Fresh 48, originating in the US, is a growing trend in baby photography offering parents the opportunity to record the first 48 hours after their baby is born. Fresh 48 newborn photography documents the details of life soon after birth and aims to capture newborns unposed in real-life settings either at home or in a hospital or birth centre. It’s a stark contrast to the smooth and polished look of traditional newborn photography.
A few years ago when my first child was born, and without having ever heard of it, my partner and I took our own Fresh 48 photos. In them, we look exhausted, delighted and bewildered. They didn’t seem at the time like pictures I would want to look back on. But today I consider them (after the children of course!) probably the most precious things I own. They are a perfect documentary of how absolutely knackered but completely proud my husband looked; Of how scrawny and red my sons little chicken legs were; And a reminder of the bizarre new-baby bubble we found ourselves suddenly in.
Like many newborn photographers, I have a desire to capture the real and the natural. My own photography has recently moved away from traditional posed newborn shots and instead I try to capture them as they really are.
Fresh 48 photography sessions focus on recording those early hours and days in a newborn’s life. They are about as unposed and natural as you can get, capturing those special moments that can often get forgotten amidst the chaos.
A Fresh 48 session can take place in a hospital or a birthing centre (with permission from hospital staff) or at home following a home birth. The first few days after giving birth can feel a bit surreal with family visits, nappy changes, and back-to-back feeding but the beauty of a Fresh 48 session is that those very real and all too quickly forgotten moments can be documented. Perhaps it's because those moments can so often feel like they go by in a blur that more and more families are finding it important to capture them.