fresh 48 :: jacob lee

In the fresh afterglow of birth, when mama and baby are both so open and new (having just been born, both of them), a gentle, slow on-site photo shoot puts all of that into a static frame to later be revisited when the newborn haze is over and the desire to remember what those first days were like surfaces with urgency.

We don’t ever want to forget these moments.

In a quiet hospital room on a sunny day, here’s just-born Jacob and his mama Jackie and his papa, too.

fresh 48 :: gwen marian

When I photograph a home birth it often involves slipping into a home in the dark of night and leaving again before dawn when the older siblings awaken. And in those cases, having me come back the next day in the daylight to photograph the entire family together after rest and freshening have happened for the mama and daddy. So that’s what we did here (you can find their birth story blogged over at Sister Birth).

This family is so sweet, and I love the enthusiasm coming from each of the older siblings over their new baby sister.

Additionally, this family opted to have some extended family present during the Fresh48, so we were sure to get them into some shots as well. Both baby’s great-grandmother and Auntie are pictured here…

fresh48 :: violet

As is so often the case with second babies, Violet's birth was much quicker than her parents could have even anticipated. Their midwife made it to their home with very little time to spare. And so when I came to them the very next day to make these photographs, they were still a bit wide-eyed and stunned from the joyful surprise of it all. They'd just had a baby(!!), and were trying to integrate that new reality into their minds and hearts. That kind of raw, fresh energy is exactly what I love about Fresh48 sessions. A day or two later, let alone a few weeks later, we would have had a very different energy, you know?! But today. Today they are shellshocked and tender, open and a tiny bit messy. And that's really, really good stuff. Not to mention Violet herself, who will look so different just days from now, as newborns so quickly shift in appearance. I hope they'll treasure these images for a long time. 

fresh48 :: jovan floyd

Jovan was born through the water on a sunny but brisk October day, at almost the time of day his mama Bethany anticipated he would be. His daddy, brothers and grandma (and the family dog!) all circled the birth pool as he made his entrance. 

Jordan (dad) created some amazing footage of his moment of birth. But after the initial burst of post-birth student midwife responsibilities, I picked up the camera to do the VERY fresh Fresh48 session I was asked to do. I couldn't help but begin shooting even during parts of his newborn exam because (a) I was already there and (b) I loooove homebirth newborn exams. :)

I was so glad that Bethany and Jordan wanted these photos to be extremely fresh and unscripted. He's only about an hour old in these pictures! You can still see how his nose is a bit squished and his head a bit moulded from his passage. And we got to capture the first time his big brothers and dad held him. So very special, indeed. 

fresh48 :: elias dean

The quiet hours of the morning after birth, tucked into bed with the new little person you grew on the inside, with whom you formed a bond for 9 months, but whose face you've only just seen for the first time and whose weight against your chest you're still getting accustomed to. This is the scene I got to photograph for Kristen, Micah, and their new son at the birth house where they labored and birthed him.

fresh48 :: agnes june

Before it was even 9 a.m., Agnes came quickly into the world, in such hurry and rush that her mama could barely catch her breath and the midwife barely made it in time to catch the baby. 

The very next morning, when Agnes was only 24 hours old, I returned to their room, finding them sleepily waking from their first night as a family of 4, and I made these photographs.

So tender I could cry.