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Matinee: 'Birth Photography Day 2017' Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

14 October 2017

Saturday matinees long ago let us escape from the ordinary world to the island of the Swiss Family Robinson or the mutinous decks of the Bounty. Why not; we thought; escape the usual fare here with Saturday matinees of our favorite photography films?

So we're pleased to present the 209th in our series of Saturday matinees today: Birth Photography Day 2017.

The news of the last few weeks has been all about devastation in one form or another. So we thought we'd interrupt the steady stream of bad news with this 3:37 clip of a specialty not often covered: birth photography.

What is birth photography? The International Association of Professional Birth Photographers explains:

The International Association of Professional Birth Photographers was established to assist expectant parents who are in search of a professional birth photographer in their area. IAPBP has over 1,200 members in 42 countries and we are growing daily. Our focus is on providing resources to expectant parents; photographers and other birth professionals through education, understanding the birth process; support and respect for each persons birth choices. Each January we host the IAPBP Image of the Year Competition in an effort to share the beauty of birth with the world.

The video highlights the work of the following birth photographers as they describe their approach to this task and why they do what they do:

  • Lindsey Welch -- Frederick, Maryland; Lindsey Welch Photography
  • Kim Cameron -- Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; Breathe In Photography
  • Deborah Elenter -- Montevideo, Uruguay; NEO Photography
  • Jo Robertson -- South Wales, UK; Lillian Craze Birth Photography
  • Amanda Gipson -- Fort Worth, Texas; Birth Unscripted
  • DeAnna Weyhrich -- Mead, Colorado; DDWeyhrich Birth Photography
  • Zandra Warland -- Byron Bay, Australia; Zandra Warland Photography
  • Lindsey Rivera -- Salt Lake City, Utah; Born Photography
  • Jennifer Hamilton -- San Antonio, Texas; Mamarazzi Photography
  • Laura Eckert -- Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, Iowa; New Creation Birth Photography
  • Jessica Benson -- Salt Lake City, Utah; Jessica B Photography
  • Selena Rollason -- Brisbane, Australia; Brisbane Birth Photography
  • Belle Verdiglione -- Perth, Australia; Belle Verdiglione Photography
  • Kourtnie Scholz -- Cleburne, Texas; KE Documentary
  • Leilani Rogers -- Cedar Park, Texas, Leilani Rogers; Photographer
  • Neely KerFox -- Columbus, Georgia; Neely KerFox
  • Aimee Durrance -- Bicester, Oxfordshire, UK; Aimee Durrance Photography
  • Amanda McGhee -- Norfolk, Virginia; Kimberlin Gray Photography
  • Jessica Worland -- Bloomington, Illinois; Jessica Worland
  • Nicole Burmeister -- Richmond, Virginia; Nicoleinbold

Now if you are squeamish about the human body or fundamental human functions, you might just skip this presentation. It's real. It's messy. It's naked. It's life.

We are fed a constant stream of idealized visions of the female body on the newsstand and over the broadcast networks. This isn't that.

It's photojournalism of the most important moment in the lives of parents and, well, children. And that makes it more like war photography than fashion photography.

But a war in which everyone wins.

We were reminded, as we saw still after still flash before our eyes, of Lenny Bruce's observation that if you don't like images of the unclothed human body you should complain to the manufacturer. Don't, that is, call the police. Wag your finger at the divinity of your choice.

But if you do sit through this short clip, you'll experience some exceptional shots in the slide show. Keep your thumb on the space bar to freeze the show and appreciate a few these longer than you might otherwise.

You'll see pain, sure, but you'll see joy. Unimaginable joy. And these days, that's in very short supply.

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