When I was pregnant with my first son, the last thing I wanted was to be in pictures. Don't get me wrong - I loved being pregnant! But I didn't love all of the angles of my 5'3" self, and

I especially didn't want it captured via professional photographer. HOWEVER, let me just tell you, that booking a newborn photo shoot was one of the best decisions we ever made!

I suggest booking it while still pregnant, because once that baby is born, there is zero chance you'll be thinking "hey honey, let's call someone to take our pictures!" when you have slept like 7 hours in the past 5 days. Book ahead of time - and don't you dare cancel! I promise you that it will be worth it!

I realize there are a million baby photographers to choose from, but let me advise you on a few "tips" when choosing one.

1. Make sure they're an actual baby photographer

When I took my littles to their newborn session, I felt like I was entering the baby whisperer's house. (Yes - I said house!) My lovely photographer uses her home as her studio, and I couldn't have appreciated it more. It was so comforting to be there, as opposed to some cold and sterile environment. She had the perfect low-lit environment which made baby feel right at home, and she had just the right amount of space heaters that kept my babies asleep and toasty warm while we photographed them naked for a few hours.

Also, this goes without saying, but there are a lot of Photoshop 'tricks' to getting those propped-up-sleepy-baby poses! If someone actually wants you to pose your child and walk away -- find the door! There was always a safe hand on the baby that was edited out later.

2. It's worth the money

Unless you have a friend that's a baby photographer who wants to bless you -- you'll probably get what you pay for if the photos come cheap! Hospitals have really stepped up their game lately with what they offer, but do your research! Doing an at-home lifestyle shoot or a session where you can essentially play dress up is so much nicer than only a handful of poses.

3. Bring props

Pinterest is amazing at giving ideas for your baby's first photo shoot. If there's anything special you want in the photos, make sure to pack it before the baby is born. You will most likely forget it once the baby is born, I promise! My 3 year old has a favorite stuffy, Foxy the Fox, and we wanted to make sure to capture him too! We will miss the days of his chubby fingers dragging that poor animal around. It was a great addition to the "brothers" photos!

4. Take them in the first 7 days

Again, this will not be fun since you'll most likely be sleepy, but it's important if you want to make sure they're asleep! After 7 days you may have a harder time manipulating different positions without disturbing them. If your photographer does it right, they'll sleep the entire time!

5. Use my photographer ;)

Ahh... there it is! I had to. Jen Priester Photography has truly captured some of the most precious photos of my family. She is in the Southeast Michigan area, so if you're around, book now! Shoot her an email when you get your due date, and she will be on-call to book your specific date once the baby shows up! She also does birth photography if you're into that, too. Tell her Mason and Jude sent you!

Jen Priester Photography




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