How to Choose a Newborn Photographer

Choosing a newborn photographer to take photos of and create images of your newborn baby can be an exciting task, but there are a lot of choices and that can be overwhelming.  Here are some tips to find the right photographer for you.

  1. Experience – Your photographer should be a specialist in newborn or child photography. You want someone who has a comfort level with these little treasures and understands how to properly handle your child.  How can you tell their level of experience? Find out if they are accreditation through a professional organization. There are several such as: The National Association of Professional Child Photographers or Professional Photographers of Canada. Also SAFETY is a number one consideration.  Ask your potential photographer what safety precautions they take when working with babies.
  2. What is their style?  There are 2 ways newborn photographer define their style: lifestyle, and posed.

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Lifestyle photography is candid and not “set-up” or posed. Photographers may give very little instruction or direction during the session – and they likely won’t do any posing. This often means photographing you doing “everyday” activities with your baby like: bathing, changing, feeding and holding your baby in your home.

 

Posed Sessions include curly sleepy images of your baby. These images might remind you of how soft, squishy and “new” your baby is. Images have a “womb-like” feel. The photographer will have a soft beanbag or cushion set up to pose your baby in various positions and have several props and blankets to create images for you to remember forever. These sessions can take place in a studio or in your home.

3. How far do you need to go for the session? Once your baby arrives, timelines can be thrown off so easily.  Getting out the door takes much longer than expected. Plus, you have all that extra stuff to take for yourself and your baby.  Many photographers – even ones with a “posed” style – will come to you.  This means you can relax in your own home during the session. Hungry? grab a snack from your own kitchen. Tired? lay down on your couch. This can make a big difference for you and your baby. A posed newborn session can take several hours to allow for feedings, cuddles or whatever else your baby might need.

4. Where and how do you want to enjoy your final images? Do you want someone that will take care of printing for you? Can they do birth announcements? Will they create finished artwork of your baby? Can you have digital images for keepsake? What a photographer offers is something to consider. Not all photographers will just leave you with a disk to shove in a drawer. Many can create beautiful albums, baby books or artwork to hang on your wall. Everyone thinks they will have time to do it themselves, but the reality is – babies are time consuming!  And wouldn’t you rather grab a few cuddles from your baby, than run to the store to pick up prints, select frames and put it all together?  Finding someone that can help you create memories and help you enjoy them for years, is so important.

How do you feel about your photographer. This might sound silly, but having someone you trust and understands your end goal for the images is key. After all, this person will likely be spending a good chunk of a day with you – a posed newborn session can take 2-3 hours. Can you have a conversation with them? do you feel taken care of? do you feel they have the level of experience you want? if you were running late because a feeding took longer, do you think they will mind? All these things are important to consider. You want to work with someone you trust on your custom photography.

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So how do you narrow down all the options?  Start with recommendations – your birth team can  be a great source of information. They know the more experienced photographers in your area.  Friends might also have good insight. Then look at each photographer’s website and image gallery or portfolio. If you love their images, the next step is a phone call or email to check availability and how early you need to book with them. Then meet them or talk on the phone to get a real feel for the who will be taking your newest family photos!

With all these things to consider, it might seem overwhelming, but it will be worth it in the end. Your baby will only fit just so in your arms for a brief moment. Sadly, they don’t stay that little forever and these precious moments will be enjoyed for years to come when you find someone to capture them for you!

Karen Meissner

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Karen Meissner of Green Apple Photography is a newborn and children’s photographer located in Waterloo Region.  She is a proud member of The National Association of Professional Child Photographers and mom of 3 {not-so-little} babies.  Karen has been photographing babies and children for nearly 10 years.  She loves creating custom wall galleries for her clients. Learn more about Karen and Green Apple Photography at www.greenapplephotography.ca