As a newborn photographer, my goal is to have a baby who sleeps through the duration of the session. I send a detailed prep guide to my clients several weeks before their session, and again the day before. It includes information like, “Keep the baby awake and stimulated for 1-2 hours before I arrive. This is a good job for Dad so Mom can spend this time getting ready,” and, “Start feeding the baby 30-45 minutes before I arrive. Make sure he/she has a full feeding, then change his/her diaper 5 minutes before I arrive.” I also recommend that Mom, if breastfeeding, avoid food and drinks that can give Baby gas, like caffeine, onions, garlic, and broccoli.
Even if the parents follow my prep guide perfectly, every now and then I’ll have a baby who has a harder time getting settled. I have a few tools and tricks I use to help settle Baby as best I can, but there’s always the chance that the baby just doesn’t want to sleep.
Sloane was just over three weeks old when her newborn session took place, which is older than ideal (I prefer babies to be about 10 days old). But because I already had booked a couple other babies around Sloane’s due date, her sweet mama and I agreed to do a lifestyle session around this time. I can usually accommodate Lifestyle sessions up to six weeks of age, depending on if I have room in my schedule or if the baby was born premature.
We didn’t get many photos of her sleeping–actually, I’m pretty sure she was awake the whole time. The one photo with her eyes closed was likely a blink! My goal is always to keep the baby happy whether or not he/she is asleep.
Sloane loved to stretch and wiggle out of her swaddle, which made for some absolutely adorable images. It also made my job of snapping pics of her little toes that much easier!
I loved working with this precious family so much! They were so calm and had a go-with-the-flow attitude, so they didn’t get flustered at all when we couldn’t get little Sloane to sleep. They rolled with the punches and it made for an absolutely beautiful final gallery.