Birth Photography of the Cincinnati homebirth of Elizabeth.
Twin Cesarean Birth of Jared + Porter
Cincinnati Doula + Birth Photographer
"It's time, they're prepping me for birth", Heather had sent me through text in the early morning hours. I grabbed my gear and headed to Bethesda North hospital.
When I arrived, her laboring room was empty and nobody was picking up their phone. I panicked, believing I had missed the opportunity to walk with her into her birth space in the operating room. I waited in the waiting room, disappointed with myself for not making it in time. Finally, her husband called me back into the operating waiting area. And while Heather was finishing being prepped for delivery, her husband and I talked and processed what was about to happen. Their twin baby boys were about to be born premature via cesarean.
Heather was ready. The delivery was ready. The NICU team was ready. They called both James and I back, and into the operating room and to Heather's side, we went.
Cesarean mothers are warrior mothers.
Welcome to the world, Jared + Porter.
The Birth I Almost Missed
Cincinnati + Dayton Birth Photography
Mom was scheduled for an induction, but her daughter had other plans. I woke up in the morning to a call saying they're already at the hospital... that she's been laboring for hours but they don't need me yet. So I wait.
We stay in touch through the morning. Nothing substantial seems to be happening. I only attend births when I am specifically requested to come.
And then I get THE text. "She's 9.5cm. It's go time!"
I have to be honest, I did not think I was going to make it to the hospital before her daughter would be born. I was still home. It was raining pretty hard. The drive to the hospital would be about 15-30 minutes depending on traffic.
I'm in a panic. I'm rushing. I fly into the car. I race to the hospital. When I park, I start running. I run through the parking lot into the hospital. I run through the hallways to the elevator. In the elevator, I throw my camera together and hope the settings will be good enough. I run from the elevator into their room. Sure, I may have looked frazzled and while.
But I arrived just in time.
Mom was centered. Focused. And in just a couple minutes, her daughter was born.
The Cincinnati Homebirth of Zara
Cincinnati + Dayton Birth Photographer + Doula
Happy birthday, sweet pumpkin.
My Promise to You as Your
Cincinnati + Dayton Doula + Birth Photographer
A decade ago, after a community easter egg hunt, my husband, Kyle, surprised me with my very first DSLR. I'll never forget this day. We got in the car after the hunt, and Kyle spilled the beans. He told me we'd be driving to the camera store and that I could pick what I wanted (within budget, of course).
You see, I've been talking about getting a "nice" camera to take pictures of my family. I wanted to preserve our memories. I wanted to have an artistic outlet. Kyle has always been my biggest supporter, he's always the one pushing me to try new things and ends up the loudest person cheering me on from the crowd. Basically, he's a really awesome guy.
A Rebel T3 and the kit lens. My first camera baby. I quickly found out that good photography was NOT just pressing a button. All of the professional photographers I admired weren't just keeping their camera on AUTO, shooting in JPEG, and calling that enough. Yikes. Talk about a reality check. I found out there was a series of settings I had to control to produce the images I desired. And did you know that images had to be post-processed (edited)? I didn't. My camera wasn't magic, it wasn't going to produce images on it's own will. I had to put in the work. I was in control, not my camera.
Similar to an oven... the chef is the one preparing the meal, carefully choosing ingredients and using her knowledge, intuition, and taste to bring ingredients to life. Her oven is just a tool. The oven warms the meal, but she created it.
I read books (I highly recommend Understanding Exposure by by Bryan Peterson if you're thinking about photography or have a DSLR and would like some knowledge on exactly what each setting does and how to use them to properly expose images). I took workshops (check out Clickin' Moms for workshops and breakouts taught by respected photographers). I hired mentors (I reached out to my old photography girl crush and she let me hire her!). And I practiced, trial by fire. I am thankful for all the families in the beginning of my journey who let me use them as models, and even paid me for my sessions (which were pretty bad lol).
And here I am... three camera upgrades, a collection of lenses, a stint at owning a brick and mortar studio, and many years later. I document my children, and I document birth. Looking back to the day that I brought home my first camera home, I never would have imaged this would be my life. I'm so, so grateful. But I'll never stop learning, evolving, and growing. I'm thankful for that.
I started reminiscing how my photography started because of a Facebook post I recently posted. It talked about how long a gallery takes me to edit, prepare, and send off to clients. This was posted to simply to bring awareness to how much works goes on behind the scenes here. People were surprised, many assumed that I was just snapping a picture during birth and sending it off in a gallery a couple weeks later with no extra work. Even doulas who offer birth photography didn't realize that post-process editing is kinda' a required thing. And I understand, because I was once there. When I purchased my first camera, I had no idea.
And birth is such an emotionally charged event, that even poorly exposed images can bring up all the feels.
But let me tell you, once your baby is born doesn't mean my work has ended. I work many, many hours meticulously preparing your birth gallery.
And I promise you, my images of your birth are captured with intent. And I delicately hand-editing each and every image. Just as the chef, I use my knowledge, intuition, and personal taste to prepare your birth gallery... to show you how strong and powerful you are in timeless images. Doing any differently would feel like a disservice.
Are you new to photography, or looking to dive into birth photography? Reach out! I'm always happy to chat.