A Wish of Mine // Birth Photography

The second half of 2013 is much different from what I anticipated. I’ve stopped drinking sweet tea, skipped a few girls’ nights and cancelled a third mission trip to Haiti. I won’t complain because this time has been spent preparing for Kamden’s birth. There are lots of things that still need to be done (nursery setup, attend breastfeeding classes, pack a hospital bag, find a pediatrician, etc.), but one thing that’s been on my mind is birth photography.

Birth photography is not the same as maternity shots. Personally, I don’t care for belly shots and have no intention of photographing mine. I don’t think my pregnancy is cute and, even though my bump is becoming more visible, I’m simply not interested.

Before you jump to conclusions, I’ll explain what birth photography is NOT:

Photos of my nether-regions. That ain’t happening. EVER.
Photos of my doctor or medical staff near my nether-regions.
Photos of needles, forceps, and other tools.
Photos of blood and other bodily fluids.
Photos of my legs and feet in stirrups. Weird!
Photos that look staged or fake.

Even though I am quite afraid and nervous about the childbirth process, there are some specific details I want photographed. There are moments I want to remember vividly.

Birth photography is:

Husband holding my hand.
Husband’s facial expression at the first sight of Kamden.
My facial expression at the sight of Kamden.
Kamden being weighed.
Kamden’s hand and foot prints.
Dr. W holding Kamden.
Husband introducing Kamden to our family and friends in the waiting room.
Our first “family of 3” photo.
Intimate shots of me, Husband, and/or Kamden after labor.
Above all, it is natural, authentic, and professional looking.

Thanks to Pinterest and the Inter-web, I’ve been able to find birth photography examples that are amazing and very tasteful. I have no idea who these people are, but I think their photos are beautiful. If these images were mine, I’d cherish them forever.

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While looking for a photographer to capture Kamden’s birth, I’m facing two challenges: availability and price. Expecting to deliver Kamden on or around December 22 wrecks not only our family’s holiday plans, but those of the photographer as well. Price is also a big consideration. Professional photography is not cheap, but I’m willing to make the investment to have these memories forever.

Would you or did you have a photographer in the labor/delivery room?

2013

By | 2013-08-07T17:17:42+00:00 August 7th, 2013|Photography|0 Comments

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  1. Taylor @ Pink Heels Pink Truck August 7, 2013 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    My friend Heather has used Michelle Peyronet as her photographer since her Engagement Photos. She has had her shoot her Babymoon pics (Maternity) and I’m fairly certain she’s doing her newborn shots. I don’t know her rates, but worth checking into. 🙂 http://peyronetphotography.com/blog/

    • Nicole August 7, 2013 at 7:00 pm - Reply

      Definitely worth checking out …. thanks for the recommendation/suggestion!!!!!!

      • Heather August 9, 2013 at 9:46 am - Reply

        Michelle is phenomenal! I highly recommend her. She also has a wonderful package called “A Year in the Life of…” where she does a newborn session, 3 month session, 6-9 month, and one year session – then compiles it into a lovely book for you to keep. It goes through the phases of them being the newborn, pushing up on their belly, crawling/rolling around and walking.

        • Nicole August 9, 2013 at 11:26 am - Reply

          Heather, that sounds amazing and something else to consider! I’ve also seen an idea (on Pinterest, of course) where you take a picture of your child every week and at the end of the year, you create a book (I think it would be an AWESOME gift for grandparents!!!!) with 52 pages ….. one for every week, plus it shows how quickly they change and grow. That kind of thing I can take my own photos and use a service such as Shutterfly or WHCC to create the book. Ideas galore!!!!!

  2. Great Aunt Deb August 7, 2013 at 7:56 pm - Reply

    Nicole, you are going to be a great Mom and you will cherish those pics. But, you can really do it with a good friend or family member, without all the expense. Just last week I was in OB and became the photographer for a couple of deliveries. The pics turned out great and I’m no pro. Have someone you love do it…even better. Best of luck with your mommydom and I will enjoy reading about Kamden’s entry into this wonderful world! Love, Kamden’s great aunt Deb.

    • Nicole August 7, 2013 at 9:45 pm - Reply

      Awwww, thank you Aunt Deb who’s GREAT!!!!!! Before I break the bank, I’m going to ask a couple of friends to see if any are interested in the opportunity. It’s such an intimate, once-in-a-lifetime experience that I want photographs. Please come and visit when you can, miss your sweet face. Big hugs from Kamden and Mama-to-Be and Papa-to-Be. 🙂

  3. Celeste Zachry August 7, 2013 at 11:35 pm - Reply

    No I didn’t and no I wouldn’t. HOWEVER, a big part of me wishes I had photos of all these things. Nonetheless, I wanted this to be a moment just between Brandon and me and I’m glad we have that. My mom respected that 🙂

    • Nicole August 8, 2013 at 8:44 am - Reply

      I totally get where you’re coming from, I do. If I’m honest, I’d like for this whole “labor and delivery” thing to happen privately and safely, without a bunch of people near and looking at my nether-regions altogether. But, alas, I don’t want to give birth in a vehicle on the way to the hospital either. Plus, as Kamden will be our one and only, I can’t have any regrets. it’s now or never …. let’s just do it!!!!

  4. Alyssa August 8, 2013 at 7:59 am - Reply

    Nice post. I think I would be OK with a stranger photographer in the room as long as she isn’t all up in my koolaid. Bonus points if I KNOW the photog.
    But those are definitely moments you want captured forever!

    • Nicole August 8, 2013 at 8:46 am - Reply

      *” … all up in my koolaid.” *That’s the *BEST* thing I’ve heard all day

  5. Julie August 8, 2013 at 9:12 am - Reply

    I wish people had been doing this when I had Zachary…..it is amazing and priceless memories captured. I wish that I had more experience with my DSLR… I would totally be volunteering for FREE! I would love to do a memory album for you if you are interested…..scrapbooking is what I love and it would be my honor. Just let me know!

    • Nicole August 8, 2013 at 10:24 am - Reply

      Awww, thanks Julie! I love hearing from Moms like you —- so full of wisdom and wit from raising their son. Big hugs!

  6. Skye August 8, 2013 at 10:41 am - Reply

    I do wish we’d had a designated photographer in the hospital room, I am always a bit jealous when I see even a small handful of photos that other families have of that time!

    • Nicole August 8, 2013 at 10:53 am - Reply

      Skye, I understand your sentiment which is the reason I’m pursuing this “wish” so diligently. Kamden will be our one and one, so it’s now or never if we’re going to get those precious moments captured forever!!!!!!

  7. reflectionsofacollegegirl August 8, 2013 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    Love this! And love how tasteful they are. Enjoyable for everyone and so very special for your family!!

    • Nicole August 8, 2013 at 3:09 pm - Reply

      Thank you! The more I look at examples like these, the more I’m convinced that these photos MUST happen during/after Kamden’s birth. I’m definitely getting more excited about the labor/delivery …. if that’s not crazy I don’t know what is!!!!!

  8. lovelylici1986 August 8, 2013 at 6:17 pm - Reply

    I agree! Those pictures are great! I would definitely do it, but I’d need to get to know the photographer for sure.

    • Nicole August 8, 2013 at 7:11 pm - Reply

      You’re right, Lici. It’s important the photographer knows us well to really capture the sacredness of the moment!!!!!

  9. Makes 3 PhotographyEmily August 12, 2013 at 4:41 pm - Reply

    So happy I found this blog entry. I am a professional BIRTH photographer. It’s what I specialize in and I (and all of the others like me) are so over the moon when people “get” what it is we are doing. It is everything you descibed and nothing “gross.” It is taking an amazingly beautiful moment, clouded by hormones and adrenaline, and preserving it for the family to reflect upon and reminisce upon and share with that child as they grow. Imagine being able to see your mother’s expression the moment she met you, 30 years later! {swoon} !
    You definitely need to be sure that whoever you hire – or whichever friend want to do this for you – that people understand that nature of birth. It is unpredictable in both WHEN it will happen and how LONG it will take. Birth photographers, like myself, are on-call, like midwives and OBs to drop everything we are doing with our families and in our lives to rush like crazy over to your side. And to stay and practice patience along side you until the baby is Earthside. Along with that, you get someone who knows the technical side of a camera, lighting, composition, etc. That’s also a portion of the heavy price tag associated with birth photography. It’s the equivalent of hiring a wedding photographer and saying “sometime in June, probably in the middle of the night, and anywhere from 6 to 36 hours.” Funny, right!
    Anyway, good luck in your search. I’m out in Southern California so I’m not able to shoot your birth. But I know if you go to birthphotographers.com you can find plenty of people who specialize in this amazing type of storytelling!
    Emily, from Makes 3 Photography

    • Nicole August 12, 2013 at 8:15 pm - Reply

      Emily, thank you so much for this beautiful comment and sharing your wit and wisdom. A year ago, having a baby was not even in my psyche, but here we are and I cannot wait to meet our son, Kamden. Husband and I have discussed, at length, and decided, that Kamden will be our one and only … so preserving this life-changing experience in beautiful photographs is much more than a wish, it has become a priority. I’ve spoken with several birth photographers in the area and I’m confident that we’ll select one in the very near future. Thank you for your confidence, it is greatly appreciated!!!!!!

  10. Grace Grits and Gardening August 14, 2013 at 1:38 pm - Reply

    Great idea and congrats to you!

    • Nicole August 14, 2013 at 1:45 pm - Reply

      Thank you! We are over-the-moon excited to welcome our Little Peanut to the world this December. =)

  11. Kimberly Erskine (@KimberlyErsk1ne) August 15, 2013 at 9:07 pm - Reply

    I love love love birth photography. Whenever Ryan and I are expecting our first little one, I’ve kind of been hell bent on doing a water birth and I’m obsessed with photos from different water births. I’m so excited for your little peanut to come in December!!

    • Nicole August 15, 2013 at 9:56 pm - Reply

      Awww Kimberly, you are so sweet. I think I’ve narrowed down the photographer options and I’ll be making final contacts by next week. It’s definitely exciting, but I don’t think I could stand doing do a water birth

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