5 Tricks for Getting Great Newborn Pictures with their Siblings
You've got baby number two on the way! (Or number three, four or five!) Everything in your life is about to become more complicated. You just got this parenting thing figured out and a newborn is going to throw a monkey wrench in all of your great routines. You'll need to figure out a new sleep schedule, meal schedule, and snuggles schedule.
Your newborn photography session will be a little different than the first too. The good news is you don't have to figure anything out. We'll handle the action and make sure your sibling newborn photos go smoothly!
Here are the tips and tricks we use with our new big brothers and sisters to have a happy and easy newborn photo session. Just one more reason to come to the best newborn photographer in Overland Park!
1. Toddlers Love a to have a Job
First and foremost, a new big sister or brother wants to feel like they're still important. So when it's their turn to step in front of the camera, we'll make a it a big production. We'll talk about how they have a big important job to do and how no one but them can help us do it. Instead of focusing on telling them to smile right way, we give them a purpose. "We need you to sit right in this spot and help us hold baby sister".
2. Take it at a Toddler's Pace
Patience is the name of the game for newborn AND toddler photography. So when you're combining the two, everyone involved needs to take a big ol' chill pill. Before we even ask the new big brother to get into my set, we'll make sure he's comfortable with us and our studio. Then, if he runs off the set, we'll coax him back in with words...not grab him and force him back in. No great pictures are to be had with unwilling participants.
We'll also be flexible about how the picture comes together. I always approach every picture with a vision in mind of exactly how I'd like the little ones to be posed, but rolling with the punches is key!
3. Sprinkle in a Little Photoshop Magic
Some big brothers and sisters are mature enough to hold and snuggle a newborn baby during a photo session and some aren't. And that's okay!
Since safety always comes first, we have ways to work around little one's that simply aren't ready to sit still and hold their new little brother. With careful planning, we can have your little one sidle up close to an empty crate, bucket or bowl. Once we have that picture, we'll release the older sibling to go play and put baby in. A little photoshop magic later, and you'd never know the two new friends weren't actually snuggled up.
Here's one example where big sister just wasn't up for getting too close to her little sister. So we did separate pictures of the two girls and stitched them together. You'd never have guessed, eh?
4. Minimize the Variables
In case you haven't read the "About Me" on my website, I'm a Mechanical Engineer in addition to being a photographer. That means I like the concept of minimizing the moving variables in the equation.
For newborn photography with older siblings, it often means swaddling the baby! Almost all newborns are comfortable and content when wrapped. Even better, by swaddling the baby, we know his hands and feet won't be flailing around. We're much more likely to get the perfect shot when we're only worrying about one set of hands and feet instead of two!
See how excited this little one is to be snuggling the bundle of her baby brother? She wouldn't have been so happy if he'd be wiggling around or hitting her in the face!
5. Last, but not least, BRIBERY
Let's all be honest, we're all susceptible to bribery. In college, you'd go to any organization's meeting if they had free pizza right? Your toddler is no different and there's no shame in the occasional bribe to help your newborn photo session go smooth. However, there is a right and wrong way to bribe a toddler. Use these simple guidelines to get the most bang-for-your-bribery-buck:
Make offer a bribe for something you actually have in hand RIGHT NOW
Think about how your bribe will photograph. Smarties or fruit snacks are small and don't leave crumbs or stains.
Make your request achievable. Get one or two smiles, then give them some of your bribe. Ask for another smile or two, give another bribe.
Offer to take them to ice cream after the session. That's too far away to be efffective
Offer chocolate! It drips out of their mouth and makes their face look very dirty. You don't want it to look like you don't wash your kid right?
Let the situation go negative/punishing. Normally, I'm 100% behind parenting with strong discipline and consistent consequences. But it DOES NOT WORK at a photo session. You can get your child to stop bad behavior that way, but you can't force a smile.
So if you're in the Overland Park, Olathe, Belton, Lenexa, or Leawood areas and you're bringing a new baby home soon, give us a call! We're the best newborn photographer in the area and we're ready to help get you some perfect pictures with your older babies and your brand new baby!