Newborn photo shoot
Now newborn can mean anything up to about 4 weeks old in terms of photography.. When a baby is born, they generally loose a little bit of weight and then start to pack in the milk and grow, so at around 7-10 days is a good time to get them at their littlest. After about 3 weeks a baby’s bones will start to fuse straight and you’ll not be able to curl them up in that lovely faetal position with their legs wrapped around them as they were in the womb. At this age you can swaddle them and curl them up in a ball, do sleepy shots and close ups of their perfect feet and hands.. If the baby has come out a little spindly, then you can afford to wait a week or so to let them fill out just a little.
3 months photo shoot
Babies start to smile at around 6/7 weeks and will have more strength in their necks after a few months which makes it a good time to show more of their character, it’s great to get the interaction between parents and baby as you get a lot more feedback at this stage. They have also filled out quite a bit and are beautifully chubby. At this age you can do lots of hugging shots, laying them down on their backs so they can kick around and engage with parents and the camera, and do close ups of eyes etc..
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7 month photo shoot
The next stage is when they are able to sit but are not yet crawling. Sitting usually takes a while to get securely so they can be wobbly for a few weeks before they get the hang of it.
Some sit at 5 months and some don’t sit securely until 8 months, it just depends. But once they are sitting they can do different poses and be more independent. It’s important however to get them before they start to crawl, which happens not long after sitting. Once a baby can crawl then photo shoots are very hard as they will only sit still for 2 seconds before they are off crawling with their head down and out of the studio!. At this age you can sit them anywhere and they can’t move…perfect for photography.
12 months photo shoot
At around 1 year to 15 months old the baby will hopefully be able to walk on their own which is the next stage to do. Once they are mobile it’s great for them to go outdoors for a shoot, where they can explore and be free without being told to sit still for photos. Small fences are fantastic for little unstable legs to lean against. Great shots to do when they are this age are walking with parents holding hands, swinging shots, and indipendant solo toddles.
Family photo shoot
Then you’re into the great wide open of family photo shoots. You can have them in your home or on location in a park somewhere but once they are running around the possibilities are endless and wonderful. I see my families every year usually to record the changes in their children and their relationship with each other. It’s a privalage and I never forget it. What a lucky girl I am!
This blog was written by Susan Porter-Thomas LSWPP – London Family Photographer based in West London working in studio and on location with families for nearly 15 years.