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Maternity Photography FAQ

What is the best time to have maternity photos taken?

I recommend booking your maternity photos for approximately 34-36 weeks of pregnancy. Your belly will be gloriously ripe and round, without you feeling completely uncomfortable and about to burst! This is just a guideline, however, and we can schedule your session at a time that is best for you.

Do you do sessions in a studio or outdoors?

Both! I have a fully equipped studio in Gatton, and do outdoor sessions in Toowoomba, Ipswich and the Lockyer Valley. Having your maternity session outdoors means having one of the many gorgeous backdrops our area offers, and is also wonderful for those more candid moments. I often recommend outdoor portrait sessions for those with other young children, as they tend to be happier in the fresh air and sunshine – and happy children make for happy portraits! Studio sessions are often more focused on the pregnant form, and can be more intimate, if you are really looking to show off your gorgeous pregnant shape. Of course, there is also the option of mixing studio and outdoor portraits together, to get the best of both worlds.

What do I wear to my maternity session?

I have a range of gorgeous maternity gowns and accessories that can be used for your session, designed to fit a variety of shapes and sizes, and to highlight your growing baby bump. I’m also happy to consult with you about your own outfits, and how to coordinate your outfit with the entire family. This takes a lot of the stress out of the session for you, so you can just relax and enjoy it, knowing that you will all look fantastic!

Can my partner and other children be involved?

Absolutely! I encourage partners and older children to be involved, too – it’s just as exciting for them to be welcoming another baby into the family, and part of your family’s story. Often, it’s the images showing the excitement and connection between a growing family that I, and my clients, love the most!

Can we do the session in my home?

Sure we can! In-home maternity portraits are a more relaxed, candid option, where we capture the “real life” moments of pregnancy. No props, no posing. You will be given guidance and encouragement, but this more documentary-style type of session is more about the little “in between” moments and the natural connection with your family and the little one you’re growing inside.

Do you offer video documentaries of pregnancy?

Yes, I do offer video coverage of pregnancy for in-home or outdoor maternity sessions, where the beautiful candid moments can be captured not only in a still image, but also in a moving, documentary-style film. From baby kicks to big sibling kisses, from belly painting to blessingways, there are many opportunities to create a stunning video momento of your baby’s time in the womb.

Do you photograph baby showers and blessingways?

I LOVE to photograph (and film) baby showers and blessingways, where the mother-to-be and the child in her womb are celebrated! This allows everyone to just relax, enjoy and celebrate while someone else captures the memories for them. From silly, fun baby shower games to meaningful, emotional blessingway traditions, this is a special day for any mama and a record of it, being surrounded by her friends and family, is a wonderful treasure to have!



Birth Photography FAQ

When do you go on call? What if my baby comes outside that time?

I officially go on call from 37-42 weeks. This means that I am available to you 24/7 during this time, and whenever your baby decides to meet you! However, birth is unpredictable, and sometimes baby’s don’t follow a timeline! If your baby comes outside of the 37-42 week window, I will make every effort to still attend your birth (so please call!).

When do I call? How long do you stay?

I ask clients to communicate with me when things change – even if just a “heads up” that something might be happening. That way, I can ensure that I have a plan for my own children, and have everything ready to go on a moment’s notice. It also gives me a chance to reshuffle my schedule in case you need me. I come to your place of birth when you need me to. I don’t work on any particular figures – not at ‘x’ number of centimetres dilated, not at ‘x’ number of contractions lasting ‘y’ long. I trust a woman’s instincts, and also make a judgement based on their previous birthing history, and their own unique circumstances. Often, and particularly with subsequent births, I will come when you are heading to the hospital, or have called your midwife to attend you at home. I stay for the labour and birth as long as it takes – knowing that this is unpredictable. In the case of a very long labour, I may take breaks to eat and rest. I stay for 2-3 hours postpartum. If you wish for me to stay longer, or come back later (perhaps when the siblings arrive), this can be arranged for an extra fee.

What happens if you miss my birth?

Depending on the circumstances, there are a few different options, from capturing the hours immediately after birth, to transferring to a Fresh48 or newborn session, to partial or full refunds. This will be discussed in more detail at your in-person consultation.

What happens if I have a cesarean?

Your baby’s birthday is unique, no matter the circumstances. If you need a cesarean, either elective or emergency, I will do my best to tell your baby’s Birth Day story through photographs. There are many moments before and after the actual birth of your baby that are an important part of the day, and I will be there to capture them – from the nervous anticipation beforehand, to the skin to skin and bonding afterwards. As for the birth itself, there are no guarantees. I have been able to photograph numerous cesareans, including theatre, but there are still times that I will not have permission to accompany you, particularly in emergency situations. In this case, your partner or a staff member will have a crash course in using my camera to photograph in theatre, and I will edit and include these photographs in your final gallery. For elective cesareans, I am willing to work with you and your care providers during the pregnancy to seek permission to have a photographer in theatre with you, and have done so successfully in the past.

Do you photograph….”everything”?

That depends on if you WANT me to photograph “everything”. Those minutes of birth itself are just one part of the story of your baby’s Birth Day, and I will only photograph it if, and how, you are comfortable. For some, seeing the process of birth is an incredible thing to look back upon – I call it “the midwife view”. For others, it is something they may not want included, and that’s fine too – in that case, I will either photograph other moments and details (such as the look on your face, or your partner’s face, the clock, the way you are holding your partner’s hand, etc) or what I call the “mother view”, photographing from behind your shoulder to see what you would see as your baby emerges.

Can we keep our images private?

Absolutely! This is YOUR story. It is a private and intimate event. Some women love sharing their empowering, positive images with the world. For others, it is something intensely personal, for their own memories and perhaps to share with close friends and family only. Any kind of sharing at all is 100% optional, and there are no extra privacy fees. If you are happy to share, you will be provided with a model release, where you have control over what images are shared, and where they are shared. If not, your images will be kept 100% private.

Do you offer video documentaries of birth?

Yes, I do, and I LOVE it. There is nothing more powerful than hearing a mother’s “birth song” or a baby’s first cry, or to watch the tear roll down a daddy’s face as he sees his child for the first time. There are so many beautiful details and moments that make up a birth story, and video is a very powerful way to relive those moments – moments you may not even remember happening, yourself.


Newborn Photography FAQ

What is the best time to have newborn photos taken?

For those beautiful sleepy, curled up newborn portraits, I recommend the photos be taken between 7-15 days old. It’s important to consider booking your newborn session during your pregnancy, to ensure that you don’t miss out! However, I also accept older babies – at any age – because I know that they will never be THIS little again. Older newborns (past 3 weeks) will sometimes be photographed in a slightly different style, as they may not be as sleepy, but there are still so many opportunities for beautiful portraits.

Do you do sessions in a studio or outdoors?

I have a fully equipped newborn studio in Gatton where my newborn portrait sessions are held. I have a wide range of props including blankets, baskets, wraps, hats, headbands and knitted outfits available. However, my style is to use these props in a simple and timeless way, with a focus on the baby, and the connection between family members. I do offer limited outdoor newborn portraits in the warmer months.

How long does a newborn session take?

A newborn session typically takes 2-3 hours. My priority is to make sure that everybody is happy, safe and comfortable, as well as getting a good variety of different photographs – this means that we will likely need to take time for feeding, settling and changing your baby during the session, which is absolutely normal and OK! I understand that babies are not predictable, they are little people with their own needs, and that it is most important that we are respectful of those needs.

What do we wear to our newborn session?

I have a range of wraps and knitted outfits for baby to wear (and sometimes they wear nothing at all!). However, you are most welcome to bring any special outfits or accessories you would like incorporated into the session – including clothes, blankets, teddies, jewellery or other sentimental items. For mums, dads and older siblings, wearing subtle, neutral clothing (avoiding “busy” patterns, and choosing neutral colours such as whites, greys, creams or browns) is best for creating beautiful portraits that focus on the love and connection. However, the most important thing is that you all feel comfortable! I am happy to consult with you prior to the session about outfit choices and accessories.

Can my partner and other children be involved?

Absolutely! I encourage partners and older children to be involved, too – it’s just as exciting for them to be welcoming another baby into the family, and part of your family’s story. Often, it’s the images showing the excitement and connection between a new family that I, and my clients, love the most! I will usually do photos with older siblings involved at the beginning of the session while they are still happy and “fresh”. It’s important to be prepared and have a plan for them, as small children may get tired, hungry and/or bored (completely understandable!). This might mean that when their photos are finished, they can be taken out of the studio to eat and play. Or it may mean bringing along their favourite toy, some colouring books or a tablet to keep them occupied.

Can we do the session in my home?

Sure we can! In-home newborn portraits are a more relaxed, candid option, where we capture the “real life” moments of life with a brand new person. No props, and minimal posing. You will be given guidance and encouragement, but this more documentary-style type of session is more about the little “in between” moments and the natural connection with your family and the new little one you’re getting to know.

Do you offer video documentaries of newborns?

Yes, I do offer video coverage of newborns for in-home sessions, where the beautiful candid moments can be captured not only in a still image, but also in a moving, documentary-style film. From baby yawns to big sibling kisses, from tiny feet to cuddles with mum, there are many opportunities to create a stunning video momento of your baby’s first days of life.


Birth Videography FAQ

When do you go on call? What if my baby comes outside that time?

I officially go on call from 37-42 weeks. This means that I am available to you 24/7 during this time, and whenever your baby decides to meet you! However, birth is unpredictable, and sometimes baby’s don’t follow a timeline! If your baby comes outside of the 37-42 week window, I will make every effort to still attend your birth (so please call!).

When do I call? How long do you stay?

I ask clients to communicate with me when things change – even if just a “heads up” that something might be happening. That way, I can ensure that I have a plan for my own children, and have everything ready to go on a moment’s notice. It also gives me a chance to reshuffle my schedule in case you need me. I come to your place of birth when you need me to. I don’t work on any particular figures – not at ‘x’ number of centimetres dilated, not at ‘x’ number of contractions lasting ‘y’ long. I trust a woman’s instincts, and also make a judgement based on their previous birthing history, and their own unique circumstances. Often, and particularly with subsequent births, I will come when you are heading to the hospital, or have called your midwife to attend you at home. I stay for the labour and birth as long as it takes – knowing that this is unpredictable. In the case of a very long labour, I may take breaks to eat and rest. I stay for 2-3 hours postpartum. If you wish for me to stay longer, or come back later (perhaps when the siblings arrive), this can be arranged for an extra fee.

What happens if you miss my birth?

Depending on the circumstances, there are a few different options, from capturing the hours immediately after birth, to transferring to a Fresh48 or newborn session, to partial or full refunds. This will be discussed in more detail at your in-person consultation.

What happens if I have a cesarean?

Your baby’s birthday is unique, no matter the circumstances. If you need a cesarean, either elective or emergency, I will do my best to tell your baby’s Birth Day story through photographs. There are many moments before and after the actual birth of your baby that are an important part of the day, and I will be there to capture them – from the nervous anticipation beforehand, to the skin to skin and bonding afterwards. As for the birth itself, there are no guarantees. I have been able to photograph numerous cesareans, including theatre, but there are still times that I will not have permission to accompany you, particularly in emergency situations. In this case, your partner or a staff member will have a crash course in using my camera to photograph in theatre, and I will edit and include these photographs in your final gallery. For elective cesareans, I am willing to work with you and your care providers during the pregnancy to seek permission to have a photographer in theatre with you, and have done so successfully in the past. During cesareans, I may be permitted to take still photographs only, not video. This will be dependent on the staff.

Do you film….”everything”?

That depends on if you WANT me to photograph “everything”. Those minutes of birth itself are just one part of the story of your baby’s Birth Day, and I will only photograph it if, and how, you are comfortable. For some, seeing the process of birth is an incredible thing to look back upon – I call it “the midwife view”. For others, it is something they may not want included, and that’s fine too – in that case, I will either photograph other moments and details (such as the look on your face, or your partner’s face, the clock, the way you are holding your partner’s hand, etc) or what I call the “mother view”, photographing from behind your shoulder to see what you would see as your baby emerges.

Can we keep our images private?

Absolutely! This is YOUR story. It is a private and intimate event. Some women love sharing their empowering, positive images with the world. For others, it is something intensely personal, for their own memories and perhaps to share with close friends and family only. Any kind of sharing at all is 100% optional, and there are no extra privacy fees. If you are happy to share, you will be provided with a model release, where you have control over what images are shared, and where they are shared. If not, your images will be kept 100% private.

Can we also get photographs, as well as the video?

Yes, this is an option. During the labour, and after the birth, I can capture both photographs and video footage. It is only during the birth itself that it may not be possible to get both, and you will need to decide what it is a priority for you. Of course, you can take still images from video footage, but the quality and resolution is not the same as a photograph.

Are we able to get ALL of the video footage from our birth?

Yes, I offer this as an “add on” option. Keep in mind, your film will be a “finished work” – turning the raw footage into a high quality film is a big part of the process. However, I understand the desire to have every sound and every memory. It is important to understand that the raw footage will be of a lower quality than the completed film, and you must sign an agreement that the footage is for your own personal viewing and will not be shared publicly.


Doula FAQ

How is a doula different to a midwife?

A doula is a non-medical birth support person. They do not provide any clinical services (such as Doppler checks, blood pressure, etc) or make any diagnoses (though they are often familiar with pregnancy-related conditions and will be able to refer you to an appropriate care provider). They are hired by you, for you – to give informational, emotional and physical support throughout the journey.

Do you attend births in any setting?

Absolutely! I have attended in births in numerous settings, including home, birth centres, public hospitals and private hospitals across the Toowoomba, Ipswich and Brisbane regions. I believe that all families are deserving of the support a doula can give, wherever they choose to birth.

What if I have a cesarean?

Having a cesarean, planned or unplanned, doesn’t mean a doula is unnecessary. A doula will still be able to support you during the pregnancy, and this includes preparing for the event of a cesarean birth and how to make that as positive and family-centred as possible. A doula will be there for you before and after the cesarean, to help you navigate not only the choices that you need to make, but the emotions surrounding them.

When do we call you for the birth?

Whenever you need me. I don’t go by numbers (how dilated you are, how long contractions are lasting) as much as I go by instinct and feelings. If you feel that you need extra support, and you are ready for me to join you, I will.

How long do you stay?

As long as it takes – there is no “one size fits all” with birth, and some will take longer than others. In the event of a very long birth, I may take breaks to eat and rest, so that I’m able to continue being the very best support I can be. I then stay until the mum has showered and dressed, and baby has had a feed and everyone is settled in.

What happens if you miss the birth?

This will be discussed in more detail in your free consultation, however the general idea is that if I miss a birth due to my own error (not answering phone, taking longer than agreed time to arrive etc) then a refund will be offered. In the case of a fast birth or something else out of my control, fees can be transferred to postnatal support or photography services.


Placenta Encapsulation FAQ

What method of encapsulation do you use?

I can prepare your placenta using either the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) method, in which the placenta is steamed (note: I do not use anything else in the steaming process, just water, unless specifically requested. Lemon, pepper and ginger are often used in the TCM method) before dehydrating, or the Raw Dehydration method, in which the placenta is dehydrated without first being steamed. There are some circumstances where the TCM method will be recommended, as it is more effective at removing any potentially harmful bacteria. The TCM method will also mean that your capsules can be stored for a longer period of time.

What are your safety measures?

All of my equipment and work surfaces are thoroughly sanitized before and after use. During the encapsulation process, I wear gloves, a facemask and an apron at all times. The equipment I use is disposable where possible, or made from stainless steel, glass, or food-grade materials. I only encapsulate one placenta at a time, and all containers are clearly marked at all times. I have a separate fridge to store your placenta.

Do you collect and deliver?

I sure do! Collection of your placenta and delivery of your finished capsules is part of my fee. However, a $50 discount applies if you are able to arrange either delivery of the placenta or collection of the capsules. My services areas are within 50km of Gatton, which includes Toowoomba and Ipswich. For travel over 50km, a $50 travel fee applies (each trip). If over 50km, I can also arrange a courier to deliver your completed capsules at your expense.

When should I contact you?

It is advised that you book your placenta encapsulation during your pregnancy to ensure I am able to fit you in. If you have booked your placenta encapsulation, please contact me when you are in labour, and again when your baby has arrived. If labour and birth occur between the hours of 9pm-6am, please wait until 6am or later to notify me and I will arrange collection that day. Remember to store my phone number in your phone, so that it’s easily accessible when your baby arrives. My phone number is 0423 004 946.

What do I do with my placenta when I’ve had my baby?

When your baby has arrived, your placenta will need to be refrigerated within 3 hours or less. Hospitals (and homebirth midwives) often have appropriate containers for placentas to be stored in, and will put a sticker with your details on both the lid, and the container itself. You may wish to have your own container available, but this is not usually necessary. If staff is unfamiliar with the requirements, please ask them to put your placenta into a sealed container with your ID stickers and place into the refrigerator until collected. If you birth in hospital, and are discharged before I have collected your placenta, please take it home with you (in a cooler bag or esky with ice/ice bricks) and I will arrange collection from your home.

When will I receive my capsules?

I will collect your placenta and begin the encapsulation process within 24 hours of birth. Delivery of the completed capsules is day 3-5.

How many capsules will I receive?

If you have chosen the TCM method of encapsulation, you can expect to receive 75-100 capsules (size 00). If you have chosen the raw encapsulation method, you can expect to receive 130-150 capsules.

What is the dosage?

You will receive dosage instructions with your completed capsules. For TCM prepared capsules, the usual recommended dosage is up to 2 capsules, 3 times a day for the first 2 weeks, then 1-2 capsules per day as needed. For capsules prepared using the Raw method, the usual recommended dose is 3-6 capsules a day until finished.

Do you offer cord keepsakes and prints?

Cord keepsakes (your baby’s umbilical cord, dried into a word or shape), placenta prints and photographs are all available as optional extras (at no extra cost).

Can I encapsulate my placenta if I’ve had a cesarean and/or pain relief?

Yes, absolutely, as long as it has been handled and stored appropriately.

When would placenta encapsulation not be appropriate?

There are times (though few) when placenta encapsulation may not be possible, or can be encapsulated using TCM method only. These will be discussed on a case by case basis, and are also listed in my booking form.

Placentas that have been taken to pathology for testing will be unsuitable for the encapsulation process due to the risk of contamination. If staff want to take your placenta for testing, please request that they cut a small piece for testing only, so that if tests are clear you are able to encapsulate the remainder of your placenta.