Sunday, May 20, 2012

photos photos photos

One thing that every couple I have doula-ed for has requested is: pictures.  Everybody wants pictures of that life-changing day.  Who wouldn't?

But I do find significant variety in what people want photographed.  Some just want pictures after everyone is decent, coherent, and rested.  Others want pictures of that moment when they first meet each other face-to-face.  Still others want detailed photographs of the entire process.

Whatever you'd like, be sure you assign someone to be on picture-duty before everything happens.  Usually the hubby is not the best choice ... believe it or not, he's going to be quite distracted.  Moms can get distracted too.  Nurses are generally going to be quite busy with you and typically 2-3 other patients and won't have the time. 

Doulas can be extremely useful when it comes to picture-taking.  Some even have a little experience with photography.  I recently purchased this little beauty:

And I am excited to put it to work!

If you haven't been able to find a doula, then get a friend ... someone you trust, but not someone who will be too worried about you to keep at their task.  I found a blog of a gal who photographed her friend's birth, and the results are about the most adorable thing ever:

Once you've got your photographer figured out, you then need to decide what you want pictures of.  Here's some food for thought:
  • How do you want to remember this experience?  Would you rather re-live every incredible moment, or focus on the happy ending?
  • Do you want pictures of you and your significant other working together to bring your child into the world?
  • How do you feel about blood?
  • Would you be distracted from the intense work of labor if there was a flash or clicking going on every few minutes?  Could the camera be kept quiet and still do its job?
  • Will you be embarrassed later by how some of the photos turn out?
  • Would you like to have pictures of everyone there?
  • Will the hospital allow pictures of the actual birth?  Most do not.  They don't want clients to have documentation against them should something go wrong.
  • Would a simple point-and-shoot camera work?  Or will you need to seek out something more substantial?
Birth is an incredible, life-changing moment that you will never forget.  Photos are the best way to highlight your favorite parts, and beautify the less-than-favorite.  Be sure to work some kind of photography into your birth plan.