Tips and poses for including siblings in newborn portraits

December 29, 2021

Newborn sessions highlight a new chapter in a parent’s life. In these sessions the newborn should be the star, however, we understand how important it is for parents to have a sibling photo during this exciting period. Capturing the love and impending lifelong friendship is a cherished moment. 

Read more: Why you should hire a newborn and maternity photographer

However, with that being said, we also understand how kids can be. The reality of a sibling photo can be chaotic. To help make your life easier, we compiled a list of tips and poses for including siblings in newborn portraits.

Read more: What to look for in a newborn or maternity photographer

1. Photograph siblings at the beginning of the shoot.  

Getting children to cooperate can sometimes be a complicated task. If you choose to do the newborn and sibling photos and leave them towards the end, the sibling will most likely be tired and a bit disgruntled. Get it out of the way as soon as you can!

 2. Pose the baby in a prop.

This strategy is amazing and helps ease the mind of the parents. By placing the baby in a prop, you can ask the older brother or sister to come over and interact with their sibling. By doing so, you have an opportunity to capture adorable candid moments. On the other hand, if the sibling is a bit more on the awkward side, you can simply ask them to give the baby a kiss, hug, to lean over them, the possibilities are endless and they will all result in sweet photos. 

Photo: Ooh Ooh Darling Photography

3. Utilizing a flokati rug.

This pose is classic and adored by both photographers and parents. Use the wrapped/swaddle approach for the baby, gently lay them down on the rug and ask the sibling to pose next to the newborn. Now, this can be a little bit tricky because kids are very active and they tend to get bored quickly, so they may not want to stay in the same spot for a while. 

Photo: Haley Maria Smith Photography
Photo: Ooh Ooh Darling Photography

4. Multiple siblings.

Posing a single sibling with the newborn can be difficult, so some think that multiple siblings will be pure chaos. But, it doesn’t have to be if you use the right approach. For anyone who has had a younger sibling, they have had firsthand experience with their sibling following them around and copying them in any way they can, for photos, take advantage of that. Use the power of the older sibling, because the younger sibling will follow along. 

Photo: Albena Ilieva Photography 

5. Tricky but adorable poses.

These are great to do if the child falls into the role of the older sibling with ease and the newborn isn’t a newborn anymore. You can have them sitting in a blanket, sofa, something that is cushioning and then gently place the baby in their arms. This makes for a beautifully sweet photo.

Photo: Haley Maria Smith Photography

6. Bring in the parents 

This is a great strategy to use if the parents are a bit more anxious leaving their newborn, maybe the sibling is too young, fussy, or they believe that their newborn is too small. But, remember this shoot should still be all about the newborn, they are the star. There are numerous ways to utilize the parents in this session, place them in the background and show the sibling fondly interacting with the newborn or place them in their parent’s arms with the sibling kissing their cheek. Whichever route you choose, your will capture warm interactions. 

Photo: Albena Ilieva Photography
Photo: Julie Doro Photography


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