I would just like to share this again as it is so important and something I discuss with all inquiries for newborn photography. Educating my clients is one of the most important pieces to my job and is key to delivering an exceptional experience. You may be coming to me for photos but I believe that is just a portion of what you are hiring me for and what you deserve from your photographer.
Anyone who is or plans to be taking part in newborn photography absolutely NEEDS to know and understand every aspect of it, not just how cute and fun it is. It's not a game, it's not play time or dress up, not when you're working with a real, live, fragile and moving helpless human being. These babies don't know any better but they too trust us with their life and parents need to be assured that their baby is in the safest hands at all times.
My clients say that I am patient, professional, easy to work with and knowledgeable and I aim to deliver no less to each and every client and to do this I need to put just as much into my education and training otherwise I too am just 'playing'.
While I just adore every baby that comes to my studio and love creating beautiful images of them, I am 100% focused on safety and baby's comfort at all times. Parents have seen that I absolutely refuse to do anything unsafe or uncomfortable for their baby and they appreciate it very much.
New parents are tired, they're looking for someone who will lift worry and fear off their shoulders, maybe allow them an hour or two of rest while someone else takes care of things. They need to feel secure that they are trusting their most valuable possession in the right hands so they can feel relaxed even for a short time. This is something their photographer should bring for them, not added fear or stress.
This should be the only way any and all photographers operate if they are to be working with newborns, no exceptions. I have been asked for certain poses but found some babies are not comfortable or flexible enough for them or they just may not be sleepy enough for the pose to be safely done and I will explain to parents why I cannot achieve and will not force the pose and I have yet to have a parent upset with me because I don't just tell them no, I explain why.
I do my best to deliver what parents ask for, however my sessions are led by their baby and the baby will tell me what they are are are not okay with, I listen to the baby. No photo is worth risking the safety of comfort of the baby.
If you are in the market for a newborn photographer, please do your research and ask questions and if you are a photographer who is or wants to be working with newborns, please do not only for yourself but for your clients the necessary steps that are imperative to safe handling of newborns. There is no way around it, there are no shortcuts and there are no excuses.