Choosing a Newborn Photographer
Choosing a newborn photographer can be quite the task! It can feel overwhelming if you’re not sure what to look for, especially if this is your first baby. Here are some considerations to help you make more informed choices:
Consider whether you would specifically like a newborn photographer or if a general portrait photographer will do. Many photographers work with all kinds of clientele, while others choose a niche and focus all of our training and equipment in that specialty. Award-winning newborn photographers like Kelly Brown, pictured at left with me on the right, host workshops all over the world for specialists.
Think about whether you prefer posed or candid portraits (or a combination). You may see some photographers describe candid as “lifestyle” photos. One is not necessarily better than the other – they are simply different styles. My specialty is posed newborns. I just love how peaceful they look when they are all wrapped up and cozy! But I deliver whatever my clients are looking for, which is why consultations before the session are so helpful.
Decide if you want the session to take place in a professional studio or in your home. I created my newborn studio to give my clients a smoother experience. They don’t have to worry about cleaning or decorating or preparing anything – they just show up and I do the rest. Plus, the lighting is perfect every day, in every season! And the clients can choose from my entire collection of props, backgrounds, outfits, and accessories, rather than picking from preselected options that are easily transportable. However, again, my job is to delight my clients, so if you want me in your home, that’s where I will be.
If you’re commissioning professional portraits, you deserve professional products. Look for photographers who work with pro labs, rather than consumer-level printers. Ask about the quality and longevity of their products. Will your grandchildren enjoy these portraits? For example, my prints are rated for five generations – that’s 100 years! And that’s on display in the light; properly stored, they will last 200 years. If digital files are important to you, make sure they are available for purchase.
Find out if potential candidates use composites to create certain newborn portraits safely. For example, one classic newborn pose is to have baby on her tummy, resting her chin in her hands. Adorable! But newborns cannot support their own heads, so it is critical to have help and use Photoshop to achieve this look. Pros have an assistant alternately place a hand on each side the baby’s head and combine the photos later to remove the hands. Magic!
Bonus Tip: Legal Stuff
This one is important, and it should not be a matter of personal preference, like most of the above. Make sure your photographer has a legal business with proper insurance. Above and beyond the dangers of working without insurance, “under the table” photography businesses are liable to disappear without notice when legalities finally catch up to them. The last thing you want is to be stood up by your photographer once the baby arrives!
IN THE END, WHAT’S MOST IMPORTANT IN CHOOSING A NEWBORN PHOTOGRAPHER?
Asking the right questions! I hope this guide helped you feel better prepared to ask those questions and find the right photographer for you. If you think that photographer might be me, please reach out and let’s talk!