How a typical newborn session goes:
Expect to spend 2-4 hours of quiet time with Mama/Dad & the photographer. It is encouraged for siblings to be entertained in the other room or outside, though nice to have them around for "when the baby is ready" for some extra sibling/family poses at the end.
We meet & backdrop/props are set up. Mama (or Dad) feeds/nurses the baby in a diaper, so the baby will fall asleep. Once baby is asleep comes the posing part, this is what takes the longest time. I "pose" / mama arranges the baby onto the beanbag in a cozy sleeping pose. (Sometimes the baby resists and wakes up crying and protests the pose, other times the baby sleeps peacefully right away) - Sleeping baby is posed with props and photographs!
Baby usually awakens (or poops on props/blanket) - we start over, baby is nursed, changed and when asleep, baby is posed on blankets with props. Sometimes the baby cooperates, though often a baby will protest until we find the right pose in which the baby is comfortable enough to sleep. Sometimes we can be done in ninety minutes, more often than not, the baby fusses and the shoot can run as long as four hours to get the "perfect" pose. I am a perfectionist and will keep going until I get the most perfect shot available of your newborn baby. Once we reach the perfect moment, when the baby has fallen asleep is when the magic happens. We can change hats/headbands and arrange the posing area for the best photographs. If the baby allows us, several types of outfits/props or poses can be done at this time. More often than not, the baby will awaken and the process will start over again.
First the sleeping shots are taken, and if time & baby permit we do poses with mama & baby, sibling and baby and if the baby is really sleeping then we are sometimes able to have a family shot posed around the sleeping baby as a bonus. It usually depends on a baby's temperament how many poses we can achieve at the photo session.
What happens if my baby wont fall asleep or pose correctly?
In rare cases when the baby wont go to sleep, occasionally we can take photographs of the baby who is awake. This can happen more with older babies 14+ days old, as they are more alert. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it just takes longer. On very rare occasions when the baby is upset and refuses to settle we can do a re-shoot. This is very rare and most babies who are aged 7-14 days will settle nicely for the best photographs to be taken.
How to Prepare for your newborn Session:
Generally the number one thing to keep in mind is that most newborn photographers are planning to photograph your baby "while sleeping" - the dreamy sleeping newborn pictures have become the "expectation" in the newborn photography industry. The day of the photo session, this means you want to discourage long naps of your baby BEFORE the newborn session. If the baby has an ultra long session before your photographer arrives, chances are that your baby will not "sleep" for the photographer. It's impossible to keep them from sleeping when they are so young, so I advise mothers to do what they can to at the very least have shorter naps on the day of the photo session. The baby is probably going to "poop" on the blankets, not to worry, all newborn photographers expect this, especially if they are doing "naked baby" poses. Many will put a liner underneath props in advance planning of this event. Expect to feed your baby frequently during the photo session, in order for baby to sleep.
Alixandra Art & Photography brings MANY props to your session, based on what you have communicated, however special props (such as those knitted by grandma) or the headband that your best friend sent you are ABSOLUTELY appreciated and can DEFINITELY be worked into or the main part of your baby's posing and photography session!
During our pre-planning session, I will discuss what your goals are - if you have a theme, if you have a specific outfit or blanket already in mind. We cover if you want your baby on a blanket or in a basket.
Moms & dads, often you are photographed as you are getting the baby to settle. Mom's are welcome to do hair & makeup, but it is up to you. Sometimes it's fun for a little glamour post-partum and it is encouraged for better photographs. Dad's sometimes we are doing an arm photograph, with the baby on your arm - in these instances, it is best NOT to wear shirts with logos or stripes or loud pattens. Solid colors are best.
Traditional Newborn Photography
This consists of your baby sleeping in a blanket or a basket or other prop. The traditional option is offered by most newborn photography studios. The results will vary depending on the props that are used such as the type of basket and the pose. offered by Alixandra Art & Photography
Offering Traditional Newborn photograph Sessions, as well as Fine Art Storybook Add-ons to your newborn sessions. All Newborn sessions start with the traditional images of your baby sleeping (on a blanket, in a basket or other props), Fine Art Storybook composites are added in post-production to your newborn photographs.
Special Fine Art Storybook newborn photographs exclusively offered by Alixandra Art & Photography
Many of my newborn photographs are turned into "fine art" composites at the request of clients - these are photographs of babies placed into flowers, or into the nest of a log. Sometimes this requires extra planning. For instance, my "newborn baby in a log nest" requires the baby be photographed with a green, furry "mossy" wrap/scarf in order to complete the image successfully. If you would like a special fine Art composite, it is best to communicate the idea early on so that it can be photographed with that in mind! Fine Art composites make wonderful decorative conversation pieces in your home for years to come.