Note before your session day...
Here are a few things to note when preparing for your Newborn Session:
• Number one and most important… Relax and have fun! Your newborn is a perfect miracle and my job is to capture all of that perfection... I love my job!
•If possible schedule your session between 5-10 days old. I work with natural lighting so morning sessions start at 9:00am. We want baby to sleep as much as possible during our shoot so they will relax and curl into those cute newborn poses. This happens best if your newborn is FULL and WARM.
• Due to the frequent breaks needed to feed, change, sooth, and get baby to fall asleep, your newborn session will last 2.5-3 hours. This time together will give to plenty of time to capture your newborn's perfection.
• If (Mommy) is nursing please try to avoid spicy foods or drinking/eating acidic foods (citrus juices, fruits, etc.) 24 hours prior, because it can upset the baby’s tummy and they will feel uncomfortable and not sleep during the session. If you are pumping, please bring a few bottles. For bottle fed babies, I ask that you bring formula to last the 3-hour session and MORE! Babies are VERY hungry during their sessions (more than normal) and we will need it.
• If baby is cranky and not cooperating, please do not worry. We have plenty of time to allow him/her to get comfortable and if you are stressed, baby can feel it! I have seen it all & love the challenge. :)
• Since baby will be undressed, we want to make the room as comfortable as possible for your baby. Your newborn has been in your womb cozy and warm and we will recreate that cozy feeling in my studio. We will get a little warm, but baby will sleep so much better. I will use a space heater to keep the room and baby warm. *** Dress accordingly for a 75-80 degree room and bring an extra shirt for any accidents... we always need them. :)
• Feel free to have some special mementos ready for the shoot, if desired (ie: handmade from grandma, knitted caps, booties, nursery item, letters, a gift from Daddy, etc.) These are great for making baby's 1st pictures even more personalized and special. Please let me know ahead of time if you want to incorporate any special family items. It takes about 7 items to make a complete cohesive look for one shot so just help me know what you are bringing in advance. (Feel free to text me a picture of your items, and I can prep other props to go along with yours.)
• Details – I will often do images of baby's little hands and feet. These will look best if baby’s nails are trimmed and clean. PLEASE don’t the cut nails if you are not comfortable.
• Be ready for pee (and poo)! I don’t need to tell you that newborns pee/poo a lot. I will most likely get peed on... it is part of the job. Again have a backup change of clothes ready for yourself so you can stay comfortable (especially if you are in some of the pictures). I can almost guarantee that baby will pee and poo on my blankets and props. This is OK! It is completely expected. Everything is washable. It will all come out. :)
• Clothing for mom and dad – If you elect to be in pictures with baby (which is totally up to you!), simple is typically best. Wear clothing that is comfortable to the session. I photograph baby first and family at the end. The room is warm, so please arrive comfortable for a warm studio. Bring clothing for photographs on hanger ready to slip on when ready. Solid natural/timeless colors work best. Mom, do your hair just how you like it (if you have the time). The few pictures you will be in will have your beautiful hair and hands in them. Many wear classic white or black tops. These colors are timeless. ** Just note that your lower body will not be photographed days after having your sweet baby so do not worry about your lower body. :)
• Sibling Images – If you want sibling images, it is best to have dad, or another capable caregiver, bring the sibling in the last hour (~11:30am) of the of the session after baby's solo part is over. This is to provide a stress free environment for both you and baby, and get the best images of your sleeping little one. 90% of your newborn session is focused on your newborn. Sibling images are so sweet and special but we only focus on this part at the end. *Please see pricing info for this additional add on session, with your newborn session.
• Absolutely NO cameras at the session other than mine. This is extremely distracting to those being photographed. You will LOVE your images from Erica Loree Photography so just sit back and relax.
• Your images will be ready for you approximately ~14 days after your session. If your session includes a high-resolution image CD, I will hand edit all 12 images. :) Editing all 12 images takes days (around 5 hours per collection), so if a few sessions are waiting ahead of your session I have to go in order. I do my very best to get a few of your images posted to Erica Loree Photography Facebook page as quickly as possible, so you can enjoy them until your CD/ images are ready for you.
Session Run Down
(Mom & Dad this really helps you know how to make the most of your session.)
The following is my rundown on how the day should go for the session – I try to be very particular and this is only because I know what works and what doesn’t so please follow these as best you can! It may seem like a lot to ask in those first few day of life, but I only ask this for YOUR benefit – so YOU get the images you dream of! Sessions typically start around 9:15am. I try to use natural light in my photos, as much as possible, so this time is best.
1) 1-2 hours before the session (at home) please remove all tight clothing that can leave marks (socks, loosen diaper, nothing with elastic around wrists/ankles that can leave marks.) This is a great time to bath baby and make sure baby is ready for her/his close up. I do pretty much all of my sessions with babies in their birthday suits.
2) If possible kept baby awake for an hour before the session. This is not easy, but doing so produces the best sleepy images. I need them to be very tired (cranky tired) before you feed them. I know baby will fall asleep in the car seat on the way here so don’t worry about that.
3) **Arrive to the studio in time to feed baby before session time starts (9:00 am in most cases). If you are nursing and pumping… please bring a bottle that is ready to feed your sweet one right at 9:00-9:15 so we can get started. Feel free to pump while I work for the next feeding. Baby will need to be sleepy and full (this is KEY!) While you are feeding… I will be setting up finishing touches. Once we’re ready to shoot, they should be in a milky dreamland from being full and satisfied. :)
4) I LOVE when grandma or dad are willing to help if they are available and will hold/move the baby myself most of the time. The reason for this is if baby smells mom they may wake to eat. I also want to give Mom enjoyable, restful session. No worries IF mom is the only one who can come help assist. I have done shoots many ways. :)
5) Baby will cry – it’s OK! I don’t force them into any positions that are uncomfortable for them. Babies are VERY flexible when they are born. They sometimes wake and cry a bit just from being moved around. Some babies sleep the entire time and don’t stir at all; others take more time and patience. *Some positions can take up to 20 minutes to get the baby correct and happy. This is another reason I give newborn sessions so much time to get “THE SHOT”.
6) If baby stirs and starts rooting I will give them to you to feed. Typically if you follow steps 2 and 3 we will be good for 2 hours and by the time baby roots the session will be over or close to wrapping up. **IF it is okay with you it works great if Mom pumps (before the session at home), and brings some extra milk in a bottle for baby to calm down when in the poses. This can really, really help us if baby is having a hard time relaxing. Last, if your baby soothes with a pacifier please bring one! If it is okay with you bring one even if it is not normally used at home. I will only use it for a quick moment to keep the pose and help baby feel comfortable. Thank you ;)
7) EAT! Sometimes it is hard to remember to take care of yourself when you are taking care of your little one. But, if you don’t eat, even a little, the 3 hours will seem long. Make sure your husband gets this part of the memo. Before every session I eat at least a banana and drink my coffee!
8) The studio will be VERY warm (75-80 degrees). Babies are very sensitive to cold. We will be photographing your baby naked, so it’s best to keep them comfortable (like baby has been the past 9 months). You will need to be comfortable too, so wear something appropriate for a very warm studio. ALSO, please bring a change of clothing. Nude babies are known to pee on anyone holding them.
That is pretty much it! It may seem like a lot but it’s pretty simple – hardest part is keeping baby awake before the session and getting out of the house with a newborn!
I have two boys and truly remember what it was like leaving the house those first weeks. I am honored to be your Newborn Photographer and am here to help. I am very passionate about getting your dream shots and want to make this time together relaxed and a blessing to you.
That is all... I look forward to photographing your little miracle! Feel free to contact me with any questions.
***IF any scheduling changes occur PLEASE call me as soon as possible. In most cases I have planned for your session days/weeks in advance, and have booked a sitter for my boys or planned a day for them to be gone with dad. My equipment, props, and studio are prepped just for you, and ready for your session day. Your deposit has blocked off your session long in advance, so no other sessions can be booked in this time-slot. I am very dedicated to you during these hours. I book out 3-4 months in advance and in most cases getting your sweet one another free studio date within the 5-14 day window is not possible. Thank you.
Blessings to you as your await your little ones arrival.
Sincerely, Erica at Erica Loree Photography