Adrienne Thiessen, the owner and principal photographer here at Gemini Visuals, has been photographing newborn babies for well over a decade. She has honed her skills through her years of experience and many parents call her the ‘baby whisper’.
Read our second blog of Questions with Adrienne. This one about newborn photography and her tips for your newborn session, featuring a beautiful newborn and family that was recently in the studio.
Have you always photographed kids and newborns? What got you started?
Yes I have! As someone who worked in childcare, it was a natural thing to do while taking care of the kids. I would capture them just in our daily routines. I’ve been babysitting and working with kids since i was 11, so it was just a natural thing to do when I started photography.
How long does it take to photograph a newborn session?
Newborns can take anywhere from 2-4 hours – sometimes more depending on the baby. A fussy baby that won’t sleep deeply can be tough to photograph and often most of that time is spent feeding and soothing.
What has been the biggest contribution to your current ‘style’ of photography?
Various props have definitely inspired my current style, as well working with other local photographers, and taking workshops. Newborn photography goes through trends like everything else, which is always reflected in the ever-changing styles of a newborn photographer.
What type of photography would you like to try?
I think I’ve tried everything that has interested me. I would love to do underwater maternity and dance sessions, but then I can’t open my eyes under water so that might be tough! I would love to get more into fantasy photography, more fairytale looking outdoor sessions, but then a lot of that is photoshop work, versus all photography.
What other newborn photographers do you admire?
Obviously Anne Geddes was the pioneer in this field and has done some amazing work, especially taking into account that much of her work was shot on film. I work closely with Eden Bao from Seattle, so she is a big inspiration and mentor. There’ is a long list of photographers that I follow on Instagram and Facebook, both local and from around the world.
What is your favourite newborn photo that you have captured?
It changes all the time. I love using my dream catcher prop. And a huge favourite was the newborn on the plane who’s parents are both skydivers. Love the pose of mom with baby in the roses. I always like when parents bring in props to include a personal spin on it and the challenge to include that item.
What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you during a newborn photo session?
This is an obvious one, but the typical shocked reaction of parents being peed or pooped on is always funny. Or baby’s pooping on the bean bag backdrop (see above photo). I find that how the parents usually react that’s so funny. One mom in trying to avoid her shoe, put the baby right over her phone and baby was peeing on her phone.
Any advice for new moms wanting to book a session?
I would suggest that you look for a photographer with experience, patience and a style you like. A photographer has their own style, and generally photograph according to that unless they are happy to take on a new challenge. I would suggest booking because you love the photographers work, and hopefully can build a relationship with them.
Always watch out for photographers that put a very strict short time limit on the session. You can’t always capture every new born as a mini. The more experience a photographer has the more likely the emphasis on safety. Cheaper isn’t always better when it comes to photography. You only get a small window with newborns and then they grow out of that stage. I’ve photographed older newborns for many moms who were devastated that their first session with a less experienced photographer didn’t work out.
Even if you aren’t exactly sure of your baby’s impending arrival, we can book your session prior with some flexibility in the date. Contact us to book your Newborn Session, or Baby’s First Year Package. We offer a $25 discount if you book your Maternity Session and Newborn together.