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What is Birth Photography?

This might seem obvious. You may think, it’s just someone with a camera taking pictures. I assure you, a birth photographer is far more.

A professional birth photographer understands first and foremost how to shoot in low light. Most home births and birthing center births have low lighting. This is used in order to make a calm birthing space. Hospitals also tend to have low lighting except for the exceptionally bright hot spot light aimed your lady bits. Now that is challenging light! In any case, we need to know how to utilize the light and we need to have the correct gear to accomplish that. For those that use flash (I do), they need to know how to use it correctly as to not disrupt the the birthing person and the birth space energy.

The birth photographer also needs to know where and when to move around. This really comes with time and practice.You should have seen my first birth, I was in everyone’s way! Thankfully, they were all very gracious and I learned. Along the same lines if you are squeezed into a corner, a seasoned birth photographer will know how to work that corner. Trust me, I have been there too.

Finally, a professional birth photographer will make the images look good. What that means, is that we know the angles, the lighting and how to capture it in a way that is tasteful yet authentic. Documenting your story in its entirety is our goal. You are your story. Your partner, your birth team and how your amazing fortitude and strength brought your child to your arms is your story.

Color birth photo of a woman in labor being supported by her partner. Photo by Pasadena birth photographer, Leonba Darnell

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