With access to low cost ready-made websites and social media, photography businesses are everywhere... and booking clients. No big deal if you just want a quick family photo or updated headshots. Hey, everyone starts somewhere! Its great to give these people a chance, and since most charge 100 bucks and burn you a disc, the risk really isn't that high. Newborn photography, on the other hand is a different story. Handing over your 1-2 week old baby is a BIG deal. Your newborn is fragile and helpless. Think of some of your favorite business pages on Facebook. Can you answer these questions about them: How long have they been photographing newborn babies professionally? How many newborns have they worked with? What kind of training and education do they have? Is their business registered? Are they insured?
Here are a few frequently asked questions:
What is your experience with newborns & how do you ensure safety?
my experience with newborns goes well beyond photography. I am a licensed respiratory therapist and worked in a neonatal intensive care unit 5 years before my photography career. I understand how their hips and joints work for posing and I read cues to make sure they are comfortable at all times. I also keep my studio very clean, backdrops sanitized and practice good hand washing. I always either spot baby or have a hand on baby in poses. I then do composites later in photoshop. I have also attended a workshop/mentoring session for posing, soothing and safety techniques.
How would you describe your style?
I love dreamy matte photos and soft muted colors. My subjects are always the focus, and kept as natural as possible. Nicely posed photos are a must, but I also include tons of candid shots that show your child's personality.
What equipment do you use?
I am a canon girl! I use a 5D mark iii and my prime lens is a wide angle 35mm 1/4L. I also have a back up camera, lenses(my two other most use lenses are the 50mm and my macro lens) I also have anoff camera flash just in case. I edit with adobe photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 4
Where can I view your recent photos?
Facebook and Instagram!! I am always uploading sneak peeks.
Where will our photo-shoot take place?
newborn and baby sessions will take place in my studio. Other sessions will typically be outdoors in one of the beautiful locations Las Cruces has to offer. I have a ton of locations I frequently use and am always finding new ones. Once you have made your deposit I will contact you to discuss your vision for the photo shoot. You are also welcome to request a spot, I will visit it and make sure it fits my style and check the lighting. I do outdoor sessions first thing in the morning or evening, an hour before sunset.
Why do you photograph newborns so young, when parents are exhausted and just getting home from the hospital?
Once a baby hits two weeks old, they begin to stay alert for longer periods of time and are not as "curled up" from the womb. They are difficult to pose and also do not stay in deep sleep as long. When they are awake, their eyes cross and hands clinch tightly. They are also not as easy to soothe. The day of the session may be a little stressful. You will be tired, and will need to keep baby awake and stimulated at least 1 hour before the session... But once you get to my studio you can rest easy and know your baby is in good hands. There is a comfy sofa to relax on as well as snacks and refreshments.
How long will the session last?
Regular sessions last 30 min to 1 hour, depending on the session you choose.
Newborn sessions take around 2 hours.
What happens after the session?
I cull through the photos and remove the repeat or bad ones (where you blinked for example). I will share a few photos as a sneak peek on my blog and /or Facebook/instagram. 100% of the photos are edited and retouched. This process usually takes 2 weeks. The photos are then uploaded to a password protected online gallery. Digital images can be downloaded. You can print straight from the gallery or schedule a 1:1 viewing/ordering session with me. I will present you with an 8X10 proof portfolio (that is yours to keep) and show you examples of print sizes and paper samples. I HIGHLY recommend scheduling an ordering session. A la carte items will be available as well as packages. You are guaranteed professional quality prints at a great price.
Do you charge any additional fees before releasing my photos?
when choosing a photographer ALWAYS ask what comes with the session and additional costs. My prices are up front and listed here on the investment tab. I release 5-15 digital files per session (depending on package) these files are in high resolution and can be printed at your convenience. Additional files, prints and products can be purchased for an additional fee.
I am nervous about handling digital files, and don't have enough space to download to my computer. What are my alternatives?
I can place all of your photos on a custom engraved 4GB usb flash drive. This USB will have EVERY photo from your gallery, not just the minimum. The cost is an additional $160.00 OR FREE with a $500 print purchase.
You can also purchase all of your photos in a beautiful photo book.
The prints you offer are beautiful! Where do you get them?
The prints you purchase from me are amazing, not only because the printer quality but because I calibrate my computer to make sure the colors are exactly the way they should be. I use a number of different vendors, but non of them are available to the general public.
What if the weather is bad?
Since I am 100% natural light right now, we will have to reschedule.
How many images will I get?
I guarantee 15 images for newborn and baby sessions. 20 images for half session and 40 images for a full session. 5-15 digital file downloads are free. The remaining files may be purchased.
What do I need to bring?
Newborn sessions are completely styled! I have tons of outfits, hats, bows and baskets. I will send you a newborn preparation sheet that has detailed information about my style and how to prepare. For families I recommend a bottle of water, and a light snack for babies/toddlers. I am all about bribery for little ones..smartees work very well :) If you choose the full session you can also bring along wardrobe changes.
What should we wear?
This article will help you dress for success : ) http://lezleyalbaphotography.com/blog/2015/3/what-to-wear/lezley-alba-photography/las-cruces-photographer
How do I pay my deposit? What forms of payment do you accept?
A 50% deposit is required to secure your pricing and spot on my calendar. This can be made with debit, credit or paypal account. The remaining balance is due the day of the session. I accept cash or check, but cash is preferred.
Do you offer discounts?
Returning clients as well as active military get a discounted rate or free print package. Contact me for details. I frequently offer discounted mini sessions on Facebook. Visit my page and click LIKE to stay updated.