Inside: Yes, you can totally do your own monthly baby pictures! Read on for five easy tips to make your DIY baby photos as beautiful as your sweet baby.
I can see you now. You’re a new mama, scrolling through Pinterest (nap time ninja that you are) in search of how to snap the perfect photo of your brand new baby on the cheap. Maybe you’ve thought of hiring a professional to do the job? Your baby will change at an amazing rate during his first year. You want to capture each new expression! Save money, bond with your baby, and do it yourself!
Our resident professional is Becca McCorkle, a part-time photographer, full-time teacher, and full-time mama of the most handsomest baby boy. She has over 10 years experience in capturing gorgeous moments through her photography. So relax and take a peek at Becca’s best DIY tips for fail-proof monthly baby photos!
(Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. I only recommend products I know and love myself!)
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5 Tips for Beautiful DIY Monthly Baby Pictures
- Indoors is the best bet for baby photos. The weather won’t be an issue as you progress throughout baby’s first year.
- I recommend setting up next to a bright window. Morning or late afternoon light is best! If you can, take the photos the same time of the day each month.
- Turn your flash OFF, and don’t be afraid to turn on a lamp if needed as well. This will help you avoid harsh shadows. You’re going for a nice natural glow, not a high school photo glamour shoot!
2. Background and Posing
- Don’t waste money on expensive backgrounds! Take a quick tour of your baby’s nursery to see what you already have on hand. I used receiving blankets like these from Aden and Anais.
- Mix and match! You’ll never get each month’s background set up exactly the same, so cut yourself a break and go for an eclectic feel instead.
- I just used clothespins to attach the vertical blanket to baby’s dresser. Make sure the blanket is hung tall enough once baby starts sitting and standing!
- As your little one gets older, don’t force the poses. What new skill has he learned? Make that the highlight of that month’s photo. Newborns are adorable curled up on the stomachs or backs. However, have you ever tried to get a 10 month old to lie still? It’s like wrestling a baby octopus! I recommend introducing a cute prop to offer a distraction. Just go with the flow mama, let your baby choose his pose!
- Three words. Keep it simple! For boys, you can’t go wrong with a simple white onesie. Baby girls look adorable in mix and match white outfits with a signature bow or a DIY tulle tutu.
- Think ahead: do you really want to spend big $$ on a new outfit every single month?
- Keep your priorities straight. Your goal here is to capture the first year journey of your beautiful tiny human! Fancy outfits and custom designs just distract from that kissable little face.
- Stick with classic black and white. It’s timeless and so easy! It also helps to set a consistent look throughout the entire year. Try as you might, each photo session will have a different color cast from month to month. Black and white photos take out the guesswork!
- Try a vignette. This darkens the corners a bit to draw the eye in towards your focal point. Put the focus on your baby!
- Think ahead when you crop. How do you want to frame these photos as a group? I cropped all of my baby’s monthly photos to 4 x 6 so I could display them in one big collage frame.
- If you’re feeling ambitious: Focus is a major part of professional looking photos. Most free editing software has a blur tool. Go ahead and blur your background. Then sharpen things that should glisten like eyes, metal, or hard surfaces.
- For overachievers only! Using Photoshop, duplicate the layer, then put a Gaussian blur on that layer. Simply use the eraser tool to erase everything you don’t want to be blurred. Finally, flatten the image and save!
5. Odds and Ends
- Make sure to keep the entire body in the frame every time. Watch that those little toes stay in view!
- Pick portrait or landscape orientation and stick to your guns! Keep it consistent.
- Take more pictures than you think you need, especially once your baby starts moving. Give yourself plenty of options to find the perfect shot!
- Baby’s the boss! Don’t set your photo shoot up for failure by starting just before nap time or lunch. In the morning just after breakfast is a great time to try.
Think you need to hire a professional to capture your baby’s first year? Think again! Use these tips from a pro to create beautiful monthly baby photos of your little one.
Tell me how you made your own DIY monthly baby photos in the comments below! Or share your favorite baby picture tips!