Updated: Jul 26
Covid has changed the way maternity and newborn sessions are done these days, it's true. But I've learned that these new constraints actually result in stunning new perspectives and experiences. A reflection in a window. An excuse to get fresh air or visit the local eucalyptus grove. These are all benefits that have been born from the changing times. Here's a little overview about how my sessions look during the days of Covid.
New constraints actually result in stunning new perspectives and experiences.
I take several precautions to ensure the health of my clients. First, we'll both complete a Covid screening form a day before our session to assess potential Covid symptoms or exposure.
Throughout our session, I am masked and keep social distance when possible. We will plan what we can ahead of the session to reduce the amount of discussion that takes place on set.
In addition to my trusty 35mm, I've become reacquainted with my zoom lens which lets me get details from a distance.
Everything is sanitized before and after each session, and best hygiene practices are taken in my personal life and to/from sessions.
New, and Old, Locations
The biggest way I can keep you safe is to stay in a high-air-flow place and wear a mask while I photograph. This means I stay outside for the majority of our session. But this doesn't mean we can't still do sessions at home. Here are example images from newborn and maternity sessions, both at home and in nature.
Newborn | Residence
Some people choose to stick with the comfort of home for their newborn session. We use both the interior and exterior of their home.
For interior shots, it feels just like the usual indoor session. And it's easy to do interior shots as long as there is a window or door accessible for the photographer.
For exterior shots, especially when the weather is pleasant, it's an enjoyable time for the whole family to be outside together. I've found that newborns are really happy when they're looking at the trees and feeling the breeze.
Although most of my work is lifestyle and fine-art style, I also offer natural/simple posed newborn shots, and these can still happen outdoors. I can find studio-quality lighting anywhere, even in your yard. I bring washed/sanitized swaddles and accessories. I let you swaddle the baby while I provide instruction.
Here are shots from some recent sessions.
Lifestyle + Fine Art Newborn | Mostly Interior
This session was photographed through windows and doors, and outside of the house, so that I could remain in a high-airflow location.
Lifestyle Newborn | All Outdoors
This session took place 100% outdoors on the back deck. The toddler zipped in and out of the back door grabbing snacks and toys while we were photographing.
Front Door Mini Session | All Outdoors
This was a mini newborn session. We used the front steps and sidewalk at this San Francisco residence to get all of our shots, which gratefully involved lots of smiles from the little one!
Lifestyle and Posed Newborn | Backyard
This posed newborn shot was all set up outside. It's easy to find studio-perfect lighting in any location. The rest of the shots took place in two spots of the backyard.
Newborn | Nature
This was a less common location for newborn sessions pre-Covid, but now more clients are choosing to have newborn photos done in a park.
Choose a special place you love, or a simple green space close to your home (or both!). You may choose to wait a little longer, a few weeks instead of a few days, to do a nature session.
Being outside and in fresh air seems to make everyone involved happy. Newborns seem to love the trees and sunlight, so I rarely see tears! It's been a beautiful experience.
Maternity | Nature
These sessions don't look much different these days. It's totally normal for maternity sessions to be at the beach or in a forest. I have zoom lenses for those close-up shots, and the landscape shots haven't changed a bit!
I keep a close eye on location availability under changing local rules, but right now accessibility hasn't been a problem. When some restrictions were in place, I knew of accessible and low-trafficked places to use.
Nature as location is relatively low risk in terms of transmission. Plus, I wear a mask! We try to schedule our session at a time when there will be fewer people around. But, when we cross paths with someone else, you can put on a mask if you want to. In general, I've found that other park-goers are supportive and congratulatory when they see a new or soon-to-be-mama having photos done and not wearing a mask. This special occasion seems to bring joy to all involved.
Residence Maternity: Here's where things have changed a bit, but it's resulted in really neat photos! People are still doing maternity sessions at home. Clients either use their yard, porches, sidewalks, etc. and/or they use the interior of their home and I photograph through windows and open doors.
This new setup actually creates some interesting and beautiful perspectives. When the door or window is seen in the photo, it sets the context. Other times, I can photograph through the window/door and no one who sees the photos would guess that the photographer was outside. It's also easy to choose your residence. The location piece is checked off the list as soon as you book!
[photos to come following model release]
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org or drop a comment below.
I'm currently booking newborn and maternity sessions on weekends or weekday evenings. Email email@example.com. This is your excuse to treat yourself and celebrate new life. Something we're all in love with.