I had a client meeting recently that echoed a question I often get when discussing newborn sessions:
"Are older siblings included in the session?"
I also showed this particular expecting mom the finished gallery from a recent session and I mentioned that I don't heavily showcase family/sibling shots in my online posts, even though they are quite prominent in finished galleries. Her response?
"That makes sense - they're so much more intimate than studio-style newborn portraits."
And that's the crux of it.
I create intimate portraits. That means that parents - their hands, their arms, their faces are all heavily featured in my finished client galleries. Ditto with siblings (and calm pets!) because they are a tremendous part of the excitement of bringing a newborn home. I also include many photos of babies isolated to show off fleeting newborn details - rolls of skin, tiny fingers and toes, perfect mouths and noses - but I think the images that have the most lasting impact are the ones that startlingly show how tiny and wonderful and loved a newborn is, and what their new family looks like in a little snapshot in time.
It's amazing how hard it is to tell siblings apart in their newborn photos, even two years down the line. But add context, with Mom's hands or a big sister's kiss or the way that your new baby reaches for your face? You'll immediately remember how your newborn squinted and grabbed and slept. Those intimate interactions are what make my heart flutter as a photographer.
I don't really see my images being displayed in huge 32X44" frames (although you certainly could if you have a big enough wall!). I see your photos in dog-eared copies of family photobooks. I see them in cute bedside frames, or as decoration in a nursery. I see them 20 years from now on a family-photo wall, alongside newer photos of family and friends and vacations and milestones. I want your photos to show how your family felt during this most special time.
So... after that very long-winded answer... most definitely, yes older siblings (and everyone in the family) are included!