Can We Take Photos of A Newborn Baby Without Flash?

Newborn photography has burgeoned into an indispensable ritual for many parents.

As you anticipate capturing your baby’s initial yawns, stretches, and smiles, a crucial question arises – is flash photography safe for those delicate eyes?

Dive into this comprehensive guide that elucidates the safety aspects of newborn photography, the role of the camera flash, and tips for a safe newborn photo shoot.

What Makes Newborn Photography So Special?

Newborn photography is an art, capturing the essence of a baby’s first days on Earth. The innocence, tenderness, and sheer miracle of life are encapsulated in these sessions.

A professional newborn photographer has the skills to make these moments magical.

Why Do Photographers Prefer Using Flash?

A camera flash provides a burst of light, ensuring clarity and precision in photographs. Flash photography can highlight every tiny detail of a newborn’s face, fingers, and toes, making the picture of a newborn vibrant and life-like.

Professional photographers often employ flash to counteract low lighting conditions, guaranteeing high-quality photos.

Is Flash Photography Harmful for a Newborn’s Eyesight?

This is a prevailing concern among parents. Many wonder if the sudden flash of a camera can cause damage to their baby’s retina when you take a photo.

The good news? According to Dr. Alex Levin, a prominent pediatric ophthalmologist, the general consensus is that camera flashes is safe for babies as they do not affect a baby’s eyesight, even if the baby is less than a month old.

Are There Instances of Blind Babies Due to Camera Flash?

Rumors have spread, especially online, suggesting a correlation between camera flash and baby blindness.

However, attributing blindness to the taking of a photograph would be incorrect. No verified reports substantiate such claims.

As parents and photographers, it’s crucial to differentiate between myths and facts.

What Do Experts Say About Flash and Newborn Eyes?

Experts agree that a camera’s flash is too brief to cause any damage to a newborn’s eyes. Dr. Alex Levin mentions that flashes are less intense than natural lights like tube lights or direct sunlight.

A baby’s pupillary reaction ensures that the eye constricts to protect the retina from intense light. So its safe to take pictures of your newborn with flash.

Natural Light vs. Artificial Light: Which Light Source Is Safer?

Both natural and artificial source of light are safe when you take pictures of newborn babies, provided they’re used correctly.

Natural light is always preferred due to its softness, but if using artificial, it’s essential to ensure it’s diffused when you take a picture of a newborn baby.

A softbox or an umbrella can diffuse harsh strobe lights, ensuring they’re gentle on the baby’s face, skin and eyes.

How Can Photographers Ensure Safety During a Newborn Photo Session?

Safety during a newborn photo session isn’t just about light. It’s about ensuring the baby’s comfort and safety at all times. Photographers should:

  • Keep props sanitized and safe.
  • Ensure the baby’s head and neck are supported.
  • Maintain a comfortable room temperature.
  • Always have a parent or assistant close by.

What Equipment Can Ensure Safe Newborn Photography Sessions?

Investing in the right equipment is crucial. 2-3 layers of the Softbox, umbrellas, and continuous light sources provide diffused light perfect for photographing newborns

Whether using a professional camera or an iPhone, ensuring the light is not too harsh or direct is vital.

Can Parents Take Pictures of Their Newborn Baby Without Flash?

Absolutely! With the advancement in technology, most cameras and smartphones can take splendid pictures without flash.

Using natural light sources, like windows, can give photographs a soft, ethereal feel. If indoors, placing the baby near a light source and adjusting the camera settings can result in a beautiful photograph.

Wrapping Up: Tips to Remember for Safe Newborn Photography.

  • Always prioritize the baby’s comfort.
  • Use diffused lighting, whether artificial or natural.
  • Keep the environment sanitary and safe.
  • Trust the expertise of professional photographers when in doubt.

Key Takeaways:

  • Flash photography is generally safe for newborns.
  • Both artificial and natural light can be used, provided they’re diffused and soft.
  • Always prioritize the comfort and safety of the newborn during photo sessions.
  • Myths about flash causing blindness are unfounded; always rely on expert opinions.
  • Parents can easily take pictures of their newborns without a flash using modern devices.

Let’s remember, the essence of newborn photography is not just about getting the perfect shot but also ensuring that the process is safe and comfortable for the baby.


Is flash photography harmful to a newborn’s eyes?

No, flash photography is generally not harmful to a newborn’s eyes.

Most experts, including pediatric ophthalmologists, agree that the brief flash from a camera is not intense enough to cause damage to a baby’s retina, even if the baby is less than a month old.

Can I take pictures of my newborn using a smartphone flash?

Yes, you can take pictures of your newborn using a smartphone flash. Modern smartphones are designed to adjust the flash’s intensity based on the subject’s distance.

However, if you’re concerned, you can always opt for natural light or use the phone without the flash.

Why do some photographers prefer not to use flash for newborn photography?

While flash is generally safe, many photographers choose not to use it for aesthetic reasons.

Natural light often gives photos a softer, more ethereal feel, which many photographers and parents prefer for newborn shots.

Additionally, continuous light sources or diffused lighting can provide more consistent and controlled lighting conditions.

Are there any precautions to take when using artificial light sources for newborn photography?

Yes. If using artificial light, it’s crucial to ensure that the light is diffused to avoid any harsh shadows or overexposure.

Equipment like softboxes, umbrellas, or diffusers can be used to soften the light. Moreover, the light should never be too close to the baby, and the baby’s comfort should always be prioritized.

How can I ensure the best lighting conditions for my newborn’s photo session at home?

To achieve the best lighting conditions:

  • Utilize natural light by placing the baby near windows or open areas.
  • Avoid direct sunlight as it can be harsh. Instead, opt for shaded or diffused sunlight.
  • If using artificial light, use diffusers or reflectors to soften the light.
  • Experiment with different angles to understand how light interacts with the baby and the surroundings.

Remember, the key is to ensure soft, even lighting that illuminates the baby gently without causing discomfort



This post is written and edited by Sandy who is a clinical pharmacist with over 20 years of experience specializing in pre-natal and post-natal care.