One of the new professions an entrepreneur can get into, especially if he/she loves cameras and children, is birth photography. I got the chance to interview entrepreneur and mommy, Regina Hahn Siy of My Story Photography.

Regina Hahn Siy by Arvie Roxas Photography

Ginger: What makes Birth Photographers different from other photographers?

Regina: As a birth photographer, I join the family and document their labor and delivery, but not in a medical sense. The pictures I take do not revolve around the surgical procedure. Instead, I capture the emotions felt throughout the experience – the support and love of a partner as he comforts the mother of his child, the extasy and joy of a mother as she sees her baby for the first time, the look of a child as he first opens his eyes. There are a lot of beautiful moments in a birth that are often forgotten long after it is over. I would like to think that I give families the opportunity to look back and remember all that was beautiful about their birth.

Ginger: How did you get into this business?

Regina: When I gave birth to my own daughter I experienced a rush of all sorts of emotions and feelings. I was nervous, in pain, excited, extremely happy, exhausted, unsure and empowered all at once. I had my husband and mom with me. They offered so much care and support, I felt so taken care of. I felt a love for my child I didn’t know existed. It was a lovely experience but it all happened so fast, I have now forgotten all the tiny details of it. I want to give families the choice to be able to be in the moment and enjoy their birth to the fullest, but at the same time have those pictures to look back at.

Birth Photographer Regina Hahn Siy

Ginger: Do you need to have a particular photography skill to be a birth photographer? Are there any trainings available for a person to get into this business?

Regina: Oh, there are so many traits and skills required. From a technical perspective, you definitely have to know how to photograph well and fast. Moments happen in a split second, once you miss it, it’s gone. But I think even more than that, you need to have sensitivity about your surroundings and a deep enough knowledge about births. Birthing is a very private time for families. Plus, it is still a medical procedure involving several doctors. You need to know when to step in and when to step back, what to say and when to say it, how to give the family and doctors the space they need in a very compact environment, that kind of thing. My mom is a childbirth educator and doula so I have grown up knowing about childbirth. I have also given birth naturally, so I understand what it feels like for a mother to be in extreme discomfort. I’d like to think that my background helps me do my job better.In terms of training, I still think a solid photography background plus deep experience is the best training.

Ginger: What do you enjoy about your job?

Regina: Birthing a baby into the world is always a happy time. I am blessed to share in that happiness even if its merely behind the camera lens.

Ginger: How would you describe the birth photography industry in the Philippines?

Regina: It is still quite new in the Philippines, there are just a few of us who practice it. Plus, not all hospitals are open to birth photographers. I always suggest that my clients talk to their doctor first before deciding to engage a birth photographer.

Ginger: What would you advise people who want to be birth photographers?

Regina: First, know your place. Respect the doctors, staff and your clients. Never go before them for a good shot. Second, keep it simple. Have simple equipment but know your equipment well. There is not much time or space for complicated stuff.

Ginger: What are your rates?

Regina: My start at PhP7,000 up, depending on the package chosen. I am quite flexible and adjust towhat my clients prefer.

Ginger: What are the obstacles that face birth photographers?

Regina: I think the biggest obstacle is time. Most births are unplanned. You can’t really predict when the birth will happen, so you will have to be on call. Plus, you don’t know how long the birth will take so you have to be ready to spend hours waiting.

Ginger: What are tips that you would give dads who want to document their child’s birth themselves?

Regina: Honestly, I do not recommend dads to document the birth themselves. Childbirth is tough for a mother. They need the care and support of their partners every step of the way. I mean, think about it, when you are in a tough position, would you rather your partner step away and take a picture or be with you and hold your hand? If a birth photographer is not for you, then try to ask the nurses and staff to assist by taking some pictures. Many are photography enthusiasts and can take a few good shots for you.

Ginger: Thank you, Regina, for telling us more about birth photography and for sharing your inspiring story.

Contact Details of My Story Photography:
My Story Photography Website:
My Story Photography Facebook Page:

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