Is my baby too old for newborn photos?

You might be wondering if your baby is too old for newborn photos or if you have left it too late to book a newborn photoshoot? 

Perhaps you didn’t give the idea of having a newborn photo session much thought while you were pregnant. Maybe you have had to postpone your newborn photoshoot in order to give yourself and your family the space and time you needed to recover from a difficult birth.

Whatever the reason, if you find yourself wondering if your baby is too old for “newborn photos”, I want to gently remind you that anytime is the right time to document your baby’s story. I have written another blog post dedicated to when is the best time to book your Newborn photo session, but in this post I want to talk about what to do if you feel (or have been told) that your baby is too old for a newborn photo shoot.

Usually newborn photo shoots take place before your baby is two weeks old.

The suggested age for newborn photo shoot is typically between 5-14 days. I usually suggest that my clients book their newborn photo shoot before their baby is born (typically around your 20 week scan). 

A lot of newborn photographers will only photograph newborns up to 2 weeks old, and there are a lot of reasons why. Babies at this age will sleep a lot which allows them to get those typical sleepy newborn photos. It also allows photographers to pose your baby in various ‘styled’ positions. This posing is also made possible because babies’ tiny limbs remain in a ‘foetal position’ after being tucked up in the womb. After a couple of weeks, you will notice your baby’s arms and legs become less bowed or curled making it a little more tricky to be positioned into a pose.

But mostly I think it has a lot to do with the individual photographer’s style and artistic aesthetic. I’m sure you have come across newborn photographers who mostly do studio photo shoots – they love to dress babies up, wrap them in blankets and swaddles and focus mainly on photographing the new baby positioned into a pose while they are in a deep sleep. One of the most acclaimed artists working in this genre of newborn photography is Kelly Brown.

My style of photography is completely different, choosing a more relaxed and organic style of photography. I love to create a visual journal of your baby’s first few weeks. To tell the full story of life at home after your little one was born. 

How you sat on your favourite armchair to feed your little one because you could also enjoy a little patch of sunshine and catch your breath between feeding and sleeping. What their nursery looked like, and how the whole family transitions to your new baby’s arrival. How your once cheeky cat, seems to have become your baby’s protector as they lovingly keep watch from the edge of the sofa.

This is why I wholeheartedly disagree that 3 weeks and older is too old for newborn photos

While you might not be able to capture those stereotypical newborn shots, anything from 3-12 weeks can be a wonderful time to document your newborn baby’s story. 

As your newborn baby gets a bit older they will start to recognise your voice, and engage with you a little more – allowing me to capture some beautiful and intimate moments between you (maybe even a first smile).

There are lots of benefits to doing your newborn photo session a little later – like having enough time to recover after birth and feeling a little more in tune with your newborn as you learn more about them and what they need. 

My sessions are designed to create a pocket of time where you can feel truly present with your little one (which is a gift in itself). I’ll provide space for you to be yourselves and help you create genuine happy memories – all the while capturing them honestly and beautifully.

And because they take place in your own home you can relax in the comfort of your own surroundings. My style is unposed so there is no need to pose your baby into any positions, which is great, if you have left your newborn photo shoot a little late.

Photo of an older newborn lying down in front of her mum and dad while she poses for a newborn photo shoot

Still feeling like your baby is too old for a newborn photo shoot?

If your baby is older than 12 weeks, and you feel like you have left things too late, please don’t worry. 

There are still so many wonderful milestones we can capture during this time. 

Your little one is going to go through so many incredible milestones during the next few months and there’s nothing better than being able to document these through visual storytelling. 

Take a look at my family sessions for some wonderful inspiration. One of my favourites is this laid-back, relaxed family photoshoot that took place in this family’s home in East London.

This family missed out on having a newborn session, but still wanted to capture some wonderful moments as their little girl was growing up. I know that these photographs are going to mean so much to her one day. 

I hope this post has shown you that even if your newborn is too old for newborn photos that shouldn’t stop you from having their pictures taken.

It’s wonderful to document all of your baby’s important milestones, but there is also a lot of magic in the in between moments. 

Like a typical walk to your local park, or sitting down on the floor enjoying some tummy time or an impromptu tickle fight. 

Years from now these are the moments you will treasure. 

Your baby is going to grow up in the blink of an eye, so make sure you capture all of these special moments so that years from now, when you look back at these photographs you can relive these moments, it’s as if no time has passed at all.

If you would like to view one of my favourite older baby sessions, you can view the gallery here.

And if you would like to book a call to chat about your newborn photo shoot or family photo shoot you can contact me here.

May 31, 2023

About Jess

I am a newborn and family photographer and live in west London with my husband, ten year old daughter and two year old son. Inspired by the magic of childhood and the simple sweetness of everyday moments - I capture genuine and emotive images of family connections without posing or forced smiles. My photography style is very relaxed; perfect for loving families who want to document their family life and children just as they are.

I offer outdoor and at-home photo shoots across London and Surrey including Kensington and Chelsea, Richmond, Kew, Fulham, Putney, Chiswick, Wimbledon, Teddington, Twickenham and Kingston-upon-Thames.

Follow along for more on motherhood and capturing memories on camera 


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