10 Ways to Tell a Story During your In-Home Newborn Session

I love love love lifestyle newborn sessions. Being a lifestyle photographer means helping to tell a family’s story and incorporating meaning and emotion into the image from the session. Looking through my last few newborn sessions I realized there are some important detail shots that I tend to take that help to document the special time of welcoming a new baby into the world.

Here are 10 ways to use photography to help tell a story during your in home newborn session.

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1. Include the Entire Family

Sometimes Dad’s aren’t particularly jumping to the opportunity to get their photo taken. I like to take a few photos of the entire family at the beginning of the session and then let Dad be on his way. 

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2. Focus on the Baby within the Family Photo

While I still have Dad’s attention and the family is still together, I like to crop in tight to get a shot of the baby. This might mean moving the family around a little bit, but it’s a nice way to create variety within a family shot. The baby was awake for almost this entire session and I love this photo with her eyes open.

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3. Photograph the Baby Feet

I don’t think I could have a newborn photo shoot without photographing the baby’s feet! The baby is so precious and new and getting close up photos of the baby’s legs and feet is so important. They grow so fast at this age so make sure you don’t forget that detail shot!

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4. Use a Window

The master bedroom in this home had really great window light. Most of my sessions are taken with natural light when possible, and for those sessions I like to take some photos near a window. My focus is more on the baby and the family so it doesn’t bother me when the windows are blown out. 

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5. Capture Connection

I typically like to schedule my newborn sessions when the newborn is 2-3 weeks old because the babies are more alert. When they are awake it tends to be a little easier to capture connection. Whether you are photographing the baby’s connection with the family or with the viewer, it can be a nice way to tell a story.

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6. Peek In

For rooms and space that allow, I like to step back and take the photo that allows the viewer to “peek in”. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect way for the family dog to join the photo. When taking these peeking-in shots, you can frame the shot with the door and/or crib if the room allows.

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7. Document a Feeding

When Moms are comfortable being photographed nursing their babies it gives me an opportunity to walk around from different angles and document this special time. Newborns naturally eat often so don’t be afraid bring your camera and document a few of these photos for the family to enjoy.

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8. Photograph the Baby in Crib

This photo can be taken with the baby in their crib awake or sleeping and I think it helps to tell the story because this is where the baby spends so much of their time.

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9. Encourage the Parents to Look at the Baby in Crib

Photographing the parents looking at their baby in the crib is another idea to tell the story with a different perspective and creates connection between the parent and the baby. Another thing you can do is have the parents put their hand on the baby. Babies are so small so I always like to incorporate objects, furniture, and people in comparison to document their small size.

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10. Place the Baby on the Bed

Placing the baby on a clean bed and photographing them from different angles is another way to tell the story. This one allows you to compare the size of the baby and remember what they felt like.

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If you’ve had photos taken of your newborn, did you get any of these photos?

If you’re a photographer would you add anything else to this list?

Leave a comment below!