Tell All Tuesday - Baby Tips | Philadelphia Photographer

It's time for another Tell All Tuesday. This time our question is from Jenny:

"So for a Tell all Tuesday idea, I'd love a list of suggestions for baby sessions...where you've bought some of your accessories (diaper cover, blankets) and any tips for someone about to do their first baby session!"

Well, I'm no expert on baby sessions, but I've done a lot of them and have a way I like to do them - so take or leave my suggestions! I'm not sure if by "baby" you mean a newborn, or an older baby, but for both I tend to keep my sessions pretty simple. I use simple props and like to focus on the child, especially capturing the details. Here is a list of the things I use the most and where I got them:

  • Diaper cover - I use a white knit diaper cover in nearly every baby session. I also have an off-white one. Both were bought on Etsy. I would highly suggest buying from Titchbiz's store. The cover I use most is from her store. It's the white Rib Leg diaper cover size S (2-5 months). It fits tiny newborns with some adjusting and also can stretch to fit some 6 month olds. Visit her store HERE. I want just about everything in it.
  • Doll bed - I use a basic wooden doll bed I bought from Ikea in the toy section. I painted it white. I use it for babies, and also sometimes use it as a bench for older children.
  • Blankets - I want more and better blankets. The best blankets are stretchy and washable. I think knits are beautiful. I wish I were a knitter!
  • NEWBORNS - I use a bean bag for my newborn sessions (it was $5 at a yard sale). I put a hot pad where the baby will be laying, and drape my blankets over it, pulling the blanket back tight and clipping it to my backdrop stand. I also use a sound machine with white noise or womb sounds, and also set a small space heater blowing really warm air directly on the baby. When the baby arrives (hopefully with just a diaper on), I put the diaper cover on and usually suggest Mom tops him/her off with milk. Then we may rock baby for a minute and place him/her on the bean bag right in front of the space heater. It doesn't usually take long before the baby is out. GETTING BABY ASLEEP IS THE KEY. I don't even bother turning on my camera until the baby is totally asleep. Once the baby is asleep, don't be afraid to touch/move/shift/bug the baby! He/she will stay asleep, and you want to make sure you can see all the important body parts...hands, fingers, toes - pay attention to where all these are! Most importantly, you must also pay close attention to how the light is falling on the face and make sure the face is being lit well. From my own experience, when the light is coming down from the top of the head across the face of the baby, the resulting shadowing is not flattering. I like to angle the baby around 45 degrees, or sometimes closer to front-lit. Use a small f-stop (a wide open aperture) so that the background blurs into a nice bokeh. During "set changes," have Mom or another helper hold baby in front of the space heater and make the change, then position the baby. When the baby is asleep, it's easy to get "the shot" in only a few tries, once everything is set up. It's allllll about setting it up right.
I hope some of these tips help! Good luck. Babies are hard, but so worth it.

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