5 Tips for Including Older Siblings in a Newborn Session

studio-newborn-session-with-older-sibling

Your little family has added another member and it’s so important to capture this moment in your lives! One of the best things about having a newborn photo session done is it’s a great way to get new photos of the whole family, including any older siblings but it can sometimes be a challenge for parents to encourage toddlers to cooperate during the photo session. That’s why I put together these five tips for including older siblings in your newborn photo shoot.

Give them time in the spotlight.

An older sibling of a newborn has often just become an older sibling, which means they’re still getting used to having a baby in the house. They may feel that their parents don’t pay as much attention to them with all the needs of their new sibling. Take time to make sure your older kids feel involved in the photo session, both in photos with your new baby and photos of the whole family together. Your newborn session is a great way to let older siblings know that it’s not just about your new addition, but about your growth as a family.

Encourage them to snuggle up.

Your older child may feel unsure or uncomfortable around the new baby, and a photo session can be a great way to help them loosen up and get to know their new sibling. Some of my favorite photos are images of the older sibling holding, kissing, or snuggling the new baby. Encourage them to gently touch the newborn and to get close, which can lead to a lot of giggles and smiles and some great photos.

Let them do their own thing.

One of the most important things is not to force your older child to participate in the session. The last thing you want is a tantrum or a grumpy face in your photos! Instead, encourage them to participate without forcing them. You may be surprised how much they enjoy being involved on their own, and giving your older child space to explore and relax can result in more natural, genuine images of your family.

Make time for breaks.

Your newborn won’t be the only one who needs breaks. Have some snacks handy for older siblings, and give them a chance to step away from the camera and just play for a little while. I almost always take photos with the older sibling first so they don’t get bored and agitated as the session goes on. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule if the older sibling just woke from a nap or comes into the studio and is noticeably uncomfortable. In this situation, I want the sibling to relax and play in the space first so they get more comfortable in my studio.

Talk to them beforehand.

It’s so important to let your older children know what to expect from a photo session. Whether they love to be in front of the camera or are a little bit shy, talking to them in the days before your shoot about how things will go can really ease their minds and make them more comfortable with me. I also suggest showing them pictures of my from my social media accounts or website so they recognize me when you arrive. Following me on social media and pointing out photos of me and my family can put them at ease.

Be sure to sit down with your older child throughout the week before your session and talk to them about how you’re going to have photos taken and the importance of listening to both you and me, the photographer. With a little preparation, you may find that they’re excited to participate, which makes for wonderful photos!

If you are interested in booking a session for your own growing family, please reach out to me by using the contact form on my website.

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meet Marianne

My name is Marianne Bley. Some refer to me as a Professional Wedding Crasher, others The Baby Whisperer.

I have been building relationships and delivering spectacular wedding experiences to couples for the last 12 years. I have photographed over 300 weddings and have an extensive list of testimonials across the web.

4 years ago, I took the leap into specializing in newborns as well. I have spent this time working side by side with doctors and nurses in my local hospitals, as well as, taking private training lessons with various newborn specialists and leaders in the newborn photography industry to learn everything I can about these beautiful little people. Since then, I have photographed over 3,000 babies!

My work doesn't stop there, I assist clients in designing stunning displays to grace the walls of their home and/or business. By utilizing their personal style and color palette when planning their session, I am able to create displays that fit seamlessly into their current home decor. 

Whether you are looking to show off that new flashy new engagement ring or celebrate the growth of your family, I am your girl!

ARE JUST A FEW OF
MY FAVORITE THINGS

Lemonade, hand lettering,
& shiny objects

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