Baby Charlie’s grandmother called the studio from her home in the Raleigh, NC area several months before his birth to find out about our offerings. She wanted to gift her son and daughter-in-law with a newborn session, and we were happy to accommodate her request. When grandparents or another family member gifts a full session, we have a gorgeous gift certificate that we send so they can present it to the recipient. Because Karen had an Atlanta visit planned, she arranged to pick up the gift certificate at the studio since she also wanted a tour. It as so much fun to meet her and show her the studio, answer a few of her questions, and talk about her grandchild that she was so excitedly expecting. Her daughter-in-law’s baby shower was that weekend and she was so excited to give her the gift certificate then.
Quinn, her daughter-in-law, contacted us in the week after and was THRILLED! She immediately made plans to add on hair and makeup services, and told us that she couldn’t think of a better gift. As Charlie’s due date grew nearer, she let us know that he would be delivered via scheduled C-section, and we went ahead and scheduled a specific date for their newborn session. Due to her husband’s demanding schedule with his job in the hospitality industry, her maternity leave, and wanting to coordinate for when his parents would be in town, she wanted to ensure those pieces of the puzzle would all fit together.
Typically we do not schedule newborn sessions until babies have actually arrived. Due dates and scheduled deliveries are estimates, at best and it’s been very rare that babies have arrived when their parents thought they would! There are also other factors we take into consideration when scheduling your session: you and your baby’s recovery, your baby’s birth weight, any complications, etc.
On the day of Charlie’s newborn session, Christian and Quinn arrived with baby Charlie. I was so excited to meet them, and we talked for a bit while looking through the studio wardrobe for Quinn. She had told me she had fair skin and loved lace, so I had a few options already pulled for her. She fell in love with one of the dresses, and then settled into the hair and makeup chair while I took baby Charlie to the newborn shooting room. Charlie was a chunky thing and a dream sleeper. He was very relaxed while sleeping, so it made his solo portraits a breeze! Karen and her husband Matt arrived and had a lot of fun watching the end of his solo portraits through the observation window. After I came out with Charlie, Karen called me “the baby whisperer”. It’s not the first time I’ve been dubbed with that nickname, and I don’t think it’s always true - but I really love working with and photographing newborns and their families, so I’ll take it!
Karen and Matt were only present for the time that they were being photographed, so we started with group shots, and then some grandparent shots together and individually, We ended with images of Karen with Quinn and Charlie, and a three generation image of Christian, Matt, and Charlie. It was emotional for their family, and I was reminded of what a wonderful job I have. I’m invited to photograph these incredibly special moments for families, and it is such an honor. When we finished up with those, we sent Karen and Matt on their way.
At this point, Charlie was hungry and wanted a diaper change, so Quinn and Christian took care of his needs while we chatted and got to know each other further. Both work for a luxury hotel here in Atlanta, and it was really fun hearing about their experiences and travels all over the world. Charlie was having a hard time settling down, and was a bit fussy. During the parent portion of sessions, it’s totally fine if baby is awake, as long as they’re calm. Since Charlie was not calm, we needed to get him to that place before we could continue. Quinn and Christian did their best, but he was not having it, so I gently took over. I’ve had three children and we see multiple babies every week in the studio. While there is sometimes still a baby that will throw me for a loop and refuse to “cooperate” every once in a blue moon, I do know most of the tricks! I walked him and bounced him all over the studio, and he fell back into a deep sleep. Quinn asked if I’d like to come home with them and help put him to bed at night. This is something that I hear from my clients on a regular basis! While I can’t do that, I can definitely give some advice if it’s asked for, and will gladly share tricks and techniques that may work for your family. The newborn stage is full of trial and error and do dependent on your baby’s unqiue needs and personality - you’ll get through it one day at a time. I promise!
We wrapped up the session with parent images, and I just loved the way that Quinn and Christian looked at each other. Welcoming Charlie into their family was not an easy journey for them, and the emotions of relief, gratefulness, and joy were very prevalent on their faces.
Here are just a few from Charlie’s gallery! Karen opted to purchase the full gallery along with an album for them, and also surprised them with a large 16x20 framed print for their home.
If you're expecting a baby or already a parent and looking for a newborn, maternity, or family photographer, I would love to work with you to create images that you will love for a lifetime. Watch this video to hear about my philosophy and see how I work in the studio so you can determine if I'm the right fit for you. I can't wait to meet you!
Lily Sophia Photography specializes in newborn, baby, maternity, and family photography in Atlanta, Georgia and surrounding areas.