Following the Trends in Newborn Photography in Fareham
I’ve been a photographer for over 20 years now and have seen styles change so much over the years. I’d always loved taking people photographs and back then had never considered taking newborn photographs. If I’m honest, I don’t think it really existed as a particular style. There were Olan Miles photography studios which were establish by Olan Mills in the US in 1932 and these studios were based in Mothercare stores in the UK. I think they mostly took babies that were a few months old, rather than during the first two weeks of being born.
As a teenager, I can remember seeing the Anne Geddes baby photos on books and calendars. She captured cute little babies wrapped up in leaves or placed in flower pots. Like me, Anne Geddes developed her passion for photography in her early 30s. Anne Geddes believes that “emotional content is an image’s most important element”. I definitely agree with this as I’m always amazed by the popularity of the newborn genre of photography and how it creates an emotional connection that new parents have with seeing the photographs of their new bundle of joy.
I remember in the early 90s when Demi Moore posed nude for her maternity session for the Vanity magazine. It had such a big impact on the industry, and pregnancy photographs became fashionable. It was taken by one of the most famous female photographers that I admire, Anne Leibovitz.
I first developed my photography business in the Wedding Photography industry and it never occurred to me to become a newborn baby photographer. I had enjoyed the odd lifestyle newborn photo session but had never thought of newborn studio photography. It just wasn’t my time I suppose for me, and I would never have dreamed of having my own studio; I’ve certainly come a long way in my photography career journey.
When I look back at some of my earlier newborn photographs, I can see that my own style has really evolved over the years. Like any industry, to keep any business going you have to constantly change and develop to meet the needs of your customers. I look at some of the props I used a few years ago and they are most definitely quite different from now.
To continually improve my skills, I follow some of the leading newborn photographers in the world. Looking at the props they use to create fresh looking photographs that my visiting mummies and daddies will want to use for their own babies. During lockdown, I have also bought some online learning courses to improve my creative wrap styling.
Being in lockdown in November gave me the luxury of time to rebuild my website and give it some care and attention. It didn’t really reflect my current style of photography. I quite often bring in newborn baby models so that I can try out new props and styles, which also gives parents an opportunity to have a wonderful newborn photography experience.
Before the Covid virus and the first lockdown, I would take the majority of my newborn photographs with the baby naked, posed on my beanbag. It was always risky with little accidents and having to change blankets through a shoot. I had just started to introduce basket and wrapped photographs into my portfolio. I would use a number of colour blankets but the latest trend is to keep things simple, and I tend to use a neutral backdrop, unless mummies have a preference. Although I’ve always offered this naked shoot, since lockdown very few parents will ask for it.
The much-loved beanbag pose with hands on chin has always been the most popular with parents. Firstly, I think parents are amazed how I can carefully get their baby to pose and how comfortable they look. I also keep the baby’s nappy on, which is cleverly hidden with a wrap or blanket. Of course, always popular is a cute little hat. or a beautiful crown of flowers for little girls.
Most of the photographs are with the baby being wrapped and snuggled up in baskets. I’ve introduced snuggly romper outfits and cute little hats. Lockdown gave me lots of time to create a lot of my own rompers and wraps. If a baby is in a deep sleep, I can usually get them dressed in the romper and then undress and wrap them. I love being able to create different wrapping styles. These few baskets and bowls are some of my favourites.
Sometimes I use props, and think in my head they will work, and this is a great way to bring in newborn models to the studio. One model shoot I did was with the gorgeous Odette, she was a little star and the colours were perfect to add to my website gallery to match my branding colours. Companies use the term ‘branding’ a lot, but what it really means is how customers see the company, a recognised style, the type of image used and the company’s values. Lockdown has given me more time to knit some wraps for the studio, and I was over the moon when my best friend in the US surprised me and knitted a wrap when she had never knitted before.
It will be interesting to look at my newborn photography in a few years’ time and see how it has developed. I wonder what the latest trends will be at that time? Let’s hope 2021 allows my studio open for the majority of the year and I get to take lots of newborn photographs.
(See my blog post Newborn Photography is my calling