What is the best age for newborn photography? The ideal age for newborn photography is between 6-12 days earthside. Babies are still super-sleepy and malleable at this stage of life. As long as they are ‘milk drunk’ they are usually very easy to handle. After two weeks they become much more alert and irritated if we keep touching them and moving them.

When should I book in for newborn photography? It’s best to plan ahead for these sorts of things. If you book at least 2-3 months before your due date, you will be sure to reserve a session date.

What if my baby is early or late? If  you have booked far enough in advance, we usually book your session 7 days after your due date. Then when the baby arrives we can shuffle the session forward or backwards if need be.

Who can come to the session? I always encourage family and sibling photos. Immediate family only. This is usually at the very beginning of the session. Then we can use the remainder of the session to focus on the baby. Toddlers and older children are then able to go off to the play centre or to the shops with Dad if the session is getting a little boring for them.

How long does the session take? I always allow up to 3 hours for a newborn photo session. That way we allow enough time for feeds, snuggles and posing the baby so they look relaxed and comfortable in all their photos.

Does it cost extra for family or sibling photos? There is no extra cost for family or sibling photos.

I have a very energetic toddler, will this work for a sibling photo? We always try our best. I actually has a full life size Queen bed in the studio which can make this part of the process much easier.

What should we bring to the session? All that you need to bring is a light coloured top for your family photos, preferably white. Little girls (siblings) look best in a sweet white dress. Then all you need to think about is what you normally bring in your baby bag. Nappies and milk. If you are breastfeeding, and the baby has had a bottle before, then I strongly advise bringing along a bottle of express milk for speedy top-ups through the session. A dummy can be a life saver also. Even if you have never used one before, or never intend to use one in the future. It can really help soothe the baby in some poses.

How many photos will be taken on the day? It really depends on how settled your baby is. The aim is to have 20 unique photographs of the baby for you to select from. However more or less may be taken depending on the baby.

How many different looks will there be? I typically set up a handful of looks for you to choose from when you arrive at your session. Usually 7. Then you can choose two beanbag colours, two props and a hanging basket if you like that look. Plus, don’t forget the family photos or Dad’s hands if you prefer.

How do we decide on the styling? If you know the gender, or if you are having a surprise. I send through a questionnaire with your booking confirmation. This will need to be completed before your session so that I know if you have any style or colour scheme in mind. Then when you arrive at your session, there will be a selection of props and looks available based on your desired colour scheme. If you want to swap out a hat or a teddy bear for example, this is entirely up to you to tailor the styling to what you like.

How many options are there? I have sourced a vast collection of both locally and internationally hand crafted props for you to choose from over my 6 years in the business. The collection includes over 20 shades of beanbag covers, 40 backgrounds, over 60 different wraps of all textures, over 50 sweet hats and bonnets, a range of 60 various outfits for boys and girls, 70 headbands and halos for girls,  33 different vessels, baskets and bowls to pose your new baby in, 12 sweet little teddy-bears and bunnies, and 3 hanging baskets.

Can I have the RAW or unedited files to keep? No. The unedited RAW files are the property of Mel Cieslik Photography and are subject to copyright. Plus, my work is only half completed before the retouching stage.

What if my baby is jaundiced or has flakey skin? With the 6 years experience working with newborns, I am very confident with removing red or flakey skin in post production, so that your baby still looks very natural.