Tips for photographing your newborn baby at home during Covid19 Pandemic | DIY Photo shoot

May 10, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

So 7 weeks on, Coronavirus still has most of us in lockdown, all non essential work has stopped, having photos taken by a professional photographer is out of the question at the moment as it is not classed as an essential service and my newborn photography business would of course put me in close contact with you and your baby which is a risk to us all.
I have been feeling really sad about not being in the baby studio working and thinking of my lovely clients who won’t get the opportunity to have a professional newborn photo shoot at my Derbyshire photography studio.  I have been trying to think of ways I can help during this crisis and have written a guide for taking your own newborn photos at home.
You don’t need a fancy camera or any photography skills to capture some lovely memories for you to cherish. So here are a few tips for photographing your newborn baby by yourself.

Newborns grow quickly, making photos a must even if you snap them with a smartphone. But the newborn photography that you see coming from a professional studio isn’t always safe to try at home. With a few newborn photo shoot tips, you can snap your own baby pictures. And get results that won’t look like a Pintrest fail.

Good lighting is the key. At home find a large window with soft light, for example a north facing window or any large area on a bright but cloudy day if your home is south facing, this avoids placing your newborn baby in bright sunlight. When the strong sun hits your babies face it gives really harsh shadows on their face. If it’s a really sunny day, you could hang up a white sheet or a piece of sheer white fabric to help diffuse the light to give the softer light you need.

Place baby so that the light is hitting baby’s head first or gently sweeping in at an angle down babies face, do not have the light coming up from babies feet to chin- this is what we call ‘ghoul lighting’ and is what we want to avoid. When you place your light below a babies eyes, the effect will be similar to putting a touch under your chin when telling ghost stories around the campfire! You will notice shadows under the eyes, and deep, sunken eye sockets. NOT the look you’re going for when photographing soft, squishy little babies!

If you can find a large piece of white card to place on the other side of baby opposite to the light source (window), you will find it will bounce some of the light back in towards your baby and fill in some of the darker shadows. It also may help if you are also wearing white or at least try to avoid wearing a very bright colourful top as this may cause a colour cast on your babies skin.

Babies are best photographed in very little so that you can record all of those tiny features. Gown up baby outfits tend to swamp newborns in their photos and make them look bulky. A simple white ore grey vest so you can see the details of their hands and feet and those adorable little nails, wrinkly arms and legs.  A tight fitting baby grow or try swaddling your baby for some cosy looking photographs.

If your baby is happy and the room is warm, just leave their nappy on and try draping a little blanket or some fabric over and around to hide it. If you are lucky enough to get baby sleeping, try and gently move him or her so their body is not just straight up and down, a little curl is often pleasing to the eye but remember to keep the light coming down the face or across the face, not lighting up their body to their face.If you have baby laying on a blanket, I find that sometimes rolling up a couple of  little hand towels/ flannels and gently placing them under their head and legs can help keep them in these ‘curly’ womb like positions.

If you have baby fast asleep, try and get some detail shots, if your camera will allow, get in close to their face, hands and feet etc. Don’t forget to ask your partner to take some of you holding your new baby too. I know you don’t always feel your best just having given birth but you won’t regret having these photos done, I can absolutely assure you of that! One day those photos will mean the world to you and your child.


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