professional quality newborn portraits

How to DIY Newborn Photography (6 Step Guide)

28 Oct 2022 How-to Guides

Newborn photography is a popular trend that allows families to share special moments. There are many ways to create newborn-themed images, but often, people go for DIY alternatives instead of spending money on professional photography

In order to photograph your new baby, you need to invest in some professional equipment, which can be very expensive. But using DIY newborn photography can be much more affordable and allow you to take truly special pictures.

Experimentation has shown us that having a variety of clothing poses and props on hand allows individuals to create the best possible images. By creating different ideas on how the family would like their baby photographed, you will always provide them with something they will remember forever.

This guide will provide you with various ideas and steps to help you take creative and professional-looking newborn portraits. We will also answer questions such as:

  • What you need to know about DIY newborn photography
  • Supplies you’ll need for DIY newborn photography

What You Need To Know About DIY Newborn Photography

These days, there are several DIY ideas for those interested in shooting their newborns. Even though many are available, it is important to determine what works best for you.

Props such as rattles and swaddles can provide the perfect touch to an image and have a way of truly bringing the moment to life. Here is what you need to know about DIY newborn photography:

Take Newborn Photos Within the First Two Weeks

Having your baby photographed during the first two weeks after they are born is essential. This is because they are most comfortable with their mother and are not as nervous. This allows them to rest easily, which in turn stops any crying and helps the photographer take high-quality images.

It is also a great idea to take advantage of this time frame as your baby will not be able to see themselves in pictures until they are 4-6 months old. This means that you can take candid images of the baby without having them squint or frown for the camera.

Aim for a Sleepy Baby

If you want to photograph your baby, you need to try to get them into a sleepy mood. This will allow them to rest comfortably, creating the perfect opportunities for snuggling and posing. If possible, try rocking them before taking pictures so that they are drowsy.

While it can be frustrating and time-consuming, it is well worth it as you will be able to take quality images that otherwise wouldn’t be attainable if the baby was awake.

Have Props Ready

Props are a great way to create memorable images for your family. While many people opt for swaddles and rattles, you should also consider clothing such as blankets or hats.

This is because they can add the perfect touch of detail that transforms an image into something truly special.

Time Your Newborn Photoshoot Carefully

While you may wish to take pictures with your newborn at any time, it is important to have a plan. Taking pictures in the morning and afternoon is the best way to go as they will naturally be more alert and awake.

It is also a good idea to avoid taking pictures when they are starting to get tired, as this can make them fussy and harder to shoot.

If you do want your baby to sleep for the shoot, then an afternoon nap around 3 p.m. is a good start.

Use Separate Location for Your Newborn Photoshoot

When taking photos of your baby, it is essential to photograph them at a location that has meaning for you and your family.

This could be their nursery or even the hospital where they were born. This will allow them to feel more at peace, which in turn makes it easier for you to shoot.

Because your photos have been intended to be cherished, it is important to create an environment that creates a sense of familiarity and comfort.

Take Close-Up Shots

When taking close-up shots of your newborn, it is important to ensure the light is perfect. This means that you must choose the best position for your camera to emphasize the baby’s features.

This could be above their face or looking down at them. While many people opt for the use of a white background, it is important to be mindful of the light so that you don’t have a harsh effect when shooting.

newborn photography

Take Tons of Pictures

While the goal might be to take great shots, the reality is that many people won’t end up using them. With DIY photography ideas, it is important to take tons of pictures so that you have several of them that you can choose from.

You never know what shot will end up being the best, and you want to ensure you have enough options available to make this decision easier. It is also a good idea to get feedback from your family to help them decide which images are best.

Shoot From All Angles

If you want high-quality pictures, it is important to shoot from various angles. Shooting straight on will allow you to emphasize the facial features, but you also need to take shots from above and below their head. This will allow you to show the whole body and create an image that truly stands out.

You should always have the baby in control so that they are posed and relaxed at the same time. While some people prefer a professional photographer, others enjoy doing this themselves.

Play With Brightness And Contrast

When you are taking pictures of your newborn, it is important to expose them properly. This means that you need to ensure that the light is at the right levels to produce a balanced image.

If you are having a difficult time, try getting light for your DIY newborn photography from a flash instead of direct sunlight.

This will ensure that their faces, clothes, and any props you have decided on are highlighted with the right amount of light.

Keep the Poses Simple

While it might be tempting to get your newborn to pose in the most elaborate ways possible, it is best to keep things simple.

This will ensure that they are comfortable and not stressed out. This will also mean that you can get several variations of the same pose to choose from.

Get Candids of Siblings

Due to the new environment and surroundings, it is important to get candid shots of your newborn with their siblings.

This will allow them to have a sense of security and create a sense of familiarity for you. You should also be mindful of the lighting so that you can take pictures in which they are comfortable.

Enlist Extra Help

When you are working with a newborn, it is important to enlist extra help from siblings and friends who are older and more comfortable. They can lend a hand with tasks such as changing diapers or helping to hold the baby. This will allow you to get more high-quality images and truly capture the essence of your child.

Use a Tripod to Get in Your Own Photos

If you are the one taking the photos, it is important to use a tripod to get into the photos. This will allow you to get various shots that truly reflect your family and create images you will treasure for years.

Do Your Photoshoot in Stages

When photographing your newborn, it is important to focus on one thing at a time. This will allow the infant to be comfortable and help them gain confidence while still caring for their needs.

This will ensure that the photo shoot is successful and that you have something valuable for everyone involved.

What Supplies Will You Need for DIY Newborn Photography

When doing DIY photography, it is important to ensure that you have the right equipment. This will aid in taking great photos and allow you to capture your infant’s essence truly.

There are many different options for getting DIY newborn photography ideas, but here are some basic things that will help to make the process easier:


If you are someone who takes tons of pictures, it is important to have camera that has a lot of features. This is especially true if you want to take close-up shots or the perfect professional portrait.

The best option for most DIY photographers is to use a DSLR camera so that you can easily connect with accessories.

A Sleepy Baby

The baby will be the show’s star, and you need to ensure they are comfortable. The best way to do this is to create a calming environment where they can sleep peacefully.

This means that you need to place soft pillows and blankets on the floor. You also need to ensure that lighting is abundant in the room so that it helps them fall asleep and has a calming effect.


While you will want to use your home and surroundings, creating a background that complements the photos you will take is important. The best way to do this is by hanging flowing curtains on the walls so they can be seen in the pictures.

You might also want to consider custom-made backdrops if you don’t have anything at home or want something with a little more flare.


You need a source of light that will help illuminate your baby and create great images. You can either use an overhead light or put some lights around the room to illuminate the whole group.

It is important to think about the focal point so that you can capture them in the background while they are still very visible in the foreground.

Support System

You might think it will be easy to hold up a large backdrop, but since you are doing DIY photography, you need to make sure that you have something to support it.

This means you should use the back of a chair or a large poster board. If you aren’t able to find someone to help you with this, then you should use a tripod or extendable arms.


The best props that you can use are ones that are simple and small. While there are many cute and elaborate things on the market, they can be distracting or might need to be placed on a table.

The best thing to do is to keep them close by and ensure they are light in weight so that you don’t have any issues while taking the photos.>

A Pacifier

You might want to get a shot of your baby with their first pacifier, so it is important to have one ready. You should put this on a pillow or pillowcase so that they are comfortable and will be close by when they need it.

diy newborn photography

How to DIY Newborn Photography (6 Steps)

Here are the steps that will help make the process easier and help to get great pics from DIY photography:

Step 1: Create the Perfect Environment

The first thing that you should do is find a place to set up your DIY photography studio. It is important to have a soft place for your newborn to lay on and make sure that they can be comfortable.

You should also ensure that they are near a light source and have something in the background. This way, everyone will look at the same thing when you take the photos.

Step 2: Set up Your Camera on a Tripod

If you are taking your own photos, it is important to set your camera up on a tripod so that it can remain steady during each shot. This will ensure that you get clear and crisp shots that reflect the quality of your photography. If you don’t have a tripod, you should consider purchasing one.

Step 3: Set Up the Backdrop

While the backdrop is something we mentioned earlier, it is important to set it up to ensure that you are ready to take the photos. You will also want to make sure that it is light enough so you can see your baby clearly.

Step 4: Prepare the Baby

The next step is ensuring your baby is ready for the photoshoot. This means that you should feed them and make them comfortable. It will also help to have a bottle of milk or a pacifier ready so that you can give it to them if they start to cry or get upset.

Step 5: Get Good Lighting

Since this is DIY photography, it is important to pay attention to the lighting in the room. You want good supplemental light so that you can illuminate their features but still have a soft and calming atmosphere for them. You can also use lights in the room to have a large enough area to work with.

Step 6: Take the Photos

You now have everything you need to take great photos of your newborn and ensure everyone is happy. You can do this by taking several shots and ensuring that the lighting will be great. You should also move your newborn around so they are comfortable and they can feel comfortable during each photo shoot.

This is how you should be able to take great photos of your newborn using DIY newborn photography ideas. These steps will help you to get better pictures, as well as help boost your confidence when it comes to taking pictures of other newborns.


Overall, there are many reasons DIY newborn photography is a great idea. These photos will be something that you will cherish forever, and they can contribute to their memory. Because you can do this on your own, the time you will spend on this will be well worth the effort.

All you need to do is get all the supplies you need and go out into the world with your camera. With these DIY newborn photography ideas, you can use anything that works for you and will be able to capture those priceless moments for years to come.