Amanda Morris Photography | The difference between a lifestyle and a posed newborn session

The difference between a lifestyle and a posed newborn session

June 30, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

I still get loads of enquires about posed in-studio newborn session. It is something I used to do and I can see that its something many parents still want. I have however moved away from this type of photography for many reasons.

 

Here's why I've changed....

  • I can only ever do newborn studio sessions during the day for lighting purposes which is tricky with my 'other work'. I then had to offer them on a Sunday which was the only real day I could access the studio I was using (and I needed to use this studio for light and space). This became trickier when I then could only access the studio on Sunday afternoon - not an ideal time with a newborn (as the best time to do these sessions is in the morning) - also tricky for people bringing along toddlers to the session who are sleeping during the day. 
  • The studio I was using was a rental and I had to pay for the space which increased the price.  I also needed to move everything (and its alot of stuff) for the session up several flights of stairs every time I did a session. If I asked for payment for the 'actual time' I put into a posed studio newborn session the cost would be massive!
  • The other issue is timing - the arrival of a baby is so variable and I really struggled to schedule these sessions with my other commitments. I needed to keep several Sundays free in case baby came early or late in order to photograph at the optimum time of 5-14 days post delivery. Why? The optimum time to photograph babies for newborn posed style of session (so those cute curled up images or images of sleepy babies tightly wrapped and asleep) is before they are 14 days old - after this time they are more wakeful and lose a lot of that flexibility where they can curl their legs up like they did when they were in the womb. I can also guarantee that every beautiful images you see of babies in baskets took the photographer about 30 minutes each to achieve! Yes really!! And that sort of posing and deliberation in an image can cut into your session time!

So I've decided to stop posed newborn sessions and move more towards the lifestyle newborn/family style of photography. It's something I'm really excited about and I am not worrying about studio space, moving lots of props or timing of the session to ensure a sleepy, easy to pose baby! It makes the session more about you as a family and the new addition and tells a story about life in those early heady, hazy weeks with a new baby at home - its a personal story that has your home at its heart! Head on over here to read more about a lifestyle newborn session with pricing here

So whats the difference about the two types of session.

  • A posed newborn session looks like the images below. Each images you see would have taken about 30 minutes at least - from settling baby to getting baby into position and then delicately and minutely adjusting tiny details to produce a beautiful image. And then if baby startles or wakes during that process we start all over again. They were also predominately about the newborn rather than the family as a new unit.
  • The in-studio sessions were expensive for me and for the client. Hiring the studio and the plethora of props needed makes these an expensive style of session and I am trying to make my options more cost effective for my clients. By removing the studio costs and using less props I have managed to reduce costs which I have passed on to my clients.
  • The below babies are also all from 5-14 days old. Any older and they're more alert and less flexible. Trying to move an older baby into position without waking them is very difficult and very time consuming. The posed sessions are very time based  around your baby's birth and I can assure you getting to a studio with a one week old newborn for a 3 hour session seems easy before they're born.....

 

  • In-home newborn session. Below are all in-home lifestyle images that I now moving my sessions more towards. Natural, simple and relaxed in your own home which makes it all the more sentimental and comfortable for everyone. And it doesn't matter how old your baby is. Although its nicer to get them within the first month to remember those very early days with a tiny newborn.
  • I come into your home and photograph your family in a relaxed, casual way. I will still help you where to stand or sit to get the best light or make you look your best. You can do anything you wish - sit on the couch or bed and cuddle, feed your baby, give baby a bath (or get into a big bath with them) , include fur babies in the session etc. I will do mum with baby, dad with baby, any siblings or grandparents at home with baby and then we'll do baby alone - yawns, little smile, stretches and all those little details of fingers and toes and hair.
  • Know these images look better with less clutter in the home. I will move objects or furniture if I think that makes a better images for you
  • I suggest you wear light neutral colours. Avoid blacks and bold colours or anything super matchy. Layers can help if your trying to avoid showing any extra kg's post baby (we all have them!). If you like I can bring a few gowns along that I use for my maternity session
  • I will bring a few props for your baby - a couple of wraps, hats or headbands. I will bring one prop to try to get images of your baby. It is with this image I will create for you some composites if you wnated. I have another blog post on what that means here.
  • Know that babies can be unpredictable in a newborn session and thats why the lifestyle session is an easier option - there is no stress if your baby is being fussy or won't sleep.  You are in your own space making beautiful and lasting memories of those hazy early days with your family
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