What exactly is a Fresh 48 session, and why you need to book one!

I recently started taking on Fresh 48 sessions, and let me tell you, they have quickly taken the number one spot as my favorite sessions to book! I cannot think of a time that is more special than the birth of your baby. Those new squishy babies are just amazing, and takes me back every time. I joke that my husband is going to make me stop booking them because I come home with baby fever every.damn.time!

It seems like yesterday I was pregnant with my baby boy, now 3, spending my days wondering what he was going to look like, how big was he going to be, who's nose was he going to have. Then just like that (well 55 hours later), he was here, and there we were, falling in love instantly, exhausted, overwhelmed, so happy. In case you wondered, he had my nose.

My sweet little Conor only hours old!! circa 2015

My sweet little Conor only hours old!! circa 2015

We spent so much of those first days just looking at him, soaking in what we could. I admit though, between the constant nurse/doctor visits, trying to figure out breast feeding, and just plain exhaustion, it was hard to capture it all. Booking a Fresh 48 session means you can ensure all of those moments are beautifully documented.

WHAT EXACTLY IS A FRESH 48 

A Fresh 48 Newborn session is a session held within the first 48 hours of your babies birth at the hospital, birthing center, or home. Once you book a session I just ask that you add me to your list of contacts to call/text when baby is on their way. After your baby is born, and you are settled in to your recovery room, we will set up a time for me to come to your place of birth during daylight hours. The session itself is very laid back, and doesn't involve any props or posing, besides me asking you to sit where the light hits you best ;)

Here are a couple of reasons why I feel that booking a professional to come take these photos is so important. 

dad kissing mom while holding newborn baby | Why you should hire a Fresh 48 Photographer | adriennelouisephotography.com

QUALITY IMAGES

We all know that there is a big difference in the pictures you take with your phone, and the pictures you get from a professional photographer. While I always say the best camera is the one you have with you, having a professional photographer come in will make a huge difference. Hospitals are horribly lit, and can be very busy. Hiring a professional who knows how to use light that flatters, and professionally edit ensures you will have beautiful images to share or even display in your homes. 

Family with new baby at hospital | Why you should hire a Fresh 48 Photographer | adriennelouisephotography.com

BE PRESENT 

Having a professional there also means that you can just be present with your family for all those firsts. This is a time to soak it all in and just enjoy your time as a family. I love documenting siblings meeting for the first time. Watching big brother/sister hold their baby. Let me worry about perfectly documenting that moment, while you just enjoy it. You will be left with beautiful pictures to remember it by, and to share with your friends and family. 

Be present in this moment because your baby will never be this small again. They will change so much even in just the first week. You'll want to be able to look back and remember that soft hair on their skin, the smell of their head, the wrinkles on their tiny feet, and their sweet tiny profile. You'll want to remember how you looked at them, so in love, and how you felt when you watched your husband become a father for the first, or fourth time. 

baby girl details | Why you should hire a Fresh 48 Photographer | adriennelouisephotography.com

Those first couple of days can be such a blur and I want to give you something to hold on to this sweet and special time. If you are interested in booking a session, please click the button below to contact me or email me at adriennelouisephotography@gmail.com. Due to the on-call nature of these sessions I only book a couple each month. I also offer a special if you book them as an add-on to an in-home newborn session.

3 Tips for Preparing for Your Family Photo Session

Family is kind of my jam. I love meeting and working with small families, big families, and even extended families. I get asked a lot about what my clients should do to prepare for their family photo session. Beyond the most popular question of what to wear, there are a few other tips I have that will help insure a fun and successful family photo shoot. 

family in green field hugging and laughing | 3 tips for preparing for your family photo session | www.adriennelouisephotography.com

1. Wardrobe!

This is my number one question when I ask clients if they have any questions. I even wrote a blog post about it here. I think if there is one tip from there that is my favorite, it's to be yourselves and to be comfortable!

One thing I didn't mention in that post, is that you should leave plenty of time for getting ready, this way you don't feel rushed and disorganized getting to your session, this can set the tone for the session. I suggest my moms make a day of it, get your hair and makeup professionally done. First of all, you'll feel your best, and it's one less thing you have to do!

family in trees at Scottsdale Farms | 3 tips for preparing for your family photo session | www.adriennelouisephotography.com

2. Timing

I LOVE to go out and shoot in the evenings right before sunset. I also have a toddler who's bedtime for half of the year is at sunset, that hour before the sun sets is called "The Witching Hour" in our house. So I wouldn't dare take him out for pictures at that time! Luckily, I can shoot at other times of the day, like right after sunrise, or we can find some open shade in the late afternoon. Be sure to tell your photographer what works best for your families schedule, no one knows your kids like you do and we all want them to be their happiest at your session.

Be advised that if you do want those beautiful golden rays of light filling your photos, the hour before sunset is the best time, it's not called Magic Hour for nothing! I have found that some well timed naps, a good meal, and plenty of their favorite snacks can go a long way! That being said, whatever time of day your session is, please be sure to come well rested and well fed!

Mother and 4 sons laughing by river | 3 tips for preparing for your family photo session | www.adriennelouisephotography.com

3. Try to have fun!

Hug your kids, kiss your wife, snuggle, laugh, joke, giggle, play, and love!! Let me capture who your family really is. I know that having a camera pointed in your face can be intimidating, but the more you interact with each other, and less with me, the more natural and emotive images you are going to get. The kind of images that truly show off who you are. The best images are the ones where you are looking at each other, these are usually where I capture the most natural smiles and connections.

Leave the cheese at home. While I love a good shot of everyone looking at the camera, and I always try to get a few, constantly having everyone look at the camera and say cheese will result in a lot of unnatural photos. Plus I find kids don't respond well to it, and it can get stressful for them. Which can put a halt to a session pretty quickly!

family on couch laughing and playing | 3 tips for preparing for your family photo session | www.adriennelouisephotography.com

As with any good relationship, communication is key. I always try to make my sessions an enjoyable experience for all, I will ask lots of questions in our pre-session consultations to help me get to know your family. I also encourage you to communicate all of your concerns with me before your session. If conditions (schedule changes, illness, etc.) are less than ideal we can always find a better time. 

What are some things that you worry about before your family photo sessions? Is there something that holds you back from booking more family photo sessions? Please leave a comment, or send me a message!!

How to Dress for Family Photos

This is by far the biggest question I get asked most often before a session. 

As far as wardrobe suggestions, I will start off by saying, I am probably the least stylish person I know, but here are a few general tips to help you out. You can also refer to a couple of my Pinterest boards here and here for inspiration!

Coordination is key

  • Don't be too matchy, coordinating colors and patterns are awesome, but no 90's white t-shirts and jeans a la Akward Family Photos. Only because it looks dated, and when everyone wears the same color, you like one big blob. Limit your patterns to one or two people, too many can distract from the final image.
mom and daughter portrait

Colors 

  • Most of my sessions are outdoors, depending on how green it is outside, I would avoid wearing green so you don't blend in. If it is fall or winter and the leaves have changed and there's lots of yellow and red in the trees, it would be a great color to wear. Dark purples, deep reds, and golds would look good too in the fall.
  • Neutrals like creme, grey, and tan, muted blues and blushes, in different layers/textures always look good no matter the season. The key to neutrals is to use them in variety of layers and textures. A cardigan here, some lace there, maybe some corduroy and denim. Mix up your shirt styles, pants, skirts and dresses in different fabrics. Here's a good example of that. 
  • Another way to choose your color pallette is to look right at home. Since these pictures will hang on your walls, choose colors that complement your home style and decor. 
30018480561_019f328b69_k.jpg

Layers and accessories

  • A cardigan or a scarf can add some dimension. I love layering fitted jackets and vests in the winter. A statement necklace, a bold colored or shiny metal cuff, or some fun earrings can add interest. Limit accessories to one or two pieces to keep a more classic look to your portraits.
Couple in field at sunset

Wardrobe Building

  • Pick one outfit and build around it. Whether it's a special outfit you have for your kids, or picking an outfit that makes you feel fabulous, and building around it. 
  • Be conscious of where we are shooting your session. If we are going to venture around the city, being super dressed up and in your stilettos will work, might not look great or be practical shooting in a park or field. 
mother and daughter at Anderson Sunflower Farm

Be true to you

  • In the end these pictures are about you and the connection between the members of your family. You don't have to be a fashionista, you just need to put a little thought and care into it. Choose clothes you are all comfortable in, and that speak to your unique personalities. Using this tip alone, I guarantee you have something in your closet that will work.
Family of 3 with dog at Green Meadows Preserve Marietta, GA

AVOID:

  • neon colors - they will cast a color on your skin 
  • narrow pinstripes, they have a weird effect on camera
  • anything with logos, or character shirts
  • short skirts/dresses, I will ask you to sit on ground at some point for some fun cuddly family shots, and you can end up looking stiff and uncomfortable if you're trying to stay covered.

I know how hard it can be to pick outfits, so I am always happy to get text's or emails from my clients with pictures to help them choose!