When Should Newborn Photos be Taken?

newborn baby girl photographed in basket in fort lauderdale, fl
hollywood baby photographer

Newborn babies are my absolute favorite to photograph.

The little bitty toes, fingers, hair curls…that new baby smell. I love it all!

They grow and changes so quickly over the next few months and years that at times, it’s hard to remember that they used to be so small.

All to often, parents-to-be don’t know when they should schedule a newborn session. So many parents wait until their baby has been born, then they’re frantically looking for a photographer with availability. So much goes into choosing a newborn photographer, that this sometimes makes tired frantic Mom’s choose based on price, availability or quality.

Not only that, but with the hustle of having a new baby, how do you even prepare for a newborn session?

It can be overwhelming.

Ideally, parents should schedule a newborn photo session during the second trimester, or early third trimester to get on the photographer’s calendar. Weeks 1-4 of newborn life are optimal for capturing these tiny babies. The older the baby, the more they are awake and can make getting those sleepy, curly, naked poses a challenge.

Week 1 – Week 2: The Ideal Window for a Newborn Session

In order to make this ideal window, you’ll want to book your newborn session two-three months prior to your due date. This is the only way to be ensure a spot on your chosen photographer’s calendar.

Before the 4-week mark, newborns are more flexible, tend to enjoy tighter swaddling (which is used for many of the wrapped poses), have more predictable sleeping schedules, remain asleep after feeding, and retain a womb-like state, and this makes it easy to replicate those favorite squishy poses.

Younger newborns tend to have less baby acne, which tends to appear after the 3-week mark. So, if you’re ultimate goal is to capture the teeny-tiny, ultra snuggly newborn, the photo shoot should be scheduled before week two.

8 day old baby girl

Preemies, twins and multiples are exceptions

Babies born early that have an extended hospital stay will have a longer window – sometimes up to 5 weeks or more – allowing us to get those exquisite newborn shots at an older newborn age.

Week 3-5: Still good, especially for twins and preemies

Week 3 -5 is still a really sweet timeframe. If you and your full-term baby have a rollercoaster ride adjusting to your new schedule, this is the next best opportunity to make it up. Your baby will still be flexible, as well as a little more on a schedule – usually. However, most babies are more awake at this point and may be too big for certain props or poses. Some of the best newborn poses require wrapping and a 3-5 week old baby will resist the curled position for wrapping, usually letting us know about it. 🙂

This 3-5 week timeframe is best for preemies and multiples.

Read Preparing for Your Newborn Session to learn more on how to create the foundation for a comfortable and stress-free experience. No matter your babies age, we’ll create amazing images, even if they weren’t the curled-up newborn poses you originally envisioned.

pemroke pines newborn photography

Babies older than 5 weeks have passed the ideal time for those curly, newborn poses. Expectations of getting those images you see on our website are slim. This isn’t the ideal window.

By this window, your baby is more interested in watching our every move and not one bit interested in sleeping.

6 to 8 months: The Milestone Session

If you missed the newborn window, we typically recommend scheduling a Sitter Session around 6 to 8 months when your baby is sitting independently. This session is all about the new skill of sitting up. This is such a big milestone in a child’s life! Once they can sit up on their own, they can look around and see so many new things. They can play with toys that they couldn’t laying down. And this usually brings on a big grin and a ‘look at me’ proud face. The six month milestone session is all about capturing your baby’s new skill of sitting.

pembroke pines baby photographer

Each of these milestones deserves to be celebrated – and what better way to permanently commemorate them than with priceless photography and canvas-worthy imagery? As parents who have newborn photos know, professional images almost always look better than the DIY photo shoots you try to create at home. So, even clients who have professional newborn photos done often schedule an additional session around this time to mark another important window in Baby Time.

Worried you missed the newborn photo moment? Don’t be! Contact me here or (954) 489-8539 and we’ll discuss the possibilities.