Dex | What to Wear Newborn Sessions

Nashville Newborn Boy Photographer

Meet baby Dex.  His squishy round cheeks stole my heart at first sight.  He makes baby #4 for his family.  When I first talked to his grandma, she told me that he has a beautiful family, and she was right!  Just scroll down to see how easy they made my job! (You’ll also find some tips on what to wear for newborn sessions.)

I start newborn sessions with individual baby pictures.  I love the rustic, neutral tones that we used for Dex’s pictures.  The colors and props we used were perfect for a baby boy.  Once we have completed individual baby pictures, we move on to family and sibling photos.

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Dex’s parents requested a picture incorporating dad’s baseball glove. I love simple, personal touches like this.

What to Wear Newborn Sessions

One of the most common questions I get from my newborn clients is “What do you suggest for us to wear for our newborn photos?”  Honestly, I think clothes for newborn family photos are the easiest to plan.  Here are a few tips for planning your clothing and what to wear for newborn sessions.

1. Wear neutral or pastel colors.  Light colors photograph best at the studio.  Years ago at my 12 year old’s newborn session, we wore black, had a black backdrop, and photos were all in black in white.  This is not the case my studio.  Light colors, creams, and neutrals are best.

2. Dress in simple clothing.  Since these pictures are in my warm studio, there is no need for layers.  Truthfully, you probably WON’T want layers!  (Don’t forget that we keep the studio nice and warm for baby.)  If you like the skin on skin look, you can also wear a sleeveless shirt.  Girls can wear dresses, t-shirts are great for boys, and button downs or t-shirts work well for dads.  *** Please no big brother, big sister, or monogrammed outfits.  My rule of thumb is that I photograph people, not outfits.

3. Chose clothing with different textures.  Lace is my favorite!

4. Don’t wear busy patterns or bright colors.  We want the attention to be on baby and your faces.

5. Don’t worry about coordinating pants or matching shoes.  Newborn photos in the studio only show waist up.  There is a slight chance you may see waist bands, but that is about it.

For more ideas and visuals, visit my Studio Session What to Wear pinboard on Pinterest.

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Simple, solid, neutrals and pastels look best in the studio.

Family and Sibling Newborn Photos

Your family and sibling pictures will be some of your most treasured pictures from our session.  Choosing simple, timeless clothing will help you love these for years to come.

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I think Dex loved the one on one attention!


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Erin’s Maternity Photos | Maternity Dresses

Nashville Maternity Photos

I squeezed Erin in for her maternity session right at the beginning of my busy fall season.  She was totally open to trying a new location.  I picked this spot without seeing her dress.  I was in love when I started photographing their session.  The tones in her dress looked amazing with the setting.  It pulled browns from the grass and barn to make an absolute dreamy session.  I love how maternity dresses make a beautiful mommy look so elegant and graceful.

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After weeks of rain and crazy beginning of fall weather, we lucked out with a beautiful evening.

What to Wear for Beautiful Maternity Photos

Maternity dresses have become popular for maternity photos.  You may have seen the long flowy gowns and even the ones that split in the middle to show your belly.  I don’t think it is necessary to purchase a “maternity gown” just for a photo shoot.  I love (and highly recommend) a maxi dress.  Long dresses photograph beautifully.  They hug your curves in all the right places.  If you purchase a maxi dress for your maternity photos, you can also wear it to your baby shower and other events before baby arrives.  My favorite shops for maternity dresses are Pink Blush and ASOS.  You can also find great dresses at department stores like Macy’s and Nordstrom.

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These two were naturals! They forgot all about the camera, and it shows in their pictures.

I know choosing a photographer is a big decision.  These are pictures you will never get back!  I invite you to view our reviews to see what others are saying about us.

“Shannon is absolutely amazing with new borns and children!! I can’t recommend shannon enough! If you are thinking of booking, you should do it now! She books up fast due to her awesome work!! I’ve used her for both of my son new born sessions as well as mini sessions!! Super talented and so very sweet!! She also did our maternity photos which turned out stunning!!”  ~Jamie C.

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Baby’s First Year Packages | Gabriella

Baby’s First Year Packages

Did you know that we offer baby’s first year packages?  These are some of our most popular packages.  Baby photos help document milestones during baby’s first year.  Mom’s love them because I even provide baby’s wardrobe.  You don’t have to bring a thing!  I have a huge selection of clothing, props, and accessories.  You are welcome to go through my studio closet and pick your favorites.

Sitter Sessions

This is my absolute favorite milestone!  Sitter sessions usually take place around 6-7 months.  I like for babies to be sitting steadily for this session.  We always have a spotter near baby, but it’s nice not having to worry about them being too wobbly.  Milestone sessions at this stage have a great variety.  Sitters usually love tummy time or pushing up, and they will play with their toes on their backs.  All of these make for the best photo ops! Although I provide outfits for these sessions, I also love naked baby pictures.  Clients often say they choose me for my use of simple props, different textures, and elements from nature.

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One Year Milestone Sessions

One year sessions are busy, busy, busy.  Many babies are on the go by this milestone.  Whether they are crawling, cruising, or walking, they are more mobile and showing their opinions.  Plan to do a lot of baby wrangling!  With all of the movement, naked pictures are not really an option for these.  But I have outfits, diaper covers, and suspenders in sizes 6-12 months and 12-18 months.

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One Year Cake Smash Photos

Another fun option for your baby’s one year milestone session is to include a cake smash.  Click here to find out more about my cake smash sessions.

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Miss G’s mommy shared the sweetest words after our sessions together.

“I can not say enough good things about Shannon Payne Photography. I found her as a referral from a friend and so I took a chance. From the moment we walked in her space we immediately felt comfortable.

When you first photograph a newborn, as a new parent you are already so nervous that something could go wrong. But not with Shannon, I never worried about anything, once I arrived. She was so gentle and careful with my sweet baby.

After that appointment I immediately booked my daughters 6 month and 1 year appointment. I knew I was going to continue to use her for all my children’s photos going forward. I consider her now a friend and am so excited to share her talents with everyone else! My friends who didn’t get photos of their children, see my daughters pictures and are so sad they didn’t! Well worth the time and investment! I will cherish these photos for the rest of my life! Thank you Shannon!”

If you are searching for a photographer, I highly recommend looking at their reviews.  A well established and reputable photographer should have accessible reviews.  You can find review for Shannon Payne Photography here on Google and on Facebook.  If you are expecting or have a new baby, I would love to hear from you!  You will NEVER regret documenting your baby’s first year, and our Baby’s First Year Packages are the perfect way to do it!


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What to Wear for Family Photos

What to Wear for Family Photos

You’ve booked your family photo session, and now it’s time to choose your clothing.  If you have a family of 3, that’s 3 complete outfits.  Family of 4? 4 outfits.  Family of 6? SIX outfits!  You get the point.  Here are some tips on what to wear for family photos.

This is my family at one of our favorite vacation spots, Destin.  We have years of beach pictures on our walls, but this is the first year that I hired a photographer for our pictures.  We won’t get into how “happy” my boys were about me scheduling pictures while on vacay…  Beyond getting my kids ready for pictures and dragging them AND my husband there, choosing our outfits is definitely the most stressful part about family pictures.  Here are 3 of my best tips to choosing great coordinating outfits.

#1. Choose an inspiration piece.

My #1 biggest piece of advice for EVERY family session is to choose an inspiration piece first.  That is one outfit, dress, or shirt that you will use to pull everything else together.  It should be your favorite of all the outfits.  You want to love it!  This can be a pattern or color.  Then use the color or colors in this piece to choose every other family member’s outfit.

Can you guess the inspiration piece for our family pictures?  If you guessed my dress, you are right!  I LOVE maxi dresses for moms and daughters at photo sessions.  Why?  Well, they give photos movement and add interest to your pictures.  They also cover up your legs.  (Not that I don’t want to see your legs!)  But if you sit down in a short dress, you have to sit a very specific way, and it limits my angles for photographing you.  I also find, that we are always pulling down a short dress.  With a maxi dress, you don’t have this problem.  Some of my absolute favorite vendors for maxi dresses are Forever 21, Free People, and Vici.  If you can find a great inspiration piece, all of the other outfits will fall into place easily.

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My boys (including husband) were not happy about stopping vacation time for family pictures. However they were great sports, and these pictures will mean so much to me forever!

#2. Choose coordinating colors and tones.

Since we have so many beach pictures already, I wanted to do something a little different at the beach.  My most important request was using the jetties.  I love how the rocks give a different vibe to the pictures.  Usually when you think beach pictures, you thing of pastel colors.  Think colors that you see in a sunset.  But we’ve been there, done that. I wanted something different.  When I found this rust colored dress from Forever 21, I knew it was perfect.  I wore my favorite OMI bracelets with white and gray beads.  So I chose those shades for my boys’ and husband’s shirts and shorts.  I knew they would complement the rocks beautifully.  Notice how nobody matches.  The key to a great family picture wardrobe is coordinating, NOT matching.

One more piece of advice while we are on the color subject.  Keep the colors of your home in mind when planning outfits.  You are going to want to display these pictures in your home, and you want them to look good with your home’s color palette.  This is one reason why I love neutrals for pictures.  They look great everywhere.

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My boys are NOT fans of family pictures. But can you tell that one of them LOVED climbing the dunes. He is the monkey of the family.

#3. Don’t overthink it.

If your family is anything like mine, they are going to moving around. A LOT.  You want everyone to be comfortable with what they are wearing.  You definitely don’t want fights over wardrobes when you are getting out of the car.  My go to for my boys is a pair of simple khaki shorts.  This year we did khaki and gray.  And the best part of pictures at the beach??? We didn’t have to worry about shoes!  Remember, once the stress of choosing the outfits and getting everyone ready is over, you want to relax and love on your family.

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I love these dunes in Destin. They aren’t the typical beachy feel that you get on the gulf coast. I love how unique they are!

I hope this helps you wrangle in some ideas on what to wear for family pictures.  For more ideas, visit my What to Wear board on Pinterest.  Some of my favorite places to find clothing for boys is Old Navy and H & M.  These are also great for girls, but also check out Bailey’s Blossoms and Zara.  As always, feel free to email me with pictures if you need any help.  I love this stuff!

HUGE thank you to Heather Clark Photography for these beautiful pictures of my family.

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What is a Fresh 48 Session?

What is a Fresh 48 Session

A Fresh 48 session is a photo session taken with your new baby in the hospital hours after birth.  These sessions have gained in popularity in the past few years.  They document baby’s first hours and all of the details from your hospital stay.  The memories of those first few days won’t last forever, but your pictures will!

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You will get a great mixture of pictures with baby alone and with family.

Why should you book a Fresh 48 Session?

Fresh 48 sessions are great for parents who want to capture baby’s arrival without documenting the birth.  Many parents schedule a Fresh 48 session in the hospital so they don’t have to worry about taking pictures.  A Fresh 48 session guarantees that they will have quality pictures and can enjoy their time in the hospital without worrying about missing any pictures.

Once baby is born and you are settled in your room, I will come to the hospital for your session.  This is typically on day 2.  Since I use natural light, I come during daylight hours.  Between doctors, nurses, and visitors, we don’t have a large window of time for pictures.  Sessions typically last about 45 minutes.  This allows time for individual pictures of baby, pictures with parents, and meeting siblings.

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We will document all of the little details from baby’s first hours on earth.

Documenting Older Siblings

Watching your older children become big brothers and sisters is one of the most exciting parts of adding a new baby to the family.  This is one of the most special parts of a Fresh 48 session.

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Many parents book Fresh 48 hospital sessions to capture siblings meeting the baby for the first time.

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Big brother and baby sister exchange gifts.

Ty + Julia Kate

Ty had already met his big sister before I came to the hospital.  However, they had a special gift exchange that I was honored to capture.  He gave his baby sister a bracelet, and she gave him a BIG truck.  I just loved all of Ty’s expressions.  This is such a big change in his life, and these pictures will be priceless when he is older.

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Fresh 48 hospital sessions focus on you meeting your newest addition.

Booking Your Fresh 48 Session

If this sounds like a session that you are interested in, I’d love to hear from you.  I currently only book 1 Fresh 48 session a month.  Contact me to find out if I have openings the month of your due date.

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