Infant photography is one of the hottest topics in the photography world. It is an ever-growing trend amongst both new moms and photographers. There are many well known newborn and infant photographers with their work being published, and newer photographers desiring to achieve the same shots, poses, etc.; sometimes at the request of their clients and sometimes simply for the challenge.Infant Photography Tips

However, with this come the stories of endangered or even harmed babies. Because we live in an on-line world, these stories spread like wildfire. This has been a good thing, in that there is more and more focus on educating new photographers on newborn safety. Some inexperienced photographers are seeking and receiving mentoring on newborn safety while others are giving up and only photographing older subjects to avoid the risk. Because there are so many people becoming photographers each month, there are still others that are new and taking risks unknowingly.

Most parents are unaware of how some of these risky, yet beautiful and intriguing poses are achieved. What is even worse is that many photographers are unaware of how they are done properly, and naively attempt to do them anyway. Hopefully they will gain the knowledge and expertise before an infant is harmed, but in the meantime, I’d like to educate new moms, or expectant mothers, that are seeking a photographer for their new sweet baby.

I would first like to advise new moms to seek out their infant photographer carefully. This will be one of the first people, most likely a stranger, to handle your fragile newborn. Many consumers purchase based on price. While budget is important to most of us, and completely understandable is today’s economy, you do not want to choose someone to handle your most precious, brand new baby, based on price alone. While it’s not always the case, lower prices generally mean less experience. You do not want to put your baby in harms way just to save a few dollars.

It is important that you make sure that the photographer you choose is experienced with babies and confident in handling newborns, regardless of the fees that they charge. Thoroughly looking through the infant photos in their portfolio should give you a pretty good idea of their experience and abilities. If you’re unsure, here are a few things to look for or inquire about during your search:

  • Do the babies in the photographer’s portfolio look comfortable? Babies that have just come from the womb are accustomed to being curled and folded. However, some babies, even at just a few days old, won’t tolerate this kind of posing. An experienced and gentle photographer will know when to give up, while others will push an infant’s boundaries to achieve the desired pose.
  • Does the photographer show a variety of babies on their website or are the photos in their newborn portfolio split between a few of the same babies. If the photographer has only included a few different newborns, this should be an indication to you of their lack of experience. Ask yourself if you’re okay with your infant being the baby that the photographer learns with.
  • The last tip is probably the most important, yet probably the least considered since most moms have little or no knowledge of infant photography. When looking through a photographers website or portfolio pay attention to whether or not they have newborn photos on their website that make you wonder, “How in the world did they get the baby to do that?” This might be a photo of a baby hanging from a tree branch, a photo of a baby swaddled tightly but sitting upright, or a photo of a baby with it’s elbows resting on the blanket but its holding its head up with its chin in its hands. These poses should make you wonder, as they should never be accomplished without an assistant (or two) and the magic of a photo-editing program. When these poses are achieved safely, an experienced photographer has used an assistant to help pose the baby, keeping a hand on baby at all times, and then they use a photo editing program to create a “composite” (seaming two separate photos together) which will remove the assistant’s hands from the final portrait. If the photographer does not know how to make a composite, he/she has done these poses un-safely and might try them again with your baby.

Not only will following these infant photography tips help you to find a more experienced photographer that will know how to handle your new baby safely and securely, but hopefully by finding a photographer that has a lot of experience with newborns will lead to a fabulous experience and beautiful photos for you to treasure for a lifetime.

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