You’ve scoured Instagram feeds and the rest of the internet to find the most beautiful newborn portraits. You’ve already created a Pinterest board full of all of your favorite inspo images. You know if you prefer lavish props or more simple and classic photos; if you want bonnets or headbands, neutrals only or pops of color. When you close your eyes, you can envision exactly what style of images you want for your newborn. But what about for the family photos?
During my discovery call with pregnant mamas, I find that other than knowing for sure that they do want family photos, they often haven’t given them anymore thought than that. Unlike the newborn photos they have pictured in their head, they have no clue what style of imagery they want for the family portion of the session. Many don’t even realize that they have an option of different styles. But guess what? You do! And I’m here to fill you in so that you can decide exactly which one is right for you and your newborn photo session.
Many people assume that studio family photos can only be achieved at a dedicated portrait studio, and therefore, think that it is not an option for them during an in-home newborn session. But I have great news! This is completely false, and I regularly provide these images for my newborn families here in Jacksonville, FL. All we need is a plain backdrop and a studio light. Easy peasy.
These photographs are perfect for families who either do not consider their home to be photo ready (i.e. new home and not decorated, going through a remodel, aren’t in love with their current furniture, etc.) or who simply prefer a clean look without distractions. For these portraits, families are posed for an artistic style and the crop is generally tighter than one might find in other types of imagery, such as “lifestyle,” which I will get to shortly. As a result, this type of portrait focuses on baby and how tiny they feel in your arms.
And as an added bonus, if finding an outfit to wear feels daunting so soon after having a baby, these photos lend perfectly to wearing a plain black dress or a white shirt and jeans.
The backlit portrait is one of my absolute favorite ways to photograph families during a newborn session! If you prefer a studio style portrait for the reasons mentioned above, but also LOVE black and white imagery, backlit portraits make a timeless and beautiful photograph. These images immediately draw your eye to the details and emotion of the photograph. They are classic and elegant, which is why my clients fall so in love with them.
If you are interested in including this type of imagery into your newborn photo session, there are a couple of things that you may want to keep in mind when planning your family’s outfits. Having everyone wear white or cream is the best way to achieve this desired look. Imagine if one person was wearing a darker color or if someone had on a heavily patterned shirt… these things would stand out and be what you noticed first in the photograph. That’s not what we want at all. The focus should always be on facial features and the connection between family members. Texture in your clothing, however, provides added depth to your portraits. The lace on big sister’s dress or the delicate bow on baby’s head.. It is these small details that give this portrait a subtle elegance. Luckily, sticking to all white or cream shirts and dresses is super easy to do!
If you are even thinking about including backlit photographs into your newborn photo session, I highly encourage you to do it. They can easily be photographed in addition to another style of family portrait, and I can promise you, these pieces of art will NEVER go out of style!
Lifestyle imagery has become extremely popular over the years and with good reason. Because these portraits are un-posed and your own home is used as the backdrop, they offer more relaxed images that focus on the natural connection between family members. This type of photography is more “go with the flow” in nature and can easily be achieved with both an awake or sleeping newborn. For those that want to include their fur babies in a few photos, lifestyle is definitely the simplest way to go!
These portraits are typically taken in the nursery, living room, and/or master bedroom, so you will need to take more care when choosing your outfits. I tell my Jacksonville families that they can be as casual or dressed up as they’d like, but to keep in mind where in their home they will be having their photos taken. Will they be lounging on a cozy gray couch or snuggled up to their baby on a patterned nursery chair? Your clothing should complement your surroundings, not compete or blend in with it.
I’d love to know which style you would choose for your newborn family portraits! Share in the comments below! If you still can’t decide, take a look at some of the families on my portfolio page or if you’re ready to book a session and begin styling your next wall art-worthy newborn portrait session, contact me today!
Erin of Erin Elyse Photography is a Jacksonville in-home studio Newborn Photographer in Northeast Florida. Erin specializes in beautifully capturing your timeless memories and turning them into luxurious works of art. Also serving the families of Ponte Vedra, Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, Jacksonville Beach, St. Augustine, Riverside, San Marco, Nocatee, Mandarin, Fleming Island and the surrounding areas of Northeast Florida.