HOW DO I KNOW WHEN TO BOOK MY NEWBORN SHOOT?
Babies tend to arrive when they are ready ignoring their due date, so unless you are having a scheduled c-section, they could come early or late. I only book in a set amount of newborn sessions per month to allow wiggle room in my diary to allow for this. I only do one newborn session a day, so it’s important to get booked in as soon as you can to ensure I have space. Most parents book after their 20-week scan, but I do have some super organised parents to be who book in after their 12 week one. I do occasionally have some last minute availability if I have had some babies born early, so it is worth asking me if baby is already here. But to avoid disappointment I would get booked in as soon as you have made your decision.
I AM WORRIED ABOUT TRUSTING SOMEONE TO HANDLE MY NEWBORN BABY
This is a very understandable worry, and one I had myself with both of my children as babies. It certainly is a big thing to be entrusted with the handling of someone else’s brand new baby, and one that fills me with great honour each time I am chosen to take their first photos.
Not only am I am mum myself to a 9 year old and a 4 year old, I have also voluntarily undertaken a lot of paid training to ensure I am capable of handling and posing a newborn baby safely. You may be surprised to read that here is no requirement that a photographer needs to do this. In theory anyone can set up a newborn photo business with a basic camera and offer to take your baby’s first photos. But they won’t know the importance of checking baby’s airways aren’t compromised, or that their neck is fully supported during the posing, and that their limbs won’t have their blood supply cut off. That’s some of the safety aspects, without taking into account actually knowing how to pose and position baby so they look beautifully serene, rather than just plonked on a rug. This is why training is so important, and you can rest assured I have trained with some of the UK top trainers in the art of posing baby safely. I am also over 5 years along in my craft, so have a lot of experience under my belt.
Please make sure, that even if you don’t choose me as your photographer, that you choose someone who is experienced and trained. There are too many horror stories of people using new and untrained photographers to handle and photograph their precious baby.
I LIKE YOUR PHOTOS BUT PHYLLIS ACROSS TOWN IS CHEAPER!
I have waffled on enough about being trained in safety posing already, so you know that this is something which makes a difference to your investment. Someone who has invested thousands of pounds in training is not going to have a business selling unlimited images for £50. I personally have spent thousands and thousands on my equipment, props and outfits. I am always adding new things to my collection as well to keep things fresh and new. Outfits don’t come cheap at around £30+ a pop, as I buy from specialist newborn vendors, not AliExpress cheap transparent things. Maternity dresses can cost £100-300+ each, backdrops and props are sourced from outside the UK as well as within, so often the prices become quite high. Don’t get me started on the costs of Flokati (real wool rugs) and my wooden props! Oh and my camera, computer, editing equipment, insurance… I could go on but that’s boring! Obviously it would be fab to offer it all for the love of giving you beautiful images, but I wouldn’t have a business then! These beautiful items and the cost of them all go towards making up my cost of business. I firmly believe that my clients deserve the best, so I don’t buy rubbish from cheap websites. I buy handmade where possible and love a good unique, vintage find too. You get what you pay for, and newborn photography is no different. If anything, it’s more important to go for quality when choosing someone to handle your precious baby. I know I wouldn’t have let just anyone hold my babies, let alone be trusted with posing them.
Phyllis can charge what she wants as it’s up to her, she may not need to make any money – maybe her husband has well paid job so she works part-time – but as a full time photographer the time I spend at work is time away from my children (often editing late into the evening and weekends) and family, and that is taken into consideration, as well as making a living. School uniforms don’t come cheap and neither do all these toys and craft things my kids keep wanting! They have to be paid for somehow!
WHEN WILL MY PHOTOS BE TAKEN? HOW OLD WILL BABY BE?
I typically like baby to come in when they are between 5-15 days old. But this can vary greatly from photographer to photographer. Due to lockdown, we have all had experience of photographing older newborns, so sometimes this is possible too. I prefer to photograph them younger though as they are sleepier and happy to go into womb-like poses as they were not so long ago. An older baby is a more awake baby.
If baby is premature, then you will discuss this with your photographer as it is important that they know this. These special babies need to be treated a little differently, and it depends on how early they were and how many weeks adjusted as to when they will come in.
I WOULD LIKE TO BOOK YOU!
That’s fantastic news, and I am excited to meet you and your new baby.
Whoever you choose to photograph your newborn baby, PLEASE make sure they have had some form of safety training and are insured. Your baby is your most precious creation, and only the best should do for them.