FAQ

If you plan on booking a session, please read through the entire faq. It is very important to be familiar with all aspects of the shoot in advance. If you have a question that is not answered here, please feel free to email via my contact form.

 

GENERAL QUESTIONS

WHERE IS YOUR STUDIO?
Morris Park, in the North Bronx. Exit 7E on the Bronx River Parkway and moments away from the Whitestone Bridge or Throgs Neck Bridge for those coming from Queens, Brooklyn and Long Island.

DO YOU HOLD SESSIONS ON WEEKENDS?
All Sessions take place Mon, Wed, or Fri only. Newborn sessions start at 11AM. Maternity & Baby sessions are scheduled between 11am-2pm.

DO YOU DO IN HOME SESSIONS?
In order to maintain the quality and consistency of my work, sessions take place in my Morris Park Studio only.

HOW DO WE BOOK A SESSION?
In order to reserve a spot on my calendar payment of the retainer/booking fee must be paid AND your contract submitted. You are not booked until both are complete. Please email me here to begin the process.

DO YOU CHARGE EXTRA FOR TWINS?
Twins require an extra set of hands for safety and posing so there is $150 fee for an assistant.

CAN I TAKE PICTURES WITH MY IPHONE/CAMERA DURING THE SESSION?
Images taken during a session is considered stealing and is strictly prohibited. See your contract for details.

WHEN DO I GET TO SEE THE IMAGES?
Your proofs will be available via a digital gallery 1-2 weeks after your session. Your final images will be sent to you via digital download 6-8 weeks after your proofs have been selected.

OUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER TOOK AMAZING PICTURES ON OUR BIG DAY. I FEEL BAD FOR NOT HIRING THEM. WHY SHOULD WE HIRE YOU?
Would you get your teeth checked by a brain surgeon? Just like doctors, photographers specialize too. I am fully trained in safety, posing and the correct handling of your precious newborn. It is my passion and because I specialize, I am fully in tune with your baby’s needs at all times. My images may look easy to replicate but they’re not, and many parents realize this during the session. For your baby’s safety, please do not try to replicate any of the poses I do when you get home.

My prop collection is another reason. It grows monthly and you will melt when you set your eyes on all of the goodies I have in stock.

DO WE GET ALL THE IMAGES ON A USB?
Your package comes with a set amount of images and they are delivered via digital download by default. You may purchase additional images and a usb from the a la carte menu at the proofing stage.

CAN WE HAVE THE UNEDITED/RAW FILES?
Unedited and raw files are not considered the final product, therefore they are not for sale.

DO YOU SUPPLY ALL THE MATERNITY, NEWBORN & BABY, OUTFITS AND PROPS FOR BOTH SESSIONS?
Yes! My internationally sourced maternity & newborn collections are part of what makes my studio unique. I have everything you need for both sessions and most of it is hand-made with love.

CAN MY PET BE IN THE PICTURES TOO?
As a pet lover, I know how special our furry friends are to us…they’re part of the family and should be included as such. Pets are allowed in the studio only to be photographed. They cannot stay at the studio for the entire session.

DO YOU HAVE GIFT CERTIFICATES?
Yes! The gift of a newborn session is the most timeless, precious gift of all. I have a beautifully designed gift card and matching pearl envelope just for this occasion.

DO YOU HAVE A BABY REGISTRY?
Yes! Create a gift registry with ZHS and I’ll send you a set of beautiful cards to include with your invites so friends and family can contribute to your session.

 

NEWBORNS

WHEN SHOULD I CALL TO SCHEDULE MY NEWBORN SESSION?
My schedule fills up about two months in advance so to avoid disappointment, please schedule your newborn appointment during your second trimester.

HOW OLD SHOULD MY BABY BE FOR HIS/HER SESSION?
Capturing your newborn within the first 7-14 days of life while they are still sleepy and curled up, can make all the difference in your newborn portraits. I find that 7-14 days old is the optimal time for newborns because they have had plenty of time to adjust to mom and dad, and it gives mom the time to recover too. Since we never really know when your little one will arrive, I put your due date on my calendar to hold a spot for you. Please send me an email THE DAY your baby is born. Your baby’s birth weight and ability to latch and if their cord is still attached are determining factors for deciding when our session will take place. Circumcised boys are scheduled 7 days after the procedure to allow for time to heal.

ISN’T 7 DAYS OLD TOO EARLY FOR MY SESSION?
Absolutely not! Newborn babies can be photographed up to three weeks old with the optimal shooting time at 7-14 days old. This is the only time they sleep deeply and curl naturally. After 2 weeks, baby’s muscles, skin, bone development, feeding and sleep patterns change dramatically.

WHAT IF MY BABY IS BORN PREMATURE?
Once you are on the schedule you may have any day you want. Preemies are treated a bit differently and depending on the case sometimes we shoot 10 days after the expected due date or after baby is released from the hospital. Every case if different so please call me to discuss.

WHAT IF MY BABY IS PAST THE 2 WEEK MARK?
We will still get gorgeous photos of your baby. Some of the shots might be with eyes open. Which is quite adorable if I do say so myself! The difference between a 9 day old and a three week old is flexibility, sensitivity to sound and touch, skin and eating habits. I have had babies as old as two months pose like newborns so don’t dispair if you are past the mark!

WHAT SHOULD BABY WEAR?

My newborn prop room is overflowing with the cutest outfits, bonnets, wraps, backgrounds and props so there is no need to bring anything to your session. All of my props are handmade by designers from around the world who specialize in newborn photography props. If you want an outfit in particular please contact me. As a client you will have access to my personal favorite vendor list.  I do not photograph outfits that do not fit properly or reflect the style of my studio. When ordering from etsy consult me first. You must please plan ahead and allow for delivery time to exceed one month. Knitted outfits are made with love, by hand, and the best vendors are ALWAYS in demand.

HOW MANY SETUPS DO WE GET IN A SESSION
Baby is photographed on two blankets (see poses below), in 2-3 props (bucket, boat, moon, chair, bowl etc..), and with mom and dad. However, since all babies are different, there are no guarantees. The process of settling baby into a pose on a prop takes time and patience, and it’s not something we can rush through. I attempt all poses but I will never force a baby into a pose it does not want to do. Things like gas, circumcision, reflux, inability to latch and colic can change any plans we may have. Following the Prep Guide sent to you before you shoot (including what not to eat for breastfeeding mothers) will help reduce any “problems” we might have the day of.

Newborn poses left to right: froggy, taco, side laying, supine (on back), forward facing, bum up, night night, in hands, cocoon (upright or laying) . Poses are done in a specific order so that the flow does not disturb the baby too much.

ZoeHiigliStudioStandardPoses2016

CAN I CIRCUMCISE MY BABY BOY BEFORE THE SESSION?

Only if it’s done on the first day of birth. Circumcision procedures need at least 7 days to heal and it is just not fair to the baby to rush it. I will be tightly swaddling your son naked in scarves and delicate fabrics and even though the fabrics are soft, a fresh circumcision is very fragile and often uncomfortable for a newborn. When I wrap and unwrap, along with the change his position or pose, the circumcision can become irritated even further which leads to a VERY unhappy baby, mommy and photographer.

WHAT SHOULD I BRING TO MY NEWBORN SESSION
The days you schedule your newborn session you will be sent a Prep Guide that includes all the information you need for your session.

A SOOTHIE PACIFIER
Please bring a pacifier (or two) even if your baby doesn’t currently take one – I prefer that you bring the Advent SOOTHIE brand (the type they give at the hospital). It is preferred over others because it doesn’t leave marks around the mouth which adds extra time during the retouching process. Clients who bring a pacifier that causes marks around the face will be subject to a retouching fee of $25 per image. For parents who don’t plan to use one at home, I ask that you please bring one anyway as it is an important tool used to keep your baby happy and calm when transitioning from pose to pose. Your baby will not become attached or confused after 4 hours of use. Sucking is a natural way for a newborn to self-soothe and can work miracles when moving to a new position or prop. Please do not underestimate how important a pacifier is for the session or make the decision not to bring one without discussing it with me before booking a session.

LOTS OF MILK
Something about the portrait session makes newborns extra hungry so please bring extra formula or expressed milk and be prepared to nurse/feed more than normal. During sessions expect lots of down time for feeding, snuggling and soothing than photographing. It is also very important not to be too concerned with a feeding schedule. Babies that are in a good milk coma sleep much better and photograph perfectly.

A POSITIVE ATTITUDE
It is very important that parents no worry or be anxious during the session as babies can smell fear and react to it right away. No kidding! They are very in tune with the energy in the room and have a hard time settling and feeding if they feel anxiety. Having trust in each other, good communication, confidence, and working as a team is an important part of keeping baby happy and a successful session. I have the experience to know if they are hungry, uncomfortable, passing bowels/gas or just reacting to be moved while sleeping. Rest assured, I will take the time to stop if they are unhappy.

AQUAPHOR
Aquaphor is pediatrician recommended lotion for babies who’s skin is peeling. Apply a good amount on your baby at home the morning of your session then bring it to the studio so we have it on hand if needed.

ALSO BRING
Diapers, wipes, a blanket, burp cloths, a baby hair brush

WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING THE SESSION?
When you arrive I will show you around the studio, and the props I have picked out for your session based on your Design Questionnaire.

In the studio you will notice two things (besides all of the adorable props); a white noise/heartbeat loop is playing on the ipod player rather loud, and the room is gradually heated to about 85 degrees.  Although it may be too hot for you, for a naked baby it is just right. If you are having trouble getting baby to sleep at home, download a white noise/heartbeat mp3 or app and play it at night. It will work wonders. Most don’t know this but, it’s actually quite loud in a womb. Babies are used to hearing the sound of your voice (which is louder than we think) and the whooshing of your blood, digestion, and fluids.

 

BABIES

WHAT KIND OF SESSIONS DO YOU DO FOR BABIES?
Baby sessions are photographed at any time after three months. The best time being when baby is 4  & 7 months. For me its all about the baby’s eyes, chunk and personality. You really dont need more! If baby falls asleep I do newborn style posing for as long as they sleep-which is usually only minutes!

At four months we focus on baby’s ability to hold their head and their beautiful eyes and hair.

Seven months is about baby being able to sit unassisted, their big eyes and expressive personality.

 

MATERNITY

WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO HAVE MY MATERNITY PORTRAIT SESSION?
Around 32-36 weeks, when your belly is nice and round, and right before you get too uncomfortable. Every woman is different, especially those having twins, so we will discuss it beforehand and pick a time that is perfect for you.

DO YOU HAVE A MAKEUP ARTIST AVAILABLE?
Yes! It can be included in your maternity package for an additional fee. My talented makeup artists are working professionals experienced in ALL skin types and colors.

WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING TO MY SHOOT?
Strapless bras and lacy underwear in nude (your skin color) is all you need–I take care of the rest. I send you a prep guide when you book your session that explains in detail what you need to bring for both you and your husband/partner and other children.

YOU HAVE MATERNITY CLOTHES FOR MY SHOOT?
Yes, I have a beautiful collection of maternity dresses and fabrics that you are able to use for your session. If you want to bring something, by all means go right ahead!

DO I HAVE TO DO NUDE PORTRAITS?
No, of course not. But, I honestly believe you will be sorry if you don’t. Trust me, I know how it feels to be naked in front of a complete stranger. Before I was a photographer, I was given the opportunity to have a maternity session. The morning of my session, I almost didn’t do it. I felt so fat, so out of it, and getting naked in front of a stranger horrified me. But I’m SO glad I did it. My nude maternity portrait is one of my most treasured memories and it proudly hangs on my wall.

CAN MY HUSBAND/PARTNER & KIDS BE IN THE PICTURES?
Yes! The shoot is mostly about you, but I’m happy to add family into the shots!

DO YOU ONLY SHOOT IN YOUR STUDIO?
No, I love to do my maternity sessions on location! I even have a handful of spots that I love to shoot at if you don’t have a place in mind. Location fees apply.

 

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