1. When should I book my birth photographer?
I typically will not book more three or four births within a particular month. This is to make sure that I have the availability to accommodate your birth. You should contact me as soon as you have a due date so we can tentatively block out that time for you. We will finalize details during the beginning of your second trimester. It’s never too late to ask, though, so if you are further along than this, check in with me to see if I have anything open.
2. Do you offer maternity and newborn sessions too?
Yes, I do. You'll find more information on my booking page here.
3. Do you use your flash during our birth?
I do not use flash lighting in my birth photography. It contradicts my main goal to be a fly on the wall. I want you to look back at your pictures thinking, "oh, I forgot she was even there!" rather than "Oh my gosh, all I can remember is that darn flash going off". In fact, I've never needed to bring my own lighting of any kind. If you are having a hospital birth - light will not be a problem. It's usually during home births or at birthing centers when it can be. Your comfort and needs are more important than the photography. ... but we do need light in order to take pictures. I have always been able to find creative ways to have our cake and eat it, too.
4. Do I need a professional to take the photos? Can’t one of my family members just do it?
They could. I wrote a blog post about why someone might want to hire a professional for birth photography. Click here to read all about it.
5. Do you shoot in color or black and white?
I shoot in color, however, most of my post-processing for birth sessions transforms your photos into black and white. With hospitals, the lighting and color tend to turn out less appealing than I would like and I prefer the black and white images. Especially with birth photography, it helps draw out the raw emotions of the day. That being said, it's possible I️ may throw in a couple in color that look especially great in color, especially if requested.
6. What if I have a C-section?
Check with your doctor about this. Some allow photographers to be there, but often times, we are not allowed in the OR. If this is the case, we will still be there to capture this precious event from the first moment we’re able to be in the room with you.
7. What if my birth is super long?
All of my packages offer unlimited coverage. I know that births don’t go exactly on schedule and sometimes they last a LONG time. But I’ll be there! I may require a food and bathroom break here or there, but will make sure it is not during any time that will need to be photographed. I️ prefer to arrive soon after "Mom" has been admitted (or when the midwife shows up) and I️ stay until two hours after the baby is born. If for any reason I'm asked to step out, I'd rather stay in the waiting area than to leave the birthing location. Murphy's law. If I leave, the baby will come and I will miss it. (... I know what you're thinking ... LOL. 'Andrea should leave so the baby will come'.)
8. What if I go into labor in the middle of the night – like 3 a.m.? Will you still come?
Yes, I am on call for you and will show up no matter what time it is.
9. Will I meet you before the day of the birth?
Absolutely! I would never want you to feel like there is a stranger in the room with you on the day of your birth. We can get together for a pre-birth consult so you can get to know me before the big day. Plus, every birth comes with a complimentary maternity session.
10. Do I need to check with my doctor to be sure they allow a photographer to be there?
Yes, definitely. You will need to check with your doctor to ensure that I’ll be allowed to be there documenting the event. Most doctors are okay with it, but some hospitals and doctors have rules against it. It’s your responsibility to check with them to get their consent. We’d rather be safe than sorry.
11. What if you are sick or cannot otherwise make it to the birth?
Although I will not be in direct contact with the baby, if I am sick, I don’t want any chance of spreading germs to you or your family, so I will call in my backup to be there. I have a network of photographers and they are all qualified to fill in for me. I’ll personally take care of the post processing to ensure that you get the photos that you booked me for. If I’m not sick, but feel like I might even have a sniffle, I can wear a surgical mask upon arriving and for the duration of the day.
12. How much does it cost for birth photography and do you offer payment plans?
Birth photography packages start at $1249. You can find more specific information on pricing on my booking page. YES - I do offer payment plans. I understand what it's like to not quite have enough saved yet, but the baby is COMING. There is a $300 retainer that's due at the time of booking, but after that, we can tailor the payment plan to whatever your needs are.
13. When will you show up for the birth?
My hope is that you will keep me updated as you experience activity (you can NEVER communicate enough with me - so don't worry about bothering me). When you head to the birthing location - that's when I head to the birthing location. I'll hang out in the car, waiting room, or maybe even a local coffee shop until you've been admitted.
14. How long do you stay after the baby is born?
I’ll stay for all of the first exams and the bath, then grab some photos of your family together and meeting your little one for the first time. This typically is about two hours after the baby is born. If we find out that grandparents or siblings are on their way - I am happy to wait until they arrive.
15. Are you going to post my photos on the Internet?
Due to the nature of the session, we can discuss the privacy level you’d prefer. I will not post anything unless approved by you, and I do not have to post anything at all if that’s your wish. It obviously helps me a great deal to be able to show my work so that others, like yourself, can have an idea of the services I provide. I will never post an image that isn't tasteful and modest. That's just not my style. I do enter photography competitions every year and it's important to me that I'm able to share my best work. Again, this is something that I alert you to, if one of your images are chosen to be submitted. It's always an exciting thing when one of my birth photography images from your birth comes back an award winner!