So you’re expecting your first (or second! or fifth!) baby. Congratulations! If you’re like the majority of expectant moms in 2019, you want to hire a photographer to document this precious, life-changing event because, by now, it’s the thing to do. Back when I was having babies (omg, I’m making myself sound old), newborn photography was really just starting to be a thing – or maybe it was already a thing and I was just living under a rock and didn’t know about it. I have virtually no photos of my pregnant self (except one Easter picture of me, my mom and my sister on the back deck – was my husband even in that one?? and maybe a shot my sister took of me randomly because I was looking cute that day…the LAST day I ever looked cute, too, I’m sure) and the only reason I have newborn photos of my daughters (sorry, firstborn son, you were ahead of the trend) is because a group of my friends got together and purchased a gift certificate from a local photographer….twice (nice friends). So, are you trying to decide on a newborn photo session?
I highly recommend doing a newborn session once your sweet bundle arrives. There are so many reasons for it. That baby changes so fast. I recently did a Fresh 48 session for my friend Rachel (hers was the 5th baby I mentioned up these in the first sentence). He was, as the name implies, 2 days old. I saw him 10 days later for his posed newborn session (because smart momma) and he had already changed so much – I was a little choked up about it and he’s not my baby so imagine you’re his mom and you don’t have those teeny newborn details documented. It’s heartbreaking, it is. Again I’ll say: if you’re trying to decide on a newborn photo session, Do It.
Another reason it’s so important to do newborn photos is because…well, there’s really no sugarcoating it. Those first days with a newborn are a hot mess. You don’t know whether you’re coming or going. The days and nights blend together in a bleary haze of exhaustion and baby spit-up. You don’t have time to go to the bathroom and you wonder how you’re going to accomplish a shower one day because who would watch the baby??! There’s really not much memory-making in those days…it’s mostly just about survival. That’s where I come in with my camera. If you choose a posed newborn session, you come to my warm studio and hand over your babe to my competent, registered nurse hands and you go curl up on the couch for 3 whole hours of freedom. I have you pump milk beforehand or bring formula and I take care of EVERYTHING while you zone out and relax. I had a mom last week who paid me the highest compliment without even realizing it. She laid down on the couch, covered up with a blanket and Went To Sleep. She trusted me that much with her baby and I think I floated the whole day after that, feeling so good about myself. Have I mentioned that if you’re trying to decide on a newborn photo session, you should just do it??
If you go with lifestyle photos, well, there’s a whole different set of reasons why it’s the best decision ever. First, your house gets cleaned (okay, tidied, because who wants that stack of 14 newspapers or that days-old mug of coffee in their newborn photos??). Moms get to put make-up on for the first time in weeks, maybe, and dads get to actually canoodle with their wives on a weekday!!! Older siblings and/or pets can be involved and, let me tell you, a morning of nothing but undivided attention from mommy and daddy is like a trip to Disneyland — OR it’s really confusing…but let’s go with the first one. All the hard work that went into planning out that gorgeous nursery gets realized and the session is a wonderfully relaxed, peaceful time of documenting yourselves as a newly formed family. If mom chooses to breastfeed, that beautiful relationship between her and her baby can be frozen in time and – maybe the best part of it all – you don’t have to leave your house!
If you’re trying to decide on a newborn photo session, you can see there are so many reasons to do one, either posed or lifestyle…or both – I’m not one to judge. All joking aside, your tiny newborn baby is going to be months old in a matter of seconds and 9 years old next week (j/k about all jokes aside but also NOT REALLY – it does actually happen that fast). Don’t you want to make sure you have those teeny fingers and precious swirl of hair documented??? (Yes, the answer is yes. Call me right now.)
Dainty Tierney in froggy pose, 12 days new.
Liz Viernes Photography is based in Silver Spring, Maryland, and specializes in maternity, fresh 48, posed and lifestyle newborns and first year milestone portraits.