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close up black and white image of a new parent holding their baby moments after birth who is swaddled up cozy photo by birth photographer jena lee photographs in golden bc in article about birth photography faq
BIRTH · BABY · FAMILY

Photographer

Golden British-Columbia

birth photography faq

the questions I am asked most as a birth photographer

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Birth Photography FAQ

Birth photography FAQ: when it come to birth photography, these are my most frequently asked questions. There are many logistics to making birth photography work. Here is what most parents ask before booking:

Also read: Booking Birth Photography / Why Hire A Birth Photographer?
More FAQ by birth photographers Jennifer Mason / Breathe In Photography

Find a birth photographer in your area here [Canada]

FAQ: WHO IS BIRTH PHOTOGRAPHY FOR?

Birth photography is for anybody who wants their birth experience photographed in a professional and artistic way. It is inclusive of all people, families, and types of birth. Whether you are planning a vaginal, c-section, hospital, home or anything else, birth photography is inclusive of all types of birth. Lots of families book birth photography for surrogacy and adoption stories too.

FAQ: How does being on call work?

At your 38 week mark, I will begin my ‘on-call’ time for you. This means that I stay close to town and am ready to arrive at your birth as soon as possible. For me, ‘being ready’ means being able to arrive as quickly as possible, in a state of well-being, with the appropriate energy for your space.

We will keep in touch while you are in early labour, then I will arrive to start photographing once contractions become consistent and close together.

FAQ: What if I go into labour in the middle of the night?

Included with your booking is having me on call 24/7. This means that I am ready to arrive at your birth as soon as possible, even if it’s the middle of the night.

FAQ: Won’t it be uncomfortable to have a stranger in the room?

Maybe, but we won’t be strangers. Before we book anything we have to make sure we are on the same page and are the right fit for each other. We have to both agree that we would love to work together … I don’t let just anyone call me in the middle of the night!

FAQ: What if I have a precipitous [fast] birth?

I can likely get there very quickly, but if you have an extremely fast birth I will come to your place of birth as soon as reasonably possible after notification in order to document the moments after delivery.  

Precipitous births happen occasionally and are nobody’s fault. I will document your birth story – in this case – a fast and unpredictable birth.

FAQ: What if you miss my birth?

This is rare, but it unfortunately could happen. I work closely with two backup photographers to help prevent missing your birth entirely. In this case, any amount that you paid for your birth photography [minus the retainer or any amount paid to a back up photographer] would be transferred to a baby photo session instead [newborn, milestone photos etc.]

FAQ: What if I have to have an emergency c-section?

If you have to have an emergency c-section, they usually only allow one person to enter the operating room with you, which is typically your support person. I can send my camera in the OR with them or continue to document your birth afterward. There are still plenty of moments to document outside of the OR. If you know you might have a c-section you can always ask your doctor beforehand about letting me in the OR with you.

FAQ: What about COVID-19?

As you know, the rules are constantly changing. If you book birth photography and are having a hospital birth it’s impossible to know what the covid-19 rules at that time will be. I recommend booking a birth photographer in advance so that they can be available for you if covid-19 lets up. Otherwise, if the time comes and I am not allowed to enter the hospital with you, your balance paid goes toward other photo sessions [newborn etc].

The great news is that I am currently allowed to attend all home births right now! [Updated Feb. 2021]

FAQ: Can I request modest birth photos?

Yes! You are in control of what is documented and you can request to have certain photos or not. At your pre-consultation we will talk more about this, look at example galleries and determine what you are comfortable with.

Family sits together in a hospital bed helping their toddler hold their new baby after
FAQ: Will my images be shared online?

Only if you give permission for them to be. Birth photography is an intimate experience and you are welcome to keep the images private. You are also welcome to share them with the world if that empowers you. It’s up to you.

FAQ: Do parents regret not booking birth photography?

Yes, sometimes. It hurts my heart when parents tell me they didn’t know it was an option or they thought they would remember everything more clearly. My friend wrote a lovely piece about how she wishes she booked a birth photographer, you can read that on this page.

FAQ: What if I don’t like my images?

I always have a guarantee that if you don’t like your birth photos, your balance paid can be transferred to baby photos instead or I will completely refund you.

My experience is that parents who are hesitant about birth photography end up completely falling in love with their photos and couldn’t imagine not having them.

FAQ: What if I have a traumatic birth?

I wish you the most positive and empowering experience possible. However, if you have a traumatic birth I will archive your images until you are ready to view them. Sometimes a documentary series of images can help parents process trauma. It is up to you and you can wait as long as you need to see them. Some parents like to go through their birth photography gallery with their doctor / midwife afterward.

FAQ: What is the cost?

All birth photography packages include a pre-consultation, a home visit if you are planning a home birth, photographer on call from 38 weeks until your birth, complete photo coverage throughout your birth [with no time limit] until one hour postpartum, and a post-consultation.

There are different packages available depending on what you are looking for. A retainer is due for booking and the remaining balance is due at 37 weeks. You are welcome to make smaller payments throughout your pregnancy [payment plan]. Please get in touch for detailed birth photography prices.

FAQ: When should I book a birth photographer?

You can book a birth photographer at any time during your pregnancy. Sometimes I joke with people that they should call me right after peeing on a stick.

In all seriousness, booking during the second trimester is recommended. The earlier you book birth photography, the more time we have to get to know each other and the more I can guarantee my availability to work with you. Although I do sometimes have the capacity to accept new clients last minute, there’s no harm in asking!

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