Births are unpredictable, even with scheduled births, so always be prepared for anything! Natural births can turn into C-sections in moments. Inductions can turn into unexpected labor. Birth can in a hospital room lit only by twinkle lights, a birthing tub at home, or in the operating room. Babies can take only minutes to be born or can take literally days!
1. When to call - Once you are admitted to the hospital, Headed there after your water breaks, or you think your going into labor, call. I want to be aware you are starting this grand adventure and I need to be ready at any moment. I then want you to call again when active labor is confirmed (typically once at hospital and at around 6-7cm. I will then head directly to the hospital and be there will you until baby is born.
(Some parents would be more comfortable with an earlier arrival or the photography, and I would be happy too!) *Extra fee
2. Doctor/Hospital Guidelines - All physicians and hospitals are different. You need to have conversations with both, to ensure they are okay with having a photographer present and if there are any restrictions (such as no photography at certain stages of labor or in the operating room).
3. There is no way to have a Pinterest inspired birth session. But as a client you may send me images of something specific you are counting on to have. I put myself in the position on the parents and I try to capture every moment I would want myself.
Why should I hire a birth photographer?
Hiring a professional to photograph your birth can seem like a foreign and strange concept to those who have never seen or experienced it before, particularly to husbands and fathers. But when you ask ANY mother or father when the best singular days of their life were, they will most likely answer “My wedding day, and the day my child was born.” We don’t think twice about spending a hefty amount to hire a professional on our wedding day, why should it be any different for the birth of your baby? Would you ask your wedding planner, your fiance, or even your mother to take the photos on your wedding day? Having a professional birth photographer capture these moments for you frees up your partner/doula/family member to just be present & free to support you during your birth process. The moments when you need your support team the most are usually when you need photos taken as well. Dad should CERTAINLY not be behind the lens of a camera or fiddling with an iPhone when his baby is entering the world & taking their first breaths! Their place is by their partner’s side, helping to catch their baby, or simply wiping away tears. Professionals also have the equipment and expertise to handle tricky lighting, tight surroundings & fast paced situations. A good birth photographer has discussed with you your desires regarding level of modesty, and knows how to capture the perfect shots from the best angles available at the moment.
How much does birth photography cost?
My basic photographic package is currently extremely low at $250. This included coming at the beginning of active labor.
*Available for earlier arrival for extra fee
When should I book with you?
As soon as possible, a Limited number of births are schedule to make sure there is less possibility of two overlapping with the unpredictability of birth!
How far away will you travel to photograph a birth?
I will travel up to 50 miles away for a birth.
How, um, “graphic” will my photos be?
I am an extremely modest birth photographer in general. We discuss all of this at your client meeting, but from my experience, most moms like having some graphic photos taken at the moment of birth, but only modest photos are used in your slideshow and used in any online publication. We will talk about your preferred level of modesty & I will make note in your contract of specific things you would/would not like me to capture.
Do you use flash during a birth?
I do not. If there will be a significant difference in the quality of your photos, I will simply turn on/up as little lighting as possible, and gently ask you if it is okay Of course you reserve the right at any time to tell me to turn them down, and I will do the best I can with what light I have. But the photos will have more noise, motion blur, and greatly affects video quality. I find that moms who are investing a substantial amount in professional birth photography are okay with the lights being raised. If you know that you like to labor in pitch darkness, then I am not the birth photographer for you
Will you be interacting with us at all during labor?
It all depends. In the time leading up to your due date, we will be in frequent communication to establish a relationship so that it does not feel like you have a stranger in the room. I believe it is essential for you to have your perfect, peaceful birth space with the least amount of uncomfortable or negative influences as possible. That being said, I am perfectly content to stand back in the shadows and not make a peep, but there may be times that we will have more interaction, particularly depending on the intensity & stage of your labor. I do not do any posing or adjusting, unless it is for modesty purposes, helping you to fix your hair if it has gotten a little crazy, or quickly getting a great first family photo.
What if my birth takes a really long time?
I’m in it for the long haul! I do reserve the right after 6 hours of "stand still" to leave to take care of my son and/or freshen up and get some food, but I don’t want you to be worrying about how much you are paying hourly after a certain point. All packages include unlimited coverage.
How long do you stay after I give birth?
Usually 1-2 hours. Unless requested longer.
What if I require a Cesarean birth?
It is your responsibility to communicate with your care provider & to advocate to have me in the operating room if you wish. If it is an emergency situation, there is no time for communication, and I am not allowed in the OR, if possible I will hand my camera to someone who will be there so that they can capture the birth as best as they can, and I will resume taking footage as soon as baby has been stabilized and with dad.
What if I schedule a Cesarean?
Again, it is your responsibility to communicate with your care provider & to make sure it is okay for me to be present in the operating room. I cannot stress enough how important it is for YOU and YOUR PARTNER to be the ones to request my presence should you need to enter the OR. It is ultimately your doctor & the anesthesiologist who make the decision, and your request weighs infinitely heavier than mine. I am overjoyed to be present at every birth experience, from home birth to scheduled c-section.
What if something goes “wrong” during the birth?
We will discuss this during your client meeting, but unless otherwise specified, and if the situation allows, I will continue shooting. If something traumatic happens, those photos will be put into a separate folder in your gallery, in case you are not quite ready to see them when they are done. While hard to see, these photos may be very helpful during the healing process after a traumatic birth experience.
What if you get sick or can’t make it to the birth for some reason?
While I do not get very close or touch your baby during a birth session, I believe the delivery environment should be as free of germs as possible. I will not attend your birth if I am running a fever, vomiting, have a new cough, or sore throat. If I am recovering from a cold, I will voluntarily wear a mask.
Since my birth package is so cheap. I do not have a back up photography. I am unable to get another photographer to do the session for the same price.
If for some reason i was unable to attend, your session will be credited to a future shoot.
How many images can I expect to get?
Usually 75-100 edited images, depending on the length of your labor and other circumstances. I will not hold any photos from you before of expected amounts. All photos i feel are deemed credible you will receive.
Will my photos be in color or black & white?
Most of your photos will be come in both color and black & white versions, but all of them will be in color. I prefer to edit in color, and in fact, if some photos are a little too dark, you may receive only the color version.
Are you going to post my photos on the internet?
You will make any decisions regarding publicity and marketing permissions during our client interview, and reserve the right to change your mind after the birth. Only modest photos & video will ever be posted..
Do you offer gift certificates?
Yes of course! What a wonderful gift it would be to receive coverage from a birth photographer at your birth! please contact me for more information.
If you have any other questions please feel free to contact me about anything!