Skip to main content

Shooting Prep for the 6-8 Month Old "Sitting Stage"

Lesson 17 from: Baby Plans: Photographing the Early Years

Julia Kelleher

Shooting Prep for the 6-8 Month Old "Sitting Stage"

Lesson 17 from: Baby Plans: Photographing the Early Years

Julia Kelleher

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

17. Shooting Prep for the 6-8 Month Old "Sitting Stage"


Class Trailer



Class Introduction


What is a Baby Plan?


7 Steps to Baby Plan Success


Shooting Prep for the 4-5 Month Old "Smiling Stage"


4-5 Month Olds: Tummy Time and Headshots


4-5 Month Olds: Basket Shot


The Baby Plan Structure


Lesson Info

Shooting Prep for the 6-8 Month Old "Sitting Stage"

We're going to be photographing the sitting stage today, which is kind of that six months, eight months, time frame so it's, but like I said earlier, it's more about stage than it is about age, so make sure your your cognisant of that, but I want to talk a little bit first kind of review what camera gear and lighting here I'm using. I know there's always a ton of questions with that as we as we get through the shooting stage here, so just to review again, I'm always going to go back to these seven steps to baby plan success right now as because we're shooting these babies in the morning wear we go, we're kind of going back and forth a little bit, we're jumping around somewhat so in the second segment of every day, we're talking about shooting baby plan and what I'm really concerned about is you guys getting a good system for shooting your sessions, okay, so like I said today, we're going to be doing a different age than we did yesterday kind of that middle age, the sitting up stages is...

when the personality where this starts to shine, but I want to talk to you just briefly about what to expect at this stage, what to shoot for, to mark baby's growth, what problems occur at this stage and how to overcome them and always keep in mind designing the shoot for the annual product, you have to be consistent in your shooting because you're going to be producing that in an incremental product for the client so that's very, very important, so make sure you plan for that consistency, okay, so visually creating the image, obviously you're going to do a pre complication to kind of get ideas and comments and a visual sense of the client's desired aesthetic along with infusing your creative style with it. That means designing an image that both of you are gonna love. Okay, so that means using clothing point is a good jump off, especially if you're gonna let the clients bring in their clothes. Now, if you're designing and styling the session yourself, you don't really need to worry about that, because you will have clothing and outfits it set right to work with today angry working with a lot of stuff from natural whispering wonders, stephanie snodgrass makes and these beautiful knit mohair things, and I actually just started recently my own studio, fully styling my own sessions because I just feel like I have more control over it. I do that with the newborn session, so why wouldn't I do that with the baby plan sessions as well, to keep the look consistent? Because so many of my newborn clients come to me or baby playing clients, I should say come to me from the newborn session so but a good weight teo get a good system in your head is too use the clothing as jumping off point, then pick your background and your floors choose a prop if you want and always always remember, especially when you're starting out less truly is more don't try to overdo it with the number of props and backgrounds and things that you do, so this is pretty much logistically what I try to go for three to four backgrounds procession three to four outfits and or neikie what we call it naked one to two buckets you know, some kind of prop a stool or a chair or a toy of some kind and this can go all out the window if your baby is difficult or challenging are has separation, separation anxiety you just have to get which you can get and you'll find that some props children really latch on to the little stool that I have, especially at this age they love to push it so sometimes if you were really challenging baby, you're going on a stool in all your shots but that's ok? I also encourage getting some really neat toys that looked good in imagery melissa and doug makes really good wood toys that are that are beautiful that look ok in inside your imagery, so I just don't like the cheesy props that are toys that are just really, you know, motel, not my shin sae company, but they're just toy store stuff that are really trendy and not not a timeless toy, so make sure to have a couple of those in your possession so that you can really create some variety in the session, then with those three to four backgrounds and three to four looks if you do a close, medium and far shot that's three to five shots with black and whites for each look that's going too easily get you two twenty or thirty finished beautiful images to show to your client and enough variety to make the session something that they value and want to invest in. Okay, so this sitting stage this is all about personality. Kids at this age are, says it's, one of my favorite sessions to shoot because they're not mobile, yet they stay in one spot and they start doing these fun facial expressions. They grab their feet, they're super curious, they starting the giggle and laugh. They have those frustrated expressions on their face sometimes which are so fun, and what you really want to capture with the stage is the sitting un assistant that's what the milestone moment is at this stage. Those facial expressions blubber rolls. I mean, yesterday we had that little chunky monkey girl. She was so cute she already had the little six to nine month chunky little fat rolls going on her legs and her thighs, which, you know, some people would call me derogatory saying that but I think it's adorable and so cute and so indicative of that age because the minute they start walking that little blubber layer goes away quickly their legs start to slim down their way starts to slimmed down by eighteen months, those air gone. So the little thighs and the butt rolls and the little I was just so cute at this age. So I really have to recommend capturing that and parents absolutely adore it. They they do love it. I also try to capture self feeding. This is the moment when mom's kind of slowly starting to wean away from breast milk sometimes not always but she's definitely starting to introduce foods, cereals, vegetables and fruits to the child and they're starting to give their baby a spoon and asking them to learn howto put the food and spoon in their mouth. They are terrible at it, but that's what makes it so because you can set him loose on some seamless paper with a spoon and some food and you will get some amazingly darling shoots do this at the end of the session don't do it first thing because it is usually a mess but that's what makes it so fun now problems that you're going tohave at this sitting stage usually it's because the baby is overtired they haven't had a nap that's a big one separation anxiety is just starting tio come into play what is separation anxiety? It iss a baby's desire to be near their parents all the time they don't want other people holding them they get very upset if mommy leaves their sight their very attached to their mothers typically it's the mother not always sometimes it's daddy but usually it's mom and if that's the case separation anxiety can be incredibly challenging to deal with is a matter of fact. Most of my most of my reshoots occur because the child has really strong separation anxiety there's two ways to go about dealing with separation anxiety you can either what do you mean you can either do the cut and run approach, which is basically taking the baby away from mom and making mom go outta sight? They'll cry for a little bit and then they're they're fine working with them I don't really like to do that it's kind of my last resort but it has worked in the past just be really cognizant of parents feelings because sometimes that can be stressful on parents but a lot of it just depends on the personality, baby. Some babies will cry for two seconds and they're totally fine, it's just a it's just a little bit of separation anxiety, and they get over it once you start playing with them and they're fine the rest of the session, some babies need to warm up. This is my first approach. Some babies need a little time to just kind of hang out and get to know me and the lights and the kind of overwhelming environment in the studio, and sometimes it takes a little while because it takes a half hour, forty five minutes to get those kids warmed up, but then they'll start shooting, and if long as mom is close by, they'll be okay. I'm going to show you an image. I don't think it's on this slideshow where I met rick, I just shot it last week where I had a little girl who would not leave her mother's lap, and so we had to do the entire session with mom there, and it was incredibly challenging, but once I once you think about how you can crop in post process to make that happen, you can make some beautiful images from that, so I'll show you guys that in the post processing segment, which I believe is tomorrow. Okay, so we're gonna get started here we have a little as arrive lee was first to come around I think he's on his way down here so before we bring him in I'm going to go ahead and re white balance one more time we have the house lights on this time yesterday because I'm in a different environment here I've got I'm sure sam has given us kind of a nice big wide shot of what's happening here with egypt, but I've got these house lights on in the studio that we have to keep on so you guys can see what we're doing, but I'm also working with this continuous light I don't have strobe, so if I had stroke, I wouldn't worry about those lights at all because they wouldn't influence my my strobe light hitting the subject. Well, now they are influencing things a little bit and they're a different color temperature than what I got going on here, so yesterday I didn't have those lights on these houselights today I do so that we can see more of what's happening you folks out there on the internet but that's going to change the color temperature of my light so I'm going to go ahead and re white balance to make sure I'm getting an accurate, accurate color tone, so to do that first things first I'm going to get a proper exposure and I'm using a photo vision s ome I make sure I'm not cranked up, I'm on four hundred so, um and I'm going to shoot, I like to set my aperture first I'm going to shoot right around f to f two point two and it looks like I am a little bit on the low side here and I need to see my history. Graham, I think I have like, a seven second delay seeing stuff here in the studio, but what I'm looking for is I'm I want to see the image and then see my history ram, which is calculating at the moment actually the color's not that bad and my history and looks pretty good, too, so I'm shooting at one one twenty fifth of a second of a two point two s o four hundred I could drop down to after one point four and get really pretty broken, shallow depth of field, but with the seamless paper, I don't really feel like I needed that much one one twenty fifth of a second, a little slow, so I think I'm going to pop up two, one, two hundred and then drop my aperture down to f to maybe f one point eight and see what happened there. Take another shot to get my exposure, and that should come through well, quick now as you can see, we white balance yesterday so the color looks pretty good, but I just want to make sure with these new house lights on that I'm not dealing with any funky color temperature. So to do that I'm just going toe hold down. I'm in the custom white balance setting on my nikon d eight hundred set thea, the color town fill my frame with gray says good and we should be white palace. You guys won't see that image there because it's just a white balance image that will go ahead and take another shot of the target and see if my color changed at all. I think we should be pretty good it's not gonna be too much of a change. I'm good, thank you. So is that the next image? If it did, it didn't change much in color. We should be pretty good. Awesome. There it is. Okay, so, yeah, the color is not being affected too much by the house lights, which is good.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Customizable BP Postcard Templates
Customizable Recipe Tag Templates
Customizable Stat Card Templates
Baby Plan Images
How The Baby Plan Works
Baby Plan Resource Guide
Baby Plan Success Checklist

Ratings and Reviews

Natalia Malinko

I just finished to watch this course. And I confess: I've been struggled all the time during the viewing to say already: I LOVE IT! So, I LOVE this course! Julia is so nice teacher, and photographer, and person. And she is so incredible organizator of whole child's photography business. She is amazing, so meticulous, so persuasive trough all and each one of the important points of this business. And she is just great in the part of studio´s shooting examples with the babies. This is one of the best and most valuable courses I found in Creative Live, thanks!

Dawn Potter

I've been so fortunate to be able to be a part of the Live audience experience with Julia. She is an amazing person, photographer and teacher. She does a fantastic job of explaining in detail, the steps she has taken that have helped her success as well as the steps that have set her back. We are so lucky to be able to learn from her experiences and to have someone who is willing to put herself out there to teach us and help us to grow as photographers. For anyone considering adding a Baby Plan to their portrait offerings, this class is a MUST have. Julia, you are #awesomesauce !! xoxo - Dawn Potter

Student Work