newborn safety in photography

i wrote the post below for the creative mama today, but wanted to share it here as well.  i feel it's so very important that information regarding newborn safety in photography gets to as many photographers as possible.  please pass it on!! +++

It seems that there's a lot of talk happening right now regarding newborn safety, in regards to photography. And honestly, it's about time!!! Yesterday, a friend who is trying to spread the message of newborn safety, shared on her facebook wall, a photograph [from another photographer] of a newborn in a glass vase that looked very unsafe and quite scary!  As the photography industry becomes more and more saturated with photographers [many getting into business well before they're ready], I'm afraid this unsafe newborn posing might also continue to occur more and more. This message needs to be spread --no matter who we're photographing, photographers need to have safety as their number one priority.

Please know that professional newborn photographers, such as Baby As Art and Kelly Ryden Photography, always have newborn safety as their ultimate priority. These photographers have many, many years of experience, work as a team and they have the art of posing newborns and editing in Photoshop mastered.

Jodie Otte recently wrote this great article on newborn safety, along with sharing some behind-the-scenes photographs, showing how this baby on a guitar is actually a composite of a couple different photographs. Never was this baby balanced on this guitar alone, without the assistance of someone else. Please refer to Jodie's article in it's entirety, for additional newborn safety information and behind-the-scenes images.

And this article by Shoot Baby shares additional [frequently attempted] newborn poses, along with how the photographs were achieved, by combining multiple images in Adobe Photoshop.

Parents -- if you don't feel it's safe, you don't think it's right, it doesn't make sense or you're simply not comfortable with something during a photo session, please stop the photographer immediately. Always remember that you have commissioned the photographer; he or she is working for you!

ETA:  if you're going to pose a newborn in a bowl, in a basket, hanging in fabric, etc., you need to do it WELL -- along with the baby being kept completely safe and comfortable at all times!  with that being said, i just don't understand poses like sticking a newborn in a glass vase filled with gum balls [even when done well].  i know and appreciate that photographers have their own creative style, but some of the things photographers are doing with newborns these days just doesn't make sense to me [and often is not even done well, nor seems to be done safely].

and if you put your photograph out there [to the public], it's important to be open to feedback -- both positive and constructive criticism. know why you're creating the photographs you're creating and be sure it's for more than competing with other photographers.