Why did I become a birth photographer?
Wow, this is huge, I guess every birth photographer has their own story, this is mine.
There is a really long version, but I won’t bore you with that one right now, I’ll save if for another time.
So, here is the shortened version.
I had my two children over a decade ago – if I knew then, what I know now, my own experiences of birth would have been quite different. I would have delayed cord clamping and cutting, I would have loved to have seen my placentas and encapsulated them, I would not have cleaned my baby straight away, I would have had immediate skin to skin, I would have loved to have birthed in water, but above all, I wish I had booked a birth photographer.
Scroll back thirteen years ago and photography was changing rapidly. When most people were embracing the digital age, I hung onto my love of film and darkroom processing.
As time went on, I found my camera spent more and more time in my camera bag than it did taking any pictures.
Eventually, I just stopped capturing moments with my camera altogether.
Fast forward thirteen years and a shift in my mundane world forced me to reconsider photography again.
One night I stumbled upon an article about a birth photographer. Her black and white images resonated with me and quite frankly blew me away. They were so real, so raw, and so full of beauty.
This was documentary photography at its very best.
I have always loved and been inspired by some of the greatest documentary photographers of our time. I have never been comfortable posing people, or working with people who are looking for me to direct them. I love to be in the background somewhere, quietly observing and waiting for an image to appear through my view finder.
So, that night, I rolled over and whispered in my husbands ear…
“I’m going to be a birth photographer.”
From that moment onwards my mind raced and my passion for photography, that had laying dormant for so long.
I researched everything I could about birth and how I could make this a reality. When I eventually photographed my first birth, it moved me to tears
I remember afterwards, when I left the hospital ward and embarked on the long walk down the corridor towards the exist sign and out the doors.
When I eventually got in my car, I just sat there for the longest time, reliving what I had just been apart of.
I reached for my camera and started to look through all the raw files I had just captured – my heart was racing!
In that moment…
In my car…
In the hospital car-park.
I knew this was what I wanted to do and give to women for as long as I could hold a camera. It’s insane how this one profound experience changes you, and touches you and hones in on your deepest emotions.
With each birth I have been fortunate to document, I know, and see that I have grown as a photographer. I see my work developing, and becoming true to my style and personality.
One of the most meaningful and truly remarkable things that has been said about my work, came from a Midwife who simply said:
“you see what I see.”
Why did I become a birth photographer?
I became a birth photographer because I found something that meant something to me. It gave me a reason to reach for my camera and start taking pictures again.
In my heart, I believe being a birth photographer is a very important role. I want to serve women who are naturally curious and want to see their own birth.
I want to show them how powerful and incredible they were, so they don’t forget.
Memories will change and fade as time passes, but a photograph, a really great photograph will show you exactly how it was, as if it was only yesterday.
If you would like to see more of my work and get a daily dosage of all things birthy, why not follow my facebook page?
I’d love to see you there.
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