“She wears strength and darkness equally well,
the girl has always been half goddess, half hell.
Recently a friend was reminiscing in the lead up to her sons birthday when I asked her whether she has an annual ritual of reflecting on his birth. This is one of the things I love most about being a birth photographer, people tell you their stories and I find birth stories particularly potent. They’re always full of magic whether or not the story-teller knows.
She told me she didn't reflect on those photos often and her ex-husband still had the video footage. It was hard for her to watch, it stirred difficult emotions. This friend is no stranger to sitting with difficult emotions. The great thing about having a tangible photo to help you reflect is that when you do want to unpack that and reflect on your birth story, you've got something to help you fill in the blanks. The time of day, the nurse whose name you cant remember. What the room looked like. How your partner supported you.
Let’s be real. Sometimes you see birth photography and you look at it the same way that you look at photographs in magazines. She looks great, I don't look like that
well I don't plan on getting a blow wave + my makeup done before I give birth (lets be honest, even if you did by the time your baby arrives it probably wont look like how it did at the beginning anyway!)
im not a size 12, 10, 8, 6, zero [whatever]
These scenarios aren't relatable. The images are homogenous and they don't look like me. Im not reflected in these images. Its not my story. Us and them. Me and her.
Here is the thing, I'm going to let you in on a little secret….
Photography is an art. Sometimes we forget that because of the accessibility of the iPhone camera. A camera thats always with you. A quick snap here and there.
While its true that I document the tale as it unfolds, I also weave in my own thread.
I cant help it. I've studied. Ive looked at great photographs to examine what makes them great: lighting, angles, crop, focus and that’s before I begin editing them and examining the colour. The camera I use, the lens, the speed to which the data is written to the card, this doesn't happen organically, I have designed it that way so that I can capture the magic that you might not see.
I know in my heart that there is a thread of goddess at every birth.
Let me introduce you to her.
Yours in Wild & Sacred Love.