Newborn home sessions are one of my favorite things to photograph. The transition of having a new baby in the house isn't easy- parents are often sleep deprived, covered in spit up, and anxious about getting everything "right." But despite all of this, capturing a new baby in his home is so beautiful. Everything is new. The dog is still getting used to his scent. The parents are learning what keeps him calm and how to swaddle. The baby is learning what this crazy thing called life is. And I love that I get to stand back and capture it.
Tips and Tricks for Photographing a Fussy Newborn
Whether you're a new mom or a budding newborn photographer, you're probably wondering how on earth you take good photos without the baby fussing the whole time. This is a good question! Newborns are tiny unpredictable subjects, but with these tips, you can gain a lot more control over the situation.
Hunger: Has the baby been fed recently? If not, you might notice he or she is rooting (turning the head towards anything that touches the cheek,) or opening the mouth repeatedly. If the baby has been recently fed, he or she may be uncomfortable and need to be held upright and burped.
Swaddle: I almost always start by swaddling the baby. This way, you can get some guaranteed happy shots and proceed to slowly un-swaddle parts of the baby for pictures of arms, toes, etc.
Sway/Shhh: Sometimes you'll have a fussy baby and its hard to identify why. If you've fed and swaddled him/her, try carefully swaying and shhhh-ing into the baby's ear. Do this loudly and it should work like a charm! Rumor has it, shhh-ing reminds them of the sounds in the womb.
Temperature: If you're trying to get sleeping shots, make sure the space is warm! Sometimes I bring a little space heater to my shoots, this is a great tool as the white noise also calms the baby.
Hope these pointers helped! Have some tips and tricks of your own? Answer in comments!