Chocolate gets eaten, flowers die, and jewelry drains your kid’s college fund. Why not consider a professional newborn photo shoot as a push present?
Having an experienced photographer capture images of your newborn baby in the comfort of your own home is the type of gift that keeps on giving. From the fuzzy hair to those tiny feet, capture those small details that will start to change right before your very eyes.
The great thing about purchasing a photography session as a push present is that one of the pictures can also be used for the birth announcement.
What to Expect
Depending on the package you choose, you should expect to have the photographer at your house for somewhere between two and five hours. Packages generally range in price from $150 – $700.
Appointments are generally scheduled between the first five to 14 days after birth. This ensures your baby is tiny, sleepy, and pliable. It is also before newborn acne kicks in, which can take some of the fun out of the photo shoot.
The photographer will likely “handle” your baby by setting him or her in different poses. Some photos will require your baby to be asleep; others might need your baby to be awake. Again, it depends on what YOU want.
Many newborn photographers work alone, but you might want to ask if they will bring an assistant along, since you will want to know a little about this person as well.
The final photos, the number of which is normally agreed upon before the shoot begins, will often be delivered both online and on a CD approximately a week after the shoot.
Many photographers will add photos they have taken to their personal websites. If you are not comfortable having your baby’s image floating around in cyberspace, be sure to let the photog know.
When to Book
Since you are never sure of the true arrival date of your bundle of joy, it’s important to contact your newborn photographer of choice somewhere near the beginning of the third trimester. If you are purchasing the package as a push present surprise, be sure to let the vendor know so they can keep it a secret.
Many photographers will put a tentative date on the calendar and then expect to hear from you immediately following the birth of the child.
How to Prep?
Ask your photographer if they will be bringing any “props” with them. But you should also have an idea of what you would like to see your child posed in. Have several swaddling blankets, knit hats, and bows on hand. The newborn photographer will shoot away like paparazzi, so be sure to leave yourself several options and color schemes to choose from.
The photographer will need an open space to maximize the angles and views and they can shoot from. Also, keep in mind that outdoor light is often a photographer’s friend, while mirrors and intricate backgrounds can be the enemy.
Your baby should be tired and have a full tummy.
How to Find a Photographer
First and foremost, you will want to find a newborn photographer whom you can trust. This is a person you are allowing into your home and permitting to manipulate your child into poses. Adorable poses! But you need to be sure that the photographer is not willing to sacrifice safety and comfort to get a cute picture. Referrals from friends and family are usually a safe bet. Not only can the vouch for the person’s work, but they also have an understanding of what you, as a client, are looking for.
When you peruse the photographer’s previous work, make sure that that the newborns do not look strained or discolored in a majority of the images. These are signs of baby discomfort.
The National Association of Professional Child Photographers, a member-based association representing and promoting the community of professional child photographers, is a good place to start.