Congratulations on your upcoming baby! Once you are around 20 weeks, you will begin your search for the right newborn photographer to capture this moment in your life. During your search, you may look at the photographer’s portfolio, studio location, client closet and the investment for the session. As those are important in your search, newborn safety should be at the top of your list when hiring a newborn photographer.
Not All Newborn Photographers Are Equal
Whether it is your first baby or adding to your family, did you know not all newborn photographers are equal? Currently, there are no newborn safety regulations in the newborn photography industry. Therefore, the photographer you hire may not be trained properly in posing your baby in a safe manner.
Questions to Ask When Searching For a Newborn Photographer
- How many years have you been photographing newborns?
- What type of safety training have you had and with whom?
- What are the newborn safety practices you have in place at your studio for newborn clients?
- Do you work with an assistant or have spotters during the session?
- Will there be hands on my baby at all times?
- How will you safely pose my baby with their siblings?
Newborn Safety Checklist At Your Session
Below are some helpful tips to keep in mind during your newborn session. Never hesitate to speak up if, at any time, you feel uncomfortable with how the photographer is handling your baby. Your photographer should stop immediately, address any concerns and explain how they are safely handing your baby into a pose. However, if you are still uncomfortable with a pose, you have the right to voice it and your photographer should move on to the next pose.
- The room temperature will be warmer to help your baby be comfortable. Remember that your baby was in your very warm womb. However, signs of overheating include sweating at the neckline, irritability and extreme redness in the face.
- Any props or blankets used in the session should smell fresh and be cleaned after each use.
- Essential oils should not be used during the session. They can cause allergic reactions or trigger other sensitivities.
- Look for any tripping hazards. Your photographer’s area should be clean and organized.
- The props the photographer uses should be weighted down to prevent tipping or slipping.
- Your baby should never be out of reach from your photographer’s hand and in some poses, a spotter should have their hands on baby at all times.
- Monitor your baby for signs of central cyanosis – the bluish discoloration around the core, lips and tongue.
Pic a Posie Photography Newborn Safety Practices and Training
Pic a Posie Photography specializes in newborn photography. The safety of your baby is the number one priority during the session. My newborn sessions are baby led, which means I pose to the pace and comfort of your baby. I constantly look for cues of discomfort or irritability while posing. If your baby is not happy being in a certain pose, I move on to the next pose.
I am continuously taking education and safety classes to be up to date in my industry. In the past, I have had both online and in person workshop classes. Recently, I attended an in person workshop that was taught by a two experienced newborn photographers, one who is also a labor and delivery nurse. At the workshop, we discussed how to keep newborns safe and what to look for during each pose. Some of these safety measures include: always being within arms reach of the baby, using a spotter when needed, securing the camera to my hand or neck, never standing on a stool to photograph baby, properly weighing down props, monitoring the baby’s temperature/appearance and swaddling the baby properly to not obstruct their airway.
Additionally, all my props, swaddles and blankets are inspected and washed before your session. I apply hand sanitizer before I handle your baby and during the session. My studio will always be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized before you arrive.
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*The question and safety checklist sections in this blog are credited to APNPI.