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Why are professional baby photos so expensive?

One of the most common questions about newborn photography that I see people asking online is “why are professional baby photos so expensive?”

Now, one person’s idea of expensive is obviously hugely different from another person’s.

But I believe that it’s a question that goes through the minds of a lot of parents-to-be. So I wanted to address this in my blog here for you today.

Why newborn photography is ‘expensive’

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Professional newborn photography can be perceived to be expensive.

But here are just some of the reasons why the prices being charged could be justified:

Specialised service

Professional baby photography is a specialist service. There is a lot of skill required, and those skills are developed over time. So while you can find cheap baby photographers, they will likely be cheap for a reason!

It may be that they are inexperienced and are wanting to build up their portfolio – meaning that they haven’t done many baby photoshoots before. (Which I would add, should be a warning sign to you as parents-to-be).

Choosing a photographer with limited experience of handling and photographing babies could lead to you not getting the kind of images you want. And if they aren’t safety trained, this could even mean that you are putting your baby into the hands of someone who doesn’t know how to handle newborn babies safely.

Which leads me onto my next point…

Professional training

Despite what you might think, a photographer doesn’t just decide to start offering baby photography services one day and off they go!

Being confident handling tiny babies and knowing how to soothe and pose them, in a way that is comfortable and safe for the baby, are essential skills that every newborn photographer must have.

A lot of technical training is required in order for a professional baby photographer to operate safely and professionally.

And that training costs a lot of money – hundreds if not thousands of pounds! The very best photographers also recognise the need to continually invest in training to stay on top of their game. So training is an ongoing cost to the photographer, and this is likely to be reflected in their fees.

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Expensive equipment

Professional photographers also need to buy a lot of expensive camera equipment, lighting aids and backdrops.

They have the overhead of a photography studio and all the operating costs that come with this. Or, if they are a mobile photographer, they will also have car insurance, fuel and travel expenses to consider.

You’ll likely also be offered the option to have your baby photographed in adorable miniature hats, outfits or wraps, and in tiny props such as baskets and boxes – again, all these cost money!

So why are professional baby photos so expensive?

Well, now perhaps you can see that the price you pay for your photography session is contributing to all these things that photographers need to buy in order to be in business.

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Other things that contribute to the cost of your newborn photoshoot

And then, on top of that, you are paying for the professional photographer’s time and expertise.

This includes:

  • The time spent liaising with you to arrange and confirm the booking (and you could argue, the time and money they have invested in marketing their business in order for you to have discovered them in the first place)
  • The time spent preparing for the photoshoot – buying props, styling the studio and generally getting everything ready for your arrival on the day
  • The time they spend doing your baby’s photoshoot

Newborn photographers typically allow up to 2-4 hours of studio time for each photoshoot, and most don’t do more than one session per day. You’ll be offered exclusive use of their studio and their focussed attention for the duration of the session – time which they usually include in a ‘session fee’ of approximately £50-150.

  • Then after the session, the time spent editing the photos. This is often a misunderstood part of the process since it’s done behind the scenes, but it’s an essential step in order for the photographer to complete the gallery of photos and make each individual image ready for you. It can take as long as half a day or more for a photographer to complete a gallery of images and to digitally finish the photos to their trademark style.

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Do professional baby photos seem so expensive now?

So, having considered all this, perhaps you can now appreciate that a lot goes into a typical newborn photography session?

Hopefully the things I have listed above help to clarify why professional baby photos can be perceived to be expensive?

A professional photographer is running a business after all, and has many business costs that they need to charge onto customers in order to be able to run it successfully.  That’s why their prices may be higher than you initially expect.

Avoid choosing a newborn photographer based on price

Just because newborn photography is really popular nowadays, don’t expect it to be cheap. (And to be honest, if it is cheap, spend some time questioning why that is before you book).

There are lots of professional photographers offering newborn photography services, but choosing the right photographer for you is really important.

I would urge you not to go with the photographer who is the cheapest necessarily, but the one who offers you the reassurance of a professional service and who feels like a good fit for you.

Definitely go with a photographer who is experienced, professionally trained and can demonstrate how they safely create the photos. And, don’t forget that it’s important to choose someone whose work you love!

Professional baby photos are worth their weight in gold!

Professional portraits by a newborn photographer capture those precious first few weeks of your baby’s life and every detail from their delicate skin and super soft hair to their curled up body and their precious little fingers and toes.

As a mum of two boys myself, I can tell you that the portraits you have taken after your baby’s birth will become so precious to you, you’ll never regret hiring a newborn photographer!

Awake baby by Sandra Cullen Photography

Any further questions about newborn photography?

It isn’t easy choosing a newborn photographer, but I hope that this has helped you to understand why you might think professional baby photos are expensive.

Let me know in the comments if you have any further questions about newborn photography. I would be pleased to help.

And, if you want to speak to me about booking a newborn photography session you can either complete this form, call me on 07507 665493 or email me at Sandra@sandracullenphotography.com. I look forward to hearing from you!