Fort Mill’s Featured Newborn Myths

big brother baby sister, Fort Mill newborn photography

Over the years, I’ve photographed hundreds of Fort Mill newborns for their first official portrait. I love documenting this for parents with my stress-free portrait process. For more information on when to schedule your newborn portrait session, please visit this resource. 

Sweet boy snuggled up

So, I’ve been asked a lot lately about newborn portraits and some expectations from first-time parents that aren’t realistic. So I thought we would do quick myths versus reality post today to walk you through the top three myths. 

The Top Three Newborn Portrait Myths 

1.) Can We Get a Portrait of My Newborn Smiling?

Can we get a portrait of my newborn smiling? The answer is probably not. I apologize to the first-time parents who have seen my work and think that an adorable smiling newborn is the norm. It’s really like seeing a unicorn and taking a photo. Some days we just get lucky, but the reality is newborns are expected to smile by three months old. That’s normal. And I photograph babies between 5-14 days old. So those adorable smiles you saw are just plain luck. Some babies smile in their sleep, and we get a once-in-a-lifetime chance to click the shutter at the right time. Most of the time, it’s just not possible. Nothing I say or do will encourage a smile from a newborn this young. 

newborn myths Fort Mill New baby photographer, baby wrapped in pink hat

2.) Can we Get a Portrait of My Baby Looking at the Camera?

Here again, that milestone is around three months. Why, you ask? Baby’s vision and ability to focus just doesn’t line up with what’s going on in a professional camera. According to this AOA article about infant vision, “Their primary focus is on objects 8 to 10 inches from their face or the distance to the parent’s face.” from birth to 4 months of age. As a general rule in professional photography with a standard lens, I need at least 3 feet between my subject and the lens to properly get them in focus. That’s at minimum 36 inches. Baby just can’t focus on me at that distance. They may look in my direction, but again, it’s like with the smiles, even if I shoot fast, it’s a lucky shot to get both eyes looking into the camera. 

Secondly, babies at this age are very sleepy; just getting them to open their eyes is a feat. Newborns sleep between 16-18 hours a day during the first two weeks. 

custom portrait artwork album of newborn photo session

3.) Why Not Wait a Few Weeks to Take Newborn Portraits? 

So now I hear the wheels turning. Why not wait a few weeks and photograph them a bit older or a bit bigger? Here are a few reasons for you.

  • Baby acne – ugh, not a fun thing to think about, but it happens a lot, and it starts around two weeks old 
  • Cradle cap – this is similar to acne but on the scalp starts around three weeks old
  • The newborn curl – Eek, so sweet. Honestly, this is what so many moms choose newborn portraits to capture. That newborn curl is the sweetest position and reminds us that our baby just spent nine months inside our bodies growing and becoming a baby. 
pink sweetness, newborn portrait of a baby girl, natural posing, Charlotte, NC, Clover SC

Baby Sleep Doctor tells us, “Most babies grow out of the “newborn curl” within the first few weeks of their life” sad but true. This is the number one reason I encourage moms to call me before their baby arrives so we can get them in during the precious newborn stage. 

Mom holding her newborn for a portrait worth of the family gallery wall.

The thing is, by three weeks old baby is more aware that we are moving her. She may have acne, cradle cap, or not. But she will sleep less soundly as the days go by, she will stretch more, and if you want portraits like you see in my gallery, they are best created by two weeks of age. The older baby gets, the longer the session may take, and the more post-processing is required to remove acne. Post-processing takes time and increases your costs for a newborn session.

Your newborn portrait artwork will anchor the wall art without overpowering your theme or asthetic.
an example of a newborn portrait artwork displayed in the home

Your Fort Mill, SC Newborn Portrait Photographer

I feel lucky to meet and photograph your sweet baby! I get to relive the precious newborn stage over and over again. To create the best experience for my clients, I can only take on a limited number of newborn sessions per week. I would love to be your newborn photographer. Just send me a message here to schedule a time to chat or to schedule your session. Tell me did you find these newborn portrait myths helpful? Please let me know in the comments.

charlotte, nc, Newborn Photography,
Just a few precious new babies ❤️

When Should You Book Your Newborn Photos

Newborn girl on pink. Charlotte Newborn Photographer

Mama, I know you have a lot on your mind right now as you prepare to welcome your newborn baby. From planning your baby’s room, buying everything you need, and so much more, there’s a lot on your plate! 

If you’re here, you’re probably wondering when you need to actually schedule your newborn photos with a photographer. I’m here to help you! 

Want the answer?

Drumroll, please….

When Should You Book Your Newborn Photos 

The answer is that you should book your newborn photos as soon as you can! In fact, I’ve had clients book their newborn sessions with me before they share the big news with family and friends. (I can keep a secret) So, while you may not want to book as soon as you have a positive pregnancy test, booking as soon as you’re ready can ensure that you can work with the photographer that you want! 

If you’re a planner, this probably sounds great! If you’re not a planner, this may sound crazy to you. Let me explain why it’s important to book your newborn session as early as possible.

As a Charlotte area studio newborn photographer, I only take on a certain number of newborn sessions per week. I do this for a couple of reasons. 

1. I stay flexible around your due date because babies come when they want to! I make sure to have availability in the weeks before and after your due date to fit your session in. 

2. I dedicate time and energy to your session. When you’re in my studio, you’re never rushed for time. I block off several hours for each newborn session so that we have plenty of time. If baby needs a feed or a break, we can accommodate his or her needs. 

Finally, you don’t want to be researching and calling photographers during your postpartum season. Book your newborn photographer in advance so that you can just enjoy your baby those first few weeks. Check out my other resource on how to prepare for your newborn session here. 

Why You Shouldn’t Wait Until Baby is Born to Schedule Newborn Photos 

The window to photograph your sweet newborn is relatively short, about 5-14 days is the best time to take newborn photos. If a client reaches out after their baby is born, we have to move quickly to fit in the session. Unfortunately, I have had to turn away sessions because I’m already booked up! That’s why I highly recommend booking your session well in advance so that you don’t have to worry about any of this. 

Special Circumstances for Newborn Photos 

Of course, I want to touch on any special circumstances when it comes to newborn photos. If your baby needs to spend some time in the NICU or mama needs time to recover from the birth, you still deserve beautiful newborn photos. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions about this. I’m happy to help. 

Charlotte Newborn Photographer

As a studio Charlotte newborn photographer, my goal is to handle everything for you so that all you need to do is arrive at the studio with your beautiful family. From start to finish, you can trust me to not only document and capture your sweet new addition but to help you display these precious new portraits on the walls of your home. Click here to learn more about a portrait session with me.