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{Feature Friday} Tips for a DIY at Home Newborn Session | CT Newborn Photographer

Hello there! I wanted to take a moment to thank you for stopping by my blog today. As I write this today, if you are in Connecticut, then you know that we are in a semi-forced quarantine from the Covid-19 Virus. All non essential business have been ordered to stop working, & only essential businesses are able to stay home. As much as I’d love to be considered “essential” at the end of the day for the protection of my fragile clients Elizabeth Frederick Photography is non essential therefore I am no longer taking sessions until this order has been lifted. Hopefully sooner than later. That being said, I feel for my clients who were hoping to have these precious memories documented. It’s unfair, but this virus knows no age limit & we need to be socially responsible flatten the curve so we can continue on & we all can get back to work. I can’t wait to get these babies back into my studio & to create art for all of you.

In the meantime, I know that babies are going to come whether there is a virus or not. And parents want to document these times. I am providing you with some quick tips so you can hopefully take some newborn like photos in the comfort of your own home using your own camera. I do understand it will not be the same, but once all restrictions are lifted then we can get back to business with a session later on. The most important thing is we captured these moments before they disappeared.

Tips for a DIY at Home newborn photography session


  1. Safety First. This should go without saying, but never ever leave the baby unattended. Especially if in a bucket, on a couch, etc never ever leave baby unattended, even if you think the baby is in a deep sleep. Anything can happen in a blink of a eye. I am never more than an arms length away. If I need to step away from the pose, I ask mom or dad to look over baby. Again they are less than an arms length away. Also, many favorite poses of mine are what’s called a composite. I take 2-3 different photos with mom or dad’s hands holding the baby, then in photoshop I put all the photos together to be able to create the masterpiece. Please do not try to attempt these photos at home. While baby may seem sleepy enough & it’s super cute, anything can happen in a blink of an eye. Check out the sample image I did a while ago at the bottom of this blog post.
  2. Turn Up The Heat. My studio is around 80-85 degrees. You need it really warm, especially when doing naked photos. Babies are in the belly that’s 98 degrees all the time. The love it warm. Good rule of thumb: If you are sweating then baby is happy. That being said: If baby is sweating, then it’s too hot. Babies don’t sweat typically. Turn down the heat.
  3. Fill Up the Belly. Right before you are going to start be sure baby has had a full feeding. No little snack, an entire full feeding & be sure to burp after. This is going to get them right into that milk drunk comma you want to be able to pose them, or even just relaxed to be left alone.
  4. Timing is Everything. I do all my sessions first thing in the morning. I have personally found that mornings are the like the magic time. They have been up all night keeping mom & dad up, then they get a really good feeding before taking a morning nap.
  5. Keep the Poses Simple. Just keep the poses simple. Try putting baby on their belly with their feet tucked under their bottom,  swaddling is always easy & classic. Capture your little one in their crib, in dad’s hands, i in moms hands. More complicated poses, I would not recommend would be the “Froggy Pose” aka “hands in the head pose”, poses like this are a composite made in Photoshop. Leaving baby in this pose can be very dangerous if baby were to just startle out of it.
  6. Capture all the details. Don’t forget those close ups of the tiny toes, little fingers, button nose. Capture them all.
  7. White Noise. White noise is amazing & promise you will be using this even beyond your at home newborn session. I recommend it to all my clients who are looking for tips for helping their baby sleep at night. All babies are used to the swishing sound & white noise can be very relaxing to them. It will also help you to be able to move around your house at the baby gets bigger without tiptoeing. I highly recommend checking out this sound machine on Amazon.
  8. Give Up on Perfection. Even for me, not every session goes the way I planned it. Some babies are a little fussier than the next even with all my prep instructions. It just happens. Each baby is different. If I’m honest even my own child’s newborn session seemed like a disaster. But I got a handful of photos I treasure still to this day. Just be calm & have fun. Babies feed off anxious vibes, so if you are calm baby will be too.
  9. Shooting tips. Focus on the eyes, shoot down the nose (up the nostrils is unflattering), take both close ups and wide shots, experiment with angles.

On top of all these tips, I can be available to Facetime or Zoom & help walk you through some poses safely, lighting, camera settings & even photoshop those photos to make them look more professional! Email me a Liz@ElizabethFrederickPhotography.com for more information!


Sample composite image from a session I did a few years back:

Sample composite image of newborn baby posed safely on a baseball

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