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The Secrets Behind Better Newborn Photos

By Rach DePaoli | Inspiration

Newborn photos like the likes of Anne Geddes look straight out of a fairytale. There is something so serene and alluring about these photographs, there is a reason that people want newborn photographs of their own babies that rival this kind of creativity. There is an essence that you can capture in your newborn that is unlike any other time in their life – and it is a really special thing to capture.

Whether you are thinking of creating your own in-home newborn photoshoot or you are looking to schedule a professional newborn photoshoot, this guide can help you develop an idea for a photoshoot and also give you some best tips for the practices you should follow if you’re looking to capture these kinds of photos!

If you are looking to shoot your own photos, Befunky’s Photo Editor will be your best friend post-shoot for all of your editing needs!

7 Tips for Successful Newborn Photoshoots

Taking newborn photos doesn’t have to be difficult. With the right guidance, you can figure out if you want to try your own in-home photoshoot and edit your photos with BeFunky’s Photo Editor or hire a professional to do the job! We are going to mix in some tips for you if you want to take your own photos and also some inspiration if you want to plan a more detailed photoshoot with yourself or a professional photographer. 

1. Age Matters!

Since it's ideal to get your newborn photos taken between 7 to 10 days after birth, keep a close eye on their developing schedule. When do they tend to take naps and for how long. This will help your photographer take the best photos of your newborn. Anytime before this, although you can still get photos of your baby that are memorable, it may not be the best time to do a newborn photoshoot!

newborn photoshoot best age

You can wait up to six weeks to take your newborn photos, but if you’re looking for those newborn photos where they morph perfectly into the shape of a pillow or sit perfectly in a cute basket, you will want to aim to take them within the first two weeks – or until your baby reaches a 6lb weight (for the preemie parents – you’ve got this)!

Make sure that you plan this ahead of time and schedule your photographer for after the birth – as some photographers are booked up months in advance and if you wait until after the birth to schedule, they may not have an opening and you may miss your window!

2. Keep Them Warm

Whether you have them swaddled, bundled, or want to take some precious nakie photos of them, make sure that your baby is warm. If you are taking your photos in your house, make sure that you have a room prepped for 80°F or 26°C and have it pre-heated before your baby is in the room. You may want to take advantage of the natural light in your home, just make sure that if you are in an open space, you have the heat in your home set to a higher temperature.

newborn photoshoot keep them warm

If you are swaddling your baby, you may not need to set the temperature of your room too high. You can adjust the temperature by 5-10° depending on how many clothes they have on. Swaddle photos are so cute and you can either opt to swaddle them fully or have their arms out to pose them.

newborn photoshoot keep them warm 2

3. Show Their Expressions

Yawns, smiles, stretches – take photos of it all. These little expressions show up in big ways in a photograph. Sometimes these photos look even better if they are edited in black and white – as it makes the expression more obvious and be the central point of the image. If you are looking to edit your photos to black and white, use BeFunky’s Photo Editor to fine-tune your portraits after your session!

newborn photoshoot expression

Also, think about the types of expressions you are wanting out of your newborn. If you want yawns and stretches, make sure that you have the photoshoot happening in the middle of their nap time into when they are just about to wake.

4. Use Props!

Use props like little hats, stuffed animals, or blankies. If you are going to a photoshoot, make sure you pack these things in your bag and discuss with the photographer any other props they would recommend. If you are working with a photographer, they will most likely have dozens of props to use in their studio, but communicate with them if there is something special you want photographed alongside your newborn.

newborn photoshoot props

5. Get Close-Up on the Details

The smushy lips, the curled little fingers, these are the things that make babies so deliciously cute, you just want to munch them up. To get these shots, you want to make sure that you have the correct lenses to get close-ups. These lenses are 50mm and 35mm lenses, or the equivalent of those depending on what camera you have.

newborn photoshoot closeup

You want to schedule enough time for your shoot so that you can get some of these shots throughout the session, and not just have the posed images where your newborn is in an entire scene. Although those images are wonderful, these small little details really tell a delicately sweet story that shouldn’t be missed out on!

6. Neutrals Are the Best

Neutral or pastel colors are usually the best for a photoshoot. They give a softer and more peaceful look to the aesthetic. I always love shooting and planning color palettes based on earth tones – this is usually a full-proof photoshoot tip for planning outfits (that and do not wear stripes)!

newborn photoshoot neutrals

I also love this neutral-tone tip because it allows you to change up the environment pretty effortlessly. When planning your photoshoot, have a goal in mind about what you want and what you are looking for, and communicate that to your photographer. You are building this shoot with them. Do you want something that is more dreamy and imaginative, or bohemian and natural? That will help you pick the correct clothing and swaddles for your newborn during their shoot!

7. Prepare, and Let Go of Control

Keep in mind that you will have very small control over most of the outcomes that happen during your shoot so prepare the best you can but be aware that you will not be able to predict everything. 

newborn photoshoot candid

Some of the best photos that are the most memorable or that show the most emotions or personality are some of the ones that you may think were an utter disaster at the time.

Have a Successful Newborn Photoshoot

By following these tips above, you can have a successful newborn photoshoot whether you are thinking of having one in-home or getting professional photos done. Befunky’s Photo Editor will be your best friend if you decide to do your own shoot. Make sure you develop the idea you are after and keep to your newborn's schedule to have the most success!

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