A 'Newborn' vs a 'baby'. What's the difference?

A 'newborn' vs a 'baby'. What?!

What's the difference?  Aren't they just the same thing?  A newborn child IS a baby, isn't it?

I can hear you saying it.  I know you're thinking it.  And I know you think I might be just a tad weird.  But - at least for portrait photographers who specialise in photographing newborns, babies and children - we do see a difference.

In the world of newborn photography, we see a difference between 'newborns' and 'babies' and 'toddlers', and it's really mostly to do with the age of the child.

The reason it makes a difference is because of the style of your portrait session.

A 'Newborn' session will be quite different to a 'Baby' session and I'll tell you why ...

We newborn photographer's consider a baby between 0 - 12 days old a 'Newborn'.  Sometimes even to 14 or even 15 days old, a baby can typically be photographed in a 'newborn session.'

1.  Sleepiness

With newborn photos, you are likely to see those sleepy, curly poses where bub is wrapped perfectly, and the photographer has posed the baby in lots of different positions that are super cosy and bub is dozing in a deep 'milk-induced' sleep.

Many of the poses we achieve are only possible because of the fact that these newborn babies are asleep.  And we're not just talking 'asleep', we're talking 'brand-new-baby-full-tummy-of-milk-sleeping-for-4-hrs' kind of sleep.

2. 'Awareness'

The other reason we are able to photograph newborns the way we do is because in those first two weeks, your newborn baby is not 'aware' of the big world around them.  They are not 'aware' of being handled and manouvred quite as much as an older baby.  

Let's not forget that new baby's will get overstimulated from too much handling and swapping and change of props and sets.

Because newborn babies are less 'aware' of their new world, we are able to move and pose them with little resistance when they are asleep.  When babies are a little older, they are more 'used to' being picked up, changed, etc and these things can wake them up easier than when they were 'newborn'.

3. Flexibility

Lastly, another reason 'newborns' can be posed the way they are in a studio session, is because they are flexible.

Flexibility is a huge factor in what a newborn can or can not do in a photo session.  Not all babies can do all poses.  Some babies like some poses and some babies like others.

Also, the younger a newborn baby is, the more flexible they are.  When a baby is born, most of their bones are not completely developed and are 'softer' than an older baby.  

They are also more flexible because they had to be in utero, and now that they are born, they can still flex, bend and curl the exact same way.

The older a baby gets, the less flexible they are.  Their bones are strengthening and their muscles are not able to flex like they did inside mum's womb.  

Those are my 3 top reasons why 'newborn's' are different to 'babies' in the portrait photography world!
Stay tuned for more about 'baby' sessions in another blog post - coming to you soon.

For all enquiries and bookings, please contact me on 0423 372 338 or the Enquiry Form.