MORRIS COUNTY, NJ NEWBORN BABY PHOTOGRAPHER MILLIE DEE PHOTOGRAPHY ON THE MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED INQUIRY QUESTIONS
At Millie Dee Photography Studio in Landing, NJ, our focus is on photographing newborn babies and pregnant women. I also photograph headshots, milestone sessions for our newborn clients and seasonal family portraits, however, after many years on the fence, The 2023 season will be my last year for seasonal portraits. Thankfully babies and pregnancies keep us plenty busy and there's just not enough room in the calendar for both.
So, I'd say when I tell people what I do for a living, I basically say "I'm a newborn & maternity portrait photographer". More than half of the time when I say this, the next question is, "Do you take kids pictures?" No. At our studio, I don't take kids photos. If we've worked with a family before, then Yes, we will work with families for milestone sessions, birthdays, other special occasions, holidays, Santa photos, etc. Our clients become family to us and so we are grateful to see them again and again to photograph these special times in their lives.
Although I say our focus is on newborn and maternity portraits, I do focus also on offering a whole experience for clients who desire a higher level of customer service, pampering and creativity. I like to meet clients ahead of their session. It helps to find out more about you before you walk in the door. We will design your session, talk about wardrobe, props, and what products you want, how you want your walls to look, whether a canvas or framed print or a unique collage creation, we work like more of a concierge service for our clients. This is what I offer, all photographers are different. We all have experienced different levels of customer service, right? What would your experience be purchasing a necklace at Tiffany & Co. vs. buying one at Target? Very different, right? Both stores have tons of clients and are loved by millions, but Tiffany & Co greets you at the door, escorts you over to the counter, a jewelry expert is there to help you with your needs, you have someone answering your questions, guiding you to what looks best, what will work best for you, where at Target, you're more independent, it's more of a solo experience where no one is right there to help you, infact, you can even play cashier and ring your own items up now, too. Both are great, however, vastly different. There is a difference in quality as well; I work with a trained assistant for photo sessions, some other photographers don't. It's a personal preference and I find an extra set of hands is helpful not just with the baby, but helping parents get settled into the studio as well.
This leads to one of the other frequently asked questions, "how much will it cost?". Again, there are a lot of variables between photographers. The amount of experience, education, what style and quality props do they have, is their photographic style something that appeals to you, are they a legit business that pays taxes or is it a side gig. Some run their business more of a hobby and charge less than minimum wage because their husbands buy their cameras and props. Whereas my belief is I should be contributing to the family's budget, not depleting it for my own personal use. No one is wrong or right, however, there are alot of legitimate expenses that many don't consider, such as time for learning editing techniques, time to do laundry, with a baby session or a maternity session, there is alot of laundry afterward with all of the swaddles, bonnets, outfits, pillows, backdrops or maternity gowns and outfits, not to mention insurance, studio rent, utilities, etc...and administrative duties such as upkeep for the website, editing time, editing software, marketing, time speaking with clients, returning emails, phone calls and text messages, the list goes on, however I think you get the Gist of why there is such a variation in what photographers cost for a photo session and the images.
If I'm being totally honest here, sometimes one half of the parents is totally on board with pictures and the other is totally not. Ha. If the parent that is not totally on board with photos is not opening to listening to their other half and understanding just how important these photos are to them, the session may not happen.
We do it to eachother all the time, what I value, isn't necessarily what my husband values and vice versa, although, I do win out on the photo thing; he doesn't like having holes in the walls, but the canvases and prints we have cover them up, right? ha.
He values what I call "roots" ...things like making sure our cars are kept up and maintained well, the house is maintained so we won't get a flood or something...One time I was away with my kids, I came home and he had a company come in and replace all the windows in our home. He values great things that will certainly help with longevity of our home, our vehicles, etc, and I value love, experiences and making our house feel like a home, which includes sharing fun experiences, cherishing our kids' milestones and taking pictures of our life and hanging them on our walls to create life throughout our home, every time we look at these photos, it brings back not only memories, but feelings of that time.
We all have something we would splurge on, right? whether it be tickets to your favorite team's game, a concert, finally getting that boat or sportscar, or that membership to that club? Yes, for some, photos are that 'thing'.
I know everyone is into 'digital' now, and it's great to be able to switch things quickly, however, close your eyes for a moment, and think about your favorite vacation? Wouldn't it be nice to have that... moment...that precious memory to see in front of you again instead of just in your mind? A photo on a wall, is a moment in time that you get to freeze.
A question that I think is important to answer is When is it best to schedule your baby's newborn photo session? Small business photographers usually run their business differently than a mall portrait studio. They take people all day long and churn out client after client. These companies are able to take on last minute clients much better than a small business. You'll always be able to find someone to do the job last minute, however, will they offer the style that you want? Will they have the experience you're hoping for, the expertise you will trust and what will your final images look like? The best time to book is at the start of your last trimester- 3 months before you're due. I wouldn't wait, especially if your baby is due around a busy time of year, such as the holidays or end of school year time, some photographers book up fast during these times. Try not to wait to long to start researching and inquiring.
I hope this information is helpful and if you have any questions about newborn portraits, please don't hesitate to reach out to our studio. www.milliedeephotography.com. We're located in Roxbury Township, Morris County, NJ. Thank you
Where did the name Millie Dee come from? It's my 2 nicknames, my maiden name is Miller, so some friends call me Millie and some call me Dee instead of Denise, so I jammed them together and made Millie Dee...