How To: Take Your Baby’s Portrait!

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A few years ago I was visiting a client’s home and was inspired by one of her gallery walls. She has seven children and had a professional photo taken of each baby at 4 months old. I loved this idea so much that I decided then and there I would do it for my future children.

Two babies later, here is where the project stands.


Today I’m going to share with you how you can get these photos done at home if you have a nice camera, a bed with a headboard, and a window near by.

Here’s how you can do it:

1. Set up the bed by stacking two pillows and throwing a white sheet over it. Also drape a white sheet over the headboard as the backdrop. Make sure the pillow stack is at least two feet away from the backdrop.  The further the space between the baby and the backdrop, the better.


In this photo, a large window is to the right. Annamarie sits in the middle of our big bed with a blanket draped behind on the headboard. She is propped up on two pillows.

2. Set up your camera with a low aperture, ISO should be high enough to make the picture bright and clear, and about 1/200 shutter speed. Set up your spot focus where you want the babies head to be. No flash required!


In Felicity’s photo, there are two windows behind her to the left and right. I had to bump up the ISO and keep the aperture very low to let the light fill in.

3. Now here comes the tricky part. If you have an assistant, it would help a lot! Not necessary though. Place your wobbly 4 month old baby in front of the the pillow stack, lean him/her forward with her elbows on the pillow to keep her propped up.

4. Start rapid firing photos! You may need to re-postiton the baby a few times before you get that perfect shot. The actual photo taking part takes a few minutes! They don’t last much longer than that.

5. In post-processing, you can enhance the image simply by bumping up the exposure, contrast & temperature. This is the original photo for Felicity. As you can see I had to adjust it quite a bit. It was way too yellow & dark.


There you have it! A super simple idea to get some great photos of your children. If you don’t feel like doing the work or don’t know how to work a camera, give me a call and I’ll come to your house for a mini session ; )