How To Prepare For Hospital Newborn Sessions
Ashley Newman Photography
It’s been a wild two years- some times photographers are allowed in the hospital, and then we shut down or tighten restrictions again. At times, I will go months without being in a hospital or being able to do a Fresh 48 Session. That is so hard on everyone! Memories are missed, and things just feel strange.
As we try to get back to some sense of normal, it’s so important to remind ourselves not only to breathe and trust the process, but what exactly a Fresh 48 is.
How To Prepare
Good communication is key- from making sure staff and family know what the procedures are, to giving good updates on how baby is doing. For a Fresh 48 session, you want to make sure to limit visitors (and of course follow the hospital policy on visitation) as well as prepare everyone. Nothing is worse than a photographer showing up to do photos and having to steal time away from grandparents or your baby being whisked away for a bath unexpectedly.
Lighting is essential- I can work with nearly any lighting situation, but making sure to have all room light turned off and windows as open as possible will really help. Let that light in! If you have a particularly dark room, make sure to let your photographer know and expect to have a variety of black and whit images as well as the possibility of some flash.
Declutter- no need to clean your room, but prior to having photos, ask someone to help declutter your bed space and the guest couch so no time is wasted trying to move things around.
No posing- hospital sessions are not about posing or looking perfect. It’s the rawness and realness of the experience. Consider how comfortable you are with nursing photos, and the general rawness of the whole birthing experience. If this feels uncomfortable for you, make sure to discuss your thoughts with your photographer.
Plan ahead- who will be in photos with you? Make a plan and let your photographer know what you are hoping to capture. Some hospitals are still not allowing very many quests, so but may not be possible to get sibling pictures. Additionally, you may not feel prepared or want images of yourself with your baby. Many moms opt to have the session focus solely on their new baby.
At the end of the day, the experience should not be stressful, but rather peaceful and a snapshot of your time there. Talk with your photographer about what else to expect and how they like to run their sessions, and always make sure communication is strong.