Newborn Mentoring | Transitioning between Newborn Poses | Oct 2014

During the year I take out some time to mentor my fellow photographers to help them improve their newborn photography at my Bothell WA studio. This photographer from Calgary, Alberta was already strong with her technical knowledge (exposure, lighting as well as newborn posing) and needed a little help on improving efficiency transitioning between newborn poses and shooting better. I will touch lightly on transitioning between newborn poses.

During our two days together, we photographed three newborns.

Our first newborn Rory wasn’t a ‘newborn’ by definition of newborn photographer. Most photographers like to photograph their tiny clients around 5 – 14 days old as they are very sleepy and can still retain their womb-like posing ability. Rory was considered a mature newborn at five weeks old. Mature newborns have developed further along so their ligaments have strengthened. Because of this, they normally may not be able to tolerate some (or even most) of the “curled up” newborn poses. They are more alert and less likely to sleep through pose changes. We swaddled Rory to keep her arms from flailing and focused on open-eyed awake and parent-baby shots.

Seattle WA Newborn Photographer older newborn
Not all newborns sleep as hoped. Rafael was 10 days old and very awake. We weren’t able to practice any transitioning between newborn poses but we were able to photograph different angles of Rafael from this one set-up. He remained still enough to not need swaddling.

Seattle WA Newborn Photographer awake


Luckily, our third newborn model Eliana (10-days old) did sleep and allowed us to practice transitioning between poses. I started with the womb pose, accessorizing and shooting various of angles as we go. Then we transitioned to tushie-up pose, easily a popular one with parents. I then gently pulled her legs away and rolled her bum to the side for the side-laying pose. And last pose (which didn’t happen as Eliana woke up to eat), I would roll her so she is back on her knees, bring her right arm up to her face and place the right hand under her left hand that is already under her cheek.  Notice that in all three poses, her face and left hand remained in the same position so as not to disturb her slumber while we pose her.

Seattle WA Newborn Photographer beanbag transition poses angles


There you have it!—how I transition between four newborn poses on the beanbag.

Thank you to all our models for providing your time!

Interested in maternity and newborn photography mentoring? Check us out! Designated Master Photographer at Masters Photographers International and proud member of Professional Photographers of America, Eden Bao operates a portrait studio in Bothell WA and offers mentoring and workshops to photographers interested in advancing their skills. Classes are limited to a small group for the best instruction and hands-on learning. For more information, please visit Maternity Photography Workshops.