10 ways to Make Your Lifestyle Newborn Photo Shoot a Success!
1. Outfits. Since we will be taking photos in your home, I want you to dress as you would on a typical day. No I do not want you in your pajamas, but I don’t want you in a suit and tie either. Wear something that is casual and shows the personality of you and your family. Don’t know what colors to wear? I highly recommend wearing lighter colors. Something that will be timeless. Maybe you want to match the colors of your home. That is perfect. We want the main focus to be on the baby, wear colors that will make the baby stand out. Make sure your families outfits go together, but don’t match. (no jean shirts for everyone, or white t-shirts for everyone;))
2. Keeping the kids happy. This is so important in a lifestyle session, especially if toddlers are involved. Your toddler will run the show! Parents please allow the rules to change when I walk in your homes. I believe in well behaved children as much as the next mom, but I want your kids to have a fun time while taking pictures. Don’t stress about your child sitting there perfectly still and smiling nonstop at the camera. That is NOT what a lifestyle session is. Lifestyle means that you are interacting with each other, and doing what you would do in your home if I wasn’t there. Play with your kids, make them laugh. By playing with your kids it will help them feel more comfortable in front of the camera, trust me your pictures will turn out better!
3. Relax. I can’t say that enough, relax, relax, relax!! When parents are stressed about the session going perfect, it creates a stress that the baby will sense and your other children as well. No one will feel comfortable taking pictures and trust me, no one will be happy to smile or interact with each other. It is ok that your baby won’t sleep during the session, it is ok that your toddler does not want to take pictures with the baby. This is normal. I am the photographer and I know how to work with these situations. Let me be the one to stress. Not you! Have fun with your kids and feel the emotions that you soon will no longer experience.
4. Music. Turn up the tunes! Listening to music can take away the stress of taking photos. Whether it be Mozart or the Disney channel, music can help children to be themselves.
5. Realistic expectations. I will try to inform you now what to expect from your session. Your toddlers might not want to sit and take pictures. That is perfectly ok! I want to capture them in their silly, naughty, unhappy personalities. You will look back on the photos one day and laugh. Kid’s attention for pictures won’t last long, that is why we will start taking pictures with them first, and then when they are done, we will capture beautiful photos of you and your baby. Your baby might not sleep at all during the session. This is also just fine! Babies with their eyes open is just a beautiful as babies sleeping. Or your husband might give you fits about taking pictures. We can work with it! I will try my best to make him feel comfortable and have fun. Lifestyle sessions are not perfectly posed. They are in the moment of what is really happening in that situation. I want to capture beautiful photos of your family having fun with each other and capturing what your family naturally does in your home.
6. Know what makes your child laugh. If your child is 9 month or older, it is really helpful to me if you know what will make them laugh and have fun. Take a few minutes before your session and think about what you could do, what games you could play, what songs you could sing, or what book you could read to help them have fun and be silly.
7. Clean up…just a little. No I am not asking you to get your home professionally cleaned before I come. Yes, I am asking if you could tidy up the space we will be taking photos in. A clean fresh looking room will reflect in the photos you receive. You want your pictures to represent the best of your family and your home. You took time to get you and your family ready for pictures, so why not make sure the space we photograph in looks the same? Your home does not need to be magazine worthy, but we want it to represent the best of you.
8. Hair and make-up. Pick a hairstyle that represents your style. If you want classy timeless photos, maybe try curling your hair or wearing it how you do every day. If you want a trendier look, maybe a messy bun on the top of your head, or a messy braid is more what you are looking for. Hair styles can really bring out what type of style you are going for in your photo shoot. Applying your make-up. I highly recommend applying your make-up twice. Make-up tends to wash away in photos. When your husbands goes “wow, that’s too much!” then that is when you know you have the perfect amount on. You want your make-up to show up in the photos, so put a little bit more on!
9. Your home. Since I am a natural light photographer, I like to take photos where there are large windows, and glass doors. Picking the space in your home where the light shines through the most is critical to a beautiful session. My favorite spots in a home to photograph in are the baby’s nursery, or the parent’s master bedroom. If those two rooms don’t have enough light coming in, typically the family/living room will be our best location in the home.
10. Remember what the goal is. Lifestyle photography is unique. It is special to you and your family. No other photo shoot will go the way yours will. You chose a lifestyle session because you want real, candid, emotional moments in your home. I don’t want to hear the phrase “sit still and smile” come out of anyone’s mouth!