How to start a Newborn Photography Business || Beginner newborn photographers



[Laughter] hey everyone I am finally doing another video I know it's been a long time and I promise to do one sooner but the video that I wanted to make today is all about what you need to do or have or buy to start a newborn photography business I'm gonna break down newborn photography specifically just because that is what I specialize in let's talk camera gear I own a Canon and I'm only gonna talk about Canon so there are a lot of different cameras on the market however canon has been an excellent brand for me personally used so I'm gonna recommend it I would highly recommend purchasing a full-frame camera over a crop sensor if you plan on being a professional newborn photographer or even a professional photographer you're not gonna want anything to hold you back a cropped sensor provides limitations it's more a camera body that's for someone who plans on just doing it as a hobby or someone who just wants to take pictures of their kids a full-frame camera also has a larger sensor this allows more light in when you're in a darker situation that's gonna really help in certain situations such as basically if the Sun is setting and you're doing a maternity session you bump up your ISO but the larger sensor allows you to have more flexibility with your settings etc if you want I will do a separate post on a full-frame camera let's move on lenses for newborn photography specifically I would highly recommend two focal lengths one would be 50 millimeter focal length and the second is a 35 millimeter focal length the 50 millimeter is provides less Distortion when you're photographing your subject a 35 millimeter is excellent for those wider angles and there are several different options for a 50 millimeter lens with Canon first being there's the very very bottom of the barrel 50 millimeter 1.8 it's a plastic lens it's good if you don't want to invest a lot of money and you just want to try it but if you don't have the money to waste don't waste it on that lens even though it's about it's less than $200 you can buy one used for under 50 and it's a waste of money to be honest if you want something that's of quality there's the next level which is the 50 millimeter 1.4 now I own this lens and it's a workhorse it's been an awesome lens it's sharp its crisp it's fast it's got beautiful bokeh which is the blurry background and it's been an excellent lens and it's not going to break the bank this lens is only if it's on sale of $350 regular price around 500 so you can't really go wrong now the third 50 millimeter focal length lens with canon is the top of the line now this is a very expensive high quality lens and it is the 50 millimeter 1.2 now this lens although it is expensive and it can be amazing there have been a lot of issues in the past and present where people buy them the 50 millimeter 1.2 and it is soft in the focusing and they cannot seem to get a sharp image now this would be very frustrating if you're doing a newborn session or any kind of photography session and you cannot get a sharp image that's what people are paying you for is a sharp image now you can send in your lens to Canon and you can have it calibrated you can also have your camera body sent in as well to calibrate the two of them together I've also heard a new term called Meyrin the camera body and lens I don't know anything about it but it's something I'm going to look into now the last 50 millimeter focal length lens the is on the market is actually not a canon lens but it is made to go on a canon camera body and it is by Sigma and they have new lenses in their art series and so they have the 50 millimeter art lens and I believe that it is a 1.4 and the only problem with Sigma and I have personally had this problem is yet again in low-light situations it is not a reliable lens you will not necessarily have a sharp image now the information that I've received from several different photographers hundreds in fact because I mean I'm in a lot of photography groups is that 50% of the people that buy these sigma art lenses are like over-the-moon excited it's the best lens they've ever owned and then the other 50% are like this is garbage I can't get a sharp focus it won't pull focus or it's soft and that's just not something you want to deal with so it really just depends if you want to gamble and take that risk I'm going to lightly touch on software specifically Adobe Photoshop using ACR which is Adobe Camera Raw or Lightroom now there is a bazillion photographers out there that's square by Lightroom and say that Lightroom all you need to use you're doing and I would agree with that to a certain extent however that does not include newborn photography the problem is is with newborn photography is most of the time you're gonna do a session and that newborn is either gonna be jaundice have super ruby red skin have translucent skin have a light yellowish skin have horrible baby acne scratches from their little fingernails or they might have major bruising from birth that they their parents want removed or maybe they have something that you really need to eliminate in Photoshop and with Lightroom when you're using Lightroom you're gonna have to take it into Photoshop to do that so you might as well not even use Lightroom if that's all you're doing is newborn photography if you're using Lightroom to organize that's fine but you don't even have to use Lightroom to organize because Adobe Camera Raw provides bridge Adobe bridge it's free it's part of the program and you can do everything like cataloging your galleries and organizing and do everything from there and you can call your images from Adobe bridge and the cool thing about Adobe Camera Raw is that once you open your images from bridge and I just learned this like two years ago or a year ago know almost two years ago is that you can when you open it with ACR you can open it into Photoshop and then from Photoshop without having to save it you can open it back in ACR and do any tweaking that you want to do and then reopen it in Photoshop and you can do it as many times as you want and then you can save it and with Lightroom you can't do that with Lightroom you have to open the image from Lightroom into Photoshop and then you work on it and then you have to save it into a special folder so that it can open in the late room so if you want to go back and forth with Lightroom you'll have to save it every single time whereas with ACR you just have to save it when you're completely finished with the image it's a game changer you're gonna love it if you try it the best thing to do is purchase presets that have a lot of good reviews apply the presets and ACR open the image in Photoshop quickly do your skin smoothing and any kind of removal of flaky skin or scratches or acne and then save your image and you're good to go it will save you so much time trust me okay let's talk offices what kind of computer do you like to use and are you a PC user or are you a Mac user well as a photographer and using heavy duty software to edit your images you're going to want a workhorse computer and I can personally tell you from experience that having two PC's burn out within the first year was very expensive and stressful to deal with after that first year of photography I decided to purchase a 27-inch iMac computer best decision I could have made at that time I was blown away with the quality and the editing was just faster and better and more efficient and working on that massive screen was wonderful but the thing about Max is that they have been designed to work with Photoshop they are a software editing computer that is what they are built for and if you want to if you're not a computer person and you don't know the first thing about computers but you know that you need a good computer to invest in to work work on with Photoshop then I highly suggest an iMac or a MacBook Pro now the thing is is that Adobe Photoshop is the software that you're gonna want to use it's a huge program it's so huge and it slows and bogs down a computer if not on the right computer and so you're gonna want a computer that is capable and doesn't leg and slug through while you're trying to edit your images because you will be editing a hundred times longer than if you had a computer that's capable of doing it so the next subject I wanted to speak upon is studio light now a lot of new porn photographers chooses you natural late and that's fine the thing about natural light though is that there it can be very inconsistent and you have to know that when you're using natural light that you can only have one light source so if you're using a room that has two windows one on each side of the room you need to block out the light on one side of the room so that you only have one light source I personally use studio light I do not use natural light anymore I used to for six are no five now four out of seven years of newborn photography I use natural light one problem that I did find is I live in Canada and we have very overcast skies a good portion of the year and when you have overcast skies it really eliminates and reduces how much natural light can come through a window and depending on the time of day well you might not have any light at all but also the white balance of your images can change rapidly within seconds if a cloud goes over the in front of the Sun then it's gonna be really dark your image and it's going to be cold or if it's really bright then your images could be blown out when the Sun finally comes out of that cloud and just it's a lot of variables that you need to work with and you need to really understand how to manipulate natural light studio light can when done properly can produce an image that's so natural and pleasing to the eye that nobody can even tell if it's a natural light image or if it is a studio light because the shadows are so soft I personally use in Einstein now I used to have an alien be 400 and I decided to upgrade to the Einstein and it's awesome it's been a really great upgrade for me and I use the 86 inch PLM now the Einstein and the PLM soft umbrella softbox umbrella is through Paul C buff I highly recommend looking on their website and ordering all your studio essentials the next thing that you need to to really narrow down is a studio space that's dedicated to your photography the reason being is that noubar photography is takes up a lot of room you're gonna have a lot of props you're gonna have your lights set up or your beanbag set up or and your heater as well as seating area for parents and etc the list goes on and you will be blown away with how much you accumulate in a short amount of time now you do not need a large room to photograph a newborn session I have actually made a post of just throwing a studio set up together in a living room while I was waiting for my current studio space to be open I previously had a home studio that was 10 feet by 20 feet I was very fortunate that was an amazing space that I was using um it just ended up being too difficult to have in my home I have four kids and always having to the have the home ready for clients to come over when you have four young children it's just it's a burden and I didn't want to deal with any more now my studio space is actually even smaller my current studio space but as a newborn photographer believe it or not this moment of the studio space the better because the faster the room will heat up and you don't actually have to have a very big room to do newborn photography my space of my office studio or my studio space is I believe ten feet by eight feet it's not very big but I do have a private sitting area for my parents to sit in and come back and forth or mom can stay with me in the room the whole time but this also gives a cooler area for dad and siblings to hang out I'm gonna try and breathe through newborn photography essentials just because I have everything written in a blog post that I'm going to link at the bottom of this video and everything goes into detail on that post but I'm just gonna quickly breeze through this now you're gonna either need a beanbag or a dog bed and the dog bed is the one that's with some metal bars and it's like a mesh fabric on top it's durable it's the new thing I own it I just bought it and it's a game changer I absolutely love it a beanbag can be expensive it can hurt your back when you're bending over check out the dog bed it's awesome if you want to have a good starter set of props I would recommend three different things a wooden bucket a wooden crate and a um wooden bucket wooden crate and also a bowl a wooden bowl if you have those three things you really don't need to buy any other kind of props until you've started making money and you have money to burn um just focus on those three things the next thing is fabric you're gonna need to have a certain type of fabric to go over your bean bag or your dog bed you want it to be stretchy you want it to be thick and you want to have lots of layers so start with a fleece on the bottom to make it thick and then buy fabrics that are either of a sweater net or a jersey knit to start off with start off with and you can go to the fabric store and you can get that and it's relatively affordable instead of buy an online and I would recommend sticking with neutral color tones if you're just starting out with newborn photography don't go with crazy colors because at the end of the day you're gonna regret it second of all you're gonna have to deal with a funky color cast on their skin while you're editing which is gonna take you 100 more years than you planned on and it's not gonna give you the results you think you're gonna get just stick with neutrals stick with creams tans either blush pink or very very light brown like a very like kamilly light brown stay away from bright colors just until you get the hang of things and then you can branch off into more wild colors um the next thing I want to discuss is fluorine what kind of fluorine do you need for a newborn prop setup yeah actually if you photograph properly and and learn how to do this you actually only need a floor you don't actually need a wooden backdrop so if you just want to invest in a small wood floor all you do is go to Home Depot there's a barn wood section that they've opened up for last couple years and buy three eight foot lakes and cut them in half and then you have six planks and that's all you need if you use a 50 millimeter lens and you shoot down on an angle you don't even need a backdrop and you don't need to clone or do anything it's perfect that's all you need is is six boards and they only need to be 4 feet by 4 feet so it's perfect and the more you buy the wider it'll be and as for backdrops I would recommend a hundred and seven inch seamless paper now start with bone bone is a cream-colored it's easy to work with get used to what you're doing and then move on to other colors some other colors that are in the savage color line are chestnut it's a deep rich brown mocha it's a lighter brown or a thunder gray Thunder gray is what I use I also use a white I can't remember what it's called but it's like really white and I love it I'm gonna try chestnut next and I love it but get the hundred and seven inch width that's the one you want there 100 bucks and you buy them at McBaine or online or whatever camera store you have in your local area okay now we're gonna talk about bonnets and we're gonna talk about Thai ducks now tie backs are the little dainty little headbands that you're gonna buy for your newborns think dainty don't go oversized when you have a newborn head that's like a tiny like it's like really tiny you don't want a big object on it that's gonna overpower the image you want something small and dainty that just shows how little the baby is you don't want to overpower anything now as for bonnets try and order bonnets that are made out of natural fibers you don't want to have anything made out of acrylic unless it's a very expensive acrylic but you're not going to know that from looking at a picture um just make sure that whenever you're ordering a bonnet from a prop vendor that you actually see it in use to make sure it's the right size and make sure that it's a natural fiber so it can be merino wool it can be brushed alpaca can be mohair can be any kind of alpaca or wool or whatever but there's au or angora a gorgeous beautiful the next thing that you're gonna want to think about investing in is to go under the fabric on the beanbag or a dog bed it would be those posing beans they look like a giant bean and they're made out of like a like a velvety white fabric or colored fabric now these have only been popular for the last couple of years and you really don't need them I actually have been doing photography for a long time and I only just got a set from a vendor sugar baby photo prop she's awesome I got a white set from her and I'm just actually just getting used to it but they are really cool so if you don't have the money that and then I would suggest just using world up receiving blankets they work just fine okay the next thing you're gonna need in your studio room is a space heater you really want the room to heat up you don't want it to be cold you want it to be very warm you don't have to have it on the whole time if your room stays warm but you do need to have the room quite hot you'll know how hot because you're not gonna have it boiling but you're not gonna have a cold you need it when you're posting the baby to have it hot okay next thing is white noise you can use by an app on your phone called the baby Shusher or you can buy the actual baby Shusher it's literally just shashi noises and it works wonders white noise is great okay so I'm just gonna touch very quickly on education um the thing is with newborn photography is you think oh it's just a baby on a blanket what do you do the thing is a newborn baby is a human person it's a very important little human person and if you don't know what you're doing and you try to post a baby in a bucket and you are unsafe you could hurt that baby you need to know what you're doing and so I highly recommend investing in either some form of online online education um and educate yourself find out what poses are safe for a newborn for newborn photographers who are beginners if you have the money I would highly recommend investing in a one-on-one in-person workshop but if you don't have the money just do with something online there's a bazillion just look on Instagram I use the hashed hashtag online mentoring or online workshops for newborn photography you will find something the next thing is you need to have insurance don't be fooled you need to have it don't even think about starting your business without having insurance you need to have at least two million dollars liability protects you it protects your client the next thing you need is a website don't go and buy a website without having your own domain name nobody wants to look at your web smells not even going to show you recommend you if you do not have your own 'my name try and find a website that has good SEO rankings wordpress is at the top you also need to have your own hosting web hosting so you're looking at a few hundred dollars a year for the two of those and the next thing that you're gonna need besides having a website is a proofing gallery available to you now proofing galleries are excellent because you don't always want to have to edit a hundred pictures for your clients to choose a proofing gallery will allow you to have upload as many pictures as you want from that gallery and they can star it or choose it or perhaps you've edited uploaded your edited gallery and your clients can favorite the ones that they want and they can order those ones or they can even order prints off of it anyways I recommend shoot proof that's what I use she proof is awesome it's only about twelve bucks a month and you get fifteen hundred images at a time on that site you can upgrade or you can lower it it's up to you now I would recommend if you're gonna blog which is key and essential to Google ranking is blog stomp and album stomp for making albums I've got that in my blog so you can just look at that if you forget now the last one of the last second to last things is a contract you need to have a contract for all of your clients I was unaware of this when I first started and it just protects you it protects you it allows you to share on social media and your website without everyone having to deal with anybody who comes back and says well you didn't have my permission even though you're the one that owns the picture it's just a protection and also if you want to submit any of your images to other blogs to publish your work then you already have the contract signed and you have the permission to do it last you need an external hard drive get an external hard drive backup everything don't be that person that doesn't back anything up and then you lose everything for your clients okay last of all is discussing what you're charging for your new bar photography now I don't know about you in your market but in mine there is literally five hundred newborn photographers popping out of the woodwork every few months and I live next to a big city of a million people population and there's thousands of geographers thousands and the problem is is that it is not cheap to run a newborn photography business you're looking at thousands of dollars of investment thousands upon thousands of dollars and it's an ongoing monthly expense it is not something that you just have a camera and it's paid for and you're good you're looking at your all the things that I've already listed in the video it's costing you money to be in business so why would you do it for free and it's something that we internally feel like we need to give everything away for free I know that's the way I am I have a really hard time tried to charging but a few years ago I realized that I was working day and night all day and night editing at night working during the day and I barely saw my family it's not worth it I was literally making at the end of the day after all the hours I was putting in I was maybe making a couple bucks an hour and I'm not exaggerating so I want you to read the last section of my blog post on saturated newborn photography market it just breaks things down and really helps you understand that you need to invest in yourself you've already invested in your business so you need to understand that you're valuable your time is valuable your family time is valuable your work all of it it's all valuable so don't give it away for free unless you want to unless you want to do a model release or I mean a model call and you want to just have fun and be creative and and do a bunch of work just for fun then that's okay but do not under value yourself it's really important you need to understand that your business will not survive if you don't charge what you're worth and the thing is is that your husband or your wife maybe they have a full-time job so you think oh well this is just extra money so it's okay if I only charge $50 or $100 recession because it's extra money in our pocket but the thing is is the person next to you who needs to put food on the table with their photography business is now struggling because every single new photographer out there is devaluing in the market by thinking and making people think that nobody has to pay for this service so please do read that blog post and I just wanted to say thank you for stopping in to watch this video give me a shout on social media I'm range shot photos are a Y and E drop photos or I'm on Facebook I'd love to hear from you and your thoughts and I just want to say thank you for watching this please subscribe and let me know if there's any other topics that you would like [Laughter]

8 Replies to “How to start a Newborn Photography Business || Beginner newborn photographers”

  1. Thank you for this! I'm just getting going and have so many questions, thank you for answering even the ones I didn't know I had! Did you take formal training? Has that whole 7 years been in newborn?

  2. Thank you for this. Very informative and comprehensive video! I've seen your old videos and I am glad to know that you're posting more regularly now! Great job and your photos are stunning!

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