I can’t imagine the excitement of bringing home a precious baby girl to her two big brothers who probably immediately assume the role of protectors and guardians of their perfect new baby sister. I saw this so clearly when miss 14-day-old Harper and her brothers visited me in my studio for the little miss’ newborn session.
When Harper’s mom first inquired about a newborn session with us, she expressed some anxiousness that her energetic boys might not cooperate for any photos with their new sister. I let her know that while this is a completely reasonable concern, my assistant and I have some tried & true tricks for handling sibling and family poses so we can get those oh so Christmas card-worthy photos! One thing I always do is allow siblings to explore the studio however they want before we start trying to take any photos. Here are a few of our favorite tricks:
1)We let them wander around and explore and even touch the equipment (with guidance of course) so they get to visually see every possible little thing that could distract them before we ask the to do anything for us. This really helps get their curiosity bugs out and our studio is child friendly so no harm can really be done to anything if they want to touch things.
2)I will also demonstrate the poses i would like them to do with a teddy bear so they can visually see what we would like them to do. If you can make it a game or tell them I need their help with the baby they usually will want to participate.
3) The most important thing to remember though, is that sometimes kids just don’t want to be forced to do anything they don’t want to, and that is totally okay. They may not take an interest at all in the baby due to the nature of change and transition after the baby is home. If that is the case we often move right into photos of just the baby. After a while, the sibling(s) usually become curious and interested in what we are doing and will want to come over and investigate. I have them come over, help me with something (like hold my camera strap so I don’t drop my camera) and let them feel a part of the experience. After a while they may make a move to want to be in the photos as well.
One key thing is to encourage parents to let go of their expectations and allow their kids to do whatever it is they want to do instead of forcing a certain pose. This will most often allow their children’s true personalities to shine and create opportunities for really fun and authentic shots of the siblings together. But remember, kids will be kids and we can’t always get them to respond the way we want them to…and that is ok.
Here’s a super photography tip for siblings: When taking sibling photos from overhead, I always make sure to keep their heads raised so I don’t photograph up their noses :) I use little pillows or rolled up towels under their heads and shoulders to keep their chins down. This also helps gives good support to little arms holding their precious new sister!
This cozy cream basket stuffer from La Laine Couture made her look like she was sleeping on a fluffy cloud. It was super adorable. I love this cream wrap from: Isty Bitsy Blooms and the way the texture contrasts against the woolly basket stuffer. It made for a perfect natural color combo.
When we talked about the style they wanted to go towards for the session, Harper’s mom mentioned wanting a mix of light and airy with pops of color. I immediately thought of this funky fabric wrapped basket against a natural, hardwood floor. Perfect pop of color and oh that sweet little tongue sticking out!? I just cant…
Those dainty little hands!! I just love her. She gave the sweetest little smile was all snug in the potato sack pose.
I had such a nice time with little Harper and her beautiful family. Thanks for letting me be apart of capturing this special time!