IS BIRTH PHOTOGRAPHY ALLOWED IN DUBAI? Some hospital and doctors do not allow you to have over a certain amount of visitors in the room so you must check with them to have approval first.
WHY HIRE A BIRTH PHOTOGRAPHER? Labor, the actual birth and the baby bubble are moments which go by too fast. Most women only recall a few moments of the whirlwind once things calm down. It happened to me and I regret not having had someone there to shoot beautiful photos of my babies’ stories. I have one blurry smartphone photo of each of my two birth. I wish I could go back and invest in this! We all invest in good photography for our wedding day…so why skip this moment which is just as monumental and life changing! Additionally, Birth Photography allows the mother, and often the partner, recall all the details of the birth. The intensity of the situation, the loving exchanges between mom and her partner, the moments of silence, the chaos, the laughter, the tears, the effort... All these moments lead to the arrival of your little one. All these moments are your Birth Story. The one that changes your life forever. Birth Photography is not only about capturing the moment baby makes it earth-side. It is about capturing the before, during and after. Out of 100 photos there may only be a few of the actual birth moment!
CAN I MEET YOU BEFORE DECIDING? Yes! This is a must! It is crucial that you feel comfortable with each person on your birth team…including me! You choose your Doctor, the hospital you wish to birth at. I am part of your choice. You must feel comfortable with me, trust me. After we meet take the time to decide if you’d like me to capture your birth. If so (yay!) we will make arrangements to book your slot as I cannot accept more than a few births a month. Then I will be available from 38 weeks onwards…24/7! Contact me and we can go for coffee/juice/tea!
ISN’T IT STRANGE TO HAVE A STRANGER AT SUCH AN INTIMATE EVENT? Yes! But I will not be the only stranger there as you are giving birth at the hospital. And contrary to most nurses, midwife and other hospital staff, I may be the closest of all J I will be the least disturbing at least!
WHEN DO YOU ARRIVE AT THE HOSPITAL? I like to arrive at the hospital when you are either at 6 cm or that your contractions are at a point that you are no longer speaking comfortably or walking around between each surge. Please communicate progress with me from the moment you feel the first labor signs!
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU “MISS THE BIRTH”? Communication is one the best ways to ensure that I make it to your birth on time. When moms or their partners communicate with me well I should be there on time. But sometimes even with the very best communication, precipitous births happen. It’s part of your story! It was part of mine with my second baby. If I get there and baby is already earth-side I will come to your birth place as soon as possible and document all the beautiful moments that follow your baby’s arrival. I will still deliver the same amount of images to you and your family. That being said, let’s try not to miss it so please let me know once you feel contractions come! I can then prepare myself and be ready to jump in the car once active labor arrives. And in the rare event your baby comes quicker OR there is an unforeseen obstacle (traffic accident for example…) I promise you’ll still receive a full collection of hand-edited images. Your story will be documented regardless of how slow or quickly it happens.
DO YOU HAVE A BACKUP PLAN? At the moment I do not have a backup Birth Photographer, but I am working on finding one I can work with. Until then, the number of Births I can book on a monthly basis is very limited.
HOW LONG DO YOU STAY AFTER BABY ARRIVES? I will stay the time it takes to get a few nursing shot as well as a few of the newborn exam. If any siblings or other family members come within two hours of your little one’s birth I will include them in the shots. If not, we can always add a discounted Fresh 48 with them as well.
DO YOU ALSO FILM BIRTHS? Yes I do! This is something I offer as well as taking Photographs. You will be able to give me your “priority” for the day of birth: more film or more stills? We can definitely discuss this.
HOW MANY BIRTHS DO YOU TAKE EACH MONTH? I book maximum 4 births a month. So that chances I am “double booked” on once specific day are reduced. I am working on finding a backup Photographer to work with in the event that does happen however. Contact me as soon as you know if you would like to meet me as spots, being very limited, can fill up fast.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE PHOTO SESSION? After we meet for our initial chat my birth photography sessions include full coverage of your birth journey, beginning with active labor and ending 1 to 2 hours after the birth of your baby. From the moment you book me I am on call for you. From 38 weeks to 42 weeks I will always be within an hour or so away from your birth location. As long as you communicate your first contractions with me – I will be there. Within 3 weeks after the birth you will receive 100+ edited images. I will also send you a couple of “sneak peek” shots within 24 hours or the birth which you can already share with your loved ones! A short entry will be posted on my Journalwith some of the more modest photos*.
* During our initial consult I will need to get a model release from you. However, I will never share or post any pictures or videos without your approval and consent. This is very important of course as this is probably one of the most intimate moments of your life! Please see two questions below for more detail on what will be shared.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE PHOTOS + FILM SESSION? The same as the above with an additional 2-5 minute Birth Film.
DO YOU SHARE EVERY BIRTH ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND/OR ON YOUR WEBSITE? I know that what you see on Social Media can be a little overwhelming at times. Seeing all these vulnerable moments shared all over Instagram and facebook can be a little frightening. People often assume that hiring a Birth Photographer means you are signing up to have pictures of your private parts online. While I find some of these images are striking and show the power of birth I also believe birth is a very emotional moment. Some moms will want me to capture the emotional and physical and others will just want me to capture the emotional. A more modest story can be captured. These focus more on reactions, looks, connections, small details, etc. This is something that will be discuss at our initial consultation. I will do my best to provide a gallery that fits your preferences. I try to work angles so that shots are not too revealing if that is important to you. If you don’t want crowning images, I can avoid them or take them from a different angle. If you’re not quite sure of it, I can always take them and give you the option to delete after the fact. Your birth gallery will be password protected with a unique download code. Each of my moms must fill out a contract with an extensive model release, granting me permission to share (or NOT share) your birth story online. As my client, you always have the option to keep your photos completely private. While many of my clients find joy in sharing their story with the world, many others keep those images and video just for their own family. Whatever you choose, I’m behind you 100 percent. I respect each woman’s culture, preferences, and beliefs. Your privacy and comfort is my number one priority.
HOW MUCH WILL THIS COST ME? Birth photography is an investment, just like wedding photography is. But I can assure you it is one investment that you will not regret. These images will bring you joy for the rest of your lives. Please see on my offers and contact me for pricing. WHY IS BIRTH PHOTOGRAPHY EXPENSIVE? A lot of people assume that a birth session might be similarly priced to a portrait session. But because the nature of Birth, it’s unpredictability, I am on call for you from the moment you hire me. It’s a sacrifice I choose to make as I must be ready to leave, day or night, for hours to be by your side. Labor can last 5 hours but could also take 30 hours! By charging these rates I can be there from the moment active labor begins to the moment baby is in your arms. Each birth story is unique and unpredictable. Professional birth photography costs are high but it truly is one of the most challenging types of photography. I not only want you to have beautiful images, but I also want you to feel like you hired someone who truly understands and respects the sacredness of the birth process.
DO YOU PRINT BOOKS OR OFFER OTHER PRODUCTS? Not at the moment. I will however give you a print release form so you can print the shots you wish in the location of your choice. I do recommend Gulf Photo Plus here in Dubai. Their printing quality is great.
DO YOU OFFER OTHER TYPES OF PHOTOGRAPHY? Yes – I do!! I offer Fresh 48’s (discounts available for my Birth Photography moms!), Mama + me sessions (dads…take more shots with mom PLEASE!) and family films which are one of my favorites as they bring your story to life with sound and movement! Click here for more info on Fresh 48'sandhere for Mama + Me sessions.