The moment your child comes into the world and breathes his or her first breath is unparalleled by any other experience, an event that is both all-consuming and often an overwhelming blur of activity. You’ve photographed your bump and carefully chronicled your pregnancy milestones. Why stop at the most pivotal moment— when you arrive in the maternity ward? Birth photography is a very special way to document and capture this precious time for your growing family and inviting someone into the sacred birth space can be even more of a challenge. So you ask, How to find the best Birth Photographer for me?
Let me give you a few tips questions you’ll want to ask when seeking to find a birth photographer that fits you the best.
Do they respect your privacy?
As a birth photographer, I love to display my work and share with others the beautiful miracles that are born into this world daily, that I have the privilege of capturing but this doesn’t mean that it needs to come at the cost of sharing something that mom doesn’t want anyone else to see. You’ll need to make sure that the photographer gives you the right to look at the images first before they are posted and that you are able to say yes, I like that one and No, I don’t like that one. This is your sacred place and we want you to be comfortable sharing these images with others.
Along this line, do they have a portfolio for you to look at?
Privacy and Portfolios go hand in hand. Every photographer wants to use those precious images they shot to be able to show others like you that are trying to find a birth photographer that fits their needs. So that’s why the above question plays such a huge part. Make sure they will respect your privacy but that your images will be viewed by others in their portfolio so they can see their amazing work as well.
Are you able to meet the photographer before you hire them?
I am alway open to meeting my birth clients ahead of time, even before they sign the contract with me. This gives us a chance to meet them and see if we connect before they hire me to come into their very private space.
What are their fees?
Inquire with the birth photographer about what their prices are and what all you get for that fee. Remember, sometimes you get what you pay for. I don’t mean that bad but when it comes to someone photographing the one moment in my life that I can’t get back, I want to make sure I get the best of the best. Paying someone $300 and hoping they answer the phone when you are in labor at 3 am is something I wouldn’t want any expecting mom to risk.
What’s their on call time?
Speaking of fees and what it includes, you’ll need to ask how much time you get. Do they only stay for 6 or 8 hours or do they stay until you’ve delivered, no matter how long it takes. Do they go on call before your due date and will they come to the birth if it’s after your due date? These questions are very important. If you hire a birth photographer that will only be there for 6 hours, it’s possible you might not even be pushing yet and they’ll be leaving because they spent the time stated in their contract. To find a good birth photographer, make sure they are in it for the long haul, 4 hours or 14 hours, either way they won’t leave until you’ve delivered the baby and most often stay after for those priceless bonding moments. Do they come at 2 am, in the middle of the night, no questions asked?
Do they have reviews from other clients?
Look on their website for reviews and if they don’t have any posted, ask them if they have any referrals from other clients that you can see. Most photographers have these ready for clients to see.
- What gear do they use and do they bring a backup?
Any normal DLSR won’t not cut it for a middle of the night, no light birth. You need to make sure they have a camera that will handle not having any light in the middle of a very intense, dark labor. They need to know how to use that camera and how to shoot in little to no light if this situation comes up. Almost all of my births have been in the middle of the night, yes, no full sunlight birthing rooms for me. So having the knowledge down of how to focus and expose your subject correctly in with little to no light is huge!!
Does the photographer have a backup, in case of emergency?
What if they get sick or they have an emergency and have to leave town, do they have another birth photographer that will step in and cover them when situations like this arise? We all know acts of nature can’t be prevented, like a car wreck on the middle of I-10 and no traffic can get by but for the things like sickness and emergencies, it’s always best to have someone there that will help when they need it.
Birth Photography is soooo much more than just snapping a picture when the baby is born.
Having a person there that’s dedicated to just this one task they do so well, is a huge relief. It frees up Dad, Grandma or the friend who is there for moral support and allows the birthing team to be there to fully assist Mom, while they capture your bundle-of-joy’s journey into this world. It allows you to not have to worry if dad got the right picture or if he can’t hold your hand because he has the camera. It’s more of a documentary approach to photography and never has to mean explicit crowning shots. The photos & slideshow are essential to treasure and reflect upon when the days come and go and the memories fade. Your baby is only born once, you only get one chance to capture these moments; the first breath, the first cry, the first gaze at mom, that moment when the baby is first laid your chest, the cord being cut, the first reaction from siblings and so much more.
You deserve to celebrate this time and make this truly remarkable experience you’ll NEVER forget… and if you do forget, don’t worry, you got it captured!
I know there are so many things to think about when you are selecting a birth photographer but these are just a few of them that I thought would be great for you to hear.
Kelly of Lifetime of Clicks Photography is a Katy birth photographer located in Katy, Texas. Kelly creates modern classic images of maternity, your newborns, and the families that love them. Serving Houston, Katy, Sugar Land and surrounding communities.