A sweet nude little babe all sleepy and curly on a soft blanket backdrop wearing an adorable little knit hat or wrap. These kinds of posed newborn photographs have become synonymous with the term “newborn photography” over the past five or so years. We all love them. There is something so serene and pleasing about a brand new life. A baby only days old sleeping peacefully all curled up and comfy just as they recently were in utero.
Of course as newborn photographers we definitely offer this style of newborn photography to our clients in the Peterborough area and beyond. We do however also offer an alternative type of newborn photography, which is a little lesser known, but just as beautiful and amazing as an in studio newborn session. Lifestyle newborn photography. And it is becoming one of our all time favourite sessions.
We’d love to take some time to introduce everyone to this style of newborn photography and go over the many benefits that this relaxed newborn photo session has over it’s in studio counterpart.
Timing is everything when it comes to newborn photography. For an in studio newborn baby photo session we like to try and get the newborns into our Peterborough Studio before they are two weeks of age. When we are looking to obtain those sleepy, posed shots the younger the baby the better. A baby that is fresh and new is much more likely to provide us with a deep sleep allowing us to work with their tiny bodies to achieve those uber adorable shots. They are also very flexible at this age and quite enjoy being curled up and cozy while asleep just as they were in utero.
Time is also key during an in studio newborn session because it’s important that we wait until the baby is settled into that nice, deep sleep before we start to work with them. This process can be lengthy and patience is everything.
However, during a lifestyle newborn session the element of time does not hold as much weight. The lifestyle newborn shoot focuses primarily on the interaction between the new baby and his family and surroundings and is much less centred around obtaining the perfect pose. Therefore having a baby under two weeks of age become less important. This is particularly helpful for Mothers who contact us once their newborn baby is over that magic age for traditional newborn photography. Just because a baby is a little “older” it no longer means you have to miss out on those precious newborn moments! And, if everything play out right...we will try to get some of those cute newborn poses using baskets and other props! It's a win-win situation.
The location for your upcoming newborn session might also have you thinking about whether a studio photography session or a lifestyle shoot is the choice for you. All of our studio sessions are conducted at our in home newborn studio. We have everything here that we need in order to provide you with a great experience for your baby’s first professional photo shoot! Our studio is stocked with all of the props, back drops and posing tools that we need. The space has great light and is small so that it can be kept nice and warm to keep your baby comfortable during his/her session. Parents have a cozy spot to relax during the shoot. All in all it’s a great place to come for your newborn photo session.
However the thought of travelling with a newborn can be daunting for some new parents, especially in the winter. Lifestyle newborn sessions are conducted in the comfort of the clients home. And it's especially handy if you have other children, who can play in their own home while the session is taking place. Of course, having siblings relaxed and happy will make for some great photos of them with the newborn too! Having your photo session take place in your home provides a level of intimacy and a personal touch to your lifestyle images that might be missing from your studio session. Imagine having images of your baby in his/her own nursery or snuggling with Mama in your favourite chair. Documenting beloved books, toys and that surely wonderful wardrobe some babies acquire before they are even here?! These small details make your newborn’s photos even more special for years to come!
Of course most clients also want to capture some darling images of their new family dynamic during their newborn photo session. Whether it be photos of baby with Mom, Dad, big brother or sister or all of the above, these treasured family photos can be obtained during both studio sessions AND in home lifestyle sessions. However the resulting look is completely different. Which you prefer is entirely up to you…..
It is true that during a studio session the light is controlled. We know what to expect in our home studio. We know that the light comes in big and beautiful at a certain time of day and that our studio lighting will light the room just as we need it. Our newborn clients will be sleeping peaceful, bathed in the light during their stay with us. An in home lifestyle session cannot obviously offer the same kind of assurance. Clients often come to us concerned that their home will not be bright enough, not be pretty enough. However, all we need is a bright window (not necessarily facing south). And, we bring all our portable studio lighting, so, in a pinch, we can imitate natural light.
SO there you have it. A little 4-1-1 on the difference between your studio newborn sessions that we all know and love and the lesser known newborn lifestyle sessions that hopefully we will all get to know and love just as much, if not a wee bit more!
And the very best part of a lifestyle newborn session….if baby sleeps then we can still get those ooey gooey posed newborn shots…no matter where we are!
Cathy & Jenn of CatsMac Photography, Peterborough, Ontario.