What Happens at an In-Home Newborn Session?

I thought it might be interesting to walk through a typical in-home newborn session with some behind the scenes photos! Most sessions follow this order but because we’re working with newborns, the name of the game is flexibility (and patience!)

It starts before I even arrive! For in-home sessions I have to plan ahead and bring everything with me so that means planning out wraps and hats and props. We’ll do a quick phone consult to talk about colors and preferences and then I’ll pull a selection of items from my closets. Often I’ll shoot you a photo of what I’ve selected to make sure you’re happy with it and then it gets packed up into my travel containers ready to make the journey to you.

About 2 days before your session I’ll send an email with some tips and tricks to help our session go better. These are things I’ve learned over the years that can help things move smoothly.

Arrival

On the day of the session, I arrive at your door around 9:00am to get set up (and look like I’m moving in haha). It generally takes two trips to get it all in but with me comes a tote of wraps, blankets, hats, and supplies as well as a platform and stand for posed shots and the props that we’ve selected for the session. Set up takes about 15 minutes and while I’m setting up, I’ll have you feed and change the baby so we’re all set for a bit.

Typical in home set up

Once set up and the baby fed, you hand them over and we’ll get to work. I’ll strip them down to their diaper and wrap them back up in series of stretchy wraps. I will often start with the floor props (buckets, baskets, etc) and unwrap them as we go. We can usually get through 2 – 3 variations in relatively quick succession. Once I get started you’re free to go do what you need to do (rest, shower, relax) or your welcome to watch. Up to you.

After we finish with the floor and prop shots we’ll go one of two directions. If the babe is starting to stir then we’ll move to family photos. For our in-home sessions we can do family photos in a variety of places. One of my favorites is everyone snuggled on the bed but I’ve used the nursery and the living room as well. The focus is on your and the babe, not the room.

After family shots, the baby often needs to eat again so while Mom is doing that, we’ll get some of brother and/or sister if they are with us. Once the baby has a full belly again, we’ll get them ready for bean bag shots!! If the babe is still sleeping well after the props, then we’ll flip this order.

Quick BTS shot of me working with the twins. Takes lot of hands to get twins set so I had an assistant for this shoot.

We’ll continue to work until we have enough images to build out the gallery. Generally we can finish up in 2 – 3 hours but for a fussy baby that takes time to calm it can take up to 4 hours. If the baby is overly fussy and we’re pushing the 4 hour mark with little progress we may decide to reschedule for a few days. It happens (not often but does) and I believe firmly in baby led sessions so if they’re just not having it, we’re not going to push it. I have many tricks to try to get them to calm and when all those fail, we’ll just reboot and try again another day.

After the Session

After the session is over I clean up and head home. All the soft stuff used goes in the wash or gets sanitized via UV (floral headbands for example). All the hard surfaces are wiped down with cleaner as well. I’ll offload all the images from the cameras and will start to work thru the images pulling out the best of the best. The first pass on the galleries is often large and I work to refine it over the next few days. Every image delivered to you is fully edited by hand to make your baby look their best and to create those beautiful little pieces of art.

In the first few days I may post a sneak peek to social (unless you tell me not to) and then within two weeks your entire gallery is delivered digitally. You can take your time in the comfort of your own home to view the images and choose your favorites. All my packages are all inclusive which means there are digital files included in your price. Once you select them and let me know, i’ll put them on a crystal digital drive and package them up to come home to you.

If you’re interested in albums or other print materials we’ll arrange a call to walk through the options. I LOVE creating albums for my clients and I’ve selected a vendor that makes incredible albums that will last a life time.

And that’s it! In home sessions are where I started and are an important part of my offering as I recognize not everyone has the ability (or energy) to pack up and head out. They are different than studio but still just as beautiful.

If you’re ready to schedule your in-home newborn session today, click here!!

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I'm a young family photographer specializing in maternity, newborn, and family portraiture.

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