I’m sure you’ve seen photos by world-renowned Anne Geddes before, even if you’re not aware of who was behind the camera. They’re everywhere– on calendars, gift cards, your pediatrician’s walls! Her images of babies and nature are created after hours of preparation, under careful controls in her studio, supported by a team of talented professionals. But that doesn’t mean you can’t learn a thing or two about taking great baby photos! Baby Center asked her for some tips and tricks can help you capture memories that will last a lifetime.
Always be prepared
Keep your camera handy at all times. This way you’ll always be ready to capture those special spontaneous moments. Plus, the more familiar your baby is with a camera, the less he’ll be distracted when you whip it out, and you’ll be able to take more natural looking pictures.
You don’t need an expensive camera to take a great photograph, just a good eye and a magical moment.
The logical way to start out is by ensuring that your baby is well fed, happy, and comfortable. (Tired, cranky babies do not make good models!) Keep your background simple (like a white sheet or a dark colored carpet) to let your baby take “center stage.” For a more personal point of view, get down to your baby’s eye level.
Lighting your photo
Anne loves using natural light. Soft, directional light coming from a window is always more flattering than the flash on a camera. If you are photographing outside, take advantage of the early morning or late afternoon light. The mid-day sun doesn’t bring out the best in anyone, not even your perfect baby!
The loveliest shots of your baby will most likely be candid ones. You can forget the flower pots and teddy bears, and let it just be about your beautiful baby. If you can, take pictures in settings that is meaningful for you; this will give them an even deeper resonance. On a special occasion, try for a sense of place, so you will always remember that day or the story behind the image.
Your newborn is tiny for such a short time. Even as they grow, each stage passes faster than you want it to. You might not believe it now, but you will forget how small your baby was in the beginning, so try to show your baby’s size in relation to the surroundings. A picture of your baby cradeled in daddy’s hands is so poignant because it captures that sense of scale.
Don’t forget to include yourself!
If you are usually the one behind the camera, don’t forget to include yourself in as many photographs with your family as possible! Your children will want to know what you looked like “way back then” and will thank you for it later!
Save and organize
Try to download your pictures from your camera on a regular basis, saving them to files grouped by months when your baby is young. Save your images by naming them, which will make it easier to loacte them later on. Instead of “Amy Summer,” try “Amy 6mos in hat. Always back up your digital images, which are valuable and irreplaceable. Use digital photo websites where to can share albums with family, scroll through smaller “thumbnail” images to find favorites, play and share slide shows, tag and favor photos, comment on them, and much more.
Use the video
Try out the short video feature on your digital camera. Those spontaneous moments will be beloved, and your kids will enjoy seeing themselves “live” as babies.
Read more: 20 tips from Anne Geddes for taking great photos
View Ann Geddes most amazing baby pictures of the year
View 50 Amazing newborn photos by real moms