Hey! I'm so happy that you are considering Birth Photography! Let me start off by saying that there are many different types of Birth Photographers out there. I am probably one of the few that lean towards the MODEST side. I have been on the receiving end, wanting to share the images with friends and family or even with my child down the road, so I spend less time focusing on your anatomy, and more time capturing the in-between moments that make up your baby's Birth Story.
Birth Stories are a little bit unique as they are completely unpredictable. There are so many unknowns, such as the time of day, lighting conditions, the length of shooting time, and of the course the birth date. You are not just hiring a photographer for the day of your birth, but also for their time leading up to the due date, which ensures they remain close to home awaiting your call, and everything that happens after the birth to create your finished product. Hiring a professional birth photographer allows you and your partner to fully rely on each other and it takes the pressure off trying to capture these memories on your own. Plus, if Dad is taking pictures of you and baby, who is taking pictures of his reaction? There are also so many details throughout the labor that you could miss because of everything else going on in the room. I capture your story as it unfolds and help you preserve the many beautiful moments that you will want to look back on after the fact.
I always meet with my clients in person after booking your birth story, and this is a great opportunity to get better acquainted before the big day. My goal is to provide you with an unforgettable experience. You are in good hands! I promise :)
You can view previous Birth Story Slideshows on Vimeo here.
The topic of Birth Photography can bring up so many questions, so I’ve put together a list of some of my most frequently asked.
I’m torn between hiring a doula and a photographer and can’t afford both. How do I decide?
A doula can be an amazing support if you don’t have someone who can fill this role. You’ll want them by your side, with their focus on meeting your immediate labor needs. A professional photographer is hired to observe and preserve the details and moments that happen during the labor and delivery. Some doula’s offer photography services as an add-on, however I do not personally believe you could focus on both of these roles to the BEST of your ability if you are trying to wear two hats at once. This is the same reason why I tell people not to rely on Dad for pictures. He will be busy supporting you. If having the support in the moment is most important, than go with your doula, but if having the memories to look back on is most important to you, than having it photographed professionally will be the best choice.
I had really fast labors with my other child(ren). Do you charge by the hour if it’s a short labor versus a longer one?
Whether this is your first birth or fifth, Birth is unpredictable. One of the biggest variables is time. My prices are not just based on my time spent capturing your birth story, but also the time leading up to your due date, as well as the many hours I spend creating the finished product. When I’m on call for a birth, I can’t leave town and must stay close to home, so restrictions are placed on me and my family. Even if your labor is only 2 hours long, I stay at the birth for 1-2 hours afterwards capturing baby’s first moments so you will have plenty of images to encapsulate your day. My shortest birth story was 3 hours and my longest was 22 hours. Both are beautiful, complete stories that have equal amounts of emotional value.
In the event that my labor progresses towards a c-section, are you still able to capture my birth story?
There is no guarantee that I will be allowed to enter the OR during the surgery, and it’s best to keep expectations low. In saying this, I have photographed two c-section births so far, and I was allowed into the OR for both cases. Sometimes the Doctor will ask that photos be kept behind the curtain for liability concerns but it really just depends on the on-call Doctor performing the surgery. I always recommend that you speak up in this moment about the importance of me being present with you in the OR, should your birth move in this direction. If the answer is no, I can hand off my camera to Dad (set on auto) for him to take a few images in my absence.
At what point do we notify you when I am in labor?
I like to be kept in the loop when you think labor is beginning. This is just so I can have the heads up in case child care arrangements need to be made on my end. The latest you would want to call me is when you reach “Active labor”, so around 5 cm’s or when contractions are 5 minutes apart. I usually suggest letting me know when you’re on the way to the hospital, or when you have paged your midwife and then updates can be made from that point onward.
We want to have our Birth Story documented, but we would like to keep it private. Do we have this flexibility?
Birth is a very personal moment. I will never publish names or images without your consent. If you’d like to keep it private, please let me know.
Do we get the chance to talk about what shots are “off limits?”
Modesty is really important to me. Some would say I’m in the wrong profession in that case, but I think birth can be beautiful without focusing on the anatomy. Leading up to the birth, I always make sure I meet with my clients face to face or over the phone to chat about any images you definitely wouldn’t want, or any moments you wouldn’t want me to miss.
How many support people am I allowed in the room with me, and do you count towards one of these people?
The rules seem to differ from hospital to hospital but Rockyview allows 2 support people, me included. So this is important to keep in mind if you are hiring a doula and also want to have your husband or anyone else present. South Health Campus does not have a limit for support. I always recommend that you discuss this ahead of time with your doctor or midwife so you know what the rules are going into the birth. Obviously, home births would not have any restrictions on the number of people but keep in mind that if space is limited, the more room I have to move around, the better.
Do you use flash?
No. As a personal preference, I do not use flash. Partly because I find it to be a bit distracting to mom as she is laboring, but also because I prefer to use existing light so the overall story is consistent across the board. There are situations, where extra light is needed, but I can get creative if need be.
If you have any further questions about the above mentioned, or anything additional you would like to chat about, please let Kristina know by clicking below!