Newborn Session Guide

Congratulations! You’re bringing a new baby home and I’m so excited and honored that you’ve chosen me to capture this moment in your life. I’m here to guide you and work with you during this time to make capturing your newborn a wonderful and happy experience for you.  

Below you’ll find information on how your session will run, what you’ll need to bring, and how you can prepare for your newborn session. At the very bottom I talk about what you can expect after your session is over, when to expect your pictures, and how to order prints. 

When To Contact Me: 
  • The best time to contact me to set up your newborn session is as soon as possible after your baby is born. 
  • Ideally I like to have new babies in for pictures within the first 14 days after they’re born since that’s when they’re sleepiest and squishiest. If you can contact me via email or through Facebook messenger within the first 24-48 hours after your new baby is born that gives us the biggest window to plan.  
  • If you are having a planned c-section or induction you can contact me ahead of time and we can plan your session based on that date

The Basics:
  • Sessions take place in my studio on our property here in Blooming Prairie, MN. 
  •  Depending on what type of session you book you can expect your session to take 2-4 hours. This can also vary depending on how often baby needs to eat, be changed, if they take longer to fall asleep, etc. I have no problem taking my time and going at your child's pace to make sure they are as happy and comfy as possible during our time together. 
  • Babies are not able to regulate their own body temperatures like we can and because of this I do keep the studio quite warm (around 80 degrees). Please come to the studio with this in mind. If you are having family photos taken you may want to bring a change of clothes so that you are more comfortable for the rest of the session.  
  • I ask for my safety and for everyone else that if you're feeling unwell or know you or anyone in your family is sick that you please ask to reschedule your session. I work with lots of babies and young families and it's important to me that I stay healthy and try to make sure we keep everyone I may come into contact with healthy as well.  
  • For posed newborn sessions there are 2-3 colors that are incorporated into each session that are used for wraps, backdrops, headbands/hats, etc. I have an ever growing collection of props in my studio and love working with parents to pick out color schemes for sessions. 
  • You are welcome to come into the studio to pick your colors in person or you can look online at my past work to pick colors you like.  You are also free to leave it up to me with some or no guidelines and I can plan your session colors for you.  Whatever works for you, works for me!

  • All the headbands, wraps, bowls, hats, blankets, etc. you see on my Facebook, Instagram, and website are provided by me. You don’t need to worry about getting anything together beforehand or providing anything besides that adorable child. 
  •  You can pick out items you like ahead of time, come in to look at items in the studio, or leave picking things out up to me. 
  • I aim for my newborn pictures to be classic, simple, and to tell the story of your new baby. Their sweet face, tiny toes, how they curl their fingers… those are things I’m looking to photograph and deliver to you so you can help tell the story of your family.  Because of this I don’t use lots of “extra things” in my pictures....  Large tutus, stuffed animals, costumes, etc. that make your baby into a prop rather than the focus of your session are generally not included in my pictures.  
  • If you do have something that is sentimental to you or holds significant value that you'd like to include in your images I'd love to make that happen! Let me know prior to your session if possible so that I can plan out how best to use your items.  
  • If you have a rainbow baby you’d like to celebrate the arrival of I have several props we can use that would be perfect for that as well. 

Parents & Siblings:
  • Unless otherwise planned or requested, parent and sibling photos are done at the beginning of the session so that you can come looking fresh and pressed, get your pictures taken, and then relax and enjoy the rest of your session without worrying about having to stay "put together".  
  • There are lots of combinations of pictures you can do as a family.  Usually I do both parents with baby, each parent with baby, the whole family (if there are older siblings), a sibling picture, and then other combinations if they are requested (like dad with all the kids).  
  • For siblings 14 and younger it is required that either a parent or trusted family member take them home after the family pictures are over. It is essential that the studio remain a quiet and calm place for your baby during their pictures and having younger siblings around for several hours in a very warm space with lots of breakable things can make that quite challenging.  
Split the Session:
  • An option I give to families where it might not work to do family pictures at the same time as the newborn images is to 'split the session'. Essentially what this means is they come in to do the newborn pictures one day and then come back a different day and/or time to do just the family photos.
  • This add on is $125.

Preparing For Your Pictures:
  • If you have chosen the Full Newborn Session your package includes parent photos.  With your photos you get to choose a background color for your family pictures.  
  • I have most neutral colors along with some colors like green and blue.  If you're wondering what certain colors look like, or need advice based on what you're wearing, I'm happy to help! 
  • When it comes to what you’ll wear I would keep it simple and neutral (think tans, whites, creams, grays, and even blush or navy). Bright and bold colors can be distracting and draw attention away from your face and create color casts that may not be able to be edited out. Small patterns and light textures are fine but I suggest avoiding large patterns or logos. 
  • Your lower half will show quite minimally in the photos. You’ll want to pay attention to the colors you’re wearing and how your pants look generally, but nice yoga pants that fit you well will look better in pictures than fancy dress pants that fit poorly. Unless we talk prior about a specific picture setup your shoes will not be in the picture.
  • Please avoid wearing hats to your session. They create shadows on your face and can block the faces of others in certain shots. If certain exceptions need to be made, please get in touch with me about it prior to the session and we will work it into your session. 
  • You will be holding your baby up near your face in photographs. Keep this in mind when picking jewelry. Large, chunky, pieces, especially necklaces or earrings, can get in the way of holding the baby or placing him/her on your chest or shoulder. Try to keep the jewelry you pick on the smaller side. This is also important when you consider your shirt. Make sure that your shirt has some give in the shoulders and sleeves as you will be lifting and possibly crossing your arms and you don’t want your shirt pulling or feeling too tight.
  • Your nails will be in the pictures, and sometimes your hands may be close up in the images.  I advise you make sure that your nails are cleaned and trimmed, nail polished isn't chipped, etc. 
Getting Your Older Kids Ready:
  • Getting your older, but still little, kids ready for pictures, along with yourself ready, along with a baby ready, and getting to the studio on time could be an Olympic sport. If it’s easier for you to do hair and press their clothes at home and dress them here, that is perfectly fine. There is a full bathroom here with a sink and a mirror so you can slick down hair, scrub up faces, and make any last second adjustments. 
  • Please make sure that the day before your older kids haven’t had anything that can stain their faces (think red Kool-Aid or face painting). Please make sure not to let them use temporary tattoos leading up to the session.
  • Please make sure their nails have been trimmed and scrubbed and they’re as squeaky clean as you would want them to be. 
  • Since kids are shorter it is possible, and much more likely, that their lower half will be more visible or entirely visible in the family or sibling photos. Because of this it is recommended that you take more care in the planning of their pants/skirts portions of their outfits and think about what shoes they might wear or if you'd like them to be bare foot. 
Before You Come:
  • Try to interact with your baby as much as you can before your session. If you have time, giving them a bath that morning is a great way to tire them out. You don't want to force them to stay awake so they are exhausted, but some extra activity in the morning is useful to helping them sleep that day. 
  • If you live in or around Blooming Prairie, try to feed your baby right before you leave the house. Eating and then a short car ride should put them into that perfect sleepy “milk coma” that we love for taking pictures. If you have a bit of a drive before you get here you can plan on feeding baby once you get to the studio.  
  • Try to dress your baby in loose fitting clothing in the hours before the session. Tight elastic bands on socks or pants can make lines on their skin and will take extra time to edit out.
  • If your baby has had shots please gently remove the band-aids as soon as you’re safely able to do so and gently scrub away and residue so the bandaid mark isn't visible for the pictures. 
  • The morning of the session please take a soft, damp wash cloth and gentle scrub away any flaky, loose skin on your baby’s face. Be gentle and don’t rub too hard, but any flakes you’re able to rub away before your session cuts down on editing time and gets your pictures back to you faster (woo hoo!). 

What to Bring:
  • All you need to bring is what you normally would bring on a longer outting with your baby... supplies to feed them several times, diapers, wipes, pacifier, etc.  
  • Please note that all the moving and activity during a session can make babies a little more hungry than usual so it would not be unexpected if they ate an extra time or two while you're here.
  • We’ll take breaks as often as we need to throughout the session so baby has a happy and full tummy.  
  • Feel free to bring some snacks and drinks for yourself! Come ready to hang out and relax. Sessions usually last several hours and are really fun. Enjoy this time where someone else is holding your baby and you can hang on the couch and take in the cuteness.  
  • The studio can be very warm.  If you are dressing in clothes for your family pictures you might not want to sit in for the entire session, or are difficult to breastfeed in,  you are more than welcome to bring a change of clothes and switch outfits after your pictures are done.  
After Your Shoot: 
  • After your session is over I’ll be posting sneak peeks of your session on my Facebook page. 
  •  I always try to tag you in my posts so you can see but sometimes Facebook settings don't allow it. Check back on the page and if you don't see it tagged you can tag yourself! Click on the three dots in the upper corner and you can tag the picture. When you do it will show up in your feed and that way your friends and family can see it too. Make sure you like my Facebook page as well so you can see when the pictures are posted. Feel free to share the post and photos with your friends and family!
  • As I’m posting the sneak peeks I’m also working on editing your gallery. The first thing you’ll get is a proofing gallery. 
  • The proofing gallery has all the images you have from your session for you to pick your final images from.  These images are lightly edited for light and color. Things like skin edits and background extensions have not been done yet in a proofing gallery. 
  •  You’ll use this gallery to make your final choices and to pick which images you’d like to me to edit completely. Once you pick/star your favorites you can send me a message on Facebook or email to let me know you’re done and then I’ll get to work on editing the pictures you’ve chosen. Things like skin edits, background extensions, removal or unnecessary objects in the background, and cropping pictures now take place. Within 4 weeks of you picking your favorites you’ll get your final images back, fully edited and beautiful.    
  • Your newborn pictures are a precious thing. These are the pictures of your new baby when they’ve barely been in this world a few weeks. They’re important to you and they’re important to me. I don’t rush while editing them and I treat them like art. I edit each and every one as it could be your absolute favorite.
  • When your gallery is complete I will send an email to the email address you’ve provided me giving you the link to your gallery and the password to access it.  
  • You have two weeks to make your picks from your proofing gallery and 4 weeks to complete downloads, purchase prints, etc. in your final gallery.  After this time has passed the gallery will go inactive. There is a $50 fee to reactivate any gallery after it has gone inactive.
  • If you just can’t narrow down the number of images you want you have the option to invest in more. You have the option to purchase individual images or you can purchase your entire gallery to download.  The price for these will be included in the email you receive with your proofing gallery information.  
  • From your gallery you can also purchase physical prints of any of your images! These images are ordered through Miller’s Labs which is a high quality, professional printing house. I order all your prints myself and if there are any issues with your prints it’s me who is dealing with the printers, not you. You can order traditional prints, canvases, and even metal prints from your gallery.  You do receive a print release as well and can also print at places of your choosing.  MPix is also a great choice for printing on your own. 

Milestone Sessions: 
  • For those of you who love to plan ahead there is a discount waiting for you! For any milestone session you book before your newborn session takes place you get a 15% discount off the total price. You can learn more about my Milestone Sessions and what’s included HERE.

Anything Else?:
  • Hopefully I have answered all your questions about your newborn session but if you still need clarification on something, or, there is something I didn’t bring up here, please let me know! I am looking forward to seeing you with your sweet new babe in my studio soon!