Everything you were wondering about these beautiful, un-posed lifestyle sessions but didn’t know to ask.
You’re busy growing a baby and you’re getting excited about those first week photos. But the big decision is looming - it’s time to decide whether to invite a photographer to come to your home once your little one arrives. You know you love the idea - you’ve seen other folks’ in-home photographs, and they just seem so meaningful and organic. Families in their own space, loving on their babies - I mean, what could be better?You see the advantages - no leaving the house, nor having to worry about whether babe is going to co-operate during all the poses you’ve seen studio photographers do, and knowing the photos will be catching memories, as well as being artful and beautiful.
Still, you have some questions, and maybe even a few reservations. What would having someone come to our house even be like? Are in-home sessions really for everyone..?
Well. This is my favourite topic, so sit down and get comfy while I spill. : )
First, know that in-home newborn photography is AMAZING! It’s completely chill, baby (and toddler!) led, and LOTS of fun. Basically..? I’ll come over, we’ll swoon over your little bundle for a couple hours (you’ll soon see there is *nothing* I adore more than a sweet new babe), and by the end of it we’ll have made a record of one of your greatest life adventures and your deepest love; the beginnings of one of the most formative and soul shaping experiences of your lovely, lovely life.
Pretty rad, right?! Is in-home photography for everyone, though..? Honestly? No, it’s not.
In-home photography is for families who want photographs which will show them being together in a way that is connected, imperfect and natural. It’s for folk who wish to have a lasting record of their lives right now; imagery which will capture something of what life is currently like, in the space within which your belonging to one another is acutely bound - your happy home.
In-home photography is for sentimental folk, nostalgic folk, romantic folk. It’s for those who want to keep things simple, who understand and appreciate the startling beauty of their ordinary lives, and for those who are bound by the importance of family. In-home photography is for those who are led by love, and matters of the heart.
Suspect (or know in your gut) that this is you? Hello there. Welcome. YOU my friend, are my people. : )
Now, let me answer for you a few more frequently asked questions!
Do I need to feed baby first, before you come?
One of the beautiful things about in-home photography is that we can pick up a session wherever babe happens to be in their (very!) loose routine. Are you mid feed when I arrive? We can continue with that, just as you were (though I may ask you to move into a different chair or slightly better light). Is baby sleeping in her crib or bassinet? We’ll start with that, photographing little one in her nursery. Are you burping? Is baby having some face time with daddy? Is your little guy kicking it out on the mat?
Whatever you’re doing, we can start our session exactly there.
I might only suggest if baby is getting sleepy and it’s nearing the time of my arrival, it may be a good idea to dress babe in the clothes you’d like them wearing for their session before he/she nods off, so we can start seamlessly and without necessarily having to disrupt them.
Can my first born participate?
Yessss. Like, big yes. Of course and of course and absolutely.
Clumsy sibling love is one of the best things ever. I’m about making photographs that will become a record for your family of when you were learning and growing and falling in love with one another. The reason I do what I do is so that in months, years and decades time your family will have this visual history of the milestones that have shaped you. The story shared by your collective babies is a huge part of this. I’ll spend some time one on one with your older kids, too - have them show me their rooms, or take me on a tour of the backyard. After all, this is their beautiful ordinary story as well.
Will we get a photograph of us all as a family?
Yes, of course! This will likely be the first opportunity you’ll have had to be in a pretty photograph of your whole family with its new addition, so we absolutely need to get that photo! If you’ve only got the one babe, this is going to be super easy peasy. If there are older kiddies in the mix, it will involve more fun and games. We’ll do what we need to do to get that all too special shot; I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve, so don’t you worry! Oh, and please don’t stress about your toddler - however he pr she is, regardless of their mood and spirit levels, they're being entirely developmentally appropriate. I’m still getting great photos, I promise!
What should we do to prepare our home?
Truly, only basic tidying is necessary. Don’t be stressed and worried about making a spotless and sparkling space - we are photographing you, not your home, after all. Make sure there’s no unnecessary clutter on the benches and on the floor or the coffee table, run the vacuum over the floor and call it done. I think it’s important I mention we’ll probably not be using the entire house - rather we’ll be sticking to the rooms where the light is best. This might be the nursery, the living room or the master bedroom, but may not be any of these places. I’d recommend you choose a neutral and photogenic linen for the beds and bassinet so imagery in these spaces can continue to be focused on your little crew, with no distracting colours or patterns to divert attention.
If in doubt about any of this, we’ll have a quick chat by messenger or phone the week before I visit, so you can either ask me then, or else when I arrive - we can make any changes super simply and together if necessary, so don’t stress.
Another thing - make sure the home is warm.
This is so babe is comfortable when we do photographs to capture their little details, unwrapped. If baby is cold, they’ll be unhappy, so we want to make sure it’s warm enough that they’ll be calm. As a basic rule of thumb, it needs to be warm enough that you as a grownup are somewhat *too* warm, so keep that in mind. : )
If you have a toddler at home I’d also suggest having snacks on hand - snacks that are quick to eat (so we don’t have an entire set of photographs with your little one clutching a sandwich) and ones that won’t make a mess of their teeth, face or clothing.
What if my newborn is unsettled?
When I come visit, I estimate our sessions will take around two hours, but this is only a guide. If babe needs a top up feed, or to be re-settled with a cuddle, that’s completely okay. Working with small babies means sometimes we’ll be letting baby guide us and listening to his or her needs - it’s the only way to make sure our session is happy, calm and memorable for everyone. : )
We’ve never had in-home photos before and I’m worried we won’t know what to do.
Please don’t stress about this - this is the very reason you’ve brought in a professional. I will guide you throughout the session, suggesting where might be best to stand, helping with which wrap looks best, and knowing how to position your body or on which shoulder to hold baby as you burp them. This is a first for you and I’ll be there to hold your hand all the way. : )
…but my home doesn’t have great light.
As long as you have one window in your entire house it’s going to be completely fine. I’m well versed in all lighting conditions and after shooting in hundreds of houses, sight unseen, I’ve never met a house in which I couldn’t make beautiful photographs.
…but my home isn’t very pretty.
Please please please remember the reason we are making these photographs - to catch the memories of that time you brought home your treasured little son or daughter. This is not about having the best house or Insta worthy photographs, and it’s not going to matter. I’m coming to photograph you and your family. My focus and emphasis will be connection, emotion, details - not your sofa, or other multifarious fine home furnishings. However you feel about it, this is your home. Perhaps your forever home, maybe your just right now home, possibly your halfway finished home. Regardless, it IS the home you lived in when you brought home your baby. It’s the first they will ever have lived in, and the one they’ll delight in seeing and hearing about years from now, when you’ve long moved on, or the then un-renovated living room is unrecognizable.
It’s a part of you and it’s a part of them, and for that reason alone it is exactly and unequivocally perfect.
Contact me today to book your beautifully un-posed session or for more information!