Yesterday afternoon I took a break from my break
to photograph a super sweet little girl who was born on my son’s birthday!
Here is her sneak peek!
A lot of newborn poses and pictures are actually composites.
A composite is more than one picture that has been pieced together in an editing program such as Photoshop.
Newborn safety is extremely important!
Some poses or pictures can only be done with a parent or helper in the picture supporting and/or spotting baby.
For most newborn shoots I get asked to do my “hanging baby” hammock picture.
I do get some inquiries asking how we get the baby in the tree.
I really want to stress that I would NEVER hang a baby in a tree
and no one should try to copy this type of picture without realizing how it was done.
So I am going to post a bit about how I achieve this shot.
First of all, the baby never leaves the warm studio.
I have a sturdy branch in my studio which I set up using a step ladder and background stand to support it.
Additionally, I have a strong man holding onto the branch at all times to make absolutely sure it will not move.
I tie the hammock securely to this branch.
Under the branch is my large bean bag and it sits a couple of inches under the hammock.
Mom and I work together to place baby in the hammock.
The mom stays by baby at all times.
I ask her to keep her hand continuously on baby and move her hands down slightly as I take the shot.
When I see baby is relaxed in the hammock I will count to three,
mom moves her hands down for a second, I take the shot and she puts her hands back up.
If baby should be restless, start arching his/her back, or be squirming too much, we can not do this shot.
In order to finish the picture I need to bring the picture into Photoshop,
cut out the baby in the hammock and then place a new background behind the baby.
And here is a SOOC (straight out of camera) shot of baby in hammock on the left
with mom having moved her hands down for a second and the cut out that I then make from that shot:
Once I have the cut out, I can place a new background behind the baby.
Either a plain background that I make in Photoshop such as this:
or a more complicated background with the baby hanging in a tree such as this:
For anyone wanting to try this on their own, I would advise learning how composites work.
A composite is the only safe way to make this type of photo!