Let’s chat about newborn photography safety. Picking a newborn photographer can be overwhelming. Most potential clients and past clients tell me that two major things factor into them selecting a photographer. Style and price. I completely agree. It is important to have images of your little one that you love the style of. Secondly, lets face it. Babies are expensive, and a photography session is another expense to add to that long list.
I also encourage people to consider the safety of their baby. The background of the photographer, experience, and training should also factor in. Spending a little more money to make sure your new baby is safe is always worth it.
Currently, there are no required trainings, certificates, or requirements to be a newborn photographer. Every newborn photographer will have different education, training, experience, and standards in place. They can range from someone that just picked up a camera to someone with years of experience.
With that in mind, I wanted to take a moment to talk about what I do assure newborns are safe and happy during our session.
Training / Education
I have taken numerous newborn photography workshops, educational courses, and trainings. Newborn photography is my passion, and understand the importance of continuing education. I have been trained by local photographers, as well as photographers from across the country. I continue to invest in training annually that not only betters me as a photographer, but assures that I am providing the best experience for my newborn clients – and their families.
Having photographed over 200 babies, I am always watching them for cues during the session and pick up on them quickly. From the baby being too hot or cold, limitations on poses, circulation issues, and airway concerns. I will never force a baby into a pose. I also have experience photographing babies with limited mobility (from broken clavicles to babies with hip dysplasia that required a harness).
The safety of your baby is more important to me than any pose. Many of the poses you see on social media and pinterest are composites. Meaning they are a number of images combined to create the illusion that the baby is doing something on their own. The “froggy” pose is a very popular pose, and a great example of how I safety complete these types of images. In the image at top of the page, I show how the two images are combined and the final edit. My hands never come off the baby during this pose. Parents often comment that they had no idea it was multiple images combined, and thought the baby was posed that way. Posing a baby on their own in this pose can be harmful to their wrists, and other areas of their body of they tip from being unable to support themselves.
I always pick props with babies in mind. While many antique items are adorable props, I am always sure to consider safety concerns, like lead paint or rust on items. The risk on these types of props is not worth it to me. I never place babies directly onto props. There is always a soft layer or two between the baby and hard props. I don not use props that can easily break, like glass or ceramics. I also make sure that any prop that could possibly tip, has weights on the bottom to assure your baby is safe and the prop will stay upright.
Vaccines / Flu shot
I am up to date on all vaccines and flu shots. This includes the Tdap vaccine (tetanus, diptheria and whooping cough). I clean and sanitize the studio and props after every session. Anything a baby touches is thoroughly cleaned afterwards. I also made sure that the toys I have in studio for older siblings are cleaned after being played with. Being a mom myself, I know how easy it is for germs to spread and I do what I can to prevent anything spreading.
As many of my clients know, I am a former police officer. I am trained in CPR, and more importantly infant and pediatric CPR. While I hope that never is needed in a session, I feel better knowing I have the training to handle the situation, and have performed CPR in emergency situations in the past, and have experience handling emergency situations. Again, I hope this never happens – but if it does I am fully prepared.
The boring legal stuff
On top of that, I am a legal and insured business. I also have taught newborn photography and safe posing to other photographers.
I encourage you to consider more than style and price while choosing a newborn photographer. By no means am I saying you have to hire me (even though I would love to photograph your growing family). I am just highlighting the things other than style and price that should be considered when shopping around for a newborn photographer.
You have a precious little one, and you need to take proper steps to keep them safe.
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