In order to take stunning photos of your newborn baby with your iPhone, you will need two things:
Yep, that’s it! A great photographer can make almost any camera work. Have you ever heard that saying, “The best camera is the one you have with you”? Well, that’s true!
A better camera will not automatically turn anyone into a better photographer. What makes someone better is intentional experimentation. Trying out different things, and seeing what works.
The more you take photos intentionally – meaning, the more you pay attention – the better your photos will get.
So what exactly should you be paying attention to? Check out my tips below.
*One thing to keep in mind – improving your skills as a hobbyist will not eliminate the need for a professional newborn photographer. It is, however, a great way to get beautiful photos in between sessions!
Depending on your smartphone model, you could have up to three different cameras available to you.
Each camera will have a different focal length. One will be wider, one is a mid-range lens, and the other a longer or “zoomed in” lens. Having three lens options allows you to manipulate your field of view without degrading the quality of the images.
But let’s not get too technical about it. The wider lens will allow you to see more of what’s around you (like a less extreme version of a fisheye lens,) while a longer lens will show a smaller section at a time (think portrait mode.) I can’t say that one is better than the other because it really comes down to the intention behind the photo. The trick is to experiment and find out which option works best for your current situation.
Believe it or not, a lot of what makes a photo successful or not has to do with this one thing you should avoid: DISTRACTIONS.
A distraction can be caused by almost anything. It can be a color in the background that’s too bright. Harsh lighting coming from above that blows out (overexposes) a section of someone’s face. It can even be the fact that someone’s feet were cut off, or part of their head isn’t in the frame!
Anything that draws your eye away from the intended focus is a distraction and will make your photo less effective.
See my tips below for two simple ways to eliminate distractions from your images.
Here’s a list of ACTIONABLE tips that are all very easy to follow but will make a big difference in your photos. I’m including short videos to elaborate on each tip and give you examples and visual references.
I include both artistic and technical tips that all have something in common: they have to do with training yourself to pay attention and taking photos more intentionally.
When learning a new skill, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Although cameras are now ubiquitous in our culture, we are not used to giving photo-taking a lot of thought – unless you’re a professional photographer!
So I recommend taking it one step at a time. Focus on a single element and master it before moving onto the next thing.
These skills may seem totally disconnected at first, but once you start using your phone camera (or a real camera) more intentionally, all these elements will come together.
The one thing I always highly encourage – whether you’re hiring a professional photographer or taking your own photos – is to get your photos printed!
Don’t let these once-in-a-lifetime moments get lost in the sea of digital data inside your phone. However special they feel on a small screen, their impact will be so much more powerful when seeing them in a beautiful album or hanging on your walls. I even love simple polaroid-style prints once in a while!
And your kids will appreciate it, too. They will love seeing images of themselves on display. It’s actually even been proven to improve their self-esteem!
Want ideas for what to photograph once your baby arrives? Here’s a downloadable pdf with the Top 10 Must-Have Moments to Capture – download it here for free!
©marjorie cohen photography | los angeles photographer