December 17, 2023

Then vs Now, Newborn Photography Edition

behind-the-scenes, newborn photography

How has newborn photography changed in the past decade?

This is a photo from my very first posed newborn session. I love it just as much today as I did the day I took it, a decade ago. But a lot has changed in the newborn photography world in that time, and looking back, some of it's style (bye bye chunky crochet, hello wispy-soft knits) and some of it's just the natural evolution of the industry.

Then: chunky crochet

Now: soft knits

Remember when themed super-chunky crochet newborn outfits were all the rage? The outfits were SO cute, but they never fit quite right, and because they were so chunky knit, it was impossible to "soften" them around baby. Now, creamy-soft knits are the thing, and there are a few wonderful vendors who make them in all sorts of themes, AND the little outfits actually FIT a newborn!

Then: a sometimes thing

Now: a full-time niche

Back then, no one really specialized in in-studio posed newborn photography, but now it's a legitimate full-time niche, and it's MY full-time niche.

Then: go with the flow

Now: posed perfection

This is a style thing, sure, but it's also an industry-wide standard. Our newborn poses have names (taco, womb, egg, bum up, froggie, etc.) and most of us strive for technical perfection. It's still very baby-led, but I love how organized and deliberate we are with newborn posing and workflow now.

Then: bright colors and LOTS of them!

Now: Monochromatic setups

Simplicity is in right now, with gorgeous monochromatic setups, which makes images taken today very timeless. Sometimes I miss the mix-and-match bright colors from ten years ago, but I do love a one-color set where baby is the focus.

Then: the sooner, the better!

Now: timing isn't as important

There used to be a hard and fast rule in newborn photography that the in-studio newborn session had to happen when baby was between 5 and 12 days old. Now, that timing is much more open; it's totally okay to book the session a bit later, from about 5 days until three weeks. We newborn photographers have learned to be more flexible and honed our skills in soothing babies and posing and photographing babies who don't want to sleep during their session.

Then: trencher bowls

Now: tiny beds and cute buckets

I don't know when the trend left, because dang, babies posed in wooden trencher bowls are still so cute, but now it's much more popular to pose newborns in little beds and in darling little buckets. I swear I'm going to bring trencher bowls back into style!

Then: Safety first

Now: Safety first

Some things never change, and this is one of the constants in newborn photography: SAFETY FIRST!

Then: Marine City, Michigan

Now: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

I can't forget to add this one! My first newborn studio was in Marine City, Michigan, but now I'm snuggling babies in Sioux Falls, South Dakota!

I love looking back and seeing how much newborn photography has changed in the past ten years, and I'm so excited to see where we'll be in the next ten years!

To book your own newborn photo session, send me a message here!