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What is a Fresh 48 Session?

Having a baby is one of the most pivotal points in your life. Those special moments in the hospital are so very precious – your little one will only be that little those first few days. From the moment your baby is born, your baby will be constantly changing so fast – hour to hour, day to day. This session can capture those first milestones: herbal bath, breastfeeding, meeting siblings, Dad’s first diaper change, meeting the grandparents, or simply just gazing at your new bundle of joy. These moments will soon be lost in the fog of your “babymoon”! You and your family are experiencing a whirlwind of emotions then you’re sent home where weeks, months, years later those memories from your hospital stay can begin to fade… it’s the magic of treasured photographs that can instantly bring you back to that moment, the atmosphere, the smells, the sounds, the joy you and your family shared during those cherished happy times.

Many families are investing in a photographer to document those first moments to have peace of mind in remembering every detail. A Fresh 48 Session is an intimate session for families that want the first few hours of their newborn’s life captured. Typically held within the first 24-48 hours after your baby’s birth, this lifestyle session will take place when those emotions are still high and everything is brand new… it’s perfect for remembering those first moments forever.

Capturing all the details… the tiny hat, the room, hospital blanket, wrinkles, flaky skin, tiny feet, hands, hospital bracelets – all of it. As you and your family ooh and awe over your little bundle of joy that is now a part of your family, your photographer will slip in for one hour to capture more than the details… the light, airy glow that is filling your room… that will quickly become a blur of excitement once you bring your newborn home. It’s important to note that a Fresh 48 Session is not meant to take the place of a newborn session. While possibly only days apart, your newborn baby will barely even look the same by the time you have your in-home newborn portraits captured (typically held within 7-14 days of life).

What to expect
I take pride in providing a client experience. I’m a strong advocate for client education. My goal as a photographer is to ensure my clients are educated on what to expect of me and to be on the same page with how their experience will unfold. I specialize in capturing the art of motherhood. So, I work with many pregnant women who are juggling endless checklists, to-dos, thoughts, questions, prenatal appointments, etc. running through their minds on a daily basis as they prep for the arrival of their little one. Therefore; it’s extremely important for me to have open communication with my clients before their baby is due. Several years ago, I developed a system in order to be efficient and organized with each client and it’s been a game-changer for my business. My workflow consists of a detailed questionnaire and a Client Guide so my clients know what to expect, how to prepare, FAQ’s, etc.

My Fresh 48 questionnaire will equip me with all the information I need so when labor day arrives I’m good-to-go! This questionnaire will include your expected due date, the name/address of your birth place, your partner and/or birth team’s contact info., if there are any specific moments you want captured during the Fresh 48 session, etc. Having these questions answered in advance will encourage less stress for everyone so we’re on the same page. Being organized and efficient ahead of time makes it so much easier once I get the “I’m in labor!” text… then the only remaining question once baby is here and you’re in postpartum is “What’s your room number?”.

So… assuming you’ve already reached out to me months in advance to book your Fresh 48 Session so we can ensure I’m available around the timeframe of your due date + squared away all the fun stuff like signing a contract/completing payment/completing your questionnaire, etc. to get you officially booked… I will check-in with you roughly 1 week prior to your due date to see how things are going. Due to the unpredictability of labor it’s important that we stay in touch leading up to the big day! Once you’re in active labor, typically your partner or someone on your birth team will call/text/email me (the sooner the better!) to let me know so I can prep my gear and clear my schedule. Once baby is here (YAY!) we’ll then schedule a time during daylight hours (I’m a natural light photographer) for me to come to your birth place.

How to prepare…
I always recommend that baby is changed, swaddled and fed shortly before my arrival — this way he/she is extra sleepy and cozy! You do not need to stress about making your hospital room spotless — the point of this lifestyle session is to capture the room, the moment, as is. No need to stress about doing your hair and makeup either if you don’t want to. I’ve had mommies that felt more refreshed for portraits after a shower and a some light makeup and others that went all natural — it’s whatever you’re most comfortable with. For outfits, a neutral everyday look is best — moms have worn a robe, a grey/white cardigan, pajama pants… again, whatever you are most comfortable and feel yourself in… Dads can wear something as simple as a solid white t-shirt and jeans… baby is typically just swaddled in their hospital blanket.

I strongly recommend that during this time the only individuals present in the hospital room are Mom, Dad, siblings, and baby. Large gatherings can easily wear you and your baby out more than anticipated. Hospital rooms can quickly get crowded with extended family members which makes it more difficult to have a quiet, relaxed, intimate session. Once all photos are captured for the Fresh 48 session, and if times allows, extended family members such as grandparents, are welcome to join us in the room for some candid photographs.

When I arrive…
I bring along a small camera bag with me that has my camera (Nikon D810) and my two go-to lenses (Nikon 24-70mm + Nikon 105mm). I’ll then scan the room and might adjust the blinds to allow ample natural light to fill your room but other than that I’m not adjusting the atmosphere at all. The point is to capture everything naturally how it is so I don’t interfere much with what’s going on in the room As a side note, when handling newborn babies I don’t wear any perfume or jewelry and always keep a very quiet and mellow voice so not to disturb baby – keeping the room and everyone in it relaxed.

During this session, I understand that this is a time of recovery for mom and baby. You just had a baby! Mom is likely exhausted, emotional, and will be going through a healing phase, as well as, family and friends that are knocking on your door excited to visit and meet your little one! Therefore; when I’m there for your session I’m cognizant of this and work quickly and efficiently to slip into the room to capture the must-have photographs and then slip back out. Typically this session lasts roughly 45 minutes. The images from your session will be available to you via an online gallery within 24-hours so you can enjoy them as a family, share with family and friends, and start prepping your birth announcement cards!

What is captured…
While I’ll be there to help guide you and your family when transitioning between images, there is very little “posing” involved as this session is meant to be more lifestyle and natural.

The setting…
Your postpartum room is a special place. This is the room that you’ll experience many “firsts” with your newborn… where you’re beginning to bond as a family and getting to know your little one. I typically start with first capturing the essence of the room. Again, don’t worry about de-cluttering the room too much — this session is more of a lifestyle approach to capture the full nature of the room so you’ll always remember it… The overnight bags, the snacks, the bassinet, luggage bags, any flowers/cards/gifts visitors may have brought by already, the whiteboard with notes from your nurses, etc. I also always like to capture the other hospital details like the room number, the waiting room, the hospital building, and overall landscape… it find that it helps tie the story together.
The details…
There are so many variations of detailed photographs to capture during this time… baby snuggled in their hospital bassinet, the hospital bracelets, baby’s first portrait, breastfeeding, skin-to-skin, daddy and baby, mommy and baby, meeting siblings, the first family portrait… and all the tiny details of baby’s hair, hands, feet, ears, toes, etc.

The emotion
These natural, candid moments are some of my favorite and truly make my heart sing! Parents that are holding their newborn child in their hands are full of happiness and raw emotion so it’s easy to capture that “awe” filling the room. The way a new mother looks at their baby, the proud look in dad’s eyes, the loving touch of a big brother/sister, the way a husband now looks at his wife now as a mother, the look of a baby staring at their parents… these are truly breathtaking moments that I am honored to witness.

 

Documenting a life created, a life changed…

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