Don’t miss your baby’s first year

From tiny bundle of joy to crawling or walking toddler – it all happens before your baby’s first birthday. Babies grow at such an astonishing rate during their first 12 months, and they pass so many developmental milestones in that time, it’s a beautiful thing to observe your little darling thrive and grow.

Here, Lloyd Wells – an amateur photographer and seasoned blogger working with Boggio Studios has provided some top tips for capturing great images of your beautiful bundles of joy.

…Rule number one: Make sure you have the camera ready to capture those precious moments!

1-3 months

Your newborn baby is very delicate and takes a little time to get used to living outside the womb. Between birth and 3 months, your baby can

  • Move from side to side, raise his head and chest and support the upper body, when lying on his tummy. He won’t be able to hold his head up yet. He will stretch his legs out and kick. When held upright on a firm surface, he will want to push down on his legs.
  • He can open and close his hands and bring them to his face and mouth. He can grip offered fingers, toys, and other objects.
  • He’ll be able to focus on objects 20-30cm away and start following moving objects with his eyes. He will start to recognise familiar faces and objects further away. His vision is still not fully developed and he will prefer monochrome and high contrast patterns.
  • His hearing is well developed and he recognises sounds, including his parents’ voices. He will begin to babble and imitate sounds and start to give his first smile, usually by 3 months old.
  • He will begin to use hand/eye coordination and will start to enjoy playing with you.

4-6 months

She is a ‘proper’ baby now, starting to fully engage with the world around her. Between 4-6 months, your baby will probably have mastered to

  • Roll over from front to back and back to front, and she may have learned to sit up. Her head control is now excellent. When you’re holding her upright, she can support her weight on her legs.
  • She can reach for objects with her hands and move things from one hand to the other.
  • Colour and distance vision is now fully developed.
  • She will recognise voices and may respond to her name. She can also differentiate different emotions by tone of voice and may use her own voice to convey feelings of happiness and unhappiness, including laughter. She may well be babbling a lot.
  • Her hand/eye coordination is developing well as she explores everything with her hands and mouth.

7-9 months

This is the time when your little one will discover the art of movement. Between 7 and 9 months, he is likely to

  • Sit unaided and start crawling, which may well take the form of bottom shuffling or backward crawling. Some babies never crawl, preferring to walk early. He will be learning to pull himself up to a standing position.
  • He may respond to his name being called and will acknowledge instructions such as a simple ‘no’. He may also start saying his first words, likely to be ‘mama’ or ‘dada’, and learn simple exclamations such as ‘oh-oh’.
  • Games involving mirrors, pat-a-cake or peek-a-boo are favourites at this age.

10-12 months

This is a transition time from the baby to the toddler stage. Between 10-12 months, your baby will learn to

  • Move around the room on her feet, holding onto furniture. The first actual steps are usually taken around the first birthday but this varies widely between children.
  • She will start to feed herself and may well have learned the pincer grasp using her thumb and index finger.
  • She will probably start to talk. Typically, by her first birthday, she will be able to say 3 words, but again there are wide variations in normal development. She will also be able to use simple gestures such as waving bye-bye or shaking her head to indicate ‘no’.
  • She will point at objects she wants to play with, and start using objects correctly, such as drinking from a cup or brushing her hair.

Of course, every baby develops at his or her own pace, and there are big fluctuations between reaching particular developmental stages that are usually nothing to worry about. Some babies may start talking at 8 months while others don’t get a word out until well past their first birthday. Normal walking development can start anytime between 9 months and 18 months.

However, one thing is clear. Blink and it’s gone – unless you capture each of those precious early milestones on camera. Babies are probably the most photographed members of the family, and so they should be. If you really want to create a lasting memory of your baby’s first year that the family can coo over for years to come, it’s worth arranging a professional portrait shoot with a photographer who specialises in baby photography. Your son or daughter will thank you for it when they’re older.

This is a featured post from Lloyd Wells

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