Birth Photography with Amanda Cagle
As a longtime doula in Southern California, I have had the privilege of supporting countless families through the incredible journey of childbirth. I have witnessed firsthand the transformative power of this life-changing event and the deep bonds it creates between parents and their new little one.
In recent years, I have felt called to expand my offerings to include birth photography professionally. As a doula, I am constantly seeking ways to better serve my clients and provide them with the support they need and want, and for many years fulfilled the natural desire of my doula families to document their experiences by simply snapping pictures on a phone. Adding a quality camera and some additional skills-based training into the mix seemed like a natural next step, as professional birth photography offers an elevated way for families to preserve and cherish the memories of their birth experience.
Birth photography is a unique and beautiful art form that captures the raw, emotional, and often unpredictable moments of labor and delivery. Each birth I attend affords me the opportunity to celebrate my clients using a timeless medium. I'm able to tell a part of a story with each individual image, creating a visual capsule to hold all the hard work that goes into bringing newborns into the world.
There are many reasons why a mother-to-be or pregnant person might want birth photography. For some, it’s a way to document and remember the details of a day that can be both intense and fleeting. After all, hormones affect memories and can leave birthing people feeling hazy. For others, it’s a way to share the experience with loved ones who couldn’t be present at the time of birth. Many of my doula clients use an image from our birth photography to announce their baby's arrival. Others create tangible album keepsakes with me to look back on outside of the digital world.
Still some families keep all of their images private, looking back on them with reverence for the sacred art each photograph can be. Birth photography, similarly to wedding photography or a big family reunion event, provides the unique opportunity to look back at a day that can never be relived in the exact same way. Birth itself is a powerful, transformative experience that can leave an indelible mark on a person’s life. By capturing the beauty and intensity of this moment, birth photography helps to solidify and honor the journey of pregnancy and childbirth.
Of course, hiring a birth photographer requires a bit of extra planning and consideration. It’s important to do your research and find a photographer whose style and approach aligns with your own vision for your birth experience. You’ll also want to discuss logistics, such as the photographer’s availability and what type of package they offer. You'll also want to consider your birthing place's policy on photography and equipment. Some hospitals, for instance, don't allow flash photography so the birth photographer needs to be flexible for low-light situations. Many hospitals are implementing policies to ban videography altogether, which is important to know as a consumer and birth photographer in the prenatal planning stages. Of course, things are often more go-with-the-flow when planning for a home birth or a delivery at a freestanding birth center, but a site visit to know what the setup will be like for the birth photographer can be very helpful.
As a doula and a birth photographer, I am deeply committed to supporting families through this singular milestone. If you’re considering birth photography for your own journey, I encourage you to reach out and learn more about this unique art form. I believe it has the power to add even more meaning to an already extraordinary life event. The photos created by a birth photographer serve as a tangible reminder of the strength, courage, and love that surrounded your birth experience. They can provide a powerful source of inspiration and pride for years to come.
Amanda Cagle resides in Southern California, offering doula and photography services to families in Los Angeles, Orange County, and parts of the Inland Empire. Reach out today to schedule your doula and birth photography consultation!