Newborn Session: How to Prepare
A new baby brings much joy to your growing family and much change to your lives. For many parents, booking a newborn session comes with a lot of questions. With an abundance of patience and experience, Rivka wants you to feel as relaxed and prepared as possible, knowing what you can expect during your newborn session.
The most important item is scheduling your session. We always reserve a couple days per week for newborn sessions and scheduling changes but they do tend to fill quickly. Newborn sessions only take place during weekdays. Newborns are best photographed between day 5 and 14, we cannot stress this point enough - babies are at their sleepiest and most womb-like during their first two weeks of life. Understandably, the first couple of weeks with your newborn are overwhelming and tiring, and knowing that your newborn session is booked/scheduled will alleviate some of the stress. Please make sure you let us know as soon as your baby is born, so we can get you on the shooting schedule for the following week. Feel free to email or text Rivka directly (212-280-6452), or ask a grandparent or spouse to take care of the scheduling. This way we can make sure you have a session scheduled during the baby's first two weeks of life, the optimal time to photograph your new little one.
Newborn sessions usually take between 2-5 hours, provided time to photograph your newborn in a variety of poses and set-ups such as baskets, bowls, nests, crates.
Most parents are surprised to find out that a rather large portion of the session revolves around the newborn's needs in terms of feeding, burping, diaper changes and helping the baby fall asleep. It is recommended to plan on extra diapers changes, extra feedings during the session, regardless of your current schedule with the newborn. Making sure your newborn is calm and satiated is our first goal - a happily sleeping newborn makes for wonderful portraits! The newborn session is never rushed, we want you to feel relaxed and enjoy the session as much as possible. It really is a once in a lifetime experience - they are only this little for the briefest of moments.
We always make sure to try and capture the newborn with the older siblings and with the parents as well! For the parent/newborn portraits, you will be photographed from the waist up holding your little newborn. When picking a shirt to wear for your portrait, think of a simple shirt (both for mom and dad) in a solid color, as we want to keep the focus on the connection between you and your baby. Moms might want to think of a pretty tunic or flowing shirt with touches of laces or soft fabric. It is recommended you bring the shirt with you and dress right before we take your picture with the newborn (especially breastfeeding moms) - clothes have a tendency to become stained quite quickly when feeding and handling a newborn. Dads look great in a T-shirt or button down (wrinkle-free!) Mom may want to take the time (if you can spare it) to have a manicure prior to the session as your hands will be prominent, as well as get a little extra pampering such as a blow-out, or applying some light make-up. I know first-hand how tired you will be feeling, but it's worth the bit of extra effort so you'll love how you look in the images.
Most of the images of your newborn will be taken without clothing. Because little clothing is preferred (so we can capture the details of their new tiny body in all its beauty), outfits are not necessary. The studio temperature is adjusted accordingly (it can get quite hot!) so it is recommended that parents dress appropriately. It is also recommended to bring an extra shirt in case of accidents (remember, baby is without a diaper for most of the session). For your newborn, it is important to bring all the items they (and you) may need i.e. diapers, wipes, pacifiers, necessities for feeding. If possible, please do not apply diaper rash cream the morning of your session.
Using my style of photography as a compass, I have sourced an extensive collection of props all over the US, as well as internationally from countries as close as Canada and as far as Australia. I’m constantly receiving packages filled with gorgeous goodies for your little ones. Vessels of all shapes, materials and sizes include: bowls, crates, boxes, baskets, and antique finds. Handmade and hand-knit rompers, diaper covers, pants, headbands, flower crowns, bonnets and quilts fill the shelves and hang from multiple hooks. Though there is a large variety of props and blankets to choose from at the studio, feel free to bring any item that carries special value to you and I will do my best to incorporate it into the session (i.e. hand-knitted baby blanket, unique hand-me-downs, family gifts.)
We look forward to meeting your new baby!! As always, feel free to contact Rivka directly with any questions or to discuss ideas/inspiration for your session.
Rivka Singer Photography is an NYC and Long Island based portrait photography studio that offers a unique experience designed to capture the delicate beauty & joy of new life. Located in Roslyn, Long island, in Nassau County and near to NYC, we specialize in vibrant, polished & inspiring portraiture for maternity, newborn and baby.