November 27, 2017
I’ve been steeped in birth photography for years, so it can be hard for me to remember that some people – I’m looking at you, mama-to-be – aren’t as familiar with it as I am.
Here’s what I’ve learned in my years as a birth photographer.
Birth is beautiful.
I know everything we’re taught in pop culture and those cringeworthy sex-ed classes teaches us that birth is scary, ugly part of the circle of life. But it couldn’t be further from the truth.
Birth is truly beautiful, and that’s what I capture. Of course it isn’t easy. They call it labor for a reason, I’m sorry to say. But man, is it beautiful.
Every birth is unique.
No two birth stories are alike – even if both stories are yours! Birth is unpredictable and natural and rarely follows the same pattern. I get to see what makes your birth unique and show it to you later. Moms are so focused on the task at hand (understandably) that they can miss the amazingness of birth.
You never know what will happen!
Babies find their way into our world in some crazy ways. I’ve photographed all kinds of births (homebirth, hospital birth, VBAC, c-section, twins…you get the idea) and yet I’m still surprised at births.
That’s why I do what I do. I offer all-inclusive birth photography so my moms can relax and enjoy the birth – and then look at the pictures later to see how truly amazing it was.
But hiring someone to photograph a birth is a big thing. An intimate thing.
I know. It’s a big decision. So let me answer some questions many moms have.
What if you miss my birth?
The chances of that are incredibly low. I take a limited number of births per month to avoid overlap. If something extraordinary happens, I have backup who will cover for me. We also discuss your birth history in detail at your birth consultations and discuss when to call when you’re in labor. I’ve only missed a handful of births out of 100+.
What is a birth photography package?
Obviously this varies by photographer, but what I offer is:
Are the photos graphic?
The photos are taken to meet your comfort level! If you want photos of everything, I’ll make sure you get them. If you’d prefer to keep things a little more covered or out of focus, I can do that too.
Will my photos end up online?
Not unless you want them to! I never share photos without the express permission of my client. If you’d prefer to keep your photos all to yourself, that’s exactly what we’ll do.
Birth photography is expensive!
It is definitely an investment! I will stay at your birth for however long you’re in active labor through 2 hours after birth. I’ve been at births for 3 hours or up to 35 hours! Birth is unpredictable and I do not put a limit on the time I spend photographing your birth.
Also, these memories are so similar to your wedding. You plan and plan for your wedding day, and then it’s over in just a few hours. You have the photos to help you relive those moments! I have so many moms who tell me (after they’ve given birth) that there were so many things they forgot about, or didn’t know happened.
Maybe I should just have my doula, husband or mother take photos?
Most of the doulas I work with offer to take photos as they can, but their main priority is taking care of the family throughout labor. Photos are an afterthought for your doula. A birth photographer is solely there to take photos, that is my job! Your mom and your husband are so emotionally involved in the day, they will likely forget they have a camera in their hand! 🙂
My friend is a wedding photographer, and she’s offered to take photos of my birth.
You want a photographer who is familiar with birth and photographing birth. There are so many unknowns when it comes to birth. I know what to look for. I’m ready to capture emotion, I’m ready for changing light conditions and I know standard practices with many hospitals and midwives.
I also know when it’s appropriate to take photos, and when it’s not. I understand labor enough to capture the moments you want without disturbing you in labor or after birth.
I don’t want a stranger in the room.
I won’t be a stranger for long! We will meet AT LEAST once before your birth, usually twice. I offer free birth consultations so you can meet me before you hire me. It’s so important you feel comfortable with those in your birth space!
If you have any other questions at all about birth photography, book that free consultation with me! We can sit down and talk about your concerns, answer any questions, or just chat about birth photography!
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