Courtney Malone

Here you'll find some of our most recent family stories, as well as tips and tricks for aspiring lifestyle photographers.

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What Type of Newborn Session is Right for You?

Today we’re talking all about newborn sessions! More specifically, the different types of sessions out there, and what type of session might be right for you!

When it comes to newborn photography, there are a lot of options out there. So many talented photographers, each with their own unique style and take on the beautiful of a brand new baby and family life. It can be overwhelming to sort through the different types of sessions and decide which one, or which combination of sessions might be right for you!

“Fresh 48” Hospital Newborn Session

As the name implies, this type of session takes place in the hospital, during that first 48 hour window while you are still in the hospital getting to know your new baby! Personally, this is my very favorite type of session. I love how real and tender the images are, and as a mom myself, these are the images I treasure the most from when my own daughter was born. This type of session is more documentary in nature, leaving you with a set of images that truly tell the story of your new family in an artful way.

Session Highlights

  • Beautiful, authentic memories of that hospital time and the first moments of getting to know your new baby
  • You get a similar look and feel of birth photography, but usually at a much lower price tag since scheduling is far more flexible in nature
  • You don’t have to feel the pressure of a clean and tidy home, or detailed nursery when you use the natural setting of the hospital!
  • To me, these are TRULY newborn photos – not overly staged, and literally the newest your baby will ever be! It captures the essence of this sweet time, and the miracle of your precious baby.

Lifestyle Newborn Session

Oh the lifestyle session. With a couple of weeks under your belt into the new parent gig, this session is a bit more styled and curated, taking place in your home anywhere from one to four weeks after baby arrives. Your family is photographed in the place you brought your baby home to, with the sweet details of the room you lovingly prepared as the most perfect backdrop. Baby is photographed in the natural elements of the home, including the crib, and the most perfect place for them to rest – your arms!

Session highlights:

  • You have some time to recover from birth and settle in with your new baby! This helps mamas feel a little more put together.
  • Your home is a sentimental place to have your new family photographed. The nursery won’t be a nursery forever, and capturing your family in that environment will make for incredibly special memories as time passes.
  • Posing is incredibly natural, so you’ll have memories that feel authentic and natural to look back on.

Studio Newborn Session

The most curated and styled of the three! Studio sessions are a great way to capture your family in a truly artistic way. If you want more traditional “posed” shots of your newborn, and carefully curated and styled shots of you with your baby, this session might be for you. At CMP, we still keep simplicity in mind for studio sessions, taking a baby-led approach to newborn posing without the use of props, baskets, etc. Timeless imagery is always at the forefront of my mind, and this translates to studio sessions as well.

  • Results in artful photos of your newborn, curled up and womb-like in a pure and simple setting, as well as simple, yet styled and beautiful imagery of your family.
  • Doesn’t require you to straighten or clean any room in your home, as you simply show up ready, and the photographer handles the rest!
  • The studio environment is typically controlled to create a warm, soothing space for your baby, often leading to a nice sleepy session!

Choosing the Right Photographer for You

So now you know the different types of newborn sessions, how do you go about choosing the right photographer to help you get the photographs you are after? Here are a few things to consider as you are making your decision!

  • Review their portfolio – Can you see your own family in the images on the photographer’s website and social media streams?
  • Do you like the colors, and the general look and feel of the photos? Hint, yours will likely look very similar, so it’s important to hire the photographer who puts out work with the look and feel you are after.
  • Do you have friends who have worked with that photographer? Reviews and recommendations are a great way to come by a great photographer! If you don.t know anyone personally, are there recent and regular reviews you can read through?

It’s important to know that photography is an artistic expression, and when you hire a photographer, you are hiring them for their artistic vision! Just like you wouldn’t hire a watercolor artist to sculpt you a custom statue, you shouldn’t expect to hire a photographer with a light and airy approach to give you dark and moody images or vice versa. Make sure you look past the colors and lightness of the images as well into the emotions, posing and general feeling portrayed in the photos. Is it joyful? Is it emotional? Make sure that whatever it is, it’s in line with what you’re after!

Have more questions about session types and choosing the right one for you? Drop in them in the comments below, and I’ll be glad to answer!

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