Keeping your baby safe during their newborn session
I cannot stress enough how important it is to make sure that your newborn photographer is properly trained and well versed in newborn safety. Don’t be afraid to ask your photographer questions about their experience posing newborns and what to expect at your session. Any experienced newborn photographer will gladly answer any questions you may have to help put your mind at ease and will never sacrifice safety for a pose. If you don’t know where to start, you can always check out my previous post that guides you on a few key things to consider when you are looking to hire a newborn photographer.
I always encourage clients to do their research first and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Here are a few things to be on the lookout for when it comes to the safety of your little one. Please note, this is not a fully exhausted list; just a few key points. :)
Adding weights to props - This is a simple step, but often overlooked. The average newborn is usually between 6-8 pounds so countering their body weight with additional weight in a bucket or basket minimizes the likelihood of them tipping over and falling. Small sandbags, ankle weights or flat barbell plates placed under cushions and posing pillows are all options that work well and won’t cause your sweet babe any discomfort.
Cushioning in props - Soft layers, tiny blankets, wraps and pillows are always used to provide cushion between baby and a hard prop. Ceramics and glass props break easily and are NEVER used to ensure your baby’s safety.
Composites - With the easy accessibility of DSLR cameras, many people think that being a photographer is an easy way to make quick cash and that’s absolutely not the case; especially when it comes to handling babies. Too often people try to replicate many of the poses they see, not knowing the technicalities and precautions behind actually creating the images. Some of those sweet poses you see are actually multiple images merged together in photoshop; ensuring the maximum safety for your bundle of joy. The safety of my baby boss is my number one priority and I never, ever compromise a baby for a cute shot. For example, the froggy pose should always be done as a composite, with a minimum of 2 images fused together. Hands never leave the baby.
Vaccines - Don’t be afraid to ask your photographer if they are up to date on their vaccinations; including TDAP and flu. Also, it’s imperative that they properly sanitize and clean studio props after each session. A good rule of thumb for me is if it touches a baby, it is cleaned before being used again. Germs spread easily and any step that can be taken to minimize their spread, I’m taking it!