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Source: pixabay.com

In the first months of life, babies grow incred­i­bly fast, so the best way to keep mem­o­ries is to arrange a New­born pho­to shoot.

Today we will show you how to cre­ate cre­ative por­traits of new­borns. Be aware: new­borns need spe­cial care and han­dling (don’t wor­ry, we’ll repeat this a few more times).

When to shoot a newborn

The ide­al age of a new­born for a pho­to ses­sion is 7–14 days. Babies tend to sleep in these ear­ly days, which makes the new­born ses­sion eas­i­er. How­ev­er, sleepy curled up posi­tions can be achieved with old­er new­borns. They will no longer be able to curl up as eas­i­ly due to the devel­op­ment of mus­cle tone, so the pos­es will be slight­ly dif­fer­ent.

In old­er babies, mus­cle tone is more devel­oped, so the pos­es for pho­to shoots will be dif­fer­ent than for new­borns. Source: pixabay.com

Newborn photo shoot equipment

For this shoot, it’s best to use a full-frame cam­era with a 24–70mm lens. But you can shoot with sim­ple fix­es — 50mm or 35mm.

The main thing is to make sure that the lens you choose allows you to be close to the child, because safe­ty is para­mount. Do not leave the child unat­tend­ed, and if you need to move away, ask the par­ents to keep the baby safe and com­fort­able.

Tools:

• cam­era;
• lens 24–70mm or 35–50mm;
• back­ground;
• a bowl or any con­tain­er where you can put the baby;
• knit­ted plaid/scarf;
• Stu­dio;
• big soft­box;
• edi­tor for post-pro­cess­ing.

Preparing for a photo shoot

For del­i­cate shots, you need a dif­fused light source. Soft­box­es and beau­ty dish­es will add soft­ness to the light. Make sure there is enough light on the baby’s face.

Source: pixabay.com

Choose a sim­ple and con­cise back­ground and give pref­er­ence to pas­tel shades. The less var­ie­ga­tion, the more ten­der the frame will turn out.

Anoth­er argu­ment in favor of light back­ground col­ors and acces­sories is reflec­tions. Bright col­ors will paint the baby’s skin in unnat­ur­al shades.

Choose soft fab­rics for swad­dling, it is impor­tant for a new­born to feel safe and com­fort­able. Wrap your baby secure­ly. You can use a stretch fab­ric first, and after mak­ing sure that the baby is com­fort­able and his arms and legs are locat­ed con­ve­nient­ly, use a sec­ond “dia­per” that match­es the cho­sen col­or scheme.

During filming

Baby posi­tion. Make sure that the child does not touch the rim of the makeshift cra­dle and is safe and com­fort­able. Posi­tion your head high­er than your feet so that your feet are not clos­est to the lens.

Deter­min­ing the lev­el of light. Use a light meter to fine-tune your light and min­i­mize your light set­up time. Set the shut­ter speed and ISO using the meter and read the infor­ma­tion to adjust the aper­ture. To soft­en the appear­ance of a new­born’s skin, a slight over­ex­po­sure will help.

You can use a min­i­mum of acces­sories — only one ele­ment of decor and a light soft back­ground, for exam­ple, a crib mat­tress or a blan­ket. Source: pixabay.com

Use of a gray card. White bal­ance caus­es dif­fi­cul­ties when work­ing with any sub­ject. The gray cards are for set­ting the col­or tem­per­a­ture. Use the gray card as a neu­tral col­or ref­er­ence and as a start­ing point for white bal­ance. Use it to set the white bal­ance in the cam­era or use the tools in Cam­era Raw or Light­room.

Light scheme. The posi­tion of the light depends on the style of the image you want to cre­ate. New­born por­traits are usu­al­ly tak­en with soft light­ing and soft shad­ows. Try to avoid too much con­trast.

Shoot­ing point. Good pic­tures are obtained if you pho­to­graph the baby from the front. Don’t for­get to diver­si­fy the series by cap­tur­ing details and chang­ing the angle. So, you can shoot from above, but do not use a lad­der so that you do not have a chance to fall from it on a child or drop a cam­era from above.

Make sure your baby is warm and com­fort­able dur­ing the shoot. Source: pixabay.com

Tips

Apply these sim­ple strate­gies to keep your ses­sion run­ning smooth­ly.

  • It rarely hap­pens that a new­born sleeps from the moment they enter the stu­dio until the end of the pho­to ses­sion. There­fore, allo­cate time so that the par­ents of the baby can feed and change the baby.
  • To make the ses­sion as calm as pos­si­ble, heat the room to 24 degrees. When the baby is wrapped, low­er the tem­per­a­ture. The baby should be warm and cozy, but not too hot.
  • A good option is to use white noise to help calm the baby. To do this, you can use a spe­cial appli­ca­tion on your phone or find a playlist in a famil­iar music ser­vice.

post-processing

  • White bal­ance. Using the Eye­drop­per Tool in Light­room, select the gray card image and click on the gray card with the eye­drop­per tool. This will change the white bal­ance. Syn­chro­nize the set­tings with the orig­i­nal image you chose to edit.
  • Remov­ing unnec­es­sary ele­ments. Using Pho­to­shop, clean up the image of excess details. Use Con­tent Aware Fill to remove large objects such as the pho­tog­ra­pher’s feet. Use tool Patch (Patch) to remove bumps and spots on the skin.
  • Skin red­ness cor­rec­tion. Check out the Hue and Sat­u­ra­tion slid­ers in Pho­to­shop. Select the red chan­nel and move the hue slid­er down to ‑180 until the areas con­tain­ing red turn pur­ple. Move the hue of the col­or by select­ing the skin and adjust the hue slid­er to +8. Mask out the adjust­ment on the lips so they stay red.
  • Plas­tic. Tidy up the shape of the plaid using Pho­to­shop’s Liquify Fil­ter and the Push Tool to gen­tly adjust any ele­ments of the image that aren’t in the right place.

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