Oh Jacob... what can I say about him? He was an absolutely adorable little pickle! He brought his Mummy and Daddy with him for his photo shoot and was ready and raring to go as soon as he arrived. That wasn't to say he was sleepy... oh no, not in the slightest! I don't mind if babies are awake, I figure they'll go to sleep eventually and I've only been proven wrong once thankfully!
We started the session whilst Jacob was checking out his surroundings and before we knew it, he had started to doze off - woohoo!
It was going so well, we made sure we kept his little tummy full so that he would be content and stay sleepy long enough to get the one pose Mummy specifically requested. We got a few lovely pictures on the white blanket before I prepared everything.
Jacob was deep in thought, deciding whether he would let me do what I'd planned...
We got him onto his tummy, and even got a couple in this pose so that I could composite Daddy's rugby ball in!
I was quietly confident that we would get the next pose, everything was in position and Jacob was fast asleep - excellent!
The 'Froggy' pose, as it's best known, MUST be shot as a composite - newborn babies cannot hold their own heads, their wrists are very delicate, the position of the neck must be just so. This pose is not easy and ideally baby needs to be very sleepy. I had Mummy help me by holding Jacob's head while I held his arms. We remove 'head hands' first for a shot, then put them back on and remove 'arm hands' for the second. The photo is made up of at least two pictures, and we remove any hands supporting baby in Photoshop afterwards (so, yes, I do Photoshop babies - gasp! I get asked this a lot!). It's my nemesis pose, I just find it so hard to shoot without waking the babies up!
Anyway... Jacob was conked, the white noise was playing... we were ready!
Here's a SOOC (straight out of camera) shot (changed to black and white just because!) of us nailing the first picture. Jacob barely stirred and was quite happy and comfy... until we swapped our hands over and it all went to pot! Jacob was awake, and knew exactly what it was we were trying to do.. and was having none of it! I wasn't overly concerned that he was awake; after all I only needed a picture of his arms! But no, Jacob knew what we were up to and refused point blank to let us finish the pose (sorry Mummy!) We even tried at the end of the shoot in the hopes he'd forgotten... memory like an Elephant this one! So this is the only picture I got, and as fantastic as my Photoshopping skills are... they cannot create arms and elbows from nothing.
Now that he was awake, we decided to move on to parent portraits before we brought in Jacob's big sisters. I wanted to experiment a little with these and before we'd got the more traditional portraits, I did this.
Look at those little tootsies!
This kind of family picture is fab for parents who aren't overly keen on being photographed, because it still gives your baby a photo of you to look back on when they're all grown up - and it's timeless! This photo works beautifully on an Orb too - and would really give your home the 'wow' factor.
We paused the photo shoot at this point, as it was school run time - eek!
This meant that when everyone came back, it was sibling and family portrait time to finish the session. Jacob's big sisters were still only little so I try to work fast (and have bribes ready!) before they get bored and lose interest. The sibling pictures are all thanks to a tiny packet of Skittles (Daddy's favourite, it turns out!)
So there you have it, a whistle stop tour through Jacob's newborn session!
If you're due soon and haven't booked your newborn session in, we do recommend you book in as soon as you can, as we can't always guarantee that we can fit you in once baby has arrived.
If you'd like more information and a price list for newborn sessions, please click here.
To book your newborn photo shoot, please click here.
I look forward to meeting you soon!
What to Expect... When I'm Expecting You! Newborn Baby Photography Sessions at Little Cherubs Photography Studio, March, Cambridgeshire
The diary of a newborn and baby photographer is a complicated place! Nobody told your baby that they are expected to turn up for their portrait session and while some can’t wait to get here, some are fashionably late. This makes my diary a wonderfully fluid place!
When you first book your session you will be required to pay the 50% booking fee to reserve your due date in my diary. I take a limited number of newborn sessions each month so that I can ensure I can fit everybody in and work around midwife and health visitor appointments once baby is here. Once your baby arrives and you have settled back in at home just give me an email me/message me and we can then confirm the best date and time for your session.
I find the first two weeks is best for photographing newborns, however I can, and do, take on older newborns; they may just be a little less sleepy and not quite as bendy as they are in the first two weeks.
Your portrait session will take place in my comfortable studio in March. Newborn studios are not like traditional photography studios - they are designed to be warm and cosy. I want you and your baby to feel relaxed and comfortable so you are able to feed on demand and put your feet up with refreshments (I even have some new dads who take a quick nap!). I have a kitchen and toilet facilities, and there's a few cafe's, shops and even a nice play park just a 5 minute walk from the studio.
So that I can capture your baby perfectly while they are still so brand new, for most of the session your baby will be in their birthday suit. Newborn clothes never fit correctly so we don’t get to see all those beautiful details that say ‘hey I’m brand new!’
However, one of the downsides of this, is your baby is guaranteed to poop and/or pee on props, blankets, perhaps even me or you! This is totally normal, and something I’m used to dealing with on a daily basis and something I allow for. All of my blankets and props are washed after each session and I have plenty of wipes to hand. You might want to pop a change of clothes for yourself into your changing bag, just incase the worst happens! (It usually happens during the parent portraits - but it's worth the mess, I promise!)
Your newborn portrait session can take up to 2-4 hours, and the reason for this is your newborn will need feeding, cuddles and cleaning throughout the session which is baby led rather than photographer led!
I have a range of props, headbands, bonnets, wraps and outfits available for you to choose from, in various colours to compliment your home and personality.
If you have any ideas or preferences for images during your session, please do let me know and I'll try my best! Newborn sessions include family, parent and sibling pictures; if you have a favourite toy or a sentimental blanket (or even have a theme you'd like to try!) please let me know and bring it along to your session.
I hope this article answers the many common questions but if you would like to book or discuss a session please contact me here.
To book your due date in the diary, please use my booking form. My price list is available here.
I've had an influx of newborns over the last few weeks, one of whom was Rayan and his family - Mum, Dad and three older siblings! They'd travelled from their home in Peterborough to come to the studio on a sunny Saturday morning.
When siblings are involved in newborn shoots, I always start with those pictures first, as younger children get bored and fed up with the whole debacle very quick! Over the years I've learned to work fast with children under four especially (mostly helped with my children not cooperating!).
All four children were superstars! I did have to use all the tricks in the book, but it was worth it - don't you think?
Once the children had had their photos taken (some with Mum and Dad too!) it was time for Dad to take them for a walk to the park while I worked on Rayan's portraits, with help from Mum. It took a while for Rayan to fall asleep, so I snapped a few photographs while he was awake then got him all snuggled up and got rocking, pacing and cuddling! Perks of the job!
I always ask parents if they have any colour preferences and Rayan's Mum and Dad pretty much let me have free reign! It wasn't a conscious decision to use white, but I think it suited his skin tone perfectly, and the images look lovely and pure (even if I do say so myself!)
At the end of the session, Rayan's Mum showed me a blanket that had been made for him by his grandmother and asked if I could incorporate it in a couple of photographs, something I love being asked to do!
I hope you enjoyed looking through some of Rayan's photos as much as I did taking them, and thank you to his family for choosing me to capture these precious moments.
The ramblings of Emma, Little Cherubs photographer in Chatteris, Cambridgeshire