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First Birthday Photography

May 21, 2012

The first birthday is a very special milestone.    I wanted to post a little about first birthday photos, giving some simple ideas to make your first birthday pics a little more special.  Another popular trend in first birthday photography is having a cake smash. Check out our Planning a Cake Smash photo shoot post for more ideas as well.  Birthday parties are often a little overwhelming for children (and parents), therefore there is usually a little post party disappointment in the photos or lack of.  I suggest taking some pre party photos before your child’s actual birthday party. You can hire a professional to take your photos or take them yourself.  I took the posted pics in our livingroom (and backyard).  I have a DSLR and 50mm lens making the task a little easier (from a technical point of view).  A little pre planning will help your photo shoot be more successful as well (clothing, decor, cake, etc).

No matter, what your child’s age, instead of waiting until your child’s birthday party to get those great pics, have a little photo session about 2-3 weeks before the party.  Before you have your pre birthday photo session think about what you want the theme for the birthday to be.  For this little girl’s birthday, mom wanted a pink and brown polka dot theme.  We incorporated a pink and brown scalloped bunting in the photos.

There are several great reasons to take pre party photos:

1.  You can use the photos in your invitations.

2.  You can use the photos as decorations at the party.  Our pink in brown bunting made an appearance in the photos and was then used at the party itself.  You can take clothespins and pin printed 4×6’s to your bunting or a piece of twine, fill some picture frames, make a collage, etc.

3.  Getting some good photos before the party takes some stress off at the actual party since you’ll know ahead of time that you have some photos of the birthday child that you’re happy with.

4.  You’ll get some great up to date photos of your child!

An idea for birthday pics is using the child’s first initial in photos.  The number 1 would also be fun.  I picked up this wooden letter for $5 at Walmart.  The letter makes a great prop for the child to hold during the photo shoot.  The letter can also be used as a decoration at the party.

Balloons are always a great addition to birthday party photos.

I would also encourage you to think about things that your child has that are meaningful or perhaps things from your own childhood.  This could be a special blankie, stuffed animal, etc.  These photos will me more meaningful later on.

I happen to have this wonderful vintage high chair (used by mom, aunts & uncle) passed down to me for use with my own kids.  It was pretty cool and windy but we managed to get outside for a few minutes and get a few great shots. Make it fun and try not to stress out. If you’re taking the photos yourself it can be a good idea to have a friend help you out.  Whether you’re staying indoors or going outside to take photos, there are lots of possibilities to get some great shots of your child.

Have a look at how we used the pre birthday photos and decor for the actual birthday party.




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