Why Hire A Birth Photographer?
Your baby’s birth is one of the most emotional & momentous occasions in your life! The more accurate question would be - Why wouldn't you hire a birth photographer?
If you were getting married wouldn't you hire a photographer? According to a recent survey, in 2012 the average Canadian bride spent about $2,500 to $3,500 on a wedding photographer. Last year in 2016, Canadian Birth Photographer members attended 373 births across Canada, that is up from 297 the year before, and 275 in 2014. The industry average fee's across Canada in 2016 was $1105/ birth; with fees ranging from $500 to $3800 which is up from 2015. I share this information so we can reflect on the increasing value of birth photography. Now, compare that to the cost of a wedding photographer. Big difference!
Think of it as an investment. I have clients that tell me all the time that they spent so much money on their wedding photos and they never look at them, but they watch their Birth Story all the time!
I promise you. You won't regret it. Because nothing can compare to that moment when you and your baby meet for the first time...when two become three... when a family is born.
They say that the memories of these first few moments fade so quickly. And, sadly it is true. I can't clearly recall what happened for the first few hours after my daughter was born. Adrenaline, medication and excitement clouds your memory. Birth Photography helps capture & preserve these precious memories for you. Parents at that time are so focused on a million different things- the health of mom, the health of baby, the pain! Who wants to think about taking pictures at a time like this?! That's where I come in!
Wouldn't you rather hold your partners hand during this special time, than be distracted by taking photographs?
I am there to capture your Birth Story.
I am there to capture that special once in a life time moment, when you meet your little miracle for the first time. When you hear their first cry, when you finally get to hold them in your arms after months of anticipation.
I regret not hiring a birth photographer for my daughters birth. I had my partner, my mother, my best friend and my in-laws present for the birth, each of them had cameras and were planning on taking as many photos as possible... I ended up having a total of 5 photos. That's why hiring a birth photographer makes such great sense. You are promised beautiful professional images and of course a tear-jerking Birth Slide Show with music!
Commonly Asked Questions:
What is birth photography?
No, it's not just me taking photographs of your private area. First and foremost, it’s art. Your photographs will be captured in a documentary or candid style, different from your usual family portraits. Your images will be truthful, artistic, emotional, story-telling images. The photographs can be as graphic as you wish. Crowing photographs are only captured upon request of the client.
Do you take pictures of the whole labor and birth?
I do whatever you wish. This will be discussed at our prenatal meeting. Some mothers prefer that I arrive when they are in “active labour” or after the epidural has been administered, others request the whole birthing process be captured. It is totally up to you. Most times, I ask that you call me as soon as
you go into labor. Then, again once you reach 3 CM. At this time, I then make my way to the birthing location.
Will you post the photos on the internet?
This will also be discussed in detail during our prenatal meeting. But, most importantly, I will not post anything that I do not have permission to post.
Will we meet before the birth?
Yes, one month prior to your due date. This meeting will be set up at a mutual agreed upon location, where we can discuss any questions or concerns you may have and sign the required forms. I also like to keep in touch via email or text up until the date of the birth.
When do you show up? How long will you stay? What if I have a long labor?
This is very hard to determine, as each birth is different. However, I will remain at the Birthing location for a maximum time of 10 hours. Any additional hour(s) will be charged separately. (This will be explained clearly in your contract).
What if I have a short labor, will I get any of my money back?
No, this is a set rate. The birthing session includes; my time for being “on-call” 24/7 for two weeks, travel expenses, small business expenses, child care expenses, insurance costs, my time spent editing each of your images and creating your Birth slide show.
What if I have a C-section?
It’s your responsibly to ask your Doctor/OBGYN whether or not I will be allowed in the operating room during the procedure. There are also plenty of great photo opportunities before and after a C-section procedure. I can follow the baby and capture all those precious first moments while mom is in recovery, which could take hours.
What if you miss the birth?
It is possible. I do promise to make every arrangement possible so that I am available for you. However, I do have a career that is unpredictable at times, but also very flexible. Having said that, if for some reason I am unable to attend your birth I will make every effort to attend the location of birth to complete a “Just Born” Session * Free of Charge* and you will also be granted a full refund.
When should I book you?
As soon as you decide to have your birth photographed. The sooner the better!
Do you offer discounts or take payments?
I do accept payments, however no images will be provided to you until full payment is received.
Do you use a flash? What if I want my birth dark?
No, I use the light that is available to me. If your room is very dark, we may obviously have to make some sort of adjustment to avoid having dark, poor images. However, I am experienced in shooting in low light environments and will do my best not to disturb you.
How many photographs will I get?
I take as many images as possible. This number varies greatly from birth to birth. It can be anywhere from 75 to 200 or more. However, I promise you 80 to 100 high-resolution edited JPEG images.
How long will it take to get my photographs?
I will provide “sneak peaks” to you as soon as possible. These photos are also posted on my Facebook page (with your permission). This usually happens within 24 hours, you will receive 2 to 3 images sent to you via email within 48 hours.
Will they be color or black and white?
The images prior to your delivery are most times edited in color. The actual delivery images and more graphic images are converted to black and white.
My images will be provided to me in digital format, what if I want prints?
You will be provided a DVD containing your slide show and a USB storage device containing your digital images in JPEG format or if you so wish a private online gallery for you to share and download at your own leisure. Once you have had a chance to view your images, and if you decide that you would like professional quality prints they can be purchased "A la Carte".
The first happiest day of your life is (probably) your wedding, but the second happiest day of your life is the birth of your firstborn child...or your second or your third. So why are people hesitant to hire a professional photographer for the occasion? I often hear that they don't want an extra person in the birth room, they don't want the occasion captured on film or if they do then they feel confident in their husbands ability to handle the camera... So, to those people that need convincing, here are 6 reasons why you need a professional birth photographer.
(1) You Forget. I honestly have no idea what happened in the last 2 hours before my son came. Things were a definite blur, and even more of a blur for the next 2 hours after his birth. I love looking through my photos to jog my memories, and since the photos are so beautiful, they definitely jog back beautiful memories. "Oh yeah... that's when we discovered he was a boy! And that's when we told my parents his name!"
(2) Babies change so quickly. They can come out of the womb and look incredibly different an hour later (Birth is a whirl wind, by the time the dad has a chance to pick up the camera their head shape has already changed, feet have stretched out, that crooked nose has already slightly straightened etc.)
(3) Fathers should be in the photos not taking the photos. Birth can be an emotional roller coaster (for the dad too!) and he shouldn't have to worry about handling a camera during labour delivery and the first couple hours of life. Let him support you, enjoy holding his baby, and greeting family visitors!
(4) The emotion and expression experienced during a birth is priceless! How amazing to be able to look back at the expression you had when you met your child for the first time, and their expression when they met you. Birth is full of real emotion that you will likely never have the chance to get in other photo sessions. The smiles are real. The tears are real. The exhaustion is real. The love is real!
(5) Quality Crisp Images. If you tried to take photos in a darkened birth room, you would likely need to use a flash with your camera, but birth photographers have proper equipment and lenses to be able to take crisp photos in low light without a flash, and that's important when dealing with a newborn's sensitive eyes.
(6) The Value of Beautiful Images. People don't bat an eye at booking a maternity or newborn photo session... but why not value the moment the baby actually enters this world? Personally I think it's nice to have newborn shots, but I don't actually ever look at my sons' newborn shots much, however I do go back to his birth album time and time again to see my son as a NEW born. If money is an issue and you have to chose between hiring a photographer for maternity/ newborn pictures or birth pictures, please pick birth! Birthing is one of the most important journey's in one's life, and to have the story captured on film from beginning to end is special. I can hardly wait to show my children their own birth photos.
Yes, the birth photography business has been a slow start... It's taken people some time to warm up to the idea of having another person on their birth team, but it definitely feels like it's catching on as more and more people want these real-moment photos in their family albums and nursery room walls. So, give it some thought... once you are in the thick of labour, I promise you that you won't notice a quite camera in the corner. You
may regret not hiring a birth photographer to capture that day, but you will not regret actually hiring them... I guarantee it!
Birth Photographer Assoc
About The Contributor:
Jaydene Freund is a
birth photographer and doula located in Abbotsford, BC
Check out the following links for more reasons on why you should hire a birth photographer: