HGP Newborn Session Prep Guide

Congrats on baby!  Thank you for trusting HGP with your little one and your newborn.

HGP Studio is located at 4705 N. Bearsdale Rd, Decatur 62526.

When pulling onto the property, I recommend using the south entrance (GPS will direct you to the East one) that is off of Park Rd.  My studio is inside the big pole barn.  You'll want to look for the navy blue door right by the white fence on the front of the building.  Park wherever is convenient for you!

Before we dig in, I want to say the LAST thing I want this to be is a stressful experience.  If there is something that is concerning you, please bring it to my attention.  You can call me at 708.638.9897 or e-mail [email protected].  This is supposed to be as relaxing as possible, and I don't want to be the cause of any stress.  You wouldn't be the first to have concerns, and not be the last!


  • Try to keep babe awake for an hour or so the morning/day of your session.  Tickling toes, tummy time, bath and nakey time all work wonders.  While it can help with the session, if baby simple won't stay awake, don't worry about forcing too much wakefulness.  While I love doing awake images, they cannot be posed while awake, so sleepy babies help keep things flowing!  Many of you have an half hour drive or longer, so keeping them awake helps, but isn't a hard and fast rule to the day.
  • Please nurse/feed baby right before you leave if you live within 10 minutes of my studio (Forsyth, North end of Decatur, Warrensburg), otherwise plan on nursing/feeding right when you arrive.  Plan on what I call "topping off the baby" a bit while you're here.  A full belly means they sleep, and thus can be curved into all the adorable poses you see in my portfolio.  If you aren't nursing, please make sure to bring extra formula with you.  You are welcome to pump while at the studio as well.  Especially for your initial feeding at the studio, we'll want to give baby a full feeding, not just until they're asleep.
  • Dress baby in a sleeper with no onesie and their diaper.  The less clothes that need to be taken off, the better!  Especially if they don't have to be taken off over the head.
  • If siblings are being photographed, prepare them by discussing how I'll be taking their picture, and they'll be holding/hugging their sibling for a few minutes.  Many parents choose to have siblings come at the end (when I typically do the family pictures towards the middle or end), or picked up to spend special time with either a parent, grandparent, or friend.

A few more things to know...

  • Keep in mind with all of these notes that sessions can take anywhere from 2-4 hours.  Babes can be unpredictable with not falling asleep, cluster feeding, gas, etc.
  • Dress in layers!  It'll be REALLY warm in the studio.  We're basically mimicking your womb (minus 10 degrees or so).  So expect 85 degree heat, white noise, etc.  You'll be able to relax, read a book, catch a catnap, catch up on social media, whatever your heart desires!
  • We do have a dog that lives on the property.  If there is an allergy/fear of dogs, please let us know so we can ensure she's not present in any capacity (she's completely friendly and wanders around)
  • We have water and a Keurig with some coffee options, but please know the session can go several hours, so you may want to prepare with snacks beyond what I have.   You're welcome to have something delivered as well while we're working with your babe.
  • Whatever is in the mini fridge is fair game!  If you can't find cups for the water and I happen to be out of bottled water, please let me know- just please don't drink our water from the tap!  I provide the bottled water for you and whomever is at the session with you.
  • There is a large grassy area outside of my studio.  If you'd like to bring your older siblings favorite toys, you are more than welcome to have some one on one time playing with them outside.  I just suggest bringing them in play clothes until they are ready for their portion!

With all of this said- there have been babes known to not sleep at their scheduled session, despite the best preparations.  Sleeping through the night (I mean- you can't complain about that, right?) growth spurts, and gas are all reasons that may keep a babe awake for a session.  Please don't worry that this may be yours.  If the session is appearing to be over stimulating babe, we may have to come back for take two.  You wouldn't be the first, nor the last, so if your baby is not having it at the session- please don't be concerned.  The most important thing is the safety and comfort of your baby and family, so we'll figure it out- no worries!

Lastly as always, if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask!

See you soon!