You can’t pose them. They won’t sit up. They may cry if you scare them. They won’t smile. They won’t even look at the camera when you want them to.
So how can you capture great photographs of a baby that the parent will want to buy?
What starts out sounding like a negative actually can be worked into a BIG positive from selling your photography.
A baby won’t pose, but they will only be little for a very short time. They won’t sit up, but they have the tiniest hands and feet.
This is a once in a lifetime moment. Wait a month and it will change. Put it off for a few months, and you lose the opportunity forever.
Now that’s a sales technique. But before you start selling, you have to take the photographs.
Choose Natural Light
Babies are sensitive to loud noises, sudden movements, and bright lights. A large flash may send them into a fit of tears – the last thing you want. So whenever possible, control your use of flash as much as possible. If you’re in your dark studio, use a softbox. Or bring the baby up to an area where natural light comes pouring through the window.
Get The Details
Tell the story of this new little life. Capture the hands, the feet, a fist wrapped around mom’s finger, or the dad’s wedding ring slipped around the toe. Size is everything. For some infants, we photograph at their home instead of bringing them into a studio location. This is a great way to bring out the props. A blanket knitted by great-grandma makes a wonderful backdrop (and of course a must-have portrait). We were in one home a few years ago where the baby was the first grandchild on both sides of the family. Every member of the family had painted a character or saying onto the wall of her bedroom. We photographed each of these items, and used it to build an album. The clients couldn’t refuse – and ended up ordering more than one album for different family members.
Bring In Mom and Dad
It’s all about size. And the love and bond between the newest member of the family. Just like the details, mom and dad will love intimate images showcasing their tiny baby.
The No Rush Studio
Do you know what separates you from the discount chains? Your client’s happiness. Give each client plenty of time. If they need to change the baby, not a problem. If she gets hungry, you’ll wait until she’s fed. Remember your clients are new parents, and may be a little stressed about the baby’s routine. Being calm and patient is going to help build your reputation.
Build An Album
Don’t just take the images and wait for the sale. Take the images with an album in mind. Predesign several samples, and offer them in package plans. A 20-page album in your lowest, a 40- page in your highest (for example). Then shoot to fill the pages in a way you know your client could never refuse.
Start A Baby Club
Because babies change so fast, they are the perfect target for more than one sale. Don’t bring in a client for one shoot as a brand new baby, offer a baby club where you take four images throughout the first year. You’ll get the family in for a sitting 4 times per year, and get the opportunity for multiple sales all year long.