The first few weeks of your baby’s life are going to be incredible. Because they change so much! The peach fuzz on their cheeks, the cupid bow lips, even the colour of their eyes can change! And it all happens so quickly, and so gradually that you don’t even notice.
And that’s why having a newborn photoshoot is such a wonderful thing to do. Because the photos will give you a chance to relive these amazing, fleeting, incredibly precious few weeks in your lives.
But where should you have your newborn photoshoot? In a studio, or in the comfort of your own home? And how do you decide which one is right for you?
With completely different experiences on offer, a different style of photography, and siblings and pets to consider, there’s just so much to think about! It’s tricky, isn’t it?
So I’ve put together a guide to help you decide whether you should have a studio or in-home newborn photoshoot.
Now as a newborn photographer in Edinburgh who specialises in at-home sessions, I have to admit to being a little biassed. But I’ve tried to keep it as fair as possible, so you can decide for yourself! And hopefully, choose the session that’s right for you.
The first thing you need to decide is what style of photos you want. Are you looking for stylised and posed? Or authentic and relaxed? Honestly, there’s no right or wrong with this one. It’s completely down to your personal taste and the style of photos you love.
In general, studio shoots tend to be stylised, posed, and a bit more arty. Think baskets, bows and ‘frog leg’ shots. And maybe a black and white photo of your baby asleep on a bean bag, wearing some kind of knitted hat.
In-home newborn photo shoots are taken in the real-life setting of your home, so the photos are inherently more authentic and relaxed. Set against the backdrop of your family home, the photos will focus on your connection as a family, and your bond with your beautiful new baby.
Of course, we can get some arty shots too! But I should warn you, I operate a strict ‘no bows or baskets’ policy…
Just picture yourself a few weeks into life with your new baby. Deliriously sleep-deprived, and with milky sick stains on your top, you're loading the car with endless amounts of baby stuff. You then drive out onto the busy streets with your incredibly fragile baby in the back, flinching at every car that drives past you on your way to the studio.
Are you happy in this scenario? No. With every exhausted fibre of your being, you’re wishing you’d stayed at home!
On a more serious note, it’s also worth mentioning that newborn sessions are only a few weeks after birth. You never know how the birth is going to go, or how you’re going to feel afterwards. I remember how I felt after I had my first baby. And the very last thing I wanted to do was leave the house.
On the other hand, studios are very calming places to be. They’re light, airy, uncluttered, and wonderfully serene. And after a few weeks of hectic baby care at home, escaping your house and visiting one of these havens of tranquillity can be incredibly soothing for the soul.
So if you’re unphased by the prospect of leaving the house, this little oasis of calm can be something to look forward to in the first few weeks after birth.
This is one of the biggest deciding factors for most parents. In-home newborn photo shoots are so much easier!
Because you just stay at home, and everything you could possibly need is within arm’s reach. So you can relax and enjoy the experience in the lovely comfy safety of your nest. And you won’t have those stressful and exhausting journeys bookending your session.
And this makes in-home sessions so much more enjoyable. Because there’s no stress, no pressure, no unnecessary physical strain. And no worry that you won’t have something your child needs. So you can just spend some time bonding with your baby, having fun as a family, and celebrating your new life together.
Bringing a new baby into your home can be disruptive for older siblings. So on the one hand, you want to keep this disruption to a minimum. But on the other hand, you’ll want them to feel like they’re a part of it all. And with any luck, get at least a few nice photos of your children together. So which one is the best option?
Well, it depends on your child!
If the older siblings are shy, nervous around strangers, or easily upset, then an at-home photoshoot is usually better. Because they’re in a familiar place with all their toys. So they won’t feel as overwhelmed by it all as they would in the unfamiliar setting of a studio. And they can come and go as they please. So it’s not an issue if they get bored and decide to wander off
But if they’re strong-willed and likely to cause mischief at home, then a studio session might be better. The new surroundings can make them a little easier to manage. And the exciting new environment may keep them interested and engaged for longer.
If you’re outnumbered by children, for God’s sake stay at home.
And of course, if you want to get your pets involved in the shoot, an in-home session is best. A lot of studios won’t even allow pets, so it’s worth checking before you decide.
The last thing to think about is the aesthetics, and how your home will look in photographs compared to the studio.
There’s no two ways about it, babies come with a lot of stuff! And clutter doesn’t photograph well. But you don’t have to worry about that with me. I have three kids! I get it! I’ll approach your home like I’m your closest, non-judgemental pal. So please don’t worry about the state of your house. Mess or no mess, we’ll make it look amazing. I’ll choose angles that are less cluttered, and gently move things out of the way if I think it’ll improve the shot.
We’ll also have the opportunity to capture the nursery as well, which is always a wonderful backdrop for photos.
Studios- especially natural light studios- always photograph well. They’re clean, tidy and neat. And the photographer will know all the best spots in their studio like the back of their hand. So whilst studios don’t offer that homely authenticity of an in-home shoot, the lighting and backdrops will be a lot more consistent.
My in-home newborn photo shoots are as much lifestyle sessions as they are newborn shoots.
We’ll capture your life as a new family and all the wonderful little moments that make it yours. The feeding, the nappy changes, the sleepy cuddles on the sofa. All the things that might otherwise be lost to memory.
And it means when you look back through the photos in years to come, they won’t just be photographs of your baby. They’ll tell the story of this amazing new chapter in your life. Giving you photos that mean the world to you and your family.
If you live in Edinburgh or the surrounding areas and would like to book yourself in for an in-home newborn photoshoot, I’d be delighted to hear from you. Please get in touch today to see if I’m available.