And then there were four...| family newborn portraits

June 14, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Just recently I had a family newborn session. Per usual, it started with a phone call and then a consultation, which was in person. I really enjoy consultations because that is when my prospective client and I get a chance to meet face to face. It allows us to get comfortable with one another and to see if we are a perfect fit for each other. During the consultation, I explain how the session will move along and what they should expect from me and what I expect from them. After, and sometimes during the business talk, we have personal, "get to know you" talk, which is my favorite part. Not only does this increase the comfort level, but I find out some very interesting information about them and I just love that. It's so much easier and so much more fun to photograph people whom I like and who like me.

While discussing the particulars of the session, Tamara mentioned that she had some shipping to do for her business. Of course I had to know what her business was. When she told me Just Like Me Box, I got all excited and told her 'I follow you on Instagram!" She then replied that she follows me too, that's how she ended up calling me! How cool is that? At any rate, have you heard of the Just Like Me Book Box? Well, it is a monthly subscription of wonderful, African-American books for children. That's putting it simply. Basically she has filled a need in the African-American community by providing a source for books with positive, African-American representation and stories. If you'd like to find out more about Tamara's subscription box, please visit It would make a wonderful gift for a young child that you know. You can also follow her on Instagram as @justlikemebox and find her on Facebook at

When I spoke with Tamara on the phone, she told me that she wanted to have portraits taken of her newborn as soon as possible because she was already about 3 weeks old. I must say, I was a little worried by this because I prefer newborns between the ages of 6 days and 14 days. This is not always possible, but I strive for that age. I wasn't going to turn her down because her daughter was beyond my desired age, but I did consider that it might be more difficult to get her to sleep. Well, I figured I would cross that bridge when I came to it.

The day arrived and I was greeted at the door by Mose and Tamara's 2 year old son Mose, Jr., whom they call M.J. They had left the front door open with the glass door locked and as I came up to the door he was running by. He stopped, smiled and just stood there until his father let me in. M.J. was so cute and active. When Tamara came downstairs Jade was still awake, but as I set up for the session, Tamara fed her and she fell into a deep milk coma. Jade was awesome! I had nothing to worry about! That just made me think of the time I photographed a 10 week old baby like a newborn and boy did he sleep. Below are some of the first images I captured of Jade while she slept peacefully. I love the first one where "the angels are talking to her."

portrait of newborn baby girlMcNeil-3 portrait of newborn baby girlMcNeil-3 portrait of newborn baby girlMcNeil-3 portrait of newborn baby girlMcNeil-8

Next we wanted to incorporate M.J. into the picture. So we took of his shirt, had him lay on the floor and I laid Jade on his arm. M.J. did so well! We couldn't get him to smile, but that's ok. We're just glad that he didn't roll her off his arm. Well, not until it was time for him to get up. He couldn't get up quick enough, so luckily I was there to move her. Below is my favorite one from that series.

portrait of newborn sister and toddler brotherMcNeil-12

Throughout the session I captured various candid's of M.J. and his dad. To be honest, most of those shots were of his dad trying to restrain him, can you tell?

portrait of father and sonMcNeil-27 portrait of father and sonMcNeil-27 portrait of father and sonMcNeil-27

I captured some breastfeeding images and family images. The family images were only challenging when we tried to have M.J. sit and look at the camera. I had much better luck with candids. We even included the family dog, Canon. At times, Canon was the only one actually looking at the camera. See for yourself. He was a very well-trained dog.

family photographyMcNeil-13 family photographyMcNeil-13

Check out Canon's side-eye.

family photographyMcNeil-13 family photographyMcNeil-13 family photographyMcNeil-13

Near the end of the session, M.J. was sitting on his dad's lap, thoroughly engrossed in this cool truck he had. In case you're wondering what they are doing, they are growling at the camera. They are literally saying "Raaaah!" How cute is that?

father and son photographyMcNeil-36 father and son photographyMcNeil-36 father and son photographyMcNeil-36

The last shot I tried to get was of Jade in her dad's hands. I captured it, but it wasn't quite how I envisioned it. I just couldn't get in a good enough position to capture it the way that I wanted to. Regardless, I still think it is a beautiful image. What do you think?

altanta newborn photographyMcNeil-40

All in all it was a wonderful session. Oh, I almost forgot! While I was putting my equipment away, I continued to talk to Tamara and Mose. What can I say, I can sometimes be a Chatty Patty. Mose started telling me about is vlog, light and camera he uses for video. He even showed me one of his vlogs. Basically his vlog is about his life. It includes family life, commentary, some's pretty eclectic. If you'd like to check it out, please visit him on Youtube at 1differentangle. I'm sure you'll find something that you can relate to.


No comments posted.