Not all newborn photographers are created equal. Safety during your newborn session is something that any and all newborn photographers should be trained in but, unfortunately, not all are.
It takes a very special skill set to photograph a newborn. You have to know how to soothe them, handle them, wrap them just right and pose them safely and comfortably. But there are so many more factors that go into making sure your newborn is as safe as possible.
Anyone working with a newborn should have a yearly flu shot and should be up to date with their vaccines. This is a requirement for all medical facilities that handle newborns so it really should be a requirement for photographers as well. Of course, you’re not going to ask every person who touches your baby whether or not they’ve been vaccinated. But your photographer is one of the few people, besides your immediate family, who will be so very up close and personal with your baby for a prolonged period of time so they should be healthy and vaccinated to protect your baby.
Newborn posing can be very tricky. Your chosen photographer should have had training as well as a good amount of experience in posing babies comfortably and safely. Not all babies will do all poses and they shouldn’t be forced. I have worked with babies who have had variety of conditions from colic to broken collar bones. An experienced photographer should always ask if there are any medical issues or concerns and should be able to adapt to your baby’s needs.
All props for newborn photography sessions should be padded, free of any lead or chipping paint, and should be weighted down for balance. The studio of course should also be clean. All fabrics should be washed after every session and the areas should be clean. Babies should never be left unattended during sessions. A photographer with a lot of experience will never get flustered during a session and will remember all these points during the session.
Baby’s safety should ALWAYS be the top priority.
Seeing the need for newborn safety, ADC Photography has created a newborn photography safety association AANPS (American Association of Newborn Photography Safety). We train and certify newborn photographers all over the world in an effort to raise industry standards for newborn safety.