Ten Years of Documenting Births!

{birth stories}

Two days ago I celebrated 10 years of documenting births!! And honestly, never ever in a million years did I think that I would go on to be a birth photographer/videographer who is getting close to documenting 100 births! After all, 10 years ago I was just heading to India to continue documenting the relationship between wildlife and humans which I had been doing on my travels around the world (I am slowly working on getting those photos up here: Projects).
However, after our trip to India, I learned that we were going to have a baby. So naturally the whole experience of having a baby of my own opened up a whole new world to me with new passions. These passions led me down a path to the birth world where I knew women were in need of a voice, and support, and sometimes healing. So here I am, 10 years later still working hard to help normalize birth and heal wounds. With the help of these wonderful families who invite me in to their sacred spaces, who allow me to share their stories with you, I can assure you there has been change!
When I first started doing this, it was unheard of! Other than midwives being super supportive and excited about what I was doing, there was mostly confusion as to why anyone would want this experience documented, and a lot of concerned staff that were not that welcoming towards me as they were worried I was documenting them working. But after building relationships with hospital staff, and with some education from all sides, here we are 10 years later and now birth photography has become quite popular! I’m even welcomed in the O.R for c-sections most of the time!!
We still have a long way to go to make sure pregnant, birthing, and postpartum folks are respected and heard, so I don’t imagine I will be quitting this type of photography any time soon. But in celebration of this milestone, let me share with you, some gorgeous loving births to watch! Maybe check the flyers of your local stores for sales on boxes of tissue before you start pressing play, ha ha ha! Enjoy! And feel free to share this with all the expecting parents you know!

Good Morning Annabella

{birth story}

When I met Kelly Swartz she was 17 weeks pregnant with her third baby dragon. I love that she loves dragons so much because I also love dragons so much! We walked around Trinity Bellwoods Park during the cherry blossoms and snapped some baby bump pictures, (which you can see HERE) and she told me a bit about herself. She has travelled, knows quite a few languages, she has experienced life, and studied hard and now she is an Erotic Expert and Health Coach who raises baby dragons. She’s the woman behind Awoken Beauty! In fact, if you are interested, she is hosting an upcoming workshop called, “Sex, Cannabis, and Intimacy - for women” because since the legalization of Cannabis here in Canada, Kelly has explored a whole new world! Check it out! It sounds like the kind of Mother’s Day gift everyone deserves!
Anyway, I followed Kelly on Instagram and watched as she documented and shared her life with 2 toddlers and a growing baby. It got me more excited to document this beautiful day. When I got the call that early morning, I raced to the birth centre. Third babies are predictably unpredictable. When I arrived labour was in full swing. This mama was circled with love and support. It was a beautiful sight. After learning that meconium was present talk of transferring to the hospital started. But Kelly knew better because mama’s always know!! She knew that there was no time to transfer. Contractions were coming hard and fast. And she was right! In no time at all sweet little Annabella made her debut and everything was absolutely perfect!
I invite you to scroll down through these gorgeous moments captured, and then press play to watch her beautiful birth story!

kellys proofs - birth041.jpg

***   now press play to watch this beautiful and powerful birth story   ***