B I R T H
Frequently Asked Questions
When you will you arrive to begin documenting my birth?
Usually, I aim to attend your birth once you are in active labour. I can gauge this at the time by listening to you, your body, your partner, your doula, your midwife and/or obstetrician. If you are no longer able to speak or walk through frequent contractions with a regular pattern, then this is often a good indicator that you are in active labour. If you choose to have any vaginal examinations to ascertain cervical dilatation, then I’d normally come in once you are confirmed to be 6cm dilated. Vaginal examinations are of course your choice though, and definitely not required for me to make a judgement call on when to attend your birth.
How long do you usually stay for the birth? Is there a time limit?
Last I checked, babies still couldn’t tell the time. I will not place a time limit on you to birth your baby. I am a strong believer that you will meet your baby when the time is right. Through good communication, we can generally ensure that I would not need to stay longer than 12 hours at your birth. There may be times where your labour progression may have slowed and I leave to take a break. You deserve high quality images. If I feel that fatigue is affecting my photography performance, I may call in a back up photographer to continue shooting for me. This, however, would be an exceptionally unique situation.
What if I want to birth in a room that is really dark? Will you use a flash?
Often you will feel most comfortable in a darker room during your labour. This is no problem at all. My camera handles low light situations exceptionally well and I am able to capture your birth without the use of a flash. However, it is important that you understand how this may affect the appearance of your photographs. Images captured in low light with no flash tend to appear ‘grainy’, whilst images captured in low light with a flash are much more crisp and defined. I love both grainy images and those captured with flash. However, if you prefer no flash, I may need to make light. I bring along a small salt lamp and copper wire lights for ambient lighting for your use. Ultimately though, if you are happy for me to do so, I will use flash where I feel it is most appropriate and least intrusive to ensure the quality of your images are as high as possible.
Do you photograph everything? Crowning? Emergencies?
Absolutely. And absolutely not if that is what you prefer. Crowning images are a seriously breathtaking way to see your most powerful self and what your body is capable of. I believe women are entitled to full, complete, thorough, unrestricted and uncensored birth photography. It is important to capture the entirety of your story to help you process your birth. If you or your baby require any immediate medical attention, I will continue to document this where able provided that you are comfortable for me to do so. We will have this discussion during our pre-birth meetup.
What happens if I need to have an emergency caesarian?
I would argue (and it has been proven) that photographs of your emergency caesarian are a very important and useful therapeutic tool in your post-birth recovery and mental wellbeing. For this reason, I will advocate for you and seek permission from the medical professionals attending your birth to stay with you to document as much as possible in this situation. Should I be denied access in to the operating theatre, I will be there to welcome you and your baby in recovery to continue your story. Dependant on the situation, I may also be able to hand over my camera to your partner or midwife, set on AUTO mode, so that you may have some better quality images than those your phone can take.
How about an elective or planned caesarian?
Access in to the operating theatre, planned or not, is very much dictated by the hospital, its policies and your obstetrician. I believe that the value of these images to a mother far outweighs any potential ‘risk’ in having an extra person present in the theatre. At this point in Australia’s maternity care system, it will be a case by case basis. I highly encourage you to discuss your wishes for birth photography with your obstetrician beforehand. I am able to provide a letter for you to give to your obstetrician well in advance, introducing myself as your photographer and seeking permission to document your caesarian birth. Again, dependant on the situation, I may also be able to hand over my camera to your partner or midwife, set on AUTO mode, so that you may have some better quality images than those your phone can take.
Do you photograph loss?
Just like any other baby, the birth of your angel baby deserves to be remembered and cherished. I would be honoured and will always welcome families who wish to capture their stillborn baby’s birth.
Do you provide any other support or services during our labour and birth?
Although I am a nurse and I have experience in the birth space, I am not a midwife, nor am I a doula. I liken myself to a birth nerd, full of birthy knowledge and always learning, but my ability to support you and your partner beyond my scope as your photographer is limited at this stage. Your comfort and healthy birth experience is most important to me and I will assist, of course, if you request me to, I am directed by your healthcare providers to do so, or if I feel I can do so without interfering with your birthing process. To every birth, I bring along a small salt lamp, copper wire lights and a waterproof bluetooth speaker for you to use if you would like to do so.
How long will you stay after our baby is born?
Unless you request complete privacy (of which you are entitled to), I will stay until approximately 2 hours after baby is born, with the intention of capturing the raw beauty of the golden hour of birth and beyond. This may include, skin to skin time with both parents, the breast crawl, the very first latch, delivery of the placenta, cord clamping, cutting, tying or burning, the first sibling or grandparent meetings and/or any cultural traditions. Mostly it involves a whole lot of oxytocin vibes.
How much do you charge to document my birth?
Please download my current price list HERE.
What do you require to secure a birth booking?
The nature of birth photography means the I am only able to accept a limited number of bookings per month. In order to secure your birth photography booking, please complete your questionnaire, sign and return your contract and deposit the non-refundable amount of $260 to Rewild Her ASAP. Only once these three things are completed will your dates be secured.
When am I required to finalise my invoice?
Please anticipate finalising your invoice by 37 weeks. A specific payment date will be outlined on your original invoice.
Do you offer payment plans or gift registries?
There are always solutions. Please reach out to me if you think you may need a payment plan. A birth photography gift registry is a wonderfully thoughtful idea and can certainly be created should you be interested.
Is it necessary to let my midwife/doula/obstetrician know that I am having a birth photographer present?
Yes, please do so! It is polite and allows time for any reservations they may have to be resolved before your actual day of birth. This is also applicable where in your birth photographer is considered a second support person and therefore any other support persons may not be able to enter the birth space.
I love coffee. Can we meet up before the birth?
Funny that. I love coffee too! Yes - let’s meet! I usually offer a pre-birth meetup at 36 weeks in order to get to know one another a little better and answer any burning questions your may have. I really want you to feel comfortable with me in your birth space - it’s so incredibly important. Please, please bring your partner along to this meeting too!
How many images should I expect? Are they colour? Black and white?
Dependant on the length of your labour, you can expect to receive between 200-300 high resolution digital image files in your Rewild Her Birth Story and about 100 images in the Welcome Earthside package. I absolutely love colour photographs and believe they do justice to your own perception of your birth. For this reason, the majority of my images are delivered in colour. At the same time, I recognise that black and white imagery can be incredibly powerful and alluring when applied to the right image. I hand select the images that will be best suited to and delivered in black and white.
Do your birth packages include prints? Am I able to book a birth package excluding print products?
My birth packages (in fact all of my packages) absolutely include prints and this is something I am extremely passionate about including. Tactile memories are priceless and evoke a certain feeling when you run your hands over the inky, textured sheets. To me, to not include prints would be an immense disservice to your memories and birth story. Your Rewild Her Birth Story includes 100 time stamped professional lab printed images, on exquisite matte art paper, collated and presented in a beautiful glass keepsake box with your personal name inscription. This product is divine, deeply personal and irreplaceable. The Welcome Earthside package includes 20 professional lab printed images on this same gorgeous paper, nestled together in a vegan leather envelope. Prints are an undeniably valuable personal keepsake and heirloom for your family. I feel so strongly about providing you beautiful printed products that I currently do not offer any packages excluding prints. I want you to be able to pass on the legacy of your birth story for generations to come.
What happens in the case that you miss my birth?
If the situation ever arose that I missed your birth, it would be very rare. In saying this, I am human and although I will do everything in my power to be there, we must account for exceptional circumstances. If I was unable to attend your birth myself, due to illness, injury or unforeseen circumstances on my end, I have a handful of local birth photographers that I will entrust to take beautiful images of your birth for me. I would then edit and deliver these images to you myself. If I, or one of my back up birth photographers miss your birth entirely due to circumstances not within our control (ie. ‘acts of god’, fire, national emergencies), unfortunately no refund is able to be given. This is also the case for if you, the client, do not provide sufficient communication and notice prior to the birth of your baby. In these situations, either a ‘Welcome Earthside’ package or ‘The Golden Month’ package will be offered alternatively.
Can you offer any advice to reassure my partner about the idea of birth photography?
The birth of a baby can sometimes be a very overwhelming and vulnerable experience for partners. They are often in uncharted territory and for this reason, it is not uncommon for them to have reservations about birth photography. Partners sometimes need reminding that they have a right to exist in and be a part of your birth story. Their presence is important on so many levels. Whilst you are working hard to meet your baby, you need and deserve undivided support from your partner. What you don’t need is your partner separated from your side, fumbling with the settings of their camera trying to capture your baby’s entrance in to the world through a lens rather than through their own eyes. Your birth will only happen once. Your partner deserves to be completely present in the moment, with you. You want to see and relive the look on your partner’s face as they meet your baby for the very first time. I would absolutely love to meet and chat with you and your partner in person over coffee so that they may bring up any concerns they have - I believe this is the best way to reassure them.
I’m not particularly keen on having my labour and actual birth photographed, but would love to have my baby captured immediately after birth. Do you offer any alternatives to the full Rewild Her Birth Story Photography package?
If documenting your labour and actual birth doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, I do offer a ‘Welcome Earthside’ package which alternatively, is an opportunity to still capture the joy, love and flow of oxytocin that make up the very beginnings of your new family. I am on call, just as for the full birth photography package, and if it suits you, I aim to be with you as soon as possible after your baby is born, but always within the first 24 hours. You are able to call me any time, even overnight, and I will be there with you at daylight. For further details, be sure to have a look HERE.
Will you post my images on social media or your website?
Sharing birth images to the world is actually a huge part of my business philosophy. I want to be a part of the movement that changes the way the world views birth and reduces the fear, even just a little bit, that surrounds this chapter in a woman’s life. I would love for you to be a part of this movement too. I incorporate a model release into our signed contract that permits me to post your images to my social media platforms and to use for other marketing purposes. At the same time, I completely understand and respect any wishes you may have to preserve your privacy. If sharing your images to social media is not something you wish to do, that is entirely okay and your choice and I will adjust your contract accordingly after a conversation with you.
Do you have any amazing recommendations on local maternity services, products or all around birthy insight?
A big yes to all of this. Want to know some amazing local tips? Grab ‘Your Bits’ HERE.
I love you. Can we please be friends?
Umm yes, yes we can! I don’t even like to call you guys my ‘clients’. I really believe ‘like’ attracts ‘like’, and we gravitate towards the people we want to share in our lives. I love getting to know you and your families and never, for one second, forget how privileged I am to do what I do. This work is as real and as raw as it gets. And I love it!
Something I didn’t quite answer?
Please send any queries directly to me via my CONTACT page.