I finally got home from the hospital after giving birth. I was wearing an adult diaper, couldn’t sit on a chair unless there was an inflatable donut (special thanks to my awesome husband for going to CVS and grabbing it for me) , and my hormones had me crying over the fact that there were no more double stuffed oreos. I was exhausted, and hadn’t brushed my teeth in five, count ’em, five days.
Glamourous? Yikes. I was the opposite of glamorous. And yet, I had to get ready for photo shoot.
Ideal? Not really.
Am I glad we did it? 100 percent!
Even though I felt pretty rotten, I knew I wanted to document how adorable my tiny baby was.
Newborn babies are so stinkin’ cute! Those little hands, the tiny toes, and the oh so precious faces just make me melt! After feeding Itty Bitty, I quickly handed him off to Hubby, jumped in the shower, blow dried my hair, and put on a bit of mascera. Oh, and I also finally brushed my teeth.
My tiny baby is still a darling little newborn, but I know he will grow and change quickly. I wanted to document Itty Bitty’s adorable features, and was excited to line up a newborn photo shoot with Erica Shea from Blessed Beginnings. Our birth doula, Kim, is Erica’s coworker, so we knew it would be a perfect fit!
In addition to being a photographer, Erica is also a doula, so I knew she would make sure my baby was comfortable and safe. I also felt at ease because the photo shoot took place in my own apartment!
We had our photos taken when Itty Bitty was only five days old. From what I’ve read, the ideal time table is about 5-10 days old. This is because they still like feeling like they are in the womb, and don’t mind being curled up in the precious photos. Plus, these tiny babies change very quickly during the first several weeks, so you want to catch these moments as soon as you can, before they get too squirmy.
If you’d like to have newborn photos taken, I would start searching for a photographer during your pregnancy. Give he or she a heads up as to when you are due, and find out when they would like you to get in touch with them. We spoke with Erica when I was 38 weeks, and then again three days after our tiny baby was born to set up a date and time for our shoot.
We started the session with some family photos. Hubby and I couldn’t stop smiling at our darling tiny baby.
- Search for local newborn photographers during your pregnancy. Ask friends, and figure out your budget. Would you prefer to be at a studio, or in your own home? Contact a few photographers, and find one that you like!
- Search Pinterest and other websites to pull inspiration. What shots would you love to have of your newborn? What props would you like to include in your photos? For my husband, he wanted to make sure we had a picture of the baby with some Red Sox gear. For me, I mainly cared about having a family photo.
- Even though you will be dealing with an extreme lack of sleep, try to send your photographer an email a day or two after your tiny baby is born. Or you could ask a close family member or friend to help set this up. The photographer will let you know what dates and times are available that next week.
- Set up your appointment for a day when you have nothing else planned. Do not try to kill two birds with one stone – make sure its a different date than your pediatrician appointment, and not your first day back home. Our tiny baby (and myself) gets incredibly tired after one event. The last thing you need in a newborn photo session is a cranky newborn (or a cranky mommy!)
- Pick out outfits for yourselves. Even though being matchy matchy may make you feel like you belong on the Awkward Family Photos website, trust me, there is a purpose. You know when you go to a concert, and all of the performers are wearing all black? This is because they want the audience to focus on the music, not their appearance. The same goes for these types of photos – you want eyes to focus on your faces and your tiny baby. Hubby and I chose to wear cream colored sweaters.
- Make sure you have extra clothes for yourself – in case your tiny baby makes a mess all over you.
- If your session takes place outside your home, make sure you have diapers, wipes, pacifiers, and any other items you may need.
|Hubby couldn’t get enough of the Red Sox shot!|
We personally loved working with Erica, who said that it is her privilege to tell a family’s story through creative photography that includes elements of clients’ homes and lives. She used natural light, and captured a lot of our natural interactions, rather than having us in posed positions. I was delighted that the session took place in the comfort of our own home (You can actually see the tip of my slipper in the photo above. I was dressed up from belly up, and comfortable down below. Slippers are a staple for moms days after giving birth.)
Erica was incredibly flexible with our schedule, and allowed us and our baby to feel at ease. It was easy to see how much she loves her job! She smiled and joked with us, as well as “ooo’d and ahh’d” at our tiny baby when he made adorable expressions. After she edited the images, we were able to view, share, and download them from a simple website. No extra charges, and we can now choose to have them printed however and wherever we’d like.
Information about Erica from Blessed Beginnings Newborn Photo Sessions:
Sessions are $150 and booked in clients homes, in studio or on location, and include from 1.5-3 hours and all edited images presented in an online photo gallery within two weeks, able to be printed and shared. Sessions are available most weekdays and some Saturdays and can be booked by calling Erica at 864-1251 or emailing BlessedbeginningsRI@hotmail.com.
I am so happy that we chose to have newborn photos taken. Try as I might, my iPhone can not capture the cuteness of my tiny baby the way that a professional photographer can. These photos are ones I will treasure for the rest of my life!
What types of newborn photos are your favorite? Ones with props? Zoomed in shots of their little toes?