Natural baby photography
Trends in baby and family photography come and go - every decade there is a new style that is popular (do you remember the one must have photo that everyone in the 80's had? Naked baby lying on the tummy on a fluffy sheep skin... erm... yes, my parents have that too of me.), but there is one style that never ceases to be exciting and preferable: the natural style. These days it has become a complete art form to capture beautiful family moments so naturally as if it was pure documentary but with such skills that elevate it to a whole new level.
(It is also the trend that brought the rise of mummy photographers. Being around the kids all day allows to capture the most relaxed and intimate moments in a family life. However, mummy photographers are rarely in those photos, because they are taking them.)
So why is natural style so everlasting? Because it's real. It shows who you really are, how you interact with each other, shows the little cute expressions you child has and a year later may replace it with another cute expression, shows your lifestyle, your hobbies, your love for outdoors, or for a specific place that is important to you. The opportunities in natural family photography are endless. Year by year you can fill an album with these photos.
On the contrary, take the other kind of baby shoots that are trending now: the frog pose and all the similar ones. They are cute, no doubt. And then? Do you need 50 of them? Will they be versatile? Will they tell anything about you? Will your friends have the exact same shots of their babies? How will they be perceived 30 years later? I know, they are still cute. Peacefully sleeping babies are so cute like nothing else.
So what can you do to achieve the best natural photos, that are still perfectly crafted? After, obviously, finding a family photographer that you trust and are comfortable with.
Pick a preferred location. Having a shoot at home is probably the easiest option, as you have everything you might need at your fingertips. For home shoots normally the best spots in the house are the living room, master bedroom, nursery.
Think about what you wouldn't want to see in the photos and put those away (water bottles, tissues, phone chargers, random items). Include other bits you love and are proud of (giant house plants, flowers in vase, fairy lights, personalised decoration, soft cushions, blankets, etc).
Choose your favourite outfits for the family and colour coordinate them. Prepare several sets, as during the shoot there is plenty of time to change - in order to achieve great variety.
Include your own props. Most photographers will bring along specific props (the one I love is a knitted delicate baby hat with bear ears), but again, think of anything that is specific to you and tells your story. Do you love pearl necklaces? Include them! I'm dying for pics of baby girls wearing mommy's necklace. Do you love tropical holidays? Include some wild coloured orchids.
Throughout the session I help my clients with "posing" ideas like where to stand, what to do, and I'll find the best angles for you so you won't need to worry about anything. Just be yourselves and enjoy the shoot!