When is the best time to bring my new baby?

· December 15, 2011 · 5:54 am · All about Babies, , , , ,

Now here’s a question we get often!  So often in fact that it’s not uncommon for us to place one mom on hold while answering the same exact question from another caller.  So, let’s not waist a moment in getting to the answer!

Your new baby will only be what is considered a ‘newborn’ for a very short period of time.  Newborns have a very distinct appearance that will change rapidly.  Within just a few weeks of being delivered, your new baby’s facial features will ‘fill out’ and the fine layer of tiny hairs that cover its entire body will start to disappear.  Your baby will also lose its umbilical cord and once that’s gone then your baby will be well on its way out of the newborn stage.  Newborns pretty much do two things and that’s sleep, feed and then sleep some more.  Within just a few weeks of life, your new baby will begin to sleep less (in shorter intervals) and when they do sleep it will most likely not be as deeply as it was earlier on.  You see, newborn sleep is sooooo unique!  It’s the kind of sleep that brings the sweetest expressions with totally spontaneous smiles that are guaranteed to melt your heart.  There’s nothing in the world quite as beautiful as a newborn in a deep slumber (aka: ‘la la land’).

You will definitely want to get your baby into the studio while they are still in this fleeting stage of infancy that we refer to as being ‘newborn’…  In the days just after giving birth you may still feel a bit icky and not quite yourself.  But, I promise it will be well worth the effort in getting out of the house as early as possible to have your baby photographed during this very special time.  We tell every mom who asks this question to get their new baby scheduled as soon as they possibly can because some babies are already losing their newborn appearance in as little as TEN DAYS after they are born!  Now, with that said, if you have to have surgery (aka: the dreaded c-section) then PLEASE DON’T PUSH YOURSELF!  You will know when the time is right to get out of the house.  It’s not uncommon for us to see babies in about 3 weeks after a c-section.  Simply let us know when you call that you have had a c-section and we promise to do all we can to make both you and your baby as comfortable as possible during your visit!

Also, we recommend getting baby as relaxed as possible just before leaving home.  That’s easy enough to do with a newborn because all you have to do is give them a good feeding which will most likely result in a milk induced coma LOL…  Then once baby is topped off and ready to head to the studio, we suggest wrapping them in a blanket wearing ONLY a diaper.  If you have to fully undress baby upon arrival at the studio then you will risk waking them and that’s the complete opposite of the game here.  If we start the photo session with an alert baby, we will most likely end the photo session with an alert baby!  Sleepy babies simply make for more photographs with a great deal less fuss during the actual session.  The long and short of it: Bring me a sleepy baby and you’ll get LOTS MORE pictures (BIG CHEESY GRIN, hehehe)!!!

Tips for a truly successful newborn photo session:

1. You won’t want to sit and sway or rock baby to sleep just before a photo session because when we lay them still they will most certainly wake up demanding more motion.  Motion is sooooooo intoxicating to a newborn!
2. Under no circumstances will I let you wipe baby with a cold wet wipe!  Cold and wet equals WIDE awake!
3. No patting or petting baby as this kind of stimuli can actually wake some babies up or keep an awake baby from falling asleep.  I know it really tempting and so I won’t hold it against you if you slip once or twice…
4. Please, Please, Please turn off your cell phone just before your baby’s session.  You won’t want to risk waking baby!
5. If baby is showing signs of colic, please bring gas drops and make sure you have plenty of extra time for your session.  Babies with colic can take quite a bit longer to get relaxed.  Colic is an extremely uncomfortable condition for infants!  It’s not uncommon for colic to rear its ugly head during a photo session.  I am a very patient photographer so not to worry if we run into this.  Please note that if your baby is refusing to feed or seems to be having problems with digestion please contact your pediatrician asap!  Only your physician can confirm that what your new baby is experiencing is colic and not something more serious.
6. Bring a pacifier, even if baby has never taken one.  I couldn’t possibly tell you how many beautiful photos I would have missed over the years without a pacifier!

SO THIS IS WHERE I SAY HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO HIRE A TRUE PROFESSIONAL TO CAPTURE YOUR BABY’S FIRST PORTRAITS!  I have been working with infants for over 25 years and I’m very proud of the fact that not only are my photographic skills up to par, but my experiences over the years have taught me very WELL…  Your baby’s comfort and safety are my number one priority above everything else.  GOD BLESS and hope to see you and your new baby very soon!

a Photographer's Blog

Sometimes a girl’s gotta say what a girl’s gotta say and so I’ve created an entirely new place for me to do just that. I have been a photographer for over 25 years so I like to think I have much to share about the business of photography. I have learned many difficult lessons over the years while building my business and I now find myself on a mission to help others by teaching them how to avoid the pitfalls of this business. I’ve decided to share as much as I possibly can about my experiences in the world of photography including the good, the bad and the really ugly stupid. I’ve also decided to share some tips and tricks on how to DO IT RIGHT and that includes sharing how I learned from my mistakes and found myself as an artist. It hasn’t been an easy road, but it certainly has NEVER once been a boring journey. I hope you’ll join me here on my new blog as I take you down memory lane, teach you a few new tricks and even offer some heartfelt advice to those who have chosen professional photography as their career path. Over the years, I have helped many up & coming photographers to develop their skills and I have enjoyed each and every moment of it. I have accomplished a great deal more than I ever dreamed I would behind the camera including winning the coveted FujiFilm Masterpiece Award, the Kodak Gallery Award as well as having the honor of being awarded the Photographic Craftsman's Degree from Professional Photographer's of America. Mix that in with a few 1st Place print competition awards a "Best of Show" and "Photographer of the Year" and hopefully you have the makings of a few good stories.

Cindi Kay McDaniel, Cr. Photog., CPP