of personality, such as a knitted hat or a soft toy.
Better yet, choose props that have a personal meaning. This can add a special touch to your photos. For example, if there is a special toy or blanket that has been passed down in your family, incorporating it into your photos can create a beautiful connection between your baby and their family history.
4. Consider the theme
If you have a specific theme in mind for your newborn, choose props that can complement that theme. For example, if you are doing a winter-themed shoot, using faux snow or a knitted hat can add a beautiful touch. However, if you are a massive nerd then a Harry Potter-themed or Mario-themed shoot is for you.
That said, having a professional photography studio can help you on this front. They have an array of setups that you can use to bring your vision to life.
5. Play with textures
Texture can add depth and interest to your photos. Look for textured blankets, wraps, or backdrops that can create a beautiful backdrop for your baby. You see, different textures and fabrics can also create contrast and dimension in your photos, which can add visual interest and create a unique look. For example, using a chunky knit blanket can create a cozy and warm feel, while using a sheer fabric can add a delicate and ethereal look. By incorporating a variety of textures and fabrics, you can create a diverse range of looks and moods in your photos.
6. Know the angles
Experiment with different angles and perspectives to find the most flattering shots. Try taking photos from above, at eye level, or from below. Each angle will give you a different perspective and can create unique and interesting compositions. One effective technique is to shoot from above, looking down at the baby, which can create a beautiful, intimate feel to the photo.
7. Get close
Newborns are tiny, so don’t be afraid to get up close and personal with your camera. Focus on capturing the details, such as your baby’s tiny fingers and toes, and their little features like their nose or ears. By doing so, you can capture your baby’s delicate features and expressions.
8. Focus on emotions
Sure, this may be difficult because your baby cannot really express their emotions yet but what you can do is anticipate and capture candid moments. Candid moments can often be the most emotional and authentic moments in a photoshoot. Instead of posing your baby in a certain way, let them move and interact naturally. This can help capture genuine expressions and emotions and can create a more authentic and emotional photo.
9. Incorporate family members
Incorporating family members into your newborn photoshoot can create a beautiful sense of connection and love. Whether it’s a parent, grandparent, or sibling, having someone else in the photo can help to create a beautiful family moment that you’ll cherish for years to come. Try experimenting with different poses and compositions to find the most flattering shots.
10. Stay patient and flexible
When it comes to taking photos of newborns, during a photoshoot or not, patience is key. Babies can be unpredictable. They may need to be fed, changed, or soothed during the shoot. So, it is important to stay flexible and be prepared to adapt your plans as needed. Also, don’t be afraid to take breaks. Having a newborn is already difficult; adding a photoshoot on top of the usual stuff will definitely be challenging so take breaks when you need them.
11. Keep it simple
It’s easy to get carried away with props and accessories, but sometimes, simplicity is key. Focus on your baby and try to keep the background and props minimal, so your baby is the photo’s focal point.
12. Have fun!
Sure, doing a shoot is stressful but don’t forget to have fun! Remember, these photos are meant to capture a special moment in your baby’s life. So, enjoy the process and the memories you are creating.
Different composition ideas
After listing those considerations, here are some composition ideas you might want to use during your shoot.
- Make use of negative space
Negative space is the area around your subject. Using negative space in your compositions can create a sense of balance and simplicity. When composing your photos, try leaving some empty space around your baby. Having that space can help us move our attention to the subject since there is nothing really there to compete for our eye.
- Move to the sides of the frame
One of the simplest ways to spice up your newborn photography compositions is to simply place your little subject near one of the edges of the frame. This creates a more visually interesting and balanced composition. In addition, since newborns are delicate, moving them to one side of the frame can emphasize their size and fragility. This can create a more emotive and heartwarming photo that highlights the beauty and innocence of your baby.
- Move to the middle of the frame
Centering the baby in the frame can also allow you to emphasize their unique features, such as their eyes, hair, or skin. By placing the baby front and center, you can create a powerful and engaging photo that showcases their beauty and individuality. Sure, it breaks the rule of thirds but by doing so, you emphasise the baby and their feature, making it more visually interesting.
Taking photos of newborns is hard, especially if you want to do it yourself. That said, you don’t need to spend a lot on a photographer to capture stunning photos. Creating beautiful compositions for a newborn photoshoot is all about choosing the right lighting, backdrop, props, and composition. By following these tips, you can capture stunning and memorable photos that you’ll cherish for a lifetime. Remember to stay patient, flexible, and open to experimentation, and most importantly, have fun!