After recently completing a number newborn photoshoots I thought it would be a perfect time to share my top six must have poses for a newborn photoshoot. During my photo sessions, I try to be as organic and free-flowing as possible – particularly with newborns. As such, I never have a fixed list of poses that I have to capture, rather, lots of different options to work with which allows me to flexible and work with space and light available. That said, I do have six poses that I will always look to incorporate into my newborn sessions, and some of them are particularly important to the parents.
Capturing baby on the bed sleeping
I’ve decided to start with this one because although it sounds so simple it’s probably the hardest shot to take during a newborn photo shoot. Why? It’s because not all babies are going to happily sleep when the session is taking place` It’s quite amazing how quickly newborn babies start to be aware of the surroundings and with every week reducing the amount of sleep (parents will appreciate this!). I generally recommend to clients to shoot a newborn shoot within the first two weeks of baby being born. At that stage, they are still sleepy and you will have a more chance to capture a sleeping baby within the two-hour photo session. That’s still not guaranteed but it just increases your chances! Also when the baby is sound asleep there is time for you to shoot from various positions ( top, low down, sides and don’t forget details!)
Hands and feet details
When my girls were born the first thing I noticed was how tiny their hands and feet are. If you do have children do you remember those dinky nails and the first peeling skin? One of my first and favourite pictures of my Hanna is her laying on a bed and lifting her one foot up. I just managed to capture that perfect moment with her little toe being stretched out a little too. When you are taking those details also remember to move around and find a good light so that you can get that perfect exposure and sharpness.
With older sibling
Not all my sessions include older siblings, however, whenever there is an older brother or sister the family always ask for a photo of the new baby and them together. Having this in mind, my priority when I arrive at the client’s home is to introduce myself and start a conversation with older siblings. Of course, some children are shyer than others but having my own children I think I have developed a few good techniques of how to make them relaxed. Once they warm up to me I start asking them about their baby brother or sister and start shooting. Making sure you get them engaged, asking them to touch baby’s nose and feet, kissing the baby and go very silly like saying your little brother/sister likes chocolate and ice cream (if the kids are old enough they will, at first, be surprised but then you can capture those true giggles). Shoots on a bed can be so adorable and will be forever treasured by the parents.
Mum or dad holding a baby and standing next to the window
This is one of my favourite poses and I am sure if you followed me for some time now you will probably see that I always try to include this photo in my sessions. It is such a timeless capture, so pure and beautiful. What I am finding is that parents are usually quite relaxed when they hold tight their newborn. They might choose to look through the window and just enjoy this quiet moment. I often ask mum or dad to close their eyes and kiss the baby at which point my shutter clicks and capture the moment. When you position your parents next to the window make sure they are at 45-90 degrees to the light source so that you have enough light covering your subject.
Both of my girls were breastfed and I feel so privileged that I was able to breastfeed. It was not an easy ride and especially with my first one it took lots and lots of practice, patience and painful days before she managed to start feeding properly. Because I know how hard it is I have so much respect to any mum who can feed. At the same time, I don’t feel that mums who decided not to breastfeed or unable to feed should feel anything less! At the end of the day, we all want the best for our children and doing our best however you decide to feed. There should not be a distinction between breast and formula. When I take a photograph of feeding mum I try to stay as quiet as possible and be an observer, sometimes from a distance. Appreciate that wonderful connection of mum giving a baby their basic need but the one without they would not exist. I usually allow mum to pick a comfortable position, whether is feeding sitting on the chair or laying down on the bed. All pictures of a feeding mum are really special and close to my heart.
All the family together
My final pose from my six must have poses during a newborn photoshoot is the photograph of all family. Every time I meet a new family, I am excited to get to know them. I am eager to ask lots of questions about their hobbies, family jokes, asking about how parents have met. It’s all about them, not me, and this is the part of my job that I enjoy most. Rather than this being a posed shot, I try to capture a family shot in the most natural moment, sometimes without the family realising I’m shooting. I love to see partner/husband wrapping his arms around mum and a baby and see their true connection and happiness. We often forgot about how simple capturing everyday life can be. It is not about being perfect but about portraying the real emotions and appreciations for human life.
I hope the above six must have poses for a newborn photoshoot will be a little inspiration to you. Even if you’re not a ‘photographer’ I hope this will give you an inspiration to pick up a camera, or your phone, and try to capture your own family moment.
Till next time