Professional birth photography is an investment. I get that and that is why I work so hard for my clients. For me birth photography isn't just something "fun" to do. Don't get me wrong, I love what I do. This love and passion is what drives me even after 24 hrs at birth. When you hire a professional, you get more than someone just there for the feel good moments, but for the hard times too. Here are just 5 for the perks to having a professional on your birth team.
This is a big one. Being on call is not something to be taken lightly. Birth is unpredictable and being on call requires me to be able to drop everything an leave for hours and sometimes even days. My phone is on and with me 24/7, I drive separately from my family, all my plans are tentative and my babysitter list is a page long. I take on call very seriously. It breaks my heart when I heard about parents who are left at the last moment by someone who thought photographing would be "fun" but end up deciding its just too much of a hassle to be on call. They are a left scrambling to find someone, when they really should be enjoying they have to together before they a great and wonderful change to their lives.
Even with all the precautions I take while on call I fully understand the unpredictability of life and that is why I have professional back up. My backup is someone I trust completely, because I know they are just as serious about being on call as myself.
Birth is not a new experience or environment to me. I am not saying I am an expert by any means. But I do know how to walk into a birth environment and work with what is presented to me. Really dark room? I can just turn on all the light then. Um no. The birth environment is not mine to control. It is all about mom. I also know when to put aside the camera and just be human. I feel like understanding and compassion go hand in hand. Sometimes what a mom needs is a hand to hold, not a picture.
RECIEVING YOUR IMAGES
Because this is my job and not a hobby, delivering your gallery on time is very important to me. Even with 3 babies born within 22 hrs of each other and then 2 in 24 hrs later that month, all my galleries were delivered on time. It is such a joy being to deliver these perfectly written birth stories and hear about the emotions parents felt as their revisit their little one's arrival.
BE FULLY INVOLVED IN YOUR MOMENTS
Having a professional document your story allows you and your support people time to be fully involved in the intense, emotional, peaceful and precious moments that make up birth. Be there emotionally. Be present physically. Be hands on (if that's what momma want). Be engaged. It's really hard to do a double hip squeeze with only one hand, I'm just saying. Stare into your newborn's eye, not at them through a screen.
Sacramento Birth Story
The forecast of rain, changed plans and made something magical happen.
As a photographer there are some locations that have you dreaming about your next session. The location that had me day dreaming weeks was a worn out mill on the California Delta. When I presented the idea of this location to my clients, they were thrilled with the idea. Falling in love with the textures and light, just as I had. Unfortunately, the weather had another idea. As our session approached, so did the storm clouds. Ultimately we decided that it would be best to move our maternity session indoors, in the comfort of their beautiful Sacramento home. As Sunday arrived, the storm clouds receded and gave through to a beautiful May day. It looked like the our original location would have been just fine, but you know what? I am so glad we had changed plans and captures this momma's true beauty with the details that help make up her world.
So glad the weather forecast rained on our parade and pushed us indoors. In my opinion there isn't much that is better than real life, real beauty and real stories.
I look forward to capturing the rest of the beautiful journey to motherhood.
Sacramento Maternity Session
It was just 2 weeks before this momma's due date when she contacted me about documenting her upcoming birth story. We met the next day to get to know each other a little and discuss important details.
Just a week after booking I was sitting in the waiting room of Kaiser Roseville waiting for another client to get admitted, when I got a text saying she was starting to have patterned contractions. I knew that the next 24 hours were going to be interesting. Baby N was born early the next morning and Baby M decided to stay in his nice little womb a little longer. It was around 8pm I got the call saying things had picked up and they were headed to The Birth Center. On my arrival I found mom laboring nicely and enjoying some last little moments with her sweet daughter who soon be replacing her title of Momma's Baby with Big Sister.
It wasn't long after things really became intense.
Her sweet husband never left her side and together they rode the waves of contractions knowing each one brought them closer to meeting their son.
Meeting your new best friend for the first time is pretty exciting.
Oh the womb swept hair of a newborn.
Welcome to the world Baby M!
This birth story was captured at The Birth Center in Sacramento, Ca
Midwife: Ruth Cummings, CNM
This lovely doula taught me what it means to be a doula on so many levels. Her kindness, compassion, knowledge and joy are inspiring. I have had the great opportunity to work along side her for countless births and when I was pregnant with my second, I could not image having anyone else as my doula. Her skills as a doula are invaluable to a laboring mother and partner, but her skills as a massage practitioner makes her that much more equipped to help clients relax and find comfort in the labor process. Jacinda is truly passionate about the mothers of El Dorado, Sacramento, Amador and Placer County having the best support emotional and physically through their pregnancy, labor and postpartum period. If you are looking for a doula, I highly recommend checking out this Placerville area doula!
I have the wonderful opportunity to witness the birth of babies and mothers on a regular basis. It really is one life's great moments. A moment that is truly once in a lifetime. Hope you enjoy this stunning collection put together by my friends over at Birth Becomes Her.
Motherhood in Full Bloom
Just a few miles up the road for the bustling little town of Placerville lies the picturesque area of Apple Hill. Among the blossoms there was a lovely couple experiencing motherhood in full bloom for the first time. Their love for each other and their unborn son was a vibrant and beautiful as the flowers adorning the trees.
Placerville Homebirth Waterbirth
From the moment I met this momma of soon to be 5, I was blown away. Her strength, dedication and joy was inspiring. She makes homeschooling, motherhood and living a healthy lifestyle look easy. The days leading up to her birth were full of laughs, science lessons, bike rides in the sunshine and snow ( California is having some crazy weather these days), walks, trips to the gym and runs. Yes, I said runs. With all that said, you might understand how I had a feeling that her Placerville homebirth was going to be nothing short of amazing.
A few hours after she joked that "we all knew she wasn't going to have this baby" I got the call 11:40. Being that this was her 5th baby, my stuff had been packed for weeks and my work clothes were ready to go. I arrived to their beautiful home at 11:55. Their sweet little baby girl arrived 14 mins after I arrived. What a beautiful amazing homebirth waterbirth it was!
What a pleasure it was to be able to document this perfectly written story of motherhood. Congratulation to the this perfect family of 7!
Midwifery services provided by One Heart Midwifery
Placerville Birth Photographer - Placerville Homebirth - Placerville Waterbirth
What a birth photographer thinks about C-section births...
You may have see the stories swirling around social media and the internet that lead you to believe that birth photographers don't love or support C-section births. The thing is this is far from the truth for myself and the many birth photographers I know. We love the stories that you write and gladly document them when given the opportunity. Whether you have a cesarean birth, home birth, hospital birth or birth center birth your story deserves to be captured and celebrated. So please know, every birth is beautiful!
The thought of little ones entering the world surrounded by separation and sadness in place of celebration breaks my heart. As a Auntie of adopted little ones I have always had a special spot in my heart for babies that have spent their first hours and days in a hospital bassinet instead of the arms of the ones who love them. Their tiny little features left ungazed upon for hours and hours. Little features that change so quickly. Their story left to be told only by court papers for hours, days or weeks.
This week I had the opportunity to celebrate one of these babies and their hopeful adoptive parents meet them 3 days after their birth. As we walked into the nicu for the first time the air was full of excitement and nerves. There was a striking similarity between this day and the parents I regularly capturing anticipating the arrival of their little ones in the early stages of labor. The wonder of what their little features look like. Is their baby doing well? How big are they? Do they have 10 fingers and 10 toes?
After placing a badge with the name "Surrender" upon on our chests, scrubbing in and walking through two locked doors, it was time. Entering their little one's shared room and the emotion was palpable. There their adoptive baby lay. Not a feature was left unremarked. Not a feature left uncherished.
Those first moments captured to be cherished for all time. Something for this little one to look back upon as they grow and see how tiny they were and know how much they are loved.
For those that know me well know that these moments get me to the core. I chose my profession out of passion, not profit. Long hours, late nights, missed holidays and family events are all made worth while. My hope is for my images to share stories, move hearts, encourage and inspire. Let us celebrate all babies.
As a good majority of birth photographers scrambled around trying to figure out what to submit to IAPBP's 2017 competition one of our very talented collogues brought something to our eyes. These competitions while they do have awards to be won, something bigger is at work.
These competition raise the awareness to birth in a new way. Birth is something that needs to be celebrated. The options that birthing women have, need to be known. The beauty and the uniqueness each birth holds, is absolutely amazing on it's own. Then you add the creative eye and passion of a birth photographer and you cant help be stand in awe of what the beginning of life looks like. Every women. Unique. Every labor. Unique. Every baby. Unique. While there will be hundreds of images in this competition, I assure you, EVERY SINGLE IMAGE will have its own story. Take time to see the story written in the furrowed brows, the tears, the bellies, the eyes, the hand and whatever else the image holds.
I was planning on submitting two images this year one in the details and one in the labor category. The weather around here seemed to have a different idea and our power went out as I was submitting my second image. Competition submission or not, it has a beautiful story to be told.
What does it say to you?
My 2017 IAPBP Submission in the detail category is from my last birth of 2016. This birth was the perfect way to finish out my year as a birth photographer. A beautiful birth The Birth Center in Sacramento with one of my favorite midwives, Ruth Cummings, CNM. My reason for choosing this image for the detail category is all the details that work to tell a beautiful story. The gentle support of her husband, her relaxed hands even as she feels the surges of transition, the strech marks across the front of her belly, the shape of her contracted belly as it moves her baby closer to the outside world.
Mother of two crazy little girls. Photographer of life with a true love and passion for birth.
I am proud to be your local maternity, birth, newborn & family photographer
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