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Is Birth Photography Worth the Money?

Denver Doula and Birth Photographer

I am so immersed in the birth community that sometimes it can be hard for me to remember that most people - like, you, the person reading this - aren't as familiar with it as I am! Here is what I have learned as a birth photographer and as a parent who had their birth documented.

Denver Birth and Family Photogrpahy

Birth is beautiful. It is unscripted. It is raw.

We have grown up viewing birth as "scary" or "gross," but what if I told you it isn't? It's the total opposite. Birth is the most transformative moment of your life and I document that beautiful journey artistically. Childbirth is not easy, but witnessing each family's journey and being able to document it for them is so incredibly rewarding.

No two births are the same. Ever.

Just like every pregnancy is different, every baby is different and no birth is the same. Even the same birthing person will notice differences in each of their births. As a birth photographer, I love seeing (and documenting) what makes each birth unique. The birthing person and partner are often so in the moment (as they should be!) that they can sometimes miss the most amazing things, and I love being able to show them later!

Birth Photography in Denver

You just never know what is going to happen.

This photo is the perfect example. Mom had been in the birthing pool for some time but was not comfortable anymore so she got up to sit on the toilet for a few. Not even a minute after she sat on the toilet, baby was born! Birth is so unpredictable and I learn something new at each birth! I offer all-inclusive birth photography collections so my families can relax and focus on bringing their baby earthside; then later, they can look back and relive the moment! I know what you're thinking, though. Birth is private. It's intimate. It's a big decision to hire someone to photograph a birth. So let me just answer some common questions and offer some thoughts...

Hospital Birth Denver

What if you miss my birth?

I take a limited number of births each month so the chances are pretty low. But sometimes, things do happen and babies come when they want to come! I work with an incredible group of doulas and photographers - we all have each other's backs. I always discuss birth history and when to call with my clients. I haven't missed a birth yet (knock on wood)!

Water Birth Denver

What is a birth photography collection?

This varies by photographer; but for me, this includes:

An initial consultation to get to know each other.

On call, 24/7, for your birth starting at 37 weeks.

Arrival at your birth at around active labor and documenting your story through 2 hours of the immediate postpartum period.

A gallery of high resolution and hand-edited digital images.

Are birth photos "graphic?"

Before I even go to a client's birth, I always discuss what is okay for me to document and what is NOT okay. If you want me to be more conservative in my angles, you got it! If you want everything documented, I'll make sure I do that! We will discuss in detail during your consultation and before your birth what your comfort level is.

Denver Homebirth Midwife, Meadowsweet Midwifery

Will my photos be shared?

This is another discussion I have with all my families during a consultation and before their birth! I will never share birth images unless I have written permission from my clients. So if you want to keep them all to yourself, that is a decision that I respect!

UCHealth Unmedicated Birth

Birth Photography is expensive!

Deciding to hire a birth photographer is definitely an investment! I am on call for you potentially for 5 weeks (37-42 weeks) and stay at with you for however long you are in active labor and until 2 hours after birth. I never put a time limit on my families - birth is too unpredictable! Think of your birth like your wedding day (and I have actually heard families say that these photos were more cherished than their wedding photos!!) You prepare for this day for months and then it's over in a few hours. But because you hired a birth photographer, you have the images to look back on and relive those moments. I personally remember looking through my birth photos for the first time and realizing that there were so many things that I forgot about (or didn't realize happened.)

I recently posted a survey on my Instagram asking my followers whether having a baby was more life changing than their wedding, and 93% answered YES! So why wouldn't you want such a life-changing moment documented?

Maybe I should just have my doula, husband, mom, or nurse take some photos?

Well, lucky for you, I am a doula, too! And balancing both is intuitive-based and a skill that is perfected with each birth I attend. But in all seriousness, if you're debating hiring a birth photographer, here are some things you should consider. If you already have a doula (who isn't a professional photographer), they can absolutely take some photos for you on their phone, but they are going to be focused on supporting you and your partner! Photos are not the main priority for your doula. Same goes for your nurse - that is not going to be their priority. Your husband and your mom will be so emotionally involved, that they may forget that that they have their phone in hand! My job as your birth photographer is to be there to document your story, and that is all (unless you hire me as a doula also, of course).

Denver Hospital Birth

Home birth in Denver

My friend is a photographer and has offered to document my birth!

While I am sure that your friend is a wonderful photographer, you are going to want someone who is familiar with birth. Someone who respects the sacred birth space and someone who understands how challenging the birth setting is. Families are often laboring in dimly lit environments and things can happen so quickly. Not only do you have to be able to navigate settings in low-light, but you must be able to adapt to the ever-changing birth space - it totally keeps you on your toes! I know standard practices with many providers and facilities. I also understand when it may not be appropriate to continue documenting. As a doula as well, I understand labor enough to document moments without being intrusive or disrupting the sacred birth space.

I don't want a stranger in my birth space.

I NEVER want you to feel like I am a stranger! Most of my families hire me as both doula and photographer so we build a strong connection over the several weeks to months that we work together. But even if I am only your birth photographer, I want to get to know you and for you to get to know me! I meet all of my birth photography families prior to their birth - once for the consultation and one other time after booking me and before the birth. We also stay in communication, especially in those last few weeks of pregnancy! It is so important for you to feel comfortable with me in your birth space. If you have any other questions about birth photography, reach out to schedule a consultation! We can chat about your concerns, I can answer your questions, or we can just chat birth photography!

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