When the session doesn’t go perfectly the first time

family by the window

Today’s feature is from .

Bobbi-Jo says:

“Baby Max is one of my “Baby plan” babies, meaning he gets photographed 4 times over his first year. I took photos of Mom when she was pregnant with him, so it was exciting to finally meet Max!”

Bobbi-Jo’s Photography Tip:

This session was a tough one! It took place over two different dates, which is unusual – but sometimes necessary.

The first session was early evening. It was dark and about to rain and Baby Max was not feeling too happy, but we went ahead with the session anyway. You can see from the first few images with Mom and Dad that I had to place them close to the only window that was letting in any light.

Luckily for me, my style is often light filled and moody, so it worked! I had them sitting on the edge of the master bed facing the window, which did not leave a lot of room for myself and even though I was using a 35mm at that point, it was still a tight fit.

As I do with most lifestyle newborn sessions, I had Mom and Dad interact with the baby and walked around the room in a quiet manner, taking shots from different angles. I love that feeling of “peeking in” on a new family so I always try to get into a hallway or even behind a bathroom or closet door to create that feeling for a few shots.

As you can see, Baby Max was awake for most of the session with Mom and Dad and although he looks content, he often was not! We decided after an hour or so that I would come back another day to get more shots of just Max alone. He did not want to be put down and I could tell the parents were getting frustrated!

I don’t usually come back another day; however, these clients lived only 5 minutes away from me so I was able to pop by one morning when my kids went to school.

The second half of the session, Max was much more content! Grandma was also there to help calm and soothe the baby – in that way that only Grandmas can!

During lifestyle sessions I always try to use the “props” the family already has. For this session, Mom and Grandma actually owned a vintage shop so there were plenty of beautiful quilts and blankets to lay the baby on. His nursery was beautiful and we captured some images in there to show off the books and little deer details.

Overall this session was a success, although it took a little longer than usual. I never want a client to feel disappointed in their finished product so I will always do what I can to make them happy. The baby’s moods cannot be controlled so sometimes it takes that extra effort to make a session work!

family in colour
baby in mom's arms
baby on mom's lap

BabyMaxwell074
sleeping newborn
sleeping baby
baby sleeping

Bobbi-Jo used a Canon 6D (affiliate link) with a Canon 35mm lens and a Canon 85mm lens to capture these images.

Bobbi-Jo Stuart is a Toronto, Barrie, and Newmarket, Ontario Lifestyle Wedding and Portrait photographer.

Click here to see more tips on in-home sessions.


If you’re thinking about getting into newborn photography, skill is only have the battle. Make sure you have all of your legal ducks in a row as well to make sure both you and your client are protected (affiliate link).

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