sleeping newborn baby girl in white bonnet

The 5 Must-Haves in my Newborn Photo Studio

With 10 years of experience photographing newborns, there are items in my home studio I just cannot live without!  I’m going to skip the obvious ones like my camera, lighting, the baby, and props.  Here are the things that make my newborn photography sessions easier!

Newborn photography of baby girl wearing a white and pearl bonnet

  1. A great little space heater.  It’s no mystery that newborn studios are warmer than a typical photo studio.  Newborn babies are unable to regulate their body temperature and are used to being in a 98.6 degree environment, so we keep newborn studios warm to help them retain their body heat while unclothed.Thankfully, I do family portraits in a larger room (so parents don’t sweat), and use a smaller studio room in my home for the baby portraits. I keep this smaller studio around 80 degrees to keep the babies comfortable without being too warm.  The smaller room can be warmed up quickly with a small space heater, and also cooled off quickly when needed by opening the double doors to the room.

    photo of newborn girl holding her feet in newborn studio in Northern Virginia

    It’s important to have a space heater that is cool to the touch and turns off when tipped over.  I use this Holmes space heater, but bought it years ago and paid about 90% less than the $145 it’s currently selling for.

  2. Ice water.  Yes, it’s pretty warm in the smaller studio, and though the parents’ photos are done by the time we make our way into it, they are welcome and encouraged to stay to watch me photograph their infant.  It’s important that parents (especially mom, who is recovering from childbirth) stay hydrated and cool, so there’s a large pitcher of ice water resting to their right.newborn girl portrait by Rebecca Danzenbaker in Northern Virginia
  3. Candy and snacks. (Nut-free) With newborn sessions sometimes taking several hours, I keep snacks handy for parents and their other children and guests.  Speaking of children, I keep Dum Dum lollipops and Smarties handy, but out of reach, to encourage and reward hesitant older siblings to smile pretty in the photos with their baby brother or sister.three sisters newborn and sibling photography in Northern Virginia
  4. White noise machine. It reaches around 90db in the newborn womb, and they’re used to constant sound, so a good sound machine works wonders in keeping a baby calm and feeling like they’re back home in mom’s belly.   I love the Deep Sleep sound machine by Homedics and keep it on the “calm” setting.newborn girl in froggy pose in a lamb hat Northern Virginia by Rebecca Danzenbaker
  5. Wipes.  Lots and lots of wipes. When a baby is without a diaper for several hours, messes will happen.  It’s an inevitability that comes with newborn photography.  You clean it up and move on.  I have wipes stationed a three different places in my newborn studio so they’re always in reach, ensuring the baby and photography environment stay as clean as possible throughout the session.hope-37

Those are my maybe-not-so-obvious must-haves for my newborn studio!

If you’re expecting a newborn in the Northern Virginia area, please contact me to schedule your newborn photography session!  I only have a handful of sessions left before summer!

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