Client: How much does birth photography cost?
Me: My packages for birth photography start at $1250. Would you like to learn more?
Client: $1250!? Starting price!?! That's crazy! Me: ....is it though? **Cue the cheesy movie dream sequence**
You're planning your wedding and you're dreaming of the special moments you'll experience. The beautiful decor. The smiles of your friends and family. The emotion when you see your Love. The dress. The ring. The horse drawn carriage. The beautiful venue. The flowers. You're planning it all. Dreaming of it all. And you want to remember every little bit of it. You know the day will be like a blur and you want to capture those moments of you and your bridesmaids getting ready together, laughing, sipping champagne, and smiling. You never want to forget any of it. So you hire a photographer. A good one. One who specializes in wedding photography. One who knows exactly how the day will proceed, which shots to get, and maybe even who can help you in a wedding day crisis. You buy the package that includes 8 hours of photographic coverage, two photographers, all of your digital images, and an album. You willingly write a check for $3,000.... probably more. You have no choice. Do you? Why would you have this beautiful celebration and NOT capture it all!? Yeah. It's a lot of money. But of course it's worth it. Why wouldn't it be? ..................................cut scene.
Now we're back to today. You're reveling in the joy of your new pregnancy. You've been waiting for this for years. YEARS. Finally. You're finally becoming a mother. Welcoming a tiny little baby into your life. You're dreaming. And planning. And researching. And planning. And dreaming. What color hair will she have? How much will he weigh? Will he have my nose? Will she have his eyes? What will it feel like when I finally see my baby? What will it be like to hold my baby? Will my husband cry? Pass out? Will I do it drug free? At home? Or in the hospital? The OR? Will I find strength and power? I'm a little nervous... What if it doesn't go the way I dream. Could it still be beautiful?
I know I'm strong. I know it will be beautiful. And just like my wedding day it will be a blur. I need a birth photographer. ....but it's expensive.
Your birth photography package, at a minimum, will include 4 weeks of on-call photography. This means from 38 weeks gestation onward, your photographer will be turning down vacations and too-serious commitments to attend your birth, because she has no idea when you will go into labor (yep, even if you have a scheduled birth you could go into labor first.) Your photographer will miss her Anniversary dinner, or child's baseball game to attend your birth. Happily. Even if you go into labor before your on-call period, she will do everything in her power to rearrange her schedule and life to be there for you. Not only will she join you at your birth location at 2am, but she will also stay with you for 20 hours. She will use high-quality professional equipment to ensure high quality professional photographs. She will maintain and insure that equipment. That equipment has cost her thousands of dollars. Then, after documenting your story and being (almost) as exhausted as you are, she will go home and get a quick nap, before her kids wake her up at 5:30 am. Then she will process your photographs and spend hours culling, editing, and curating your flawless Birth Story Gallery... depending on your package... there's more. Much more to be done. Oh... and because she wants to give you a top notch experience, she takes no more than 2 births a month. Which means she greatly limits her income sources. For you. She does this all willingly. Happily. With a smile. But shouldn't she be valued? Shouldn't she be compensated too? Your wedding photographer was... With all that....shouldn't your birth photographer cost more than your wedding photographer? But she doesn't... does she? ...Does $1250 sound expensive now...?
Jaimie Zaki, owner of Little Bear Services, LLC is a Birth Photographer, Labor Doula, and IBCLC serving families in South Jersey and Central Jersey. Jaimie enthusiastically supports hospital births and home births in Burlington County, Camden County, Mercer County, Atlantic County, and Ocean County. If you reside outside of this service area, reach out! Jaimie may still be available to serve your family!
Learn more about Jaimie and the services she offers now!