Today, I want to let you in on a little secret: one of my absolute favourite things about newborn photoshoots is capturing the whole family. There’s something incredibly special about freezing those precious early moments when your little one fits snuggly in your arms, and their older siblings are not quite sure about this new addition to the family. From the joyous giggles to the gentle touch, or perhaps even the sideways glare of who are you! these interactions hold an immeasurable depth of love and connection and are photos my parents love to look back on in years to come.
As a Pukekohe newborn photographer, I believe in telling stories through images, and what better story to tell than that of a growing family? It’s not just about capturing adorable poses and cute expressions; it’s about preserving the emotions, the unique dynamics, and the unbreakable bonds of family.
In this blog post, I’m excited to share some of my tried-and-true tips and tricks that will help you create those perfect newborn and sibling photos during a photoshoot. Whether you’re coming into the studio for a professional photo shoot or just trying to take your own images at home, these practical insights will ensure that you capture the heartwarming moments that truly encapsulate the beauty of your growing family.
Preparing your older children for the photo shoot is essential to ensure their cooperation and create a relaxed atmosphere. Talk to them about the upcoming session, explain its significance, and involve them in the planning process. Let them choose their outfits or props, which will make them feel excited and included. My biggest tip is not to make taking photos sound like a big massive thing, instead keep it simple and light-hearted, tell them you’re all going to have some special photos taken. If they are younger and have a favourite toy or comfort toy, don’t forget to bring it along – these props not only make for cute photos but also help us get a smile out of the little ones.
Newborns require a great deal of attention and can be unpredictable, especially during the early weeks. If you have a toddler as well as a newborn I’d recommend planning the photoshoot around their naptime or when they are generally in a good mood. This will increase the chances of cooperative behaviour and minimize potential disruptions. If the siblings are older then try and choose a time when they are happiest, and make sure you have a few snacks to give them ahead of the shoot – no one performs well on an empty tummy.
Young children have limited attention spans, so it’s best to keep the session short and focused. Plan for a specific set of shots and poses, ensuring that the sibling’s involvement is age-appropriate. Incorporate activities they enjoy, such as playing with toys or gentle interaction with the newborn, to capture genuine moments of connection.
In our newborn photoshoots, we always start with family photos so that dad and the older siblings can head to the park or off home if need be. I find kids are best when they first arrive so we get the family photos out of the way nice and early and then it doesn’t matter if the little ones get over it.
While posed shots are beautiful, candid moments can often be the most heartwarming and authentic. Encourage siblings to engage naturally with the newborn, whether it’s cuddling, kissing, or simply observing. Capturing their genuine expressions and interactions will result in timeless photographs that evoke emotions and tell a story.
When working with newborns and siblings, safety is of utmost importance. Always make sure someone is within arms reach of the baby and siblings at all times. Ensure that the siblings understand the importance of gentle touch and are supervised when holding or interacting with the newborn. Always prioritize the comfort and well-being of all participants throughout the photoshoot.
If the siblings are young we always lay them down on a nice soft fluffy rug or blanket before giving them the baby. That way if they pull away the baby can’t be dropped.
Children, especially younger ones, may not always cooperate as planned. Be patient and flexible, understanding that unexpected moments can lead to unexpected, yet delightful, photo opportunities. Allow for breaks, have snacks or small rewards handy, and create a stress-free environment where the siblings feel comfortable and supported. And remember if they really don’t want to play the game just leave it and come back to doing photos again later. It’s not worth pushing them to do it as no one will enjoy the experience.
Incorporating siblings into newborn photoshoots can be a heartwarming and beautiful way to celebrate the arrival of a new family member. By following these practical tips, you can create a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere, capture genuine moments of connection, and produce timeless photographs that will be treasured for generations to come. Remember, the key is to prioritize the safety, comfort, and happiness of everyone involved, allowing their love and bond to shine through the lens.