Camera Settings for Newborn Photography

When it comes to newborn photography, achieving that dreamy and ethereal look with a beautifully blurred background is essential. The right camera settings can make all the difference in capturing those precious moments. In this article, we’ll delve into the optimal camera settings for newborn photography that you need to master to achieve that perfect blurred background.

The best part? You don’t have to worry about breaking the bank in finding the most perfect expensive lens for creating the scenes!

Image by Milk & Honey Photography

Understanding the Importance of a Blurred Background

A blurred background, also known as bokeh, adds a touch of magic to newborn photographs. It places the focus squarely on the adorable subject while creating a soft, dreamy atmosphere. To achieve this effect, consider the following camera settings for newborn photography:

Aperture: Embrace the Wide Open

Aperture plays a pivotal role in achieving a blurred background. Opt for a low f-number (wide aperture) such as f/1.8 or f/2.8. This setting allows more light to enter the lens, creating a shallow depth of field and that sought-after creamy bokeh.

Shutter Speed: Freeze the Moment

Maintaining a proper balance between aperture and shutter speed is crucial. A faster shutter speed, around 1/200 to 1/400, freezes the newborn’s movement while still allowing ample light to reach the sensor. This combination ensures your subject remains sharp against the blurred backdrop.

ISO: Keep it Low

To minimize noise and maintain image quality, keep your ISO low, ideally around 100 to 400. This ensures that even in low light conditions, your photographs retain their clarity and charm.

Focusing on the Subject: Autofocus and Manual Focus

Achieving that perfect blurred background involves precise focusing on your newborn subject. Utilize your camera’s autofocus for quick and accurate focusing. Alternatively, experiment with manual focus for complete control over the focal point.

Lens Choice: The Power of Prime

Prime lenses, with their fixed focal lengths, are a fantastic choice for newborn photography. A 35mm or 50mm prime lens with a wide aperture can help you capture stunning portraits with a beautifully blurred background.

Composition: Framing the Beauty

Remember that the composition plays a role in emphasizing the blurred background. Position your newborn slightly away from the background, creating more distance between the subject and the elements behind. This enhances the bokeh effect and highlights your adorable subject.

Lighting: Soft and Gentle

Soft, diffused lighting is your best friend in newborn photography. Natural light from a window or softbox can create a gentle and flattering ambiance. Avoid harsh, direct light that could overpower the delicate atmosphere you’re trying to capture.

Want to deep dive into Studio Lighting for Newborns?  Download our free Studio Lighting Gear Guide for Newborn Photographers

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