Talking to clients during their newborn session, something that is often spoken about is how grateful they are that their newborn photos can be done in the comfort of their own home. It's often "Thank goodness we didn't have to think about leaving home today." As I arrive and mum is still to have a shower or they are still wrangling a toddler sibling who does not want to wear the pretty dress picked out and would much rather be dressed as Emma Wiggle.
So I thought it might be helpful to share some thoughts here for those who may be welcoming a new baby soon and are trying to figure out the best option for their family.
It is very much a personal choice and there are benefits to both an in-home session and a studio session. Newborn photos, like wedding photos need to be thought about and booked ahead of time. Generally it's best after you have had your first ultrasound to book in with your chosen photographer. Here are some of the good things I have found over the last 5 years of being an in-home newborn photographer.
This would have to be the number 1 reason for most families. First time parents may not quite realise what they are in for yet, but probably have a good idea! If you have already been through having a newborn then you know just how much a new baby can turn everything a bit topsy-turvy and can be a huge learning curve for you all. It can honestly just feel too overwhelming on top of everything else to try and get everyone ready and out the door. The amount of stuff that can be needed with a brand new baby can make it look like you are about to go for a weekend away and not a photo session. Instead I pack my car to the brim to bring everything needed to you. We can even organise to have hair and make-up come to you if you would like.
With an in-home session, you can go and have that shower or much needed cup of tea or coffee while I set about capturing baby on their own or with their siblings. Everything you need is there in your home. No worrying about snacks, outfits or feeding baby.
Speaking of siblings, it is also much nicer for them to be in their own environment with their own toys or set up watching a movie, all the while I work around them and their own little schedule.
2) There's no where like home.
This is your family home and the first home your baby will know. You have most likely lovingly decorated a nursery and spent many hours daydreaming about this very moment for the last 9 months. The special nursing chair that you will sit and feed in the quiet of the night staring into your baby's eyes, the gorgeous blanket knitted by nana, draped over the cot.
Everything here has a story attached to it.
These things are meaningful.
One day when your babe is grown, you may have moved somewhere else or the house will probably have gone through many changes. How nice is it even now to look back on photos of your own childhood home. During the session, if baby needs a feed break or change, I will often take photos of their nursery or we can take your family photos snuggled on the bed which inevitably changes from a grown-up zone to a shared family zone!
Any special items are already there and you do not need to worry about forgetting to pack them in the car.
Staying at home during those very early days also helps to keep any extra risk of outside germs to a minimum. All the wraps, blankets and outfits used are always washed with a sensitive skin formula after each session.
Birth is a big deal! Whether you have a c-section or vaginal delivery, it takes a huge toll on a mother's body. Often mums think they need to get straight back into everything and over do it. A c-section is major surgery and I know myself, that I overdid it after my own. During the session I may ask dad for some help or to keep watch for safety, but mum you are to try and so no more than sit and watch! Grandparents, family members or a close friend are also of course welcome and it can be nice for them to watch all these itty bitty newborn moments being captured. It's nice to have your loved ones around you at this time to spoil you and make cups of tea or help with meals. Your body will thank you.
4) Accidents Happen! Your Wardrobe Comes in Handy.
In fact when working with newborn babies these things happen 95% of the time. Spit-up, poo, wee, milk drips, bottle splatter. You name it we get it! There are towels, bibs, waterproof mats and we can prepare as much as possible but accidents happen. If anyone needs a change of clothes it's so nice to know that your entire wardrobe is there.
But you'd never know it.
Your newborn photos are more than just photos. They are little memory catchers. One day when you are packing up all the newborn things perhaps for the very last time. You will be able to look back on these photographs and be transported through time for just enough for your heart to feel full. Whatever way you choose to document this monumental time in your lives, just do it. Whether it be an in-home newborn session with a professional photographer or going into a studio. Even just making sure you take lots of photos yourselves. Document as much as you can and have them printed to keep forever.
Just one more little note. Please be safe and make sure that anyone that documents your precious babes life has been trained in safety and has the necessary vaccinations. Poses like the one above need to be done safely. Enjoy your babies xx