Then and Now…Danita Brooks Photography / Jacksonville Kids Photography

Then and Now Series…they were little and now they are not as little…

I’m starting “Then and Now” Series.  Kids photography is so important to me…they change so fast and it happens before my eyes (and my camera lense).  As a newborn and family photographer, I get the privilege of seeing my families grow and change as their lives change.  Some of my families are growing so fast and most of their children I started photographing as newborns.  To start out I want to feature one of mine.  Little A. just started school this year.  She still seems small to me but this takes me back.  Here she is “Then and Now”…



Baby M. / Newborn Photography

Newborn Photography Session of my dreams…

Ahhh this baby was soooo sweet at her newborn photography session and so are the siblings!  Baby M. did a perfect job being a little princess at our photo shoot.  I loved photographing her and her three siblings.

So how do you get four children to pose for you?  This is one of the biggest questions that comes up with newborn photography sometimes.  Some newborn photographers may answer…you have to have really great kids.  Just kidding :)… but this crew was really amazing.  Or you have to bribe them with ice cream and candy 🙂  Newborn photography sessions can be tricky especially when there are other children involved (or “stars”).  Actually these kids were so good…mom prepped them beforehand and they came excited ready to do our newborn photography session.  We all had so much fun.


  • prep mom beforehand…tell her have fun and not to stress (easier said than done)
  • prep the kids on what you are doing
  • get the kids involved as your “assistants”
  • if one doesn’t want to assist…that is ok too.  Play to that one’s strengths 🙂  Maybe they need to be the center of attention for a few minutes as the big kid.

I love having fun at newborn sessions and getting the big kids involved.  Play with them and being a big kid myself…just hoping no one is shooting a youtube video of me in the process.  Ok this has got to be one of my favorite sweetest sibling shots…love love love!

Newborn Photography let's get the big kids involved too /

Newborn Photography /

Newborn Photography let's get the big kids involved too /

Newborn Photography baby in a big sweet /

Cake Smash Baby A. is One/ Baby Photographers

Cake Smash on the Beach!

I am one now let’s cake smash!  This was such a fun session and this is one reason I love being a baby photographer in Florida.   Of course Florida in winter can be warm or cold and you would never guess how cold it really was…thankfully this baby has an Alaskan background in her genes 🙂  We actually freaked out a little as we watched a man in a speedo run straight into the ocean behind us as we were photographing our session…maybe a member of the “polar bear club” or who knows??  Only at Jacksonville Beach do you see something like that at a one year old session.  Ok and this was one baby that loved her cake…she dove in and didn’t stop.  I think every one year old should have a cake to devour…especially one with really colorful icing!  Covered in icing and loving it…I loved this session!

One Year Old Cake Smash on the boardwalk at the beach /

Family Session all under 4 oh my / Family Photography

It’s a Family Session & toddlers will play!

Ok this first image is one reason I love a big family session…especially fun families!  You would never know there were storms all around us…dark rain clouds just ready to break.  The kids were all under the age of 4 so all of the moms know how that goes.  We played, we laughed and we cried 🙂  All the perfect ingredients for a great session…full of fun and lots of toddler energy (just the way I like it!) And a perfect tip from Grandma…bring marshmallows then run with them 🙂

Remember goldfish & marshmallows are a photographers best friend when everyone is under the age of 4!

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

Family Session on the fun, the snacks and the energy /

I love this technique…going to start using this at all my family sessions!

Family Session on the fun...Grandma brought the marshmallows /



Little K…catch me if you can/ Jacksonville FL Children’s Photographers

Summer session dancing on the beach and playing in the sand photo session /

Summer Session…dancing on the beach and digging in the sand!

I have been so busy this summer…crazy busy is kind of an understatement right now.  But that is what I love about summer…the kids all coming in my office and going to the pool on a whim. So kicking off my “trying to be good to the blog” moment…I thought this is a perfect summer session to feature with a slideshow.  I just love this family and it has been an honor just to see K grow.  A miracle baby with parents that adore her and she just lights up everyone with that smile.  You can tell by this show just how much fun we had.  And yes we ran a lot!!  A lot and it was so fun!!!

Newborn Photo Props & Baby B. Sneak Peak

Newborn photo props…

When looking for newborn photo props always look inside the home of your clients!  This is one of my favorite ways to find props and it’s completely their style.  If it is an object that they love enough to put into their home chances are they would love an image containing it especially with their baby in it. When using a bowl such as this you must be very careful.  Bowls are cold and hard.  One trick is to warm up a towel in the dryer just a touch and place it in the bowl to heat the bowl a bit before you add the baby.  Another trick is to line the bowl with something soft before you put baby in.

Remember when it comes to newborn photo props the safety of the baby is the most important thing.  And if baby isn’t into doing this it may not be the right thing to do.   I always take cues from the baby.  If baby is not cooperating, it is not worth it and do something else.


Newborn Photo Props Baby in Bowl Close Up

Newborn Photo Props Teddy Bear

And don’t forget to look for personal toys…passed down teddy bears or that special blanket that grandma made for the baby.

Family session telling secrets

Newborn Session capture older siblings playing

Newborn Session Sibling Fun and Newborn Photo Props

Get the big kids involved in your newborn session…

Get the siblings involved in playtime and telling you their stories.  Even the fun band aids I think added a touch of “real” to this session.

This was such a great session.  We played and little baby B. looked so adorable.  Check out all that red hair and her bright blue eyes…melt my heart.  I think these looks say a lot about her personality.  She’s got a lot to take in with brother and sister who showed me a lot of personality and energy.  I even came home with a homemade piece of jewelry that I will treasure from big sister…compliments of the next generation fashion jewelry designer.  We even got to chase some crabs on the beach…can’t beat a day like that 🙂



Baby Photo Shoot Future Pilot Baby G.

Baby pilot photo shoot

Baby photo shoot

Baby photo shoot future pilot

Baby photo shoot stars future pilot session

Baby photo shoot …maybe a future pilot?

This baby photo shoot was so much fun.  We had a blast at our maternity session and now the baby is here!  Baby G. is such an adorable little guy and he was a perfect little model for me.   I absolutely loved his patriotic room with stars and planes which is perfectly fitting since Daddy is a Naval pilot.  Celebrating this new beginning with such a wonderful family is truly a blessing for me.  Thought this was the perfect post for Memorial Day when we are celebrating how grateful we are for all the military who give up so much for us along with their families that deserve to be honored.  There were so many to choose from but these were just a few of my favorites.

Six Month Old Sweet Baby R.

Six Month Old Baby Photo Session

Six Month Old Baby Pink Dress and Bubbles

Six Month Old Baby Photo Session

Six Month Old Baby Session…how did we get here so fast?

Six months old and growing so fast…I absolutely have so much fun with this family.  I can’t wait to see what happens in the future and how adorable she is going to be at a year old.  It’s hard to believe half of a year has already gone by.  When it comes to baby photo shoots, this first year is so important.  The first year is a year of major growth and change.  The changes are not only in the baby but also in the family.  This crew is on there way to a beautiful family.  I am looking forward to next time and seeing just how much she grows in the next six month.  These also just make me love springtime…you can almost smell the fresh air and feel the breeze of spring in these images!

Newborn Photo Shoot Baby P & Her Frog

Newborn Photo Shoot with an adorable baby and a big stuffed frog…

This was such a great session…baby slept the first half and then was awake for the second half.  Giving us the best of both worlds we were able to capture her eyes open and closed.  In a newborn photo shoot sleeping babies are like gold and I actually love it when we can peak at babies eyes.  We even got the dog Gina to cooperate for a few and she’s a little camera shy.  I just love this image of mom and baby.  Check out baby P’s bright eyes as she poses for me in her froggie chair…I love that!

Newborn Photo Shoot Baby in Frog Chair

Newborn Photo Shoot Baby Face

Newborn Photo Shoot Dog Photography

Newborn photo shoot baby in basket