10 Tips For Photographing Your Newborn Baby

So, you have your brand new camera ready and on hand to capture every cute expression and tiny detail of your newborn baby, but the images do not turn out as you were hoping.  Photographing a baby well is not an easy thing to do, I have put together 10 tips for photographing your newborn baby to help you to take beautiful images you can treasure forever.

Tips for Photographing Newborn Baby

1. Read the manual

This seems like a really obvious one to mention but I cannot tell you how many people get their new camera out of the box, turn the dial to auto and point and shoot.  Your camera’s manual will give great basic instruction on how to take your camera off of auto.  Auto will not give consistently good results.  I would recommend reading the section on shooting in AV mode {Canon} or A mode {Nikon}.

2. Quantity

Take lots of photographs. More than you normally would. This gives you a greater chance of getting that perfect shot.

3. Perfect lighting

Choosing the right light is important to create beautiful photographs.  Turn off the flash and use natural window light.  This must not be direct sunlight as this will create harsh shadows.

4. Pay attention to your background

Pay attention to your surroundings before you snap. As with all photography, you should try avoiding distracting background elements. Your newborn should be the main centre of attention. You can create a neutral background with the use of pillows or blankets placed around your baby.

Tips for Photographing Newborn Baby

5. The best age

I would recommend capturing lots of newborn shots in the first 10 days.  After this time many baby’s develop baby acne.

6. Choosing the right time

Just after a feed is a good time for baby photography, as is sleep time.  Some of the most beautiful newborn images are taken when your baby is sleeping.

Tips for Photographing Newborn Baby

7. Natural is best

Photograph your newborn in their birthday suit or wrapped in a blanket.  Avoid dressing them up in cute outfits.  At the newborn stage all clothing is generally a bit too big and bulky and baby will be overtaken by the outfit.

8. Don’t forget the details

Flaky skin, the gorgeous rolls & wrinkles on baby’s back. The sweet little milk bubbles that form on his or her lips while they sleep.  Those all important tiny toes and fingers.  These are all really lovely details that you will forget.

Tips for Photographing Newborn Baby

9. Get involved

Don’t hide behind the camera.  It’s easy to get obsessed with capturing your new baby, but don’t forget to photograph yourself with your newborn too. Mum and baby/Dad and baby moments are some of the most special ones.

Tips for Photographing Newborn Baby

10. Safety First

Babies have a very strong startle reflex.  This reflex can be surprisingly strong.  Be mindful of this and don’t take any risks by putting baby in any buckets or props.  The baby in prop shots you will see in my portfolio are properly prepared, baby is always in a deep sleep, the prop is weighted and I always have mum or dad as a spotter at all times.  BANPAS have a great article written about Newborn Photography Safety, well worth a read.

Tips for Photographing Newborn Baby

I really hope you have found these 10 tips useful and that you are able to take some fantastic photos of your baby over their first year.

For some image inspiration take a look at my newborn baby photography portfolio. If you are considering hiring a professional to capture your baby check out my Guide To Choosing Your Newborn Photographer blog post.


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Proud to be a member of BANPAS Baby and Newborn Photography Association. The foremost group of leading newborn & baby photographers dedicated to ensuring your baby's comfort and safety whilst creating beautiful images for you to treasure. We strive to encourage high standards of customer service, quality images and safe practice across the profession of newborn photography.