Why should I hire a birth photographer ?
Birth photography gives you an otherwise impossible view into one of the most important days of your life. Birth is often fleeting and memories left hazy, photographs make it possible to see that first breath, the first time you lay eyes on your baby and all the other special moments you may miss. It also allows your support people to be 100% present for you and in-front of the camera rather than behind it.
What hospitals and areas do you cover ?
I cover Auckland City Hospital, Waitakere Hospital, Middlemore Hospital and North Shore Hospital, Birthcare Parnell, Botany Downs Birthing Unit and I also cover home births in the wider Auckland area.
What is your shooting style during a birth ?
I shoot in a discreet, candid, ninja like style. I fade into the background and leave it to you to engage with me as little or as much as you like. I understand the stages and progression of birth and the need for a peaceful and quiet environment, I am always happy to go for a walk and allow you some space if need be and will often pop out to wait if progression has stalled or an epidural has been administered.
What if my husband or partner isn't sure about birth photography ?
They wouldn't be alone, I do understand the hesitation and concern from partners. A birth is a very private and intimate moment for the both of you and often partners just need some assurance that I will be discreet and won't interfere, I meet with all of my clients prior to their birth but I am always happy to meet to chat prior to booking as often all a partner needs is to feel comfortable with me first. Also sometimes partners simply do not realise what it is that I am capturing (not just the "glory shots") so showing them a few slideshows in my slideshow section may help.
What happens if my birth ends in an c-section ?
In the event that your birth ends in a c-section and you would like photos in theatre the options are that you ask permission for me to enter theatre (most hospitals are not willing to allow a second support person into theatre but it does depend on the staff on the day), if the hospital declines my access you can send me in in place of your partner or I am happy to give my camera to your partner or midwife to capture what they can and I will resume shooting in post-op. Please note that Auckland City Hospital have made the decision to not allow birth photographers in theatre unless they go in place of your partner and any identifying images of staff will be edited to either crop them out or completely blur their eyes and any other distinguishing features.
If your c-section occurs in the middle of the night and I am unable to enter theatre I will go home and return in the morning as often hospital staff will not allow photography in the post-natal ward during this time and you will likely be needing to sleep afterward. If you are admitted into theatre before I am with you at the hospital I will come up afterward and take photos in post-op and in your postnatal room (a discount does apply in this situation).
What equipment do you use and do you use a flash ?
I use a Canon 5d mark 3 camera and a variety of pro-series lenses. I often will use a flash, either bounced off the ceiling or a wall (not directed at you) as the quality of light can be poor. I am extremely aware of the need for little distraction however I have not found it to be a problem before, often when you are in a natural labour process your eyes are closed or covered. I am more than happy to switch my flash off if it does cause a distraction but I will need a light source somewhere to enable my camera to focus correctly (this could be a light in a hallway or a door to a bathroom open) however please be aware that this will restrict your image numbers and images will have a heavier grain.
Who needs to know i'm hiring a birth photographer ?
Your LMC will need to be aware of my presence before your labour and delivery, if they have any concerns they are more than welcome to request that I give them a call to chat prior.
What happens if my birth isn't going to plan ?
Sometimes during birth there can be moments of uncertainty, I do not photograph emergency interventions so I will put my camera down and stay well out of the way, I may be asked to leave the room by staff, I will resume shooting when I feel it is appropriate or I have staff's permission to do so.
Is there anything that you don't photograph ?
I do not photograph during vaginal examinations, epidural or drip insertions, hospital staff in an identifying fashion (unless I have permission from them), details outside of your hospital room or anything at the request of hospital staff.
What is included in my birth photography package ?
Please have a look at the packages section to see all that is included in your package.
How many births do you take per month ?
I now only take 1 - 2 births per month to avoid clashes and to have more time with my young family.
When do I need to book in with you ?
Due to my limited booking numbers please book in as soon as you can but please do always enquire regardless of how far along you are as sometimes depending on actual birth dates I may be able to fit you in.
What happens if my birth progresses too quickly and you miss it or if you arrive too early?
On the odd occasion you may progress very quickly and your baby may arrive before I do, if this happens I will get there as soon as I can and photograph your first moments as I would after any birth. I do offer a small discount for a missed birth however if I have missed the birth due to lack of communication from you the discount does not apply.
If I arrive too early (sometimes I may opt to arrive before rush hour traffic ensues) I will either take myself out into the waiting area until you are further progressed or if I arrive and your progression isn't as advanced as initially thought I may opt to go home (depending on the time and intensity of your labour) and come back when active labour is more established.
Can I meet with you before my birth ?
Absolutely, I meet with all of my birth clients around 35-37 weeks, I usually come to your home or a cafe half way if you live further out and we have our mini maternity session at a location close by afterward. It gives me a chance to talk about how I work, for you to meet me and feel comfortable with me and gives you an opportunity to ask any questions you may have.
Will you use my photos online ?
Being able to share images on social media is an absolute privilege that I very much appreciate, it helps to shine a light on this beautiful industry and works towards a greater social acceptance of birth photography. I completely understand the desire to keep images private and it is entirely at the client's discretion where images are shared. I do offer my clients who allow some social media use of their images a discount (there are multiple ways that I can gain permission for online use which I will explain to you when we meet but no image is ever shared or shown anywhere without express permission from the client and the client is welcome to decline at any time). I sometimes enter photos into photography competitions, submit to related articles, have my images featured in magazines, DHB's and medical professionals sometimes use my images for educational purposes, I can contact you prior to any submission to gain your permission at your request.
When do I call you when i'm in labour ?
I will send you a document prior to your on call period which outlines when to get in touch with me.
If your question is not featured here please feel free to get in touch via the contact page, I am more than happy to chat.