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A baby sitting in a white bathtub surrounded by blue and silver balloons. The baby is smiling and holding a yellow rubber duck. There is a small blue cake, several rubber ducks, and a decorative sign with the word 'ONE' in front of the tub.

Celebrating Austin’s First Birthday: A Special Cake Smash Photoshoot

A baby sitting in a white bathtub surrounded by blue and silver balloons. The baby is smiling and holding a yellow rubber duck. There is a small blue cake, several rubber ducks, and a decorative sign with the word 'ONE' in front of the tub.
It’s so special watching my tiny clients grow, and nothing captures that growth better than a cake smash photoshoot for their first birthday. I was able to photograph Austin’s first birthday cake smash and it was a particularly special session for me.  Not only because I photographed his newborn session a short year ago, but also because his parents Michelle and Rob loved that session so much that they traveled all the way back from Virginia for me to capture these memories, since they had moved out of the area. To say I was flattered is an understatement. Seeing him again, now as a curious, adorable and vibrant one-year-old, and getting to see his incredibly sweet parents was a joy.
A baby sitting in a white chair with a blue fluffy blanket, surrounded by blue and silver balloons, holding a sign that says 'One' and smiling.

Designing the Photoshoot

Every session we book starts with a design consultation, determining whether the session will be styled after the baby’s nursery, first birthday party theme, or something entirely unique. For Austin’s cake smash Michelle and Rob chose to have me design a simple balloon garland in a navy, teal and silver color palette. Michelle did mention to me Austin is obsessed with rubber ducks, so it made sense and was fun to incorporate those into the bathtub pictures at the end of the photoshoot.

The Smash Begins

A collage of family photos featuring a mother, father, and their baby. The baby is interacting playfully with each parent and smiling while sitting between them in the central image.
The session started by updating their family photos, capturing a great portrait of the 3 of them together as well as sweet candid shots showing their enormous love for him, his infectious smile and his joyful spirit.
 
The basket shots are a staple at the studio, because if I’m being honest, having a prop where the toddlers can’t crawl, walk or run away is a huge help! And the balloons typically catch their eye and make for some cute interaction shots.
Collage of 2 images with a baby standing in a basket that has balloons tied to it.
From there, it’s onto our popular O-N-E expression shots, and while capturing them is normally a ton of work for both me and my assistant, the end result is always worth it.

It's Time for Cake

Then came the highlight of the session – the cake smash. Austin’s eyes widened with curiosity when he saw the beautifully decorated cake in front of him. His dietary restrictions required us to have a special cake made for him, free of dairy and soy, and we were so happy to make that happen so they wouldn’t have to miss out on that part of the session. Like many of the babies we photograph, Austin wasn’t particularly interested in eating much of the cake or doing much smashing, but that’s okay because we still got some cute shots.

Rub-a-dub-dub, There's a Baby in the Tub

A baby sitting in a white bathtub surrounded by blue and silver balloons. The baby is smiling and holding out a yellow rubber duck towards the camera. There is a small blue cake, several rubber ducks, and a decorative sign with the word 'ONE' in front of the tub.
This was my first time using a tub as part of a cake smash, and I am kicking myself for not doing it sooner! Austin LOVEd it, and it made for some of my very favorite shots from the session. I’m pretty sure it was his favorite part too.

Reflecting on the Journey

As I photographed Austin’s cake photoshoot, I couldn’t help but reflect on how much he has grown since his newborn session. From a tiny baby all swaddled and sleepy, to an energetic toddler celebrating his first year, it was a beautiful reminder of how quickly time passes and how important it is to capture these moments. Each photograph from his sessions tell a story of growth, love, and the wonderful journey of parenthood.

 

Thank You

To Michelle and Rob, thank you from the bottom of my heart for allowing me to be a part of these wonderful moments in your lives. Your dedication and trust mean the world to me. It’s clients like you who allow me to have the best job in the world.
 
 
Happy Birthday, Austin! Here’s to many more years of joy and wonderful memories.

 

Book Your Cake Smash Session

If you’re looking to capture your child’s first birthday in a unique and memorable way, a cake photoshoot is a perfect choice. These sessions are not just about the cake; they are about celebrating a major milestone in your child’s life and preserving those memories for years to come. Feel free to reach out to schedule a session, and let’s create some magical moments together.

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