When is the best time to take newborn photos?

Most Newborn Photographers will agree that the best time for a newborn photoshoot is in the first two weeks after your baby is born.

My personal preference for a newborn photoshoot is within the first three weeks after birth however I am always happy to work around this time frame.

Some Photographers will say within the first ten days after birth is their preference. Others will say even up to the first 10 weeks is fine for a newborn photo shoot.

Personally, I have photographed newborns from 2 days old through to 10 weeks old. If it is not possible to photograph a newborn within the first three weeks, I have a discussion with my clients about what to expect from the session and we go from there.

Why is 2 weeks the normal timeframe?

Within two weeks after birth is the normal time frame for a newborn photoshoot because babies are generally very sleepy and easy to settle during this time. It is probably safe to say that both the baby’s parents and the Photographer want the session to run as smoothly as possible, with minimum disruption to the baby. When babies are sleepy and content, the session will be easier and run smoother for all concerned. Photographers will get great shots and everyone will be happy.

We all love photographs where babies have their eyes open, too. However when babies are awake, we would usually only get a small handful of great shots. This is because of the way that babies wave their hands around and contort their faces when they are awake – both of which are adorable, but generally parents don’t want 30 photos of their babies squinting and blinking. They can easily take these types of shots themselves.

Anyone who has experience with newborns will also tell you that babies change and grow rapidly. Some newborn babies love tucking up their legs underneath them. In this instance you can expect lots of gorgeous poses where your baby is curled up looking new and squishy. After the first couple of weeks, most babies prefer to stretch out more.

But guess what? Not all babies are the same. 

This will come as no surprise to most people.

I have photographed babies as young as 7 days old who want to remain awake for most of our session together. They are curious and alert and just seem to want to be part of things. I have photographed babies at 10 and 11 days old who can lift their own heads up with ease and like to wriggle and stretch out much more than curl up. No matter how many times we might encourage a leg to be tucked under, they shoot it back out again and stretch it straight as can be. I have also photographed a baby very recently who was 8 weeks old and slept peacefully for most of the session and curled up just like some very new babies under two weeks old do.

The best time to book in your newborn photo session is when you are still pregnant. This way, you can research Photographers and find one with a style that will suit you. Once your baby is born, it is usually then just a matter of making a time with your Photographer as soon as it is convenient.

To find out about newborn sessions with me and how long a session takes, you can read more here.

Having a photography session with your newborn is incredibly special and it is something that you will never regret. Those precious memories will be beautifully documented for you and the images will be enjoyed by everyone in the family for years to come.