Lifestyle Newborn Photography

October 25, 2019

Lifestyle Newborn Photography

Wait… what exactly is lifestyle newborn photography?

You may have heard the term “lifestyle photography” and wondered what exactly that is. First of all, let me say that it is open to interpretation. Different photographers will have different ideas of what exactly makes for a lifestyle image or lifestyle session. In this post I’m going to use a recent in-home newborn session of mine to illustrate what I consider to be the most important hallmarks of lifestyle newborn photography.

Lifestyle Newborn Photography Means Real Connection & Interaction

Rather than stiff, formal images, lifestyle images capture real moments. This means that when I photograph a mother and her newborn I make sure that the image captures a moment that might happen even if the camera wasn’t there. You’ll notice in all the images below, the parents are looking down at their baby… a perfectly natural action that they probably spend most of their day doing!

Lifestyle newborn photography backlit portrait of mom gazing at newborn dad looking at newborn

And… Realistic Environment

In-home sessions are great for this because we can incorporate your natural environment into the portraits. However, lifestyle images can easily be achieved in the studio as well. Even the posed images I take of baby by himself are in a natural environment. The images below were taken on a special posing beanbag, but they don’t read that way. This little guy could be lying on a blanket on the floor or his parents’ bed. Had I photographed him in a miniature hot-air balloon or flowerpot the feeling of the image would be quite different.

baby lying on bed looking at the camera swaddled newborn sleeping on white bedding Newborn toes macro image

And… Storytelling

In the case of newborn photography, there is a big story to tell! In this session I’m telling the story of a new little person coming into the world, but also of a little girl becoming a big sister and a family growing from three to four.

Lifestyle newborn photography Lifestyle newborn photography

An in-home session can lend itself to special moments, like the one above. However, the image below could easily have been photographed in my studio. I think they both manage to tell the story of a newly minted big sister getting to know her little brother.
little girl's finger touching newborn brother's cheek

And sometimes a photograph just tells the story of what happens in the other room when mom is nursing the baby…black and white image of father tossing his child onto the bed

And… Posing

Yes! Lifestyle newborn photography absolutely includes posing. But… that does not mean holding a stiff pose and saying “cheese” for the camera. It simply means that in addition to placing my subjects in gorgeous light and photographing them at a flattering angle, I am also directing them.

Very few people can “act naturally” in front of the camera without direction. In this image I directed dad where to stand, how to hold his son and told him to bring him up for a kiss. The image looks natural because it’s a natural action, not because it was spontaneous!

Lifestyle newborn photography

And…even during a lifestyle newborn photography session we’ll take a few more posed portraits. Because… who can resist a photograph like this??

baby sister holding newborn brother

I hope that answers all your questions regarding lifestyle newborn photography and helps you decide if it’s the style you’re looking for.

If you’d like to read more on the subject, you can take a look this blog post of mine about lifestyle family photography.