So you have just found out you are expecting a sweet little babe sometime in the next nine months. First of all congratulations! Parenthood is an incredible ride from the very first moment. A ride full of insurmountable joy, love, and to-do lists full of choices to make. To-do lists that include where/how to give birth (natural, medicated, in the hospital, at home, its endless), how to decorate the nursery, what does baby actually need, breastfeed or bottle feed, and it goes on. Something that may not be on the very top of your list is finding a newborn photographer. Choosing a newborn photographer can be an easy task if you know what you are looking for. Below I'll dive into some things to consider when choosing your newborn photographer!
When you start preparing for you sweet little bundle researching the best and safest car seats, strollers, and cribs becomes almost a full time job. Finding a Grand Rapids newborn photographer who ensures best practice newborn safety techniques and care when posing your baby should be a number one priority when choosing your photographer. Does your photographer take part in education classes to stay up to date on how to properly pose and keep your baby safe? There are no official certifications on newborn safety required of newborn photographer, however what your newborn photographer can do is make sure they are properly trained by professions who have been working with babies for 10+ years, work with medical professionals on what is/isn't safe for a newborn baby, and participate in education courses. As a newborn photographer I make sure that I am up to date on cpr certification and take part in yearly education course that are specifically for photographers on posing newborns safely.
The thought of handing your brand-new baby over to an almost complete stranger can seem a bit overwhelming. One way that may you help you feel more at ease is to make sure that your newborn photographer knows what they are doing. There are a number of ways to check the level of experience your potential photographer has before hiring them. Things to consider are: the number of years they have been in business, the amount of education they have specifically in newborn photography, and their investment in future education. Newborn photography is a very specialized niche, simply knowing how to use a camera well may not produce those perfect newborn shots you may be looking for. Although I am relatively new to the business side of photography I have many years of experience with my camera, and photographing family and friends. Additionally in the past year I have taken part in monthly classes specific to newborn photography in posing, lighting, editing, and safety led by leaders in the newborn photography industry.
A question to ask yourself when choosing your newborn photographer is what style am I looking for. There are two common types of newborn photography; lifestyle sessions, which is typically done in your home and is a more journalistic, unscripted, approach, and studio/posed sessions. During a posed newborn session, your sleeping baby is guided into curled up poses, snuggly wraps, and placed in cute props. This type of session takes a high level of experience from the photographer and can last up to 4 hours. Once you have figured out the type of newborn photography you are looking for the next thing to look at is the style. Every photographer has their own style. Some photographers are really great at stylizing elaborate themed setups, some are more simple with a focus on baby. Some photographers edit with a warm creamy edit, while others prefer a true to color, contrasty edit. Some photographers use only neutral colors, and some like to use bright, bold colors. There are many styles of newborn photography, and none of them are right or wrong. Taking a good look at their website, and social media will help you determine the photographers style, how successful they are in achieving that style, and if it is something you are drawn to.
Studio newborn sessions are my jam and go through great lengths to provide a space conducive to getting those sleepy, curled poses safely. If I had to describe my style it would be simple, true to life, with the perfect touch of contrast.
The last thing to consider is your investment. The cost for newborn photography can vary greatly. Some things to take into consideration are location, session type, the photographer's experience, level of training, and the equipment they use.
It's important to remember that when hiring a newborn photographers your investment is for more than just the time spent with you. A photographer running a legal business with insurance, and continual training, and other business expenses will almost always be more expensive. (but not always).
I offer two sessions for my newborn photography experience. The first is a mini wrapped newborn session that starts at $150, and is a sampling of what you will get with the full newborn package. Full newborn sessions start at $350 and are much longer, and include more poses, and images. You can get more details on pricing and what each package includes HERE.
I hope this information helps you navigate the world of newborn photography and helps you pick the perfect Grand Rapids Newborn photographer for you. And if you love my style, and want to choose me as your Grand Rapids Newborn Photographer I would be thrilled!