I remember how hard I fought against doing baby sessions. I had what I thought at the time were very good reasons for not doing it:
IT IS EXPENSIVE: Newborn portraiture (done well) is a whopping investment. You never really know how much money you are going to spend till you you're too far gone in your decision to change you mind. Thankfully, I have enough self disciple to confidently walk the very thin line between what I need and what I want. Nevertheless my pocket is still traumatized. It's all the cute stuff that conveniently pops up in your mail box just when you've vowed to cut down on spending for props. That's when you suddenly realize how much you NEED that bumble bee newborn romper complete with antenna and woven honeypot. (I didn't buy it btw . Self discipline. Elom 1- Adorable romper seller 0)
IT IS TIME CONSUMING: I've tried to get around this by honing my workflow and pricing my packages for timed sessions. This is the only way I can afford to have something for everyone in my packages but boy do those babies know how to make me work for it. I tell parents it could take up to an hour to settle a baby. I give all parents a very precise preparation guide on what to do to bring me sleepy babies. Do they follow it to the letter like I ask them to? Your guess is as good as mine. "Ooh don't worry my baby is always sleeping" If I had 10 cedis for every parent who told me that only to have their newborn stare defiantly into my face the whole session, I would be on a private resort in Belize by now. (lol.....hmmm maybe I should start betting with parents...where's my bikini?...)
IT IS PATIENT WORK: Let's just say I have surprised myself.
THERES ONLY ONE WAY TO DO IT: That's the safe way! Newborn portraiture is basically handling someones whole life and some, propping and positioning them in ways to create 'awww inspiring' photos that families will treasure forever. There is no room for trial and error. YOU HAVE GOT TO KNOW WHAT YOURE DOING!! I believe maternal instincts help some, but only to a certain degree. It certainly helps that I've managed to keep three human beings alive. I work on all my baby sessions with my husband. He's the ying to my yang and my secret weapon in newborn portraiture. We know what the miracle of new life is and we don't take that for granted. All three of our children were high risk and we only had each other to handle them with care. At no point would we knowingly or unknowingly risk the safety of a newborn to get a shot, however epic the shot may be. This is why our clients trust us and continue to do so.
THESE BABIES ARE CONTAGIOUS: I will admit it, I was afraid. One minute you're cuddling cute babies the next minute you're having an ultrasound (Jesus!) God had to promise me, the way He promised Noah after the flood, that NEVER AGAIN! (come on somebody)...I'm done having babies,... finito! Which is what makes this the perfect job for me, this is the only way the Lord could deliver me from a perpetual state of pregnancy. I get to hold them, cuddle them, rock them, sing to them and bid them farewell in Jesus name. Won't He do it! Mighty to save indeed.
So now here I am, smack in the middle of what I believe is my calling, happy to wake up on Monday mornings. Who would have ever thought?
Newborn portraiture is all of the above and I wouldn't have it any other way. It fills my spirit with so much joy to be able to create imagery for families that they will value forever. That fleeting moment of perfection that is the first few weeks of newborn life, to be able to capture that and let it exist to be remembered for all time. That my friends, is what sets me on fire!
What sets you on fire? Have you found it yet? Tell me in the comments