NEWBORN PHOTOGRAPHY AND THE SAFETY OF YOUR NEWBORN
There has been huge growth over the last 10 years in the Newborn Photography Industry. Meaning there is now a huge amount of choice for parents when searching for a photographer.
When starting out not all photographers have the knowledge and skill to create those beautiful images and poses safely. This is why even as an NNEB Nursery Nurse I invested in 'in-depth hands on’ training with two very experienced US Newborn Photographers. During this training we covered safe posing, equipment handling, studio preparation, cleanliness and compositing images. I was shown how to monitor a newborns comfort and safety at all times. Most of the general public are unaware that some of the poses that you see on photographers websites are actually two images that have been merged together, these are called composite images, this is done so that the baby is supported at all times, those supporting hands are then edited out using software such as Photoshop.
I don’t feel Newborn safety is a unique selling point. For me it’s a given that the safety of any newborn in my studio would be my absolute priority.
The photography industry is totally unregulated, anyone can buy themselves a swanky new camera, set up a website and call themselves a photographer. It takes a trained eye to spot the amateurs and the newbies, and unfortunately the general public can often be taken in by some of the cheaper (portfolio building) deals that are out there. Photography is not a cheap industry to be in, a professional camera body will set you back over £3000, a professional lens will often be around the £1000 mark. So if you see an offer that's too good to be true it probably is and the chances are that photographer is neither insured, trained, paying taxes or using professional equipment.
Sadly there are now also organisations offering so called safety training to Newborn Photographers. I would question how relevant this training would be based on the fact that everything is done online… Especially given the fact that newborn photography is so hands on! As much as I would love to see an industry standard in Newborn Photography it’s just never going to happen. It would be impossible to police. It is up to parents to make sure that they do their research and feel confident in their choices.
When choosing your own photographer it is absolutely OK to ask them about how they approach the safety of your Newborn and what training and experience they have had. I have in the past been asked by clients if they could come and meet me and see my studio before they book and of course they are more than welcome to do so.
Handing your precious new arrival to someone to take images is a big ask and you absolutely have to be confident in that choice.