Tips for taking Monthly Baby Pictures
When you hold your newborn baby for the first time, it is hard to believe that in the next 12 months your little squishy baby will walking and babling away. They grow and change so quickly! Especially in the first year. No wonder taking monthly baby pictures has become so popular!
If you don’t know me, I’m Kristen. A family photographer in Akron Ohio. I have two sweet little girls and have taken monthly baby pictures of each of them. I learned what worked well and what doesn’t. And, I would love to share my favorite tips so you can take better monthly photos of your baby.
Take a look on Pinterest and you will see many variations on the monthly baby pictures. One thing almost all of them have in common is the use of an object in the pictures every month. This allows you to see just how much your baby has grown compared to an object that remains the same each month. Some ideas include:
- stuffed animal – I used a Jelly Cat stuffed animals for both my girl’s monthly baby photos
- child’s chair – Pottery Barn Kids has a chair that would look perfect in monthly baby photos and be something your child could use day to day.
- chalkboard sign with details about your baby that month
- blanket with months to be circled
- wooden numbers from a craft store
Consistency is Key
When you look at all 12 images together, you want really see how much your baby has grown and changed. Keeping everything else in the photos consistent allows your baby’s growth to be the focus. Some things to consider are keeping the location, outfit choices, props, time of day and lighting consistent.
Pick a location and use it every month. I used my couch (my husband was always within an arms reach spotting her), a red throw pillow and her little Jelly Cat lion. If you are taking these pictures on your own, you may want to consider using the crib for your monthly baby photos. This is a safe place for your child (remember, they will eventually be crawling and exploring). And knowing they won’t topple off a chair or fall off the couch will allow you to focus on taking a great picture.
If you choose to photograph your baby in his crib, I would suggest laying him down. Then stand on a chair or small step stool so that you can take the picture straight down at him.
Consistency in what your baby wears will also help keep the focus on how she has grown and changed. You don’t have to dress your baby in the same thing every month, but similar style is important. If you choose a neutral onesie some months and bold floral dresses other months, that will leave the group of images looking inconsistent. I personally love solid colored onesies because it allows your baby’s face to be the focus of the monthly baby pictures.
But, you can also use your outfits and color choices to create a specific style for this project. Maybe you photograph your daughter on a black and white striped blanket and dress her in bold vibrant dresses each month.
We talked a bit about using a stuffed animal or chair to help show how much your baby is growing from month to month. If you choose to include any other props, be sure to keep them consistent each month.
This is one of my favorite tips for taking monthly baby pictures. Or photos of your children in general. It is amazing how much better a picture will look just from having good lighting. I explained a little more about how to find great light in your home in the post: Photographing Baby’s First Year.
Look for a window or sliding glass door that has soft light streaming in. The best window in your house may change from hour to hour as the sun moves across the sky. So, once you find a great window, you may want to consider taking your monthly baby photos at the same time of day. That way you not only have a well lit picture, but the lighting will look consistent when you place all twelve monthly photos side by side.
Lastly, be sure to make sure your baby is safe when you are taking his or her monthly baby pictures. I know safety is one of the first things on our minds as a parent. All day. In everything we do.
But there is one safety tip that I think is worth mentioning because it may not cross your mind. If you are working with a bigger camera and photographing your baby from above, be sure to wear the camera strap around your neck. If you have ever watched a newborn photographer work, they always do this. Just in case the camera ever slipped out of this hands.
I hope these tips for taking monthly baby photos help you feel more confident photographing your little one. I’d love to see some of your photos! Feel free to drop them in the comments below or ask any questions you may have.
Camera: Nikon D810
If you would like more information about booking a custom child or family session with Kristen Fotta Photography, please click here for our contact page or feel free to call 330-289-3255 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.