There is lot of information out there about when to have a newborn photography session in Sydney. Some advice is valid, while other advice seem repeated by person to person until the original reason is lost. So when is the best time for newborn photography?
What is Newborn Photography?
Baby photography is very common in Sydney now, but newborn baby photography has a specific meaning. It usually refers to the photography in the first 2-4 weeks after your baby is born.
Baby photography is usually done in studio, or sometimes in your home. Note that photography done in the hospital ward is generally referred to as hospital photography.
Normally photography in hospitals is done by a franchise who has purchased an exclusive license to operate in the hospital. It’s a completely different style to what’s normally called newborn photography so we won’t talk about that here.
When is the Best Time for Newborn Photos in Sydney?
Many Sydney newborn photographers tell you to book your newborn photoshoot within 7 or 14 days of your baby’s arrival. This is because in the early days your baby will retain their etherial state, and be very sleepy and curl up like they were still inside mum’s belly.
While this is true to an extent, every baby is different, as well as family situations. We’ve had 1 week old babies wide awake, and we’ve had sleepy 1 month olds. You just can’t predict what will happen!
We recommend you come in within a few days of going home after the hospital because:
- You are fresh. All the new parent experience and emotions are still with you. We want to capture that magic!
- Life is going to get very hectic from here, with a new baby at home. Get it done so you can relax.
- Many babies at 2-3 weeks will get milk spots and dry, peeling skin that lasts for a few weeks.
- Your baby changes daily, and will never be this small again. Those tiny fingers, that little nose, now is the time to capture them!
- All your friends and family will be bugging you for photos.
What Happens If You Miss The Best Time?
It’s not the end of the world. Once your baby gets the peeling skin, you should wait for that to finish. We don’t want to photograph them while they’re itchy and uncomfortable. Yes you can photoshop the flaky skin, but do you really want fake photos of your baby?
They may be a month old by that time. It won’t be a newborn baby photography session anymore, it will be a regular baby session.
They may not be as sleepy anymore. You may get one eyed looks from your child, though don’t bank on getting that looking-at-the-camera shot. They’ll be bigger, but they’ll still be switching between looking like mum and dad every few days!
We’ve photographed many babies who were 1-2 months old before they could make it to the studio. We’ve photographed premature babies weeks before they were due. Don’t worry, and leave it to us. It’s all about your connection and love as a family.
When Should You Book Your Newborn Photoshoot?
Sydney newborn photographers work in many ways. Some will happily book you in for tomorrow. Others have a waitlist longer than a childcare.
You need to weigh up what you want to achieve from the session, and how you want to celebrate your family’s artwork every day. Services are different, and there’s no right or wrong.
Think of it as the difference between popping into McDonald’s vs going to that restaurant where you book a month in advance. They are different experiences, suited to different situations.
We prefer you to book us at least a month before the due date. Because what happens next is the most important part of your experience.
What Happens After Booking Your Newborn Photo Session?
We spend some time talking to each of you individually. We learn about your story, your journey to this point, your hopes, your dreams for your baby. We get to know you, so that we know what those looks and gestures mean, why something is important. This way, we can capture your relationship naturally and authentically, less posed, more real.
Think about it this way. If you went into a restaurant and say “Give me food,” what are the chances you get something you want?
You can say that to your mum though, because she knows you. She knows you like things less salty, and whether you can take spice. She knows what you’ve been up to lately, that you’re trying to cut down on sugar. By knowing you, she can cook up your perfect meal.
Some photographers will photograph your baby 5 minutes after meeting you for the first time. They’ll get nice photos, but it will be you inserted into the photographer’s photo, not a photograph of your connection.
What Does Connection Mean?
This is what sets us apart. When we know you, we can capture the look between you that only you understand. We let you interact and capture the expressions that happen naturally.
When she looks at this photograph, she remembers how he promised he’d love and take care of them forever. And how she felt as a result.
When he looks at this photograph, he remembers how she told him how proud and and happy she was to have him by her side. And how he felt as a result.
When they look at the photograph together, they remember the emotions and tears well in their eyes again.
What It Means To You
We don’t tell you to smile at each other. Why would you want a photo that reminds you of the time the photographer said to smile?
These photographs remind you of the true feeling you had at the time. When their baby grows up, she will be able to see and understand these feelings 10 years from now.
Every day their artwork hangs at home, they get energy as they walk past and see their moments. It brings them energy, and reminds them what’s important. Wouldn’t you want that for your family?
Valent Lau Photography provides Pregnancy and Baby Photography and is based in South Coogee in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs. Contact us now and take your first step towards creating some beautiful heirlooms.