I had my first daughter, Lily, in a waterbirth in 2011. It was a wonderful experience, but there are hardly any pictures. Birth photography wasn't really a "thing" here in Atlanta so I didn't know of any photographers offering the service. Plus, I didn't have any photographer friends who could just drop everything and come to my labor and delivery whenever it actually happened. So I decided that I would just set my camera to automatic and have our doula take photos when she could.
Doulas provide support to moms in labor, so I don't have very many good photos of my labor process. I so wish that I did, but my doula supporting me was the priority. I needed my doula to do the job I had hired her to do. If she had been taking photos, she wouldn't have been able to do that. Once our daughter was born, our doula grabbed our camera and did the best she could. We knew she wasn't a professional photographer and didn't have high expectations at all. We have some very sweet photos from the day, and since I'm a professional photographer with editing software I was able to edit the photos.
When I saw the photos that my doula took for us with my camera, I thought to myself "I'm so happy that I at least have something to look back on and show my daughter someday." I also thought, "Gosh, I wish a professional birth photographer had been an option, because there are so many things and small details about Lily and that day that will fade in my memory." Make no mistake, I am not criticizing our doula! She never presented herself as being a professional photographer of any sort and I didn't have high expectations. Even if she HAD been a professional photographer and doula, she wouldn't have been able to get any more photos since I needed her support so much.
What your baby looks like minutes after being born is hard to freeze in your mind. They change so quickly, even in the first couple of hours! Since I was recovering from labor and delivery and enjoying my sweet new baby, getting up and taking all of those small detail shots wasn't an option for me. A birth photographer would have been able to capture all of that for me.
I attended my first birth in 2012 as a birth photographer for a dear friend, and I absolutely loved it. I realized that this was something that I wanted to offer, but I just wasn't at a place in my life where I could offer birth photography here in Atlanta due to having a one year old and another on the way.
Between the births of my daughters, birth photographers became available in Atlanta. I decided to hire one for the birth of our second child, and I'm so, so, so glad I did! Our doula returned for round two and was glad to have the weight of photographing our birth off of her shoulders so she could solely focus on supporting us. Having a separate person dedicated to each role was important to me, because I did not want to risk any precious photo opportunities being missed. Birth cannot be reshot!
I look at the images from Violet's birth and they take me back to those first moments with her. I look at her features frozen in the photographs and can remember exactly how cute her little nose was, her little fingers, her little toes. Even better, I was able to share those photos with my grandmother, my mother, my sister, and my best friends. Looking at them allows them to feel like they were there when Violet entered our lives. I also love the photos of me holding my daughter. A professional knows how to shoot the post birth bonding photos from flattering angles. :)
Birth photography is my passion! I love nothing more than grabbing my gear bag in the middle of the night to get to a mom in labor. If you're considering birth photography for your birth in the Atlanta area, I would love nothing more than to talk with you more about being your birth photographer!! I've given birth to two children and know exactly what you'll be going through. I know how to respect your space while you're in labor while still getting beautiful images. I know the moments that you're going to want to remember years from now when your baby heads off to college or walks down the aisle, or welcomes their own baby into their arms. I consider it such an honor and privilege to be invited to document birth stories. Watch this 3 minute film and get an idea of what the experience is like with me as your photographer.
If you are considering reserving The Birth Session, contact me right away. I meet with all interested couples in my studio for a no obligation consultation for about an hour. Fill out this form here to get started. Birth photography is a personal experience and an investment: be confident in your choice!
Lily Sophia Photography specializes in newborn, baby, maternity, and birth photography in Atlanta, Georgia and surrounding areas.