Expert Tips for Choosing the Best Northern Virginia Newborn Photographer for Your Family

If you're a new parent, you're probably overwhelmed with all the decisions you need to make. 

~Newborn photography doesn't have to be one of them.~

When I had my first baby my newborn photos were stressful! Not only did I not know what to expect, but I had to drive a long ways, and my baby being posed and asleep gave me anxiety! 

Let me guide you through the process and provide you with all the information you need to capture the early moments of your baby's life. 

Let's dive into some of the most common questions about newborn photography. 

“What should I look for when hiring a newborn photographer?” 

It's important to choose a photographer who specializes in newborn photography and has experience working with infants. Not only have I had three of my own sweet babies, but I have plenty of experience photographing newborn babies (as a birth photographer I’ve photographed the newest of babies). I'm dedicated to providing a comfortable, safe, and enjoyable experience for you and your baby. 

I personally feel it is important that baby stays with you for your session! I am a baby wearing, breastfeeding on demand, contact napping kind of mama…when I started photographing babies it didn’t make sense to me to over feed baby to make them sleepy, or put baby in uncomfortable positions for pictures. As always my goal in your session is showing you have beautiful your REAL life is. I understand the importance of capturing these early moments, and I take pride in creating beautiful, timeless memories that you'll cherish for years to come. 

“What can I expect during a newborn photography session?” 

Most of the time these newborn sessions are done in the comfort of your own home (unless you have specifically requested an outdoor session, which is HIGHLY weather dependent). I love being able to come to your space and capture these oh so quickly fleeting moments. From baby's wispy little hairs to their flakey feet all parts of your newborn will be embraced and not overly retouched. There is no expectation from me about how baby should behave (alert or asleep). Baby is going to guide the session. What is most precious to me is that we capture this beautiful time in your life.

I LOVE natural light and capturing babies and families in the natural light in their own homes. We will be embracing your home’s natural light (open up those window blinds!), turning off the overhead lights, and taking advantage of the natural brightness as much as possible. I’ll pop you all next to windows for most for our pictures — we will take full advantage of the light coming into your house. Even on the cloudiest (and even rainiest too!) days, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how much the outside light comes in to give you the best possible pictures!

If the natural light is not sufficient enough (trust me I get it, some houses are dark!) I will use my flash at a very low power to bounce off of the ceiling or wall to add just enough light to illuminate you all in your space.

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Creative use of light in an in home newborn session.

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“How do I prepare for my in home newborn session?”

To prepare ahead of time, when I arrive we will walk around the house and check out the lighting in every room (usually the best lighting is in the bedrooms or living room)

Try and feed babe shortly before your session time, but there is NO need to over feed, we will go at baby's pace! This ensures we start with a content, and hopefully happy baby for our pictures! If you would like any feeding/nursing pictures, we absolutely can do this at the beginning of the session…so hold off feeding babe until I get there and we’ll get some feeding/nursing pics done first!

Turn up that heat! I’ve found that baby is soooooo much happier in a warm environment. This allows for babe to be comfortable for any naked/diaper pictures and isn’t so upset to have their clothes changed if the house is extra warm.

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Crunchy mom newborn photography near me virginia

“What should I dress baby in for my newborn photography session?”

I suggest you have your newborn in a simple onesie that is form fitting with no graphics or words. This usually means you will need a preemie or newborn sized onesie. I will likely take it off and get some nude or near nude newborn photos as well. As for the rest of the family, I highly recommend going through the "Let's talk wardrobe!" section of this page. Ultimately it is most important that you are comfortable and confident in these newly postpartum days!

“How can I prepare the older siblings for newborn photos?”

Your newborn's siblings are going through a major change right now. I have three kiddos myself, and so I understand the dynamic of bringing a new baby home. I like to try and get some sibling pictures first. Starting off with siblings allows them some time to have a "break" and go play while I get mom and dad shots. Just like with your newborn, I have no expectation for how the siblings should behave. I will never force them to do something they're not comfortable with. It's best to prepare the older children ahead of time and not surprise them with my presence in their home. I like to tell my parents, as an example, they can tell them a friend is coming over to visit and take some pictures of the family. 

Let kids be kids!

“When should I schedule my newborn photos?”/“How does scheduling my newborn photos work?”

I recommend booking your session as soon as possible during your pregnancy to ensure availability. In the booking process I am going to temporarily make your session date your due date. Then once you have your baby contact me as soon as possible to get a time and date scheduled for real. To capture the best moments, it's important to schedule your newborn photography session as early as possible, ideally within the first two weeks of your baby's life. 

“Do I need to have any props?” 

Since this is a lifestyle, it is very heavy on the candid and documentary nature of a session, however I always bring a few blankets and swaddles (and a Moses basket) for some pictures of just baby. Your newborn is perfect as they are and although I may wrap baby up for a portion of your session, I will never try to get baby to sleep, or put them in unnatural poses. If there is anything special that you’d want to include that is absolutely encouraged! You can absolutely round up your own items to incorporate into photos, such as your own swaddles, hats, basket, headbands, outfits, etc… for babe.

How can I incorporate props in my newborn session?

“When will I get my newborn photos back?” 

After the session, you can expect to receive the final edited photos within 2-3 weeks. I offer a range of bundles, some that include an album. If you’ve booked one of those packages once you receive your final gallery you will have the opportunity to “heart” your absolute favorites. Then I will curate your album for you to receive 2-3 weeks after that!

“How much does newborn photography cost?” 

Newborn photography sessions can range from $300-$2000 in this area, depending on the photographer and package. I know this might seem like a significant investment, but keep in mind that newborn photography is a specialized service that requires a lot of time, effort, and training. I'm dedicated to providing high-quality images & products that you'll cherish for a lifetime! 

So, there you have it! Newborn photography is a wonderful way to capture the early moments of your baby's life and I do my best to take care of all the details, so all you have to do is be ready yourself! 

If you have any questions about newborn photography or would like to learn more about booking a session, click here to fill out my contact form

I'm here to help you create beautiful, timeless memories of this special time in your family's life!