Newborn photography is a bit of an adrenaline rush, believe it or not. For one, you are getting photographs of this brand new person. And for another you are racing against the clock. A true "newborn" is a baby under 14 days. And in my book, under 12 days is optimal. The fact is, there is a very brief window where most babies can physically be posed to create those iconic images you will want to have of your baby.
This is not to say that older babies cannot be posed. Many can. I have had babies as old as 35 days still able to to curl and bend easily. But why risk it? Try to do these poses when your baby is 12 days or younger.
1. Daddy and Me:
For some reason, Dad gets left out of the loop during newborn photos. With all the fluttering around Mom and the new baby, well, poor Pops gets forgotten. Don't forget him. This is a classic image he and your baby will cherish. Don't worry if your Dad is not too keen on taking his shirt off for the photo. You can get a gorgeous shot with him in a long sleeved neutral colored solid shirt. Remember, your newborn will not be able to curl and fold like this for too long. Even if you can't get to a professional newborn photography studio, you can try to get this shot on your own.
SAFETY: Remember the Golden Rule about holding babies...THREE POINTS OF CONTACT. Right hand, Left Hand, Chest.
2. We Heart Baby Feet
As cliche as this shot seems, the fact is that your baby's feet only look like this for a short time. You will be so glad you took 5 seconds to get this shot 10 years from now. Once babies are awake more and awaken more easily, this shot is harder to get. An awake baby cannot control their hand and leg movements, so getting them to stay still for this shot can be tough. Do it as soon as possible, or contract out a professional newborn photography studio near you.
3: Squishy Face
Nothing is cuter than a newborn baby sleeping. Add a tad of squishy face and this is an image you will be loving for years. Look at that face! Those eyelashes! Those teeny fingers!
SAFETY: A newborn cannot stay is this position long without cutting off circulation. You have got to be quick. If you see a hand or foot turning purple, STOP the shot immediately
As you plan for your own newborn photography session, keep in mind these three relatively simple poses. Be aware of safety and have fun.
Katie Katsenis is a newborn and maternity photographer in Tujunga, CA 91042 just outside of downtown Los Angeles.