This reminds me of a news story about the dangers of throwing sticks to dogs. Newborn photography with or without flash has been performed since the invention of cameras. Now if you discharge a flash 10 inches from the face ( As described in one suspect source mentioned in another answer), it might cause harm but who does that anyway? Babies can be only manipulated into so many safe poses and most good parents know what’s safe. This warning sounds to me like something a professional photographer might start as a way to drum up business from fickle and paranoid new parents. If the dangers of this photography practice were real there would be millions of blind and crippled children out there today as a result. There are not. So photograph your babies. Photograph them a lot. I am so glad I did with mine. You are missing out on something special if you don’t. Your child might come back and say “Jenny has new born pictures of her, where are mine?” When you give your child your stupid fickle paranoid parent answer, they will roll their eyes at you, start eating gluten, take off the safety helmet and go to the polling station to unfortunately vote for Trump 2.0. It will all be your fault.
So any time you see a picture of a baby hanging from a branch or resting on a basketball or in any other precarious position, understand that the images should not be attempted without proper safety and composite techniques for newborn photography.
Your magic window for Newborn Photography is within the first 14 days of birth. Newborns are easiest to work with during this time because they are sleeping for most of the day. They are also the most easy to adjust during this time-frame. Consider taking your baby’s photos after his or her umbilical cord has fallen off (which is typically after 5 days or so).
You should be able to get amazing newborn and baby photography results with almost any camera and lens if you simply learn the proper lighting, creativity, and camera angles for newborn photography. Though a professional camera like a Canon 5K Mark III, a full frame camera, will give you better overall image quality than an advanced point and shoot camera like a Sony NEX, a camera like the Sony NEX will likely be sufficient for capturing great images of newborns. Below is a quick side-by-side showing images from the two cameras mentioned above with the Canon 5D Mark III image on the left and the Sony NEX image on the right. For more on this, be sure to check out our Newborn Photography Workshop.
That being said, photos have been used for generations to capture precious memories. Baby photos can still be done as long as we exercise caution. Here’s a great article on everyday parents’ guide to taking newborn photos like a pro (when you are not). It talks in details about safety of these newborn photo sessions, and how to construct composite photos safely. And if you are looking for tips and tricks on how to take newborn photos, either with a smartphone, a regular point-and-shoot, or a DSLR, the article has it all as well.
Tip 10. Learn Proper Post Production for Newborn Photography
You will hear from time to time how the flash is harmful to a baby’s eyes. People have been taking pictures of their babies for how many years with a flash. Yes, babies eyes are sensitive and you should be careful to not expose them to that kind of light over and over and over. But…….I’m not as concerned with the light as I am with the poses that are so incredibly adorable that people try to do at home. Like mentioned by others, some of these photos are actually a compilation of 2 or more photos in photoshop. If you try to do some of them you WILL harm the baby. I’m a professional photographer and I do newborn shots. I love newborns but you have to be so careful! Please, please, please spend the money and hire a professional to do your newborn’s photos! They know how to pose the baby without doing any harm. They have the necessary props and safety devices to make your newborn photos not only extremely cute but also a safe experience for all (especially for your baby)
A good newborn session by a professional photographer can take 3–4 hours – with several props and poses – and some amazing shots… this includes all the waking up – feeding times – cleaning times ( they poop a lot ) etc…
There’s tons of hours in EDITING pictures to perfection and you really need to have that expertise or it will just not look as it should look…Here’s some examples of before & after :
Creative props can be the difference between a professional photo and an amateur one. Newborn props don’t have to be expensive and you can find most of what you need at home or a local crafts stores. Other recommended locations are Beautiful Photo Props and Etsy. For ideas, consider incorporating the parents’ hobbies, their culture, their favorite colors, or their overall personalities. We came up with the concept below for Ellie because her mother used to live in Paris. For more inspiration and to see how this scene was shot, please see our Newborn Photography Workshop.
In newborn photography, you are generally going for two looks, peacefully sleeping or awake and happy. If the baby is uncomfortable, you run the risk of him or her being fussy, potentially crying, and overall causing a difficult time for everyone involved in the shoot. Consider wearing gloves if your hands are cold. Use Heating pads, and consider space heaters if the room is not nice and warm. For a full list of non-photographic accessories for Newborn Photography, see our Workshop.
Though newborn photography may seem daunting at first, it’s like any other form of photography in that the more you practice the better you become. Take your time, be patient, and don’t second guess yourself. With the proper planning and research, some creative and personalized props, in addition to careful and safety-first execution, you should come away with at least a few good images on which to build your foundation. For more newborn photography tips and tutorials, please see our Newborn Photography Workshop, a full guide to baby and newborn photography, teaching posing, lighting, planning, and post production for newborn photography.
In the UK when i was still living there about 15 years ago now, This was before digital photography was mainstream and photos were still taken using 35mm film and need to be developed before you could see the photo’s.
Not realizing that a professional photographer never left the baby alone… she simply photo-shopped it out later on. The baby is never at any risk because a pro photographer knows she can “remove” the person holding the baby later on from the pictures… but a non-photographer would not know that and will attempt to leave the baby alone.
And AFTER… notice even the color of the blanket was photo-shopped to match the hat 🙂
If you try doing it yourself , you’ll end up with something like that…
For more newborn photography tips and tutorials, please see our Newborn Photography Workshop, a full guide to baby and newborn photography, teaching posing, lighting, planning, and post production for newborn photography.
A professional photographer has a SPECIAL studio specifically made for newborns – they have specific equipment and props – the studio is heated up to a specific degree , so the baby is always comfortable and always safe.
AND AFTER… a mix of both – remove hands… adjust light and colors…
Note: If you’re new to Photoshop and/or Lightroom, you can also consider outsourcing your post-production and retouching to companies that specialize in editing newborn photos.
As ANOTHER professional photographer, this time with more than 50 years experience using photographic flash for all manner of subjects, including babies, I can ALSO assure everyone that the idea the flash can harm the newborn’s vision is nonsense.
Your post production for newborn photography will generally be more light and airy than other types of photography. Consider using fades, tasteful black and white effects. Also consider brushing up on advanced Photoshop techniques like Frequency Separation and other advanced retouching techniques.
Tip 8. Use Window Light and reflectors for Newborn Photography
Newborn photography is an ART… it’s a SKILL that takes years to master , and it’s not something you want to do on your own… or you’re going to blow away the only chance you’ll have with your newborn… as there’s only a tiny window of time you can do something like that.
They apparently were trying to do the right thing, and were afraid the takers of the photo’s could possibly be pedophiles. and would put the photos online on share them with other pedophiles.
With a little Photoshop magic, the images are merged and you have the composite image that you see in the first picture. (Above photos used with permission from Bree Franklin Photography).
SAFETYYou don’t want to take any risks with your Newborn child.
Your newborn baby has his or her own schedule. When they get fussy, be sure to take your time and wait it out. Sometimes you’ll spend 3-4 hours on a shoot with the baby crying the entire time and finally, in the last 20 minutes, you’ll get everything you need. It’s not going to be easy and be sure to plan sufficient time or the shoot. Your shoot duration will vary depending on the number of wardrobe changes and scene setups, but in general be flexible. If you’re doing this professionally, consider charging per session, per image, or per scene rather than charging per hour.
To create amazing photos of your newborn – there’s often a lot more time in editing, because it’s sometimes very hard to even get one perfect shot…as babues are … well… babies… they do what they want – they don’t pose for you … :(So you have to create a good picture from basically nothing… and this require years & years of Photoshop experience.It’s not just removing stuff – it’s adjusting the light – the colors – the tone of skin… hundreds of things you need to change in order to get a perfect picture.
Safety should always come first when it comes to newborn and baby photography. The list can get quite extensive for tips on newborn safety, but in general, use your common sense. Never bring in any hard or sharp objects as props. Never place your newborn on high or unsteady surfaces without a spotter. And realize that some of your favorite photos of newborns are actually composites. Below is an example.
Is that something you want to miss out on – forever – like I did… :(I have amazing newborn pictures of all my kids – hanged on our wall – all except ONE… my first daughter… :(And do you think she didn’t ask me why ?! what can I tell her – because we were too stupid to think we don’t needed a newborn photographer ?!?
Take almost impossible photos by turning your camera into a high-speed capture device!
IT’S NOT JUST THE PHOTOGRAPHY…IT’S THE EDITING !The hard part in creating amazing newborn pictures is the camera work – but it’s not the hardest part… Later on, each picture is edited to perfection for hours by the photographer … which makes each image even more amazing… something you’d really want to hang on your wall… in a big canvas, and cherish for life.
I’ve met a lot of people who attempted to take pictures of their Newborns on their own… and let me tell you one thing they ALL told me – “I am NOT doing this again with my next child…” – they all regret it and they all take a professional photographer for their next baby… but they’ll always regret not doing it for their 1st child , because it’s a memory they’ll NEVER have.
We recommend planning your scenes using the website Kuler by Adobe. On there you’ll be able to find complementary and analogous color combinations that work well together. Being able to see the colors together visually prior to going out and looking for the props and backdrops will save you hours. On Kuler we arranged the pink and yellow combination you see in the left image below prior to searching for actual newborn props and accessories.
Newborns have soft and immature eyes. Experts have said that while babies will shut their eyes when exposed to light on reflex, just milliseconds of strong light can cause permanent damage. In fact, a 3-month old baby is left blind in one eye after a family friend forgot to turn off the flash while taking a close-up photograph.
Baby left blind after family friend took photo while flash was onSome adorable poses for infant photo are actually dangerous to try at home. In fact, some poses are only possible with the help of Photoshop.
Newborn babies could really get hurt if inexperienced parents and/or photographers try to force them into awkward and unnatural positions to produce the desirable outcomes. These Baby Photo Poses Are Actually Dangerous To Try At Home
Safety is critical but also hygiene – newborns are very sensitive and the studio has to be sterilized and clean.
Take a look at this adorable picture below of a newborn and a guitar.
Kids are the purest form of life and even God will not want anything bad to happen to them. So, I don’t think any such thing as bad omen exists. We just need to overcome our fear of so many things in life. It will make our lives much more fulfilling. As long as kids are happy and healthy, we can willingly do stuff we wish to do.
Many of my friends who had children were afraid to take photos of their children in general because of this.
Being creative is a large part of being a newborn photographer, but so is making sure you get the basic, must-have shots. You should always start with the basics and move towards the more advanced photos just in case the baby gets too fussy and you have to call off the shoot. Below are some of the basic shots you should get before introducing complex, time-consuming, and difficult photographs. For more info on Newborn Posing, please see our Newborn Workshop on DVD.
Part 2 of our Newborn Photography Workshop covers post production and includes newborn photography presets.
Photographic flash intensity is typically no brighter than daylight on a sunny day. Moreover, the flash duration is also very brief indeed, approximately only 1/1000th of a second. Do the sums. This means a baby’s eyes are exposed to 1000 times more light than a photoflash delivers for each and every second they spend just being outside in sunlight. Flash effect on vision is therefore absolutely piddling, especially as photoflash is filtered to limit the amount of Ultra Violet radiation emitted to a lot less than sunny daylight.
Sometimes you need to take 2 bad photos and make one good one :
You certainly don’t need to get too fancy with the lighting. All you need is a large window for your main light and a Westcott 5 in 1 Reflector to help fill in some of your shadows. Below is a screenshot of the setup we often use.
In the past couple of years, we are seeing more and more parents posting pictures of their newborns in all sorts of adorable poses. Thanks to the (relatively) new trend of social media sharing on Facebook, Instagram, twitter, Pinterest, etc., there is no shortage of ideas.
As cute as those pictures look, there are potential dangers with taking newborn snapshots.
Imagine someone seeing this picture and trying to take his newborn pics by herself…
A very good question. It is one of the few unanswered questions that I have been carrying with me for the last few years, when my sister had her first kid. I have seen this kind of thing happen in many Indian families and still many don’t have the answer for it. Some people say you shouldn’t do these things till the baby is 45 days old and some people say till she is 1 year old. The duration keeps varying. Even though I believe these to be mere superstitions, still I understand that when it comes to babies and kids, everyone is a lot more emotional and no one wants to take any risk. So, people just blindly follow the superstitions without ever worrying too much about the real reason behind it. I don’t think that any real reason exists at all. If one does good things and keeps thinking positively, nothing will happen to his/her kids. Also, certain things in life are beyond our control. Life is full of up and downs and for every down one cannot put the blame as “non conformance to some superstition”.
In our home, it is the fact told by elders of the home that a baby should not be photographed before one year of age. We all know a baby becomes a center of attraction from the age of three months as she tries to cuddle, laugh, weep, smile and do all naughty things and we want to click her moments, but elders always forbids to do so, because if the photo is seen by those who do not possess the child, may get jealous and may even have a bad omen on the child. More over never ever try to snap a child in the sleeping posture as it will give a very wrong notion which you better understand and one need not respond here. Infant babies are not even shown mirror as they might get fear and terror in their mind. And they say, never try to kiss a kid when she is sleeping, because when you kiss the kids life will be short-lived (Umar Kaam ho jati hai).I don’t know but I always kiss when kids are sleeping), they are so cute and adorable when they are sleeping.
Just like you would not fly a plane on your own… or do surgery on your kids on your own… you should not take photos of your newborn on your own… there are people that learnt for years how to do those things successfully, and we should leave that to them.
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Introducing personal elements is part of what makes some of these creative props for newborns so great. However, guitars aren’t the most stable surfaces for newborns so a spotter is enlisted. With the camera on a tripod, the composition of the image does not shift. One photo is taken of just the guitar (left) and another picture is taken with the newborn on the guitar but with someone securely holding the baby in place (right).
If you try to do it yourself – you’ll spend 6 hours on taking 100 pictures , and not even one good one… You’ll LOSE the only chance you’ll have for this magical time of a newborn… and you’ll regret it for life , because you’ll never have good pictures of your newborn.
I personally believe it is the choice of the parents if they want to capture some cute moments of their babies and cherish them for a lifetime or believe in the superstition and later think that whatever good is happening was because they didn’t invite any bad omen for their kid.
ENJOY THOSE AMAZING NEWBORN PHOTOS – thanks to Tiana Creation , the best Newborn photographer out there.
You can never have MORE newborn pictures of your child – it’s lost forever… this precious age is never going to happen again. Remember – you have only from day 7 to day 10 to do it properly. Later on – it’s just not going to be as good…
However, we must remember that nobody looks directly into the sun for more than a similarly brief instant, let’s say the same 1/1000th of a second, so do not go close with the flash when the subject’s eyes are directed towards the light. FOUR FEET (1.25 metres) is plenty close enough when facing the flash. Be aware, this rule applies to everybody, not just babies…. and NOT because there is a risk of any permanent damage to the retina, (there isn’t) but because it can be somewhat uncomfortable for a moment, and it is rude to do that to people, especially little kids.
I believe even some developers when printing the photo’s would black out any photo’s with genitalia etc.
There were a lot of incidents at photo developers, where when they received the films to be developed, they would report some photo’s to the police because there were pictures of naked babies.
NEWBORN PHOTOS ARE ONCE IN A LIFE TIME… There’s only a few days in your entire life when you can take good newborn pictures – from 7 days old to 10 days old – after that it becomes very hard to take good pictures because the newborn is going to wake up and cry a lot – you won’t be able to pose him in all those amazing props – and they won’t sleep as “strong” so they’ll keep wake up every time you change a pose .. which is a LOT…
Extra advice: Don’t believe everything you read in the Daily Mail… in fact, it is debatable whether you should believe anything printed in the Daily Mail.
Is that what you want to see on your wall for your entire life ?
Newborn photography can seem like a scary field of photography. It’s one thing to photograph landscapes or pose adults who take instruction, but working with something as fragile and unpredictable as a newborn baby can bring out the anxiety in even the most seasoned photographer. Here are a few newborn (baby) photography tips to get you started.