What Does a Newborn Photo Session Cost in Portland Oregon?
So, you know for sure that you need to do a newborn session, but not sure where to start or what to expect financially?
I know it can be confusing, because you aren’t always comparing apples to apples at first glance. Some photographers charge a flat fee, while others break it out into a session fee + digitals/artwork. Some offer benefits like wardrobe, makeup, session styling, & location planning, etc., and some do not. And then obviously you have a great variety of skill and expertise. Which all of course can be a challenge to navigate at a particularly *tiring* point in your life during pregnancy. Let me help you break it down so that you can feel confident in planning your budget and knowing what kind of photographer to hire to document this completely irreplaceable time of life!
Like everything else, you will find a variety of services, in a variety of price points. I’m going to share what I believe you can expect from each tier for newborn photography in the Portland metro area. And, much of my knowledge comes from having worked up through these tiers myself! We all start somewhere, right? To those first few client friends who let me photograph your precious newborns with my very, very minimal experience: bless you!
Please keep in mind, these ranges will vary depending on your exact area, and what each photographer needs in order to make their business profitable. There are also photographers who only do photography as a side hobby and have expendable income to use toward their expenses without needing their work to generate income; I’m not talking about those photographers, as they can charge whatever they feel like since they are not running a business!
*ahem* here we go!
A photographer who is offering free or very low-cost photo sessions is entry level. At this tier you will receive unpredictable results, as they’re just gaining experience, learning camera settings, building a portfolio in general, and may or may not have any experience being around or photographing babies. Like I mentioned before, everyone starts somewhere (including myself), but make sure you understand the risks of hiring an unexperienced photographer to capture an irreplicable time in your life. Babies change SO much during their first few weeks of life, and you’ll never get those moments back should the session and photos not turn out well.
In this price range, you’ll likely find a photographer who knows what they’re doing with their camera, but they likely don’t specialize in one type of photography (they do a mix of weddings, families, seniors, newborns, etc, whatever comes their way). They probably have at least some limited experience working with babies and children, but probably don’t offer any extra services such as providing a client closest, artwork, studio, etc. Photography for this photographer is a part time, side hustle that is probably not generating any actual income and not a top priority.
A photographer in this price range is probably questioning their life choices right now. Ha! Really though. These photographers are overworked, tired, burnt out, and not able to spend as much time with each client as they’d probably like. Photographers in this range are likely very talented, and very busy, and your session may feel like it is on an assembly line because, well, it practically is. There isn’t much room for personal client planning, creative energy, or the “extras” when you hire from this tier. They may or may not offer a client closet or album design services.
A newborn photographer in this range is an expert in their craft. They likely exclusively work with families and newborns and photography is their job, not a side hobby. Their posing feels natural and genuine, they can handle all lighting circumstances, and know how exactly to move through a session beautifully. They work with babies frequently, have seen it all, and no amount of fuss gets them riled. They notice and think of all the details because they have several years of experience working in their niche. A Portland newborn photographer in the $1000+ range is providing a luxury service to their clients from the initial inquiry, all the way through designing and delivering artwork, and has many perks worked into their experience like professional hair and makeup, hands on planning, client wardrobe, delivery, and more. They are spending ample time with each client helping them plan for a seamless and enjoyable session. A luxury newborn photographer is going to go to the ends of the earth to make your experience the best it possibly can be for your family, and nothing is taken lightly!
I hope that this breakdown was helpful to you, and even if you don’t book with me, I’ve given you a few things to think about!
Are you expecting a new little one and ready to book? I can’t wait to work with you and bring your dreamiest session to life, let’s get the conversation started here!
Hey friends, I’m Emilie and I am a luxury Family, Maternity, and Newborn Photographer located in Portland, Oregon. I serve clients all over the Portland Metro area from Hillsboro to Camas and everything in between! Thanks for being here!