Will we meet before the birth?
Yes! Meet and greets are so important to me as an artist for documenting this special day. I am happy to meet with you before signing your contract, as well as meeting again once you have developed your birth plans. Though they are not mandatory – they are recommended. At meet and greets before your birth, we will review your birth plans together for me to envision how best capture your personalities and any special details you have planned.
When should I hire a birth photographer?
It’s never too early or too late to hire a birth photographer but I do only take 2-3 per month. It is best to book early during your second trimester but to make sure that your baby’s birthday is covered, please inquire as soon as you can. When contract and deposit is in, then you are officially booked and your estimated due date is on my calendar!
When do you arrive to start documenting a birth?
I typically arrive when active labor begins which is about 5-6cm, or when contractions are steadily coming about 8 to 5 minutes apart, lasting one minute long, and have been that way for an hour. When I should come will also depend on your birth plan, my travel time, previous pregnancies, birth history, or pregnancy complications as this can change when I should arrive. Based on the information we talk about during your meet and greet, we figure out what might sound like an appropriate time for my arrival.
What if my labor is really long?
Once I arrive at a birth, I typically do not leave unless your labor allows for it. I may take breaks and give some alone time, but I am there to show the story of your birth and labor process. Breaks are only taken at an appropriate time of course. Essentially, I’m in it for the long haul. It’s part of being a birth worker. This is also your birth. If you need some time alone please do let me know and I will give you the space you need.
Will you post my photos or video on your Facebook Page or Website or otherwise?
We will go over in your meet and greet what you are and are not comfortable with being released. I do not share any revealing content without permission and signed release. You will get to see footage first and approve before sharing, unless you say otherwise. We can protect identity by sticking to first name bases, only using terms “Mom, Dad, and baby”, and even changing name’s.
Sharing birth images is how others learn about my services and become inspired reach out to have their birth experience documented too. All birth stories are an amazing journey and hope that you would like to share some of the beauty and uniqueness of yours. Showing what real birth and parenthood is about, and its hidden beauty, certainly helps normalize birth. Please let me know if you have any specific concerns or requests.
What is the benefit between downloading our footage vs. getting a USB drive?
The benefit if downloading your images in an online gallery is to save money. Downloading such high resolution content can take a decent amount of time, and does require some basic tech skills. When you get a USB drive your images are pre-loaded on to it. It is much faster to transfer your images to your computer or back up drives from a USB drive than the downloading process, which can be beneficial when you have a newborn to care for. I offer this so that my clients can have options and decide what is best for them.
What is the difference between and full film and highlight film, and why might I want both?
A highlight film is a compact version of your birth story. It doesn’t contain a lot of story “fillers”, and is quick to get to the point. A highlight film is great to share with friends and family who were not able to attend the birth and wanted to see it. Some reasons you might consider a full film is that your full film will contain more details, and you can have a video that shows more of your birth. You might like to use your full film to have more sensitive footage you want to remember for yourself and a more intimate circle, while the highlight film can me more family centered and fit to share with a wider audience.
Exactly how much do you “show” of the birth?
When it comes to displaying my work on my website, advertising, marketing pieces, or video, I typically display only modest photographs and video clips. Footage and images that may seem “immodest” have all been shared with full consent of the parents. How I document your birth depends completely on you, and we will discuss this in your meet and greet. I generally try and shoot very modestly, but this is birth and sometimes it is inevitable in order to get the shot. I will be very sensitive and try to document the birth to whatever extent you are comfortable with and would like to see.
How does the process work?
Once you decide you would like me to attend your birth, please contact me and let me know the package that meets your needs. Once you are ready to book, I will send a contract over that stipulates our agreements. I will be on call from 38 weeks until the birth of your baby. Once all services are complete and final payment is received I will start the editing process. You will receive sneak peeks of your birth images via email within 24-72 hours of the birth. It will take me about 2-4 weeks for me to complete the editing for your photos and 8-12 weeks to proof your videos. For your videos you will get an editing session to request any changes you would like prior to your video being put on your usb drive or ready to download.
Do you interact with us at all?
I generally act as a “fly on the wall”, but if I’m asked a question I will converse and chat. I go with the vibe of the room. I have upmost respect your birth space and choose my actions wisely to not disturb the birth process. We will have a good bit of time to get to know each other so you do not feel like you have a complete stranger with you in the delivery room. Most of my clients do say they forgot I was there.
What happens in cases of a cesarean or a scheduled cesarean?
All birth, no matter what form it takes, is beautiful and deserves to be documented. It is ultimately your decision if you would like me in the OR with you to document the arrival. Sometimes photographers are not allowed in the OR depending on the Hospitals policy, Doctor, Charge Nurse, or Anesthesiologist. No one can advocate for my presence in the OR better than you and your spouse. The hospital rules are generally set by the charge nurse or anesthesiologist, which you will not know who this will be until the day of your birth. If I am not allowed in, I can send my camera in with Dad, or a willing nurse, on auto and document as much as they can. The actual birth of your baby is a small part of the birth story. There are so many other great first moments to be documented. Based on my history of working in whatever hospital you a birthing at I can tell you what I generally experience in being able to get in the OR. We will set up a plan during the meet and greet should this be the case.
Do you photograph only births?
Birth is my specialty, but I do offer other sessions when appropriate for my schedule or an off call period. Documenting birth is my passion and takes utmost priority in my schedule over all other session inquires.
Why hire a Professional Birth Photographer? Why shouldn’t Dad be the photographer?
You not only get the benefit of having awesome images from an experienced photographer, but your partner can focus solely on you, live in the moment, and be in the photographs too. No one has to be worried about taking out the camera, charging the batteries, and making sure settings are correct. Professional birth photographers not only have the proper equipment, but know how to work in harsh lighting conditions, capture the quick moments, and respect the birth process in its entirety. Dads and doulas best perform their roles best when they can solely focus on helping Mom and Baby, and not worrying about fumbling around with a camera.
If you have more questions please feel free to contact me!