I’m so thrilled to share another #JCStreetTeam blog with all of you. This time DeAnna Weyhrich of Mama Dee’s Birth Photography is here to tell us a little bit about her and share her top reasons for hiring a birth photographer. I’ll let her take it away –

About me: I am a sentimental mom, a very protective grandma, and a certified professional birth photographer (CPBP) that you can trust to capture the raw, intense, and emotional moments the day you give birth to your baby. I started my photography business 6 years ago, so the importance of supporting small local businesses hits close to home. Especially during this pandemic!

I will always pick the beach over the snow. I am a bit of a penny pincher, but I am more than willing to pay for things that mean a lot to me (such as professional photography). I have a silly sense of humor and sometimes people don’t get my jokes, but that’s okay.

How I got started: After working 18 years in banking and 6 years at a 911 data management company, I decided I needed a break from the corporate world. I told myself I was retiring but it didn’t really turn out that way. After about one year of “retirement,” I started exploring my love of photography again. One day my oldest daughter asked me if I would be interested in photographing a birth. Of course, I said yes! I met with the mother to find out more about her birth plan. The plan was for a C-Section, (or belly birth as I lovingly refer to them). This was a first for me! My first time watching a non-family member come earth side and the first time I was allowed at a belly birth. It was an unforgettable experience. That was it; I was hooked. At the time, I didn’t even know that birth photography was a real industry! All I knew was that this is what I wanted to photograph, and I had to figure out how to make that happen. I started researching to find out anything I could about being a birth photographer. When I searched FaceBook, I found a group called Birth Becomes You. I started following them and learning as much from the group as I could. One day, they posted about a workshop for birth photographers. I was so excited; then and there I decided I was going to attend the workshop no matter where it was going to be held. As fate would have it, it turned out to be right here in Golden, Colorado! Birth Becomes Her was based in Denver, Colorado and I didn’t even realize it. That was a sign to me that my feet were set upon the right path!

Many times, when I have told people that I am a birth photographer, they seemed surprised that I would photograph “all of that!” And that’s just it! Why in modern times does it seem weird or taboo that a family would want pictures of the most amazing days of their lives?

My goal: Like most birth photographers, I am passionate about normalizing birth. Giving birth is not something that should be hidden away. It should be celebrated and embraced by all. I believe that what sets me apart from others, is my passion to not only provide photography services to Northern Colorado families, but to provide resources to my clients. I have spent a lot of time connecting with other birth professionals and companies that assist birthing people with their pregnancies. This allows me to provide business information to my clients when I first meet with them. Some of my resources include doulas, midwives, massage therapists, chiropractors, acupuncturists, yoga instructors, Infant CPR Educator, placenta services and more! I believe in providing resources for my clients before, during, and after the birth of their babies.

My top 5 reasons why you should absolutely and unequivocally hire a birth photographer:

  1. You have created someone you will love for the rest of your life! Capturing the “first look” you get of your baby, your partners reaction to seeing your baby for the first time; those moments are priceless. I have never had anyone tell me they regretted hiring a birth photographer, only that they regretted NOT hiring one!
  2. Giving birth is a magical and transformational time that should be shared. So much can and will be happening during labor; you may never see these moments while you are bringing your baby through your body and into the world. Many times, these are memories you won’t have because you are in your own head space working through your labor.
  3. All the little details. Your newborn will change so quickly! Even within one week the change is dramatic. You will ask yourself these questions from when you gave birth…did your baby have a lot of vernix, was the umbilical cord long or short, do you remember how tiny their fingers and toes were? These are details that can fade into the distance so easily. Your pictures won’t.
  4. You and your partner can be fully present before, during, and after your baby is born. The only thing you and your partner should be focusing on, is bringing your baby earth-side, not pictures. Sure, your partner, or maybe even a family member could get some good pictures on their phone, but why give them a job to do? They should be fully present and in the moment with you.
  5. A CPBP is professionally trained to be in the birth space. As a CPBP, I am educated on the birth process and the birth space and understand that babies are not born on a schedule. I have the skills and equipment needed to photograph births in many different types of setting. I know when to shoot and when to put my camera down; I am not the paparazzi! I follow a code of ethics and I have insurance for my business. I also always have my back up gear with me and a backup birth photographer just in case because you know, life happens.

My advice if you’re looking to hire a birth photographer: Know what kind of experience you are looking for first. Think about things like – is birth photography their expertise? Is this someone who is just learning the ropes? Is this photographer a “Jack of all trades” or someone who specializes in hospital room etiquette and the birthing environment?

All are legitimate choices, legitimate experiences, and different price levels. So, you get to choose your experience and what works best for you. There are all kinds of photographers out there, but not all are CPBP’s. If you want a photographer who knows how to handle themselves in the birth space, follows a code of ethics, are skilled, passionate, and a committed birth artist, then you will want to hire a CPBP; I hope you hire me!

I love what I do! I find it exciting and beautiful to be a witness to a new life arriving earth-side. Every birth story is different and unique. You get to see what I see through my camera, the strength, power, and courage it takes for you to birth your baby, and to see the support team of your friends and family being there for you. I love being part of a family’s birth story, because that is what every birthday is, a family birth story. The day a baby makes its way into a family, they are forever changed. I love working with families from every walk of life who can laugh with each other, are comfortable together and want to celebrate and share who they are, I am here for it!

READ THIS: All of Julianne’s clients will receive 10% off any birth package I offer (good through 2022) – be sure to ask about it. I would love to chat with you and learn more about how I can make your birth photography dreams come true.

You can see more of my work on my website www.mamadeesbirthphotography.com

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