Newborn photo sessions can be intimidating for new parents. This is completely understandable, since newborns come with a lot of unknowns; add to that the fact that most people are a little intimidated by any photo shoot at all, and the list of questions grows.
What if my baby is fussy and just wants to be held or needs to eat?
What if my baby won't sleep?
What if he pees (or worse, poops!) in a shot without a diaper?
What am I supposed to bring for her to wear?
What do I wear? Do I even have to be in the photos? I just had a baby, you know!
First of all, moms and dads, please be in the photos. Yes, you're already running on less sleep than you thought a human required to function, and that is ok. Trust the people who say you look amazing, and even if you think you look as tired as you feel, you should still be in the photos because you are here, on this day, the guardian of this new little life. That is certainly a role worth documenting. Be present in the pictures.
As for the rest of the questions, this is a great time to start practicing being reasonable in your expectations, flexible in your responses, and content with who your baby is. These are skills that will take you very far as a parent.
Sometimes babies sleep and sometimes they are wide awake, and both work great in photos. Sometimes that early sleep that is a bit restless can feel stressful, because you don't know for sure if he is going to sleep or wake, but it also provides a great opportunity to capture one of the most endearing of infant skills: The Sleep Smile. How sweet and adorable is this little guy?
If your baby wants to be held, great! We get to see the beautiful connection that is cemented so early.
If your baby is feeling sleepy, great! We might be able to include some fun props. Baseball and bunny rabbits... what a perfectly themed newborn photo shoot for Spring!
And yes, when you remove a baby's diaper, the inevitable happens quite often.
No, your photographer is not worried about it.
Yes, you should definitely go ahead and get comfortable dealing with this sort of thing now.
But if you don't feel like taking that risk, that's fine! There's no rule that says you must have a photo in every possible newborn pose (actually, there should be a rule against it because it's not going to happen). Our goal is to come away having created an image of your baby in your family at this moment, be it bright eyes or peaceful lids, sleepy smiles or pouty lips, from wispy hairs and eyelashes down to little dots of toes.
It is so easy to forget the details of these early weeks, which is one of the reasons they are worth capturing.
And if you come away with a funny story about who the baby peed on first, well... all the better. :) Many congratulations to this beautiful family!