THEY may have only just entered the world but these sleeping beauties are already showing off their personalities.

Southampton professional photographer Julie Davis waits until the newborns are in a deep slumber before placing them in a variety of positions.

The babies are adorned in dainty accessories such as cute woollen hats and snuggled onto soft blankets and cushions, and some are even placed in their daddy’s police officer or firemen’s helmet for the adorable poses.

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Julie then makes sure she is ready to capture their heart-melting expressions when they giggle or pout to bring joy to hundreds of parents which include her celebrity clientele such as footballers Rickie Lambert and Jose Fonte.

Julie, who says it is best to photograph the youngsters aged just two weeks old before they lose their foetal-like poses, said: “I’ve always been completely captivated by photography and even remember taking photos of the babies and children when I got my first job as a nanny.

“To now photograph newborns is just amazing.

“I love capturing their little expressions and early smiles and making memories for the parents because they change every single day. They are only that small for such a short period of time and you can never get that time back.

“It really is an honour to photograph them.”

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Julie has worked with babies, children and families for more than 25 years as a nanny, maternity nurse, midwifery assistant, post natal carer and breast feeding advisor however had always been fascinated in photography and later began a career as a professional photographer.

The mum-of-one set up her purposebuilt home studio in Ashurst four years ago after the craze of newborn photography came over to the UK from the USA.

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Julie, whose work is featured on the walls of labour wards throughout Hampshire, believes it is her skills in expertly handling babies that lead to such magical images.

The photoshoots can take anything from three hours to up to six hours for triplets.

Julie says having a warm studio for the tiny babies, playing white noise in the background, using a baby hushing device as well as ensuring the babies have full tummies and are content are key in order to get the best pictures.

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“My background with babies is a major advantage point because new parents know they can come and as long as they are prepared, I’ll take care of everything – some people do even ask me for tips!

“The babies have to be in a very deep sleep so they are relaxed and understanding them means they feel secure enough to sleep. When I capture the babies smiling for a split second, the parents are absolutely amazed but because I have spent so much time with babies, I know exactly when they are going to do it.

“Often they pull funny faces which is really sweet and sometimes they may just open one eye and look at you but it’s just their reflexes.”

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Julie says she is a fan of capturing the tenderness of a newborn baby and though she uses accessories such as hairbands, hats and blankets knitted by her mother-in-law, she encourages parents to use props and sentimental items to provide a personal touch to the pictures.

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For Julie showing the family the photographs is her favourite part of the process.

“They cry happy tears. They are very overwhelmed by the results.

“To have a baby is the most remarkable time of someone’s life and to play a part in capturing that in a unique way for parents to cherish and relive for years is very special and very satisfying. How could I not absolutely love my job?”

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