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Newborn Photography Tutorial - Tips to Success

By Edited Dec 11, 2015 1 2

If you are not a patient person, then you will need more than a newborn photography tutorial to get the ball rolling. This is something that can be a great challenge and you really have to be prepared for that. In saying that, it can be incredibly rewarding as well, especially if it is your own baby.

There are a ton of ways you can take pictures, but producing that natural touch is what you should be after. You may be lucky enough to end up with a newborn that is filled with laughter and smiles, but you also may find that it can be a mission to get a little baby to do what you want it to do. This takes time and patience.

Get the parents involved

Discuss with the parents what they are looking for. Sometimes they won’t want any nude photos – show them samples, because when you say this they may be repulsed, but you can get some beautiful soft and subtle looking shots.  Parents may want their baby positioned in a certain setting. It is great if you could get the parents into the shot and almost tell a story with a couple of shots.

After all, this is what photography is all about – a photo is worth a million words! Keep on shooting. Here is where you just have to take loads of photos and just select those which have come out the best. Get the parents to bring different outfits and toys and, they can also have a change of clothing.

baby and father

credit:the baphotography

Lighting, siblings and props

Experiment with black and white as well, standing in different positions, using different lighting conditions. Use typical newborn photography accessories to emphasize the size as well as create different textures and contrasts. For example, a teddy bear will give you an idea of size.

 Lighting is fairly debatable. Some photographers prefer to use a flash if the light is not great. However, you can imagine what this would do to a little baby. I think it is better to put them next to a window and use natural light.

Even on a cloudy day, you will get a diffused light, which can look good. However, it is good to have something as a backup. A fluorescent light is a nice idea. You will also want to experiment with various ISO settings as well as exposure settings, depending on how you want the shot to come out as. A spyderlite would be a good investment because it is just the kind of brightness that you would be looking for in a circumstance like this.

Try and focus on specific features, which you only see with newborns. This would be things like dimples and wrinkles. The legs, arms and hair come into play here. Use a soft background so you can pick this up.

Probably one of the most beautiful things, is to shoot the whole family together as well as a couple with an older brother or sister with the new member to the family. However, the quality of your shot will depend on how you capture it. For this, you have to keep on shooting and just wait. Make sure parents are prepared to be around for some time in order for it to be a success.


credit:Ruby Lane Photography

The Challenges

Obviously newborns are going to get restless and edgy so make parents aware of this. If the parents are there, the baby will feel more at ease. They will also need to make sure that the baby is fed because the whole shoot could take up to 2 hours.

This is why making sure the mood is good is important. The baby must be comfortable in the particular setting. A lot of photographers invest in a space heater, and this helps provide some warmth to the baby.

Use a macro lens and get up close. You don’t need a DSLR for this, so if you just want to take photos of your own baby, you don’t need to spend a fortune on equipment. Just have your camera ready so you don’t have to mess around with setting and miss the magic moment.

You also don’t want to take too much time messing around, because the baby is going to get impatient, and the parents are also going to start pacing.



Jul 1, 2013 12:07am
Good advice that is simple and effective. Thank goodness for digital cameras these days so we can take lots and lots of pictures.
Jul 3, 2013 4:34pm
Thanks, Yindee - yes - lots and lots of pictures and have a dark room or spend money on having spools developed :)
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