Anne Geddes may have been the first to peddle the idea of a tot in a flower pot, but photographers like Tasha Schoen of Freckles Fotography find their own inspiration in every tiny newborn. For a Houston firefighter, she recently posed the family’s newest addition on dad’s helmet. “It was a difficult shot to get, but the parents loved that image,” she says. “I’m so honored by parents who trust me to photograph their precious children.”
Snapping the Sweetest Pictures
For a new parent, taking pictures of their little one may be as involuntary as breathing, but that doesn’t mean it’s as easy. Capturing those cute pictures of your child happily smiling can sometimes come after taking countless pictures of them wiggling, crying, or even sleepily yawning. “My 6- and 4-year-olds have ‘photographic child syndrome,’” Schoen jokes. “When I take out the camera, they run!” When Schoen turned professional, her first photography subject was a newborn. “I love photographing children, but they move a lot,” she says. Newborns are sleepy and cooperative.” Schoen enjoys getting parents involved in photos, too. “Moms don’t feel up to par so soon after birth, but a mother holding her newborn comes out natural and lovely, not overdone.” Natural light helps her achieve this.
Tricks of the Trade
Many photographers prefer to take newborn pictures as soon after the child is born as possible. While fragile, they are still somewhat limber from their life in the womb, and many creative poses mimic that time before their birth. Sleepy newborns make it easy for photographers to capture the sweetest shots of baby, without them squirming.
Schoen goes on the road with a mobile studio, so she can take photos at a family’s home, where their newborn will be most settled and content. Prepping for the portrait keeps the session smooth. Mom feeds and plays with her child for an hour beforehand, so the baby grows sleepy and she can change its diaper before photos are taken. Still, it’s not all sighs and bliss as nature calls when it will with a newborn. Photographers plan ahead and employ a few tricks to get the perfect pictures. Turning up the heater or turning off the air conditioning keeps baby toasty, as pictures often are done in the buff. Newborn birthday suits show off velvety smooth, perfect skin, and a tushie in the air looks sweet. A knit hat, booties, or a bow are props enough. Schoen uses few extras in her photos and uses basic items like a wicker basket or textured blanket, stressing that less is best to highlight an infant’s simplicity and beauty.
Baby Is Boss
With every photo shoot though, baby is boss. Focusing on baby’s soft features, like their tiny ears, lips, and nose makes for photos that capture their natural beauty. Photographers like Schoen follow baby’s natural movement to help bring out their soft spirit and preserve family memories that will last a lifetime. CFM