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9 Tips for Taking the Perfect First Photos of Baby
Updated on
September 11, 2023

9 Tips for Taking the Perfect First Photos of Baby

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9 Tips for Taking the Perfect First Photos of Baby.
9 Tips for Taking the Perfect First Photos of Baby

There’s one thing most new parents have in common—lots and lots of baby photos. While it’s fun and easy to fill up your phone’s camera roll with photos of baby, you’ll probably want a few special photos of your baby—or of your new family—to share with friends, family and, well, Instagram.

Here are some tips on how to get that perfect shot.

  1. Decide if you want to hire a professional photographer or will take your photos on your own. If you go with a pro, think about if you’d like the photos to look like they were taken in a studio (posed) or in your home (lifestyle). Lifestyle tend to be less formal and illustrates what your life with baby looks like, while posed pics allow you to get an end result more like those iconic Anne Geddes baby photos. Whatever your preference, be sure to communicate it to your photographer.
  2. If you’ll be DIYing the photos, think like a pro and gather all your props ahead of time so you aren’t running around looking for things when you’re ready to shoot. Plan three or four setups with different outfits, blankets or hats or headbands, in case one doesn’t work out. Another tip: use a nursing pillow or bean bag covered with a blanket or swaddles to prop up baby and make a cute backdrop.
  3. Be sure to keep the clothes for baby as unfussy and cozy as possible—now’s not the time for frilly frocks or scratchy waistbands. Instead, think cotton footies or sleep gowns, and comfortable swaddles and hats that stay put on wiggly babies. Also, headbands and bows are very cute accessories.
  4. Take detail shots when baby is asleep. This is the perfect time to get closeups of those tiny little toes and fingers or that sweet sleeping face.
  5. If your new baby has siblings and you’d like to take photos of them with baby (or the whole family), take photos with the older kids in order to make the most of those short attention spans.
  6. If you’re taking photos of the whole family, here’s a fun family photo idea: matching pajamas. This can make for a really sweet memory. It’s a particularly cute idea during the holidays and can make a fun longstanding family tradition, whether you use the photo as your annual holiday card or just a great way of remembering each year and how your family is growing.
  7. Use natural light. Take your photos in front of a window or sliding glass door for the maximum amount of natural light. Keep an eye on different rooms throughout the day in order to see which room gets the best light and when during the day. Turn off all artificial lights and don’t use flash!
  8. If your little one is awake during your shoot, let them do what comes naturally to them—like yawning or stretching—and try to capture it. If they’re asleep, you might be able to move them around more and “pose” them a little, such as unclenching their tiny fists or stretching out their arms.
  9. Feed baby before you start! Everyone is happier with a full tummy.

Most of all, whether you’re taking the photos yourself or with a professional photographer, try to be patient. The perfect shot is out there, but it might take a few tries to get it. And like all things with a new baby, your definition of “perfect” may change. You might find some of those outtakes really are the best at capturing those new baby memories.

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Babylist Staff

Babylist editors and writers are parents themselves and have years of experience writing and researching, coming from media outlets like Motherly, the SF Chronicle, the New York Times and the Daily Beast, and the fields of early childhood education and publishing. We research and test hundreds of products, survey real Babylist parents and consult reviews in order to recommend the best products and gear for your growing family.

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