What to Expect at your Newborn Portrait Session

Everything you need to know about booking professional newborn portraits

The newborn phase slips away so quickly.  Your baby changes and grows by leaps and bounds during the early days.  Before you know it, that amazing newborn smell is gone, along with the adorable peach fuzz skin and sweet little rolls and wrinkles.  There is no better way to document those details than with beautiful newborn portraits.

If you are thinking about having professional photos taken of your new baby, you likely have a lot of questions about what to expect.  I prepared this post to explain the entire newborn portrait process at my studio.  From what happens after you submit an inquiry, to finally seeing the images and receiving your beautifully finished artwork at the end. Not to mention all of the planning and work that goes on in-between! Don’t worry, I will explain everything you need to know.

The Newborn Portrait Process Explained

Pre-Session Consultation and Planning

newborn portrait taken in a professional newborn photography studio.  Chin on hands pose with cream colored backdrop.
professional newborn photos taken in New Jersey studio; baby girl on dark pink backdrop.

Our journey together begins with a pre-session consultation after your initial inquiry.  This will be a phone call where we can get to know each other.  We will discuss your family and your goals for your portrait session.

This consultation helps set us up for a fun and successful experience together. During this time, we can also begin planning out the details for your newborn session.  We can discuss styling options for props, colors and poses.  Don’t worry if you aren’t sure on all of this just yet. I can provide with you some ideas, and this can also evolve as we get further along in the process.

Once you have decided that I am the perfect fit for your family, we can formally book your session to hold your due date in my calendar.  This guarantees my availability for your baby.  We will determine the actual date for your portrait session shortly after baby has arrived.  The ideal timeframe to come in for your newborn’s portrait session will be within two weeks of birth. Don’t worry, I will stay in touch with you as your due date gets closer to help welcome your bundle of joy and make sure that we don’t miss a beat!

The Portrait Session

professional newborn photographer wrapping a newborn baby for a photoshoot in New Jersey portrait studio.
New Jersey photographer Yvonne Leon working in a newborn photo session

Your session will take place at my comfortable home studio in Randolph, NJ. I will have everything setup and ready before you arrive so that we can get the most out of our time together.  This will include backdrops, wraps and any props we may have discussed during our pre-session consultation.

Once you arrive, we will take some time to get settled in before starting. This is a good time for a diaper change or a feeding for baby. Newborn sessions usually last between 2-3 hours, so its important to make sure baby is comfortable and has a full belly before we begin. This should allow them to sleep uninterrupted for the duration of our session once I get started.

The portrait studio has a relaxing parent lounge with comfortable recliners where you are welcome to sit back while I work with baby.  There is also a restroom and a diaper changing station stocked with newborn diapers and wipes available for your convenience.  Not to mention complimentary refreshments and entertainment options while you wait!  I provide everything for families to feel welcome and comfortable at my studio. 

Image Reveal and Product Delivery

matted print collection, professional artwork products offered for newborn portrait sessions.
hardcover newborn photo album with gold embossing.

The next step in our newborn portrait process is the most exciting – getting to view and choose your images! Shortly after your portrait session we will meet again for your ordering appointment.  This is when you will get to see all of the unedited images from your session.  We will go through them together, make side by side comparisons, and ultimately you will get to choose the ones you love best. 

At this appointment, I will also show you the artwork products that are available so that you can decide which ones are the best fit for your images and your family.  Some may choose a custom designed Album while others may prefer a Gallery Box, which is a collection matted images.   There are also options for Wall Art for your home, as well as gift items for everyone on your list.

After you choose your images, I will send them off to get expertly retouched.  They will be ready within two weeks, at which time you will receive your digital files in an online gallery.  In the meantime, your artwork order will go into production, and your products will be ready for delivery a few weeks later.  Delivering your finished artwork is always my favorite part!  I just love seeing my clients’ reactions to their beautiful products.

Photographing your Baby and Family Beyond the Newborn Days

portrait of a sitting up baby wearing a teddy bear onesie outfit in a professional baby photography studio.
cake smash photo of a baby boy with blue and grey photography props.
family portrait of a pregnant mom, dad, and young daughter holding hands and laughing during a fall family portrait session.
Fall portrait of three sibling children holding hands and smiling at the camera, lined up from shortest to tallest.

Our experience together does not need to end after your newborn session! Many families return for one or two baby milestone sessions during baby’s first year.  I usually recommend a “sitter session,” which is for babies who can sit up unassisted, usually between 6-9 months.  And of course, a first birthday or “cake smash” session.  I just love watching my little clients grow and how much they change from one session to the next!  

You will be sure to love all of the beautiful and unique images that we will capture along the way.  It is the ultimate keepsake of your baby’s first year. Beyond the first birthday, many of my clients return for an annual family photography session to document their children as they grow and evolve over the years. It is always a wonderful time!

Get in Touch

Our experience together begins well before the portrait session, as I get to know you and your family and how you want to be photographed. Together, we'll create lasting heirlooms that make your family your art. Just fill out the form below and I'll send you more information to get started.

xo, Yvonne

Specializing in Newborn Photography, Baby Milestone Photos, and Cake Smash Photography. Based in Morris County, New Jersey.