Why hire a professional birth photographer?
Can't my doula take photos for me?
Will it be "weird" having a stranger there?
When do we call you and how long do you stay?
Will I be able to show these pictures to not-so-close friends and relatives?
Will you be sharing my images on social media?
What about a print release?
Birth is a life-changing event. Much like a wedding, it’s the culmination of love and intimacy, and we almost don’t even question hiring a photographer for weddings anymore.
These moments are so worth capturing, and as a trained birth photographer my aim is to document, to blend in seamlessly with your birth team. In addition, I find that many of my clients actually appreciate having a familiar face in their birth room, as you may or may not even know the nurses/care providers attending your birth!
Finally, by hiring a professional birth photographer, your partner will be free to experience the moment as it is happening, rather than through the lens of a camera. And more importantly, they will actually be in the photos!
Hiring a professional photographer that is very familiar with birth means that you will have your story documented, edited, and presented with the professional quality you deserve. So many of my clients tell me that their birth photos are their most prized possessions, as certainly mine are for me.
Yes, your doula can absolutely take photos for you! However, if you are looking for professional quality photographs that are skillfully captured, using professional equipment, and edited and presented in a way that highlights the beauty of your birth, I would highly recommend you hire someone that has spent time and energy perfecting their craft. If photographs are not a high priority for you, then having your doula, nurse, or family member take some snapshots may be the perfect option for you!
Having someone present at your birth who is dedicated to taking photographs also means that all of your birth supports will be able to focus on doing just that - supporting you. Not to mention, some of my favourite photographs from births are the ones I’ve taken of spouses/doulas/nurses supporting birthing people while they labour and deliver.
Not at all.
First of all, we will have a prenatal visit around the 35 week mark (or earlier, depending on circumstances), where we will discuss your birth plan in greater detail. This is also when I will meet your spouse and/or birth supports, so that they are just as comfortable with me as you are. My presence at your birth will not be an intrusion; my goal is to compliment your birth experience.
While the main purpose of having me there is of course to take photographs, it will be my honour to support you in your birth experience in any way I can.
Birth is nothing if not unpredictable. Having said that, there are definite patterns to labour and signs to look for, many of which are more easily judged by someone who is familiar with birth. My extensive experience with birth and birthing women has given me this ability, which is why I will always come to you as soon as active labour begins. I have also created a clear visual guide for all of my clients (in digital form for your phone and as a magnetic postcard for your fridge) so that you have no room for doubt when it comes to the big day.
I also know some women have their babies very fast! If you know this is how your body works we will work out a plan that works best for you. For those women planning a hospital birth, I live very close to the new Jim Pattison Children's Hospital, and for those of you planning on delivering your babies at home I am also very near Circle Drive and Idylwyld, so I can be anywhere in the city very quickly.
On average, I stay one to two hours after the birth of your baby. If your baby needs medical assistance after they are born and I am unable to capture family bonding images, I will come back when your family is ready to document those moments.
Each birth can be captured as modestly as you like. Some moms want only shots taken with me standing near her head, while others want images of their baby crowning; it is completely up to you. Your images will be delivered in a secure online gallery, and you will have the ability to mark as many images “private” as you would like. This enables you to share as much or as little of your birth story as YOU choose.
I would be honoured - but only if you want me to.
I am a fierce believer in the fact that all bodies are beautiful before, during, and after the act of bringing new life into this world. The raw strength and the grace I am witness to each time a family hires me will never cease to amaze me. Our bodies are incredible, and I feel very strongly about normalizing birth so that current and future generations of birthing people can feel empowered in their own births.
That being said, I will NEVER share an image that you are not comfortable with. Part of our birth photography contract will be your model release. In it you will find varying degrees of modesty from 100% privacy to full release and everything in between. I even have the option for you to select which images you are comfortable with me sharing.
This is YOUR birth, your story.
After I leave your birth I will go through all the images I take and select the ones that best represent your birth story (usually 100+ images). Once I have edited and delivered your images via your personalized online viewing gallery, which you are free to share with family and friends, your images can be easily downloaded and you will receive a full release for printing up to 8x10 at a reputable printer.
I highly recommend printing your keepsakes through Don’s Photo or Costco, but London Drugs also has an option to print on a bamboo paper and the quality of these prints is quite fair as well. I do not have personal experience with online vendors, such as Shutterfly, but I have heard from several of my customers who have done photo books through them that the quality is good. Please do not ever print my images at a “kiosk” printer such as Walmart. It will be tempting - because of convenience and affordability - but I assure you the quality is so poor that it is not worth the slight savings in time or money.