Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays. I love everything about it – the sentiment, the heart decor, everything. When I had Elias, I wanted to come up with a creative Valentine to send to our family. I came up with the idea of making him a little cupid. I bought some wings on eBay and set up a sheet and a red pillow from our couch. I loved how this baby cupid Valentine shoot turned out!
Of course, I wanted to do the same thing with Adeline and I must say, the pictures from her shoot turned out every bit as cute. This mini Valentine shoot is so easy and the pictures are so darn adorable.
I hope this post will inspire you to do your own baby cupid Valentine shoot. Your pictures will be treasured for years to come.
- Something pink or red for the background (I used a large couch pillow)
- A sheet for the floor
- Wings (I bought these on eBay, but you could also make them – see below)
- Optional: props (I cut a stiff red felt heart for Elias and used a pink heart pillow for Adeline)
- Optional: A white diaper cover (for Elias, he just wore a white diaper. Of course, you could have your baby be naked.)
- Optional: A pink, red, or white headband for your baby girl
You want your background to be a solid color so it doesn’t distract from your child’s cuteness. However, don’t make the mistake of using white, like I did the first time I did the shoot with Adeline. While the pictures were adorable, the wings didn’t pop well. After looking back at Elias’s pictures and talking with Matthew, I decided to do another shoot and was so happy that I did. The color made a huge difference!
I prefer to use natural light. I made my little “set” right by our deck’s french doors so that I had beautiful natural light. (Because I know someone will ask, I shoot with a Canon 40D and a 50 mm 1.4 lens.)
You could have a lot of fun with props for this little Valentine shoot. For both of my kids I kept it simple – hearts. With Elias I used a stiffened felt heart that I cut out myself and for Adeline I used a heart pillow that I found in the dollar section at Target. Other options:
- A mini bow and arrow
- Love letters
- Mini hearts
- Candles (not lit – obviously)
The wings are very critical to this shoot. I found my wings on ebay for $2.99 – NICE! However, after inspecting them, I realized I could have made them using these steps (although, honestly, you can’t beat the ebay price):
Step 1: Cut a half moon shaped piece of cardboard
Step 2: Spray paint it white
Step 3: Pierce two holes in it – for the arm elastic
Step 4: Loop a piece of elastic through each hole, making arm bands
Step 5: Glue white feathers all over the cardboard
If you don’t want to try your luck with ebay or make your own, Amazon has this nice option.
To Get a Happy Cupid
Be sure to choose a time a day for your Valentine shoot when your baby is happy. The first time around, I did the shoot right before nap time because it was convenient for ME. Wrong idea. While I got cute shots of Adeline, her eyes just didn’t dance like they do when she is wide awake. Elias (my photo assistant) and I had to really work to get her to smile, too.
The second time I did the shoot just after a nap. She was bright-eyed and getting her to smile was a breeze. Almost every picture she was smiling.
I also found it helpful to have some of Adeline’s favorite toys to shake and get her attention. In fact, many of my favorite shots were taken without me looking through the camera. I simply held it in position and snapped while focusing my attention on looking, talking and smiling at Adeline.
Despite all the smiles, this is the photo that takes our breath away. It is so Adeline. I plan to create Valentines from Adeline using this photo. I know they will be a hit.
Enjoying Your Pictures
Because I want to enjoy these pictures for years to come, I am going to have canvases made by Canvas People! Then, every Valentine’s, I will hang up the canvases – one with each child’s cupid picture.
Please feel free to leave any questions or comments in the comment section below.
Happy Valentine’s Day! xo
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