Frequently Asked Questions
Why hire a birth photographer?
“Because they only take their first breath once!” When I am there to capture your birth story, your partner, family, and friends won’t need to worry about remembering to capture each precious moment and can truly be there for you. To support you and be in the moment with you. Allow me to capture all the incredible moments you want to remember forever. The tenderness shared between you and your partner. Who was in the room? Who laughed? Who cried? What did your baby look like the moment he was born? What was your reaction the first time you held her/him? Once in a lifetime moments deserve professional photographs.
What is a first look session?
A first look session is a special session for families who want those first precious hours of their newborn’s life captured. Held within the first 24-48 hours of your baby’s life, these lifestyle sessions are the perfect way to treasure that first day forever. I will come to your place of birth within 48 hours between the hours of 9am to 5pm and capture your baby’s sweet new moments in a fresh and natural way. This is not a newborn session; I will not bring studio lighting, props of any kind, nor will I pose your baby.
How far in advance should I book my birth session?
Due to the “on-call” nature of birth photography, I limit myself to two births per month so I recommend contacting me as soon as you think you’re interested to check my availability. Once you’ve decided you want to hire me a deposit of $400 (which is then subtracted from your chosen session) is required to reserve the time surrounding the due date to ensure availability.
What if you are booked too close to my due date?
If I am already booked within 2 weeks of your due date for another birth, I can be on stand-by for your birth. This means that there is no guarantee that I will make it, but if I do you wouldn’t pay me anything until then. However, the birth that is booked has priority should I get that call while I am with you. In the unlikely event that this happens, you are welcome to substitute a Fresh Outta The Womb Session. I will ask you to pre-write a check and have it with your signed contract so that when I arrive at your birth it’s all set to go.
Will I meet you before the birth?
Yes! I like to meet with an expecting mom (and main support person) when she’s ready to book her due date. It is important to me that we are comfortable with each other and I can answer your questions before you sign a contract and make the initial payment. I will also keep in close contact during the last month of your pregnancy via your preferred method (text, phone, e-mail) to see how things are going.
What types of births do you attend? Do you photograph C-Sections?
I attend births in hospitals, birth centers, and homes. If you are scheduled for a Cesarean Section, I would love to be in the operating room with you and capture images that you might not be able to see or too groggy to remember. However, this must be secured in advance and I will need permission from your OB and the anesthesiology Even if I’m not allowed in the OR, there are still many moments I can capture with your waiting family and friends. If allowed, I will follow your baby to recovery and/or the nursery to capture his firsts moments.
When I go into labor, when should I call you?
I ask that you contact me as soon as you have any signs of labor. That doesn’t mean I will immediately come to be with you, but I appreciate being frequently updated so that I can make arrangements for my family as things progress. Please keep in mind that I may need up to an hour to secure care for my children. Stay in touch while you’re in early labor and together we’ll decide when the best time for me to come will be.
What if I go into labor in the middle of the night or on the weekend?
All birth packages include me being on call 24/7. Please do not hesitate to let me know when labor has begun, even if it is in the middle of the night and even if you’re worried that it might be a “false alarm.” I need ample notice so it is essential that you’re not concerned with time of day.
What if I give birth prematurely?
In the event that an unanticipated medical circumstance prevents me from providing services, all fees will be applied towards a future session of your choosing. In the past, a lifestyle “homecoming” (from the hospital) or NICU session has been a good option.
What will you do in case there is an emergency with the baby or me?
I will do whatever you want me to do, as long as the staff does not ask me to stop shooting. I know this can be a rather chaotic and scary situation and I will do my best to read the emotions in the room and determine whether or not I should stay.
What if you can’t make the birth or miss it completely?
If I have been given ample notice (excepting any medical emergencies), this should not be a problem. However, birth is unpredictable so it is always a possibility that something prevents me from getting there, ie. illness, labor goes exceptionally fast, natural disaster, automobile accident. I make plans to be 100% on call from 38 weeks until you give birth so that you can be confident that my schedule is clear for you. If I make it to the birth, even if it’s after the actual birth, I will stay and take pictures until I get enough to fulfill the minimum amount for your chosen session.
Do you interact at all or mainly stay quiet?
My job as a birth photographer is to be a fly on the wall but I am certainly open to interaction. I will get to know what you’re expectations and plans are during birth so I will adjust my level of interaction based on you request or expect. My primary responsibility is to take photographs, but the ways I would interact with you (or anyone else in the room) depends entirely upon what you want.
How long do you stay at a birth?
I don’t charge by the hour and will stay as long as the birth is in progress. Typically, I will stay up to 2 hours after your birth in order to capture weight, measurement, footprints, breastfeeding, and those incredible moments following birth.
Do you use a flash?
I consider myself a ‘natural light’ photographer which means I use what ever kind of light is available. If there isn’t enough light in the room I will have to make the decision to either stop shooting, use a flash, or set up my own light in the room. We will discuss all the options at our visit and I’ll talk in more detail about how lighting will effect the quality of images. Usually, the lighting at any given time is what “makes” an image, adds to the look and feel of it, and makes it look true to life.
what form of payment do you offer? do you offer payment plans?
I accept cash, check, credit card, paypal, and bartering (ask me about this!!). I want all my clients to be able to afford birth photography, but at the same time I must make enough money to support my family. yes I do offer payment plans, I know what its like to be denied something because you don't have all the money that day or even that month. again, I want all of my clients and potential clients to know that I want them to have birth photography at their birth if they want it. I want to honor you mama!
What if I change my mind at the last minute and decide I don’t want pictures?
That is not a problem at all. If you decide to forgo birth pictures for any reason, I will completely understand. However, any fees paid to that point are non-refundable and non-transferable.