Much like weddings, baby photography wasn’t something I ever saw myself getting into. I saw those shoots with naked newborns in flower pots and various other peculiar household objects, and no doubt loads of wet wipes and towels at the ready, and I thought “not for me”.
That was before a friend visited with her baby girl and I heard about “cake smashes”. People pay hundreds of pounds to take their kids to a studio, put them down in front of a cake, and have the subsequent chaos captured on camera. It can be as much as £800 for some of these shoots, AND you have to provide your own cake. Someone somewhere is laughing all the way to the bank.
I thought it incredible, the industry that has sprung out of people wanting cute shots of their kids. I feel that in the UK we’re becoming slightly more Americanised in how we want professional shoots to document absolutely everything. The engagement shoot, then the wedding, the baby announcement, the baby shower, the bump, the baby… the list goes on. You can pay as little as £19 to go to a studio and have your child photographed, but as soon as you want prints the price goes up into the £100s. Young families are paying extortionate amounts to capture these moments, and often the photos they get back are beautiful but not really a natural look at who they are as individuals or as a family.
So, much like my approach to wedding photography, I like a natural style with things. More of a documentary feel that comes from capturing real moments rather than choreographing something. And certainly doing it in a way that is affordable!
Luckily I know a couple of cute babies that were born in December, and so I arranged shoots with them and their awesome mums. We set up my studio with a simple white backdrop and lights, and with a few toys and changes of clothes we spent a couple of hours capturing Baby E and Baby J doing what babies do. We had smiles, laughs, tears, dribble bubbles, the works, and all of those moments led to some beautiful photographs.
I realised though, that the most precious moments are often those that aren’t documented; the hours spent alone at home, usually just mum (or dad) and baby going about their daily routine of feeds and changes and naps. Those hours quickly turn into days, then weeks, and soon into months and the baby is no longer a baby, the moments are just memories, and all that is left is the odd photo taken quickly on a phone, or some studio shots that were captured when the baby was on its best behaviour.
I want to offer a service that doesn’t only cover the studio style baby photos (which is portable so I can do home visits), but one where I also come to people’s homes while they’re having a normal day with baby, and we spend some time capturing the moments that are central to the start of the baby’s life. Those moments aren’t glamorous, but they’re real, and they’re precious.
Here are some shots from the sessions I did with little E and J. If you know of anyone looking for some no-fuss, affordable baby photography, point them in my direction! For Mother’s Day, I’ll be doing a 20% off deal, for all bookings made and deposits placed in March. Get in touch via the Contact page.