SIMPLY NEWBORN studio session prep notes
essential TIPS for having a successful studio newborn session
1. WHAT GOES IN...
If nursing, try to avoid eating anything spicy (ie. pizza, hot sauce, etc) or anything that will cause gas and might upset baby’s tummy for 24 hours preceding your scheduled session. A gassy baby will not pose well during the session due to their little tummy being upset.
*Some other foods that may cause gas are dairy products- milk, cheese, yogurt, pudding, cream, or any food that has milk, milk products, casein, whey, or sodium casein it, as well as foods with caffeine, soy, fish, peanuts, chocolate, wheat, beef, nuts, eggs, corn, or citrus fruits (Courtesy Babycenter & ModernMom parenting).
*If baby happens to be gassy the day of your session, Oval or Gripe Water can be used to help ease baby’s discomfort.
2. WAKEY WAKEY
Do whatever it takes to keep baby awake for the 1-2 hours before your session to ensure he/she is good and sleepy for the session. This is very important. Without this, we spend too much time getting them to sleep and not as much time photographing them. Which leads me right into my next request...
Not only does bath time help stimulate baby and keep him/her awake, but use this bath to wash their hair (mama's hormones can leave baby's hair looking greasy), gently slough off any dry or flakey skin and wipe for boogs. If baby has hair, please bring a baby brush so I can smooth it out after putting bonnets or headband off and on. Be sure to remove all bandages (from shots, etc) from baby’s skin during bath time so you can (hopefully) get any of that sticky residue off. Bandages cannot be removed in post processing and, if left on, will show up in the final images.
4. FULL + HAPPY
Please make sure your little one has a full belly for the session. Feed baby just before you leave for the studio. I'm talking FULL feeding, not a snack. If possible, please bring extra bottles and milk (formula or breastmilk) so I am able to feed them when they fuss.
*A full baby = a sleepy baby, and we need a very sleepy and calm baby in order to achieve the sweet, flexible poses you see in my portfolio. I may ask you to ignore a strict feeding schedule for the 2.5 hours at the session. The only way we will achieve calm, flexible poses is if baby is fully satiated and sleeping. I would rather have you give baby an extra feeding than have you worry that baby isn’t sleeping and we’re missing out on some cute poses.
5. DRESS FOR SUCCESS
Dress baby in a zippered sleeper or button down onesie. Loose fitting clothes help avoid disturbing baby when I get them undressed and ready for their session. Please avoid onesies or anything that has to be pulled off over baby’s head. Also make sure to bring extra size-appropriate diapers.
6. PASS ME A BINK
If your baby takes a pacifier...DON'T LEAVE IT AT HOME – they are very helpful during the session!
The studio temp will be about 78-8o degrees to keep your little one warm while being photographed. Plan your wardrobe accordingly. Layers are a good choice. In case it gets a little too warm, I have bottled water and snacks available.
8. LEAVE IT ALL TO ME
This is a full service studio meaning that from the moment you step into the studio, you are officially off duty! I will be removing baby from his/her carseat, changing baby’s diapers, cleaning up any messes, and feeding baby when required during the session (as long as you bring bottles for me). The reason is that it's tough for baby to settle if he/she re-connects with mommy during the session. Of course I will gladly and patiently work with breastfeeding-only mommy's and baby's, I, too, exclusively breast fed my babies so I respect that whole heartedly. With that said, if you have fed baby prior to arrival as suggested above, there should only really be one other interaction with Mom during the session.
9. YOUR JOB
During the session, your job is to sit back and relax. My Mommy Lounge is in close proximity to where baby and I will be shooting so you can watch the magic happen. I won’t need much assistance, so take advantage of this time to rest (I’m sure you need it!). The Mommy Lounge will have snacks, bottled water, wifi, mobile charging station and reading materials. Feel free to catch up on emails, binge on your Netflix or heck, you may even be able to sneak in a nap! It won't hurt my feelings!
Notes to consider:
First and foremost, it is important to me for your baby look comfortable and peaceful in the photographs and for each image to be a piece of timeless art. I have a lot of experience and patience with newborns. I have two little girls of my own and have photographed over 100 newborns. Safety is ALWAYS first. I will never put your newborn in an unsafe or unnatural pose/prop. I listen to baby and let them tell me what they are willing to do what doesn't feel right to them.
If you have older siblings that you would like photographed with your newborn we will do these shots FIRST. Cream, ivory or white (without patterns or logos) is recommended for older siblings (with jeans or even dresses for girls). The more texture the better (knit, lace, etc). They’ll be barefoot, so no need to look for clean shoes.
*Due to the nature of the session and the quaint space in which we will be in, I ask that your spouse/partner/grandparent be available to take the older siblings home or out for something fun to do while we finish up with the individual newborn shots.
PERSONAL PROPS and 'PINTEREST’ REQUESTS
I supply all of the backdrops, headbands and wraps for the session, and my style is neutral, simple props and photos that focus on baby. I am always open to new ideas but be aware that I will not use anything that will harm, irritate or look awkward or controversial (guns, deer antlers, etc) on your newborn. If you see something you like in any of my galleries, be sure to mention it before your session. I am open to suggestions on poses that you may have seen from Pinterest but please understand that every pose we do depends on how well baby cooperates and how safe the pose is for your little one. I cannot guarantee any pose for this reason.
My home studio is located at 17 E Coral Gables Drive in North Central Phoenix, near 7th Street between Greenway and Thunderbird. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.