Photographs Don't Matter

“I don’t understand these people who want Birth Photography. I gave birth and there is nothing about that experience I want to look back at!”

“You take pictures at births?! Like, people have a baby and want you there?! That’s weird.”

“OMG. Who would want pictures of them giving birth?! Hey honey! I’ve got an idea for this year’s holiday card!”

Birth Photography and Newborn Photography for D.C. Parents.

Birth Photography and Newborn Photography for D.C. Parents.

When I hear these phrases - which, I often do - I think to myself, “What a wonderful way to have experienced birth.” Because I am surrounded by parents who have struggled for years to become pregnant in the first place. Parents who have been told they would never have children. Parents who know their child will likely not survive long after birth. Parents who had no idea there was anything about to go horribly, horribly wrong.

I often see, unless you’ve been intimately touched by death, how the assumption of a healthy birth can be taken for granted. Photographs don’t matter.

But for those who have lived, or even had the scare, of a child’s life shortened, I am there. To celebrate with you. To love with you. To breath that sigh of relief with you. And, for some, to cry with you.

I often hear myself say, “Birth Photography isn’t for everyone”. Certainly, this is true. But for the parents it is for, I am proud, honored, and humbled to be at your service.

xo

Teresa

After birth, family bonding. The first family portrait. Birth Photography, D.C.

After birth, family bonding. The first family portrait. Birth Photography, D.C.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

The One Book the Saved My Sanity, My Business, and My Family

When it comes to business, it’s one thing to be an employee and it’s another to be the owner. Even if you don’t own a business, wearing multiple hats for multiple jobs is far from abnormal these days (however, if you are a Parent reading this, I will strongly suggest that you own and operate a small business).

How are we staying sane?

Having been around the ‘job block’ more than once, I have been a part of multiple lectures and ‘courses’ on organization over the years. Nothing - and let me emphasize, nothing - seemed to help the overload I held in my brain, the heart stopping anxiety, the body numbing fear when I failed to deliver, or the defeat that I simply was a ‘Scatter Brain’, ‘Flighty’, ‘Disorganized’ employee/business owner.

Working on the plane. Photographing in Maryland, DC, Michigan, Georgia, Florida, and Hawaii keeps me busy - The Savor Life Planner keeps me sane.

Working on the plane. Photographing in Maryland, DC, Michigan, Georgia, Florida, and Hawaii keeps me busy - The Savor Life Planner keeps me sane.

Until, recently I thought it was me. But it wasn’t. It was the systems and the planners that were designed only for people who needed to keep track of appointments, meetings, client call reminders, or holidays.

Those planners didn’t help create. Those systems didn’t inspire. And I certainly didn’t feel less stress.

Complaining for the millionth time to a friend that I was cursed with having my ‘head in the clouds’ forever, she said, ‘I think you need to try the Savor Life Planner’. Another planner seemed far from helpful. But when she showed me how just one week in the planner had TEN dedicated pages to (literally) take me from brainstorming to brain dumping, daily ‘to-do’s to separate compartments for each of those ‘to-do’s to be crafted, designed, executed...fulfilled?! It was seriously nothing I had ever seen and I saw immediately what a perfect fit this was for my intelligent, crafty, innovative mind.

Let me be clear: I wasn’t asked to write this post or offered anything in return. I seriously feel like this has changed my day to day stress level DRAMATICALLY and if I can help you do that as well, I’m more than happy to.

Interested in what I do (or just want to oooh and ahhhh over cute babies)? See my work here.

Interested in how I keep track of it all? Visit Savor Life Planner.

xo

Teresa

Savor Life Planner is a 90 day planner perfect for busy entrepreneurs, on-the-go moms, managers, and professionals who need a system to "remember it all" for prioritizing the day.

Savor Life Planner is a 90 day planner perfect for busy entrepreneurs, on-the-go moms, managers, and professionals who need a system to "remember it all" for prioritizing the day.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Potato/Potato Dubsado/Dubsado

It’s often that I’m asked what I do all day. It would seem that when I’m not photographing newborns, babies, families, even pets, there is a sneaking suspicion I am sleeping in and binge watching The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel all day. Ahhhhhhh...to live the dream life of a Photographer.

Truth be told, between marketing, blogs, product quality control, meetings, education, cleaning, general maintenance, editing, IT issues, networking, homework (mine, not my kids), taxes, bookkeeping, sales, vendor shows, admin work, customer inquiries, damaged packages/products, and whatever else a business day can throw at me, I’m surprisingly strapped for time when it comes to the ‘luxuries’ of working from home.

It    is    possible to run a business and drink coffee that is still hot.    Dubsado    can help with that. Birth, Newborn, and Baby Photographer serving the Annapolis, DC, Baltimore, Atlanta, and Oahu areas.

It is possible to run a business and drink coffee that is still hot. Dubsado can help with that. Birth, Newborn, and Baby Photographer serving the Annapolis, DC, Baltimore, Atlanta, and Oahu areas.

Are you someone (not just a Photographer) who can relate? Outsourcing is a dream I have every day. But finding the right products that work with my untraditional schedule, yet keeps me on top of my business game, is a serious struggle.

What sends my mind into a tailspin is how hard it is to find companies that, in addition to a quality product, treat me with the same amount of customer service that I strive to provide to my clients.

One of the products that has been a game changers for me this past year has been Dubsado. Dubsado not only helps me serve my clients well...they serve ME well. In that ‘I seriously hope my clients feel that I am this good to them!’ well.

From invoicing to email workflows, scheduling to design, the last year has taken me from a sea of self doubt to feeling like I’ve got a grasp on at least 8 of those things I mentioned above (there were 19+ if you were counting).

Working from home can have it’s challenges. Dubsado can help. Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Oahu Photographer specializing in Birth, Babies, Newborns.

Working from home can have it’s challenges. Dubsado can help. Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Oahu Photographer specializing in Birth, Babies, Newborns.

I truly believe that finding that needle in a haystack shouldn’t be something to hold and keep from everyone else - it should be shared and loved by many. If you are in need of one or two things that bring some serious professionalism and relief to your day, Dubsado takes the cake.

So while this photography blog may be a little different from others, I know there are some incredibly awesome people out there who can use the recommendation. I hope it serves well for those of you who need it (especially you, working from home Momma’s. By the way, you’re kicking ass). If you have any questions about how I use Dubsado every day to help manage my workload - or just want to check it out for yourself - visit their link here.

xo

Teresa

Searching for a software program that shows your professional AND have good taste? Look no further. Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Oahu Photographer specializing in Birth, Babies, Newborns.

Searching for a software program that shows your professional AND have good taste? Look no further. Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Oahu Photographer specializing in Birth, Babies, Newborns.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

The Power of Print

I talk a lot about the importance of printing photographs but what’s even more convincing to me is what I am personally witnessing with my children.

When my first ‘baby’ was born, I was still a film photographer. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of photos my son as a newborn up until a young child. Then 2 things happened: 1) digital took over and 2) he didn’t grow up thinking social media was ‘the place to be’. At least not Facebook – where so many of his photos were stored.

“Is that me?”

“Yes! Don’t you remember this day? I look at this photo all the time!”

My son, holding an internationally published photograph I took of him as a baby boy. We have this image hanging in our home to this day. (Newborn, Baby, Child Photographer serving the Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Baltimore, Oahu area).

My son, holding an internationally published photograph I took of him as a baby boy. We have this image hanging in our home to this day. (Newborn, Baby, Child Photographer serving the Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Baltimore, Oahu area).

It dawns on me how I almost feel as though I’m holding these sweet memories of his life captive. Now, granted, he has the power to login and look himself. But as technology grows and changes, our children will have no concept of how many people have viewed this, loved this, and commented on how amazing they are…or, more importantly, that we even displayed these sweet pictures of them ourselves.

There was an excellent article written the Baltimore Sun ran discussing how printed images of our children, displayed in the home, can actually enhance a child’s self esteem and help them get to know themselves. I encourage you to read it and share your thoughts. Did you have photos displayed in your home growing up? Do you now? Are they in ‘common areas’ or more ‘private’ rooms?

This is just one of the reasons I am more and more adamant in my business to make sure that your photographs are printed and printed to last. Yes, I am a photographer and specialize in capturing you and those you most love. I also have such an attachment to the families, children, babies, pregnant mothers, and newborns I photograph that it is my sincere desire that my photographs truly lend a positive impact for years to come.

xo

Teresa

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Postpartum Depression: Beyond the Newborn Phase

One of the major misconceptions with Postpartum Depression (PPD) is the assumption that it is a short-term struggle. Much like the flu, it hits some harder than others, the time frame that you are ‘out of commission’ can vary, but overall, you bear through the worst of it until it’s finally time to get back to the daily grind.

Except sometimes the worst of it never goes away. Sometimes you never get better. Sometimes it leaves and comes back.

“Something is really wrong with me because you don’t hear people talk about postpartum depression starting and then staying like that.’” Said Chelsea Reiswig in an article posted by The Atlantic, When Postpartum Depression Doesn’t Go Away.

The article continues to discuss the the long term effects that PPD can have on an individual when it goes undiagnosed. Towards the end of the article, Reiswig states, “Now I have accepted this is likely something I will deal with the rest of my life...”.

The day I met Lorena (   Motherhood Unfiltered   ) I knew there was something a little deeper behind that gorgeous smile. D.C., Baltimore, Annapolis, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

The day I met Lorena (Motherhood Unfiltered) I knew there was something a little deeper behind that gorgeous smile. D.C., Baltimore, Annapolis, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

And if you think it’s hard for the individual themselves to try and grasp what is happening to their emotional, mental, and physical health, it can be just as complicated for professionals. “It is very difficult for a person, even a trained person, to be able to distinguish between regular frustrations, hormonal fluctuations, and a mood disorder,” says Nicole Washington, a Tulsa-based psychiatrist.

I sincerely think this is why the discussion of what happens around birth - before birth, during birth, after birth - needs to be recognized as something that is not shushed and discarded. If we aren’t even near the point of being able to pinpoint and recognize certain challenges, the furthest thing from helping that is throwing up our hands, saying ‘Yep. That sucks.’ and changing the topic.

Laurena talks about her struggles after birth in her article,    The Truth Behind the Photo   . Newborn, Birth, Maternity photography serving the D.C., Atlanta, Annapolis, Baltimore, Oahu areas.

Laurena talks about her struggles after birth in her article, The Truth Behind the Photo. Newborn, Birth, Maternity photography serving the D.C., Atlanta, Annapolis, Baltimore, Oahu areas.

When I recognized that writing about the topic of Postpartum Depression was something that I felt was a necessary, I envisioned it to be a three part series: capturing the perspective of a postpartum mother I knew, sharing a piece of my own experience, and finding one article that may share some insight on this highly complex issue. Having come to what I loosely assumed would be the ‘end’ of this topic, I am reconsidering that my time exploring this is ‘done’.

I am well aware that this is not a topic that is going to be enjoyed by many; however, I am going to take the ‘quality over quantity’ approach with these writings, in the hopes that a few may be encouraged to recognize signs and symptoms within themselves or someone they know.

So, let’s keep the conversation going, so that we may feel joy, share joy, raise joy, and leave a legacy of joy.

Xo

Teresa

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Filet Mignon on a Styrofoam Plate.

Have you ever gone out to eat at a really nice restaurant? You know the type, the kind of place where you only go for really special celebrations. Not only is the food amazing but you actually feel pampered just dining there. The chef has been educated and went to school in order to treat people to the perfect culinary experience. You may even need to save up a little just for that one meal, but it’s totally worth it. 

Let’s hold that wonderful daydream for just a moment. 

Even if you aren’t a chef, I’m going to assume you know how to cook, even if it’s just one thing. You’ve got knives (and, not to brag, but they’re sort of fancy - they came with a sharpening rod and everything) your oven works just fine as you’re concerned and you even try to buy organic vegetables from time to time. 

So why the desire for the fancy restaurant? 

Whether you book a birth, maternity, newborn, baby, child, or family session, it’s important to keep your products safe. D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

Whether you book a birth, maternity, newborn, baby, child, or family session, it’s important to keep your products safe. D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

Food seems pretty easy to come by and all you have to do is follow the directions to a recipe for a meal to usually work in your favor. Why not go to the amazing restaurant and tell the chef, ‘I LOVE your food but I know how to work my oven. I’m just looking for the ingredients you use in this one meal so I can do the rest myself. If you could just toss what I need into this bag and print out the recipe, that’s all I need.’

Can you imagine? 

Being educated as a Photographer and Print Artist, I certainly don’t expect others outside of my field to know the fine details that go into their experience and product. But I do expect to be trusted, which all of my clients do (which is such and incredible honor). It’s crucial to what I do that they trust my eye, my understanding of preservation, and passion for presentation all while respecting the boundaries for which they’ve hired me. 

I once had someone say to me, ‘No one cares what paper you use to print on. People just want something affordable.’ Really? Something tells me that if your $75 medium rare filet mignon came out on a styrofoam plate with a plastic fork, you would care. 

Personally, I love that there are so many choices for people to hire Photographers these days because there are that many more opportunities to document special events.

So, while it can be a little overwhelming trying to decide who, what, where, and why when you are hiring a Professional Photographer, please know that we are truly here to share what we love with you, provide you what our expertise allows, and most of all, give you a smile.

xo

Teresa

A perfect keepsake from classic Breastfeeding Portrait Session. D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

A perfect keepsake from classic Breastfeeding Portrait Session. D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Postpartum Depression: Dear Friend

Did you know? 1 in 7 Moms and 1 in 10 Dads suffer from postpartum depression. Reaching out to speak with someone is the best way to help determine what path is best for you. Consider reaching out to Postpartum International Support by calling 1.800.944.4773, texting 503.894.9453 or visiting http://www.postpartum.net/

 

Dear Friend with Postpartum Depression Who Doesn’t Think She Has Postpartum Depression,

I don’t know if you see yourself. But I see you. And I’m scared for you.

Why?

Because I’ve been there. And I almost didn’t make it out alive. I know, I know - this is different for you. It was for me, too. I could get out of bed. I could fake the smile - hell, once in awhile I even had a genuine smile. I changed my cloth diapered baby, cooked dinner from scratch, posted all the pretty pictures on Instagram; if you could see a physical example of a ‘functioning post-birth mother’, I can assure you, I was what you were looking for. I even filled out that 6 week checkup form with flying colors because, I mean...come on.

I made sure no one could see me inside.

Eight weeks postpartum, at the pumpkin patch with my family. The meltdown in the middle of Whole Foods afterwards is memorable.

Eight weeks postpartum, at the pumpkin patch with my family. The meltdown in the middle of Whole Foods afterwards is memorable.

I had been told about the ‘scary, spooky PPD’ stories. What I was feeling wasn’t anything quite like I had heard, so at the time I thought that wasn’t what I was going through. Whatever it was, I was ‘just was in a funk’. Something I needed to adjust my attitude in the bathroom quickly and then continue to take on the day. After all, I was just adjusting. I was just tired. I was just...failing.

I want you to know that Postpartum Depression is SO difficult to see and define, that if you *are* struggling, you will likely not fit nice and neat into a predetermined box. And like an abusive relationship, it will be easy to make excuses, brush off ‘isolated’ incidents, and accept the voice in your head that keeps apologizing, saying ‘It will never be this way again. That was the last time. I promise.’

No, I can’t see your soul. Maybe I’m way off base. But if the fact that I see even a glimmer of me in you scares the hell of me. I don’t want this pain for you and I wish I could do more. A side effect of not getting help when it is needed means that this can have life-long, lasting effects; so, yes, I am coming to you as a person who has never completely healed - and as someone who is begging you to consider a different path.

I  want you to know that I see you, I feel with you, and I. LOVE. YOU. I may not be able to heal you but I still want you to know you can come to me and just be. Not the ‘You’ pre baby, not the ‘You’ you thought you would be post baby - the You that you are right now.

I need you. I need you to be honest with me. I need you to be honest with yourself. With your significant other. Your doctor. With anyone and everyone who will listen. Maybe we won’t all understand and we may make mistakes. I just want you to know it’s all with good intention, with the attempt of showing you how much we love you.

Just please don’t wait.

Three weeks postpartum, first family outing with my newborn, Washington D.C.

Three weeks postpartum, first family outing with my newborn, Washington D.C.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Should You Tip Your Photographer?

Recently someone asked me about the tips I received as a Photographer.

As in, monetary tips. Not advice.

I’m sorry, what?

Cherry Blossoms in DC and Maryland. Photographer of children, baby, family, and newborn serving the D.C. Metro area and beyond.

Cherry Blossoms in DC and Maryland. Photographer of children, baby, family, and newborn serving the D.C. Metro area and beyond.

Having worked many years in the restaurant industry, I am not stingy with my tips. But maybe I’m stingy in who I tip? Because in all my years of being a Photographer, I cannot say that I’ve ever received - or given - a tip.

Actually, I will take that back. I did receive a ‘tip’ once from a very kind family who placed the winning bid on a large gift I had donated to a non profit fundraiser. They understood the time, effort, and quality ‘out of pocket’ expense of what I was providing them. They wanted to make sure that I wasn’t losing money, which I hesitated accepting but was grateful for their consideration.

More than tips, what I crave, honestly, are things like google reviews and written/typed testimonials. Not only do I take my reputation very seriously but I also know how much easier it is for others to find me if they are looking for a Photographer such as myself. Receiving another birth, newborn, or baby client due to a referral isn’t just a monetary gain but a heartfelt one that encourages me to grow and be better.

So if you are ever wondering about tipping your Photographer, ask them if they would rather a written review or a referral program. And if you’re one of my previous clients - mind writing me a google review? ;)

xo

Teresa Robertson

Newborn and Child Photographer serving the Virginia, DC, Maryland areas and beyond.

Newborn and Child Photographer serving the Virginia, DC, Maryland areas and beyond.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Postpartum Depression & Photography: Looking Back

If you, or someone you know, may be suffering from Postpartum Depression (PPD), please reach out to your health professional or Postpartum Support International


There is something that I often bring up that catches some people off guard when discussing why there are benefits to having photos taken of your newborn or infant.

“Have you experienced or think you’re at risk for Postpartum Depression?”  

I don’t think we’re at a healthy point in our society where we are yet educated to really understand how to prepare for PPD before it’s actually experienced, so I understand that the timing of this topic (typically when someone is expecting) can seem off. However, having experienced many new moms walk through my studio doors with a familiar look in their eye is just one way I see the correlation between what these women think they’ve hired me to photograph and what I know I need to capture.

One of the most beautiful mothers I’ve ever photographed, in the midst of her postpartum depression hell.

One of the most beautiful mothers I’ve ever photographed, in the midst of her postpartum depression hell.

For one woman, Lorena of Motherhood Unfiltered, our newborn session together would be more impactful and expansive than I could ever imagine. In her blog post, THE TRUTH BEHIND THE PHOTO: POSTPARTUM DEPRESSION REALIZATION Lorena writes,

“...felt so guilty. I had a healthy, beautiful baby boy for fucks sake. Why the hell was I crying?  I kept blaming it on the baby blues….I felt miserable, disconnected, and started having dark feelings that I was embarrassed to tell anyone about.”
— Lorena of Motherhood Unfiltered

After working through her recovery and reflecting back on that time, Lorena now says, “I am definitely very grateful we captured the pictures. I definitely had times of happiness but I just felt covered by a dark cloud until Lennox was about 6 weeks.” It’s been through conversations with other women as well that they are able to look back on these pictures with their brand new babies and remember, if just for the slightest of moments, that there truly was beauty in the storm.

Follow along with Lorena and Lennox on the website Motherhood Unfiltered

Postpartum Depression - PPD - can steal any remembrance of joy, or even a simple moment of calmness, you may have experienced during the first few weeks/months after delivery.

Postpartum Depression - PPD - can steal any remembrance of joy, or even a simple moment of calmness, you may have experienced during the first few weeks/months after delivery.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

The Best Time to Hire a Photographer

Communication is a practice I not only hold dear to me in my personal life, but in my Photography business as well. I recognize that hiring a Professional Photographer is not something people do on a regular basis, but that each business is often run so differently that the ‘rules’ can easily change.

A very common question I receive is, ‘When should I hire a Photographer?’ No matter if you are looking for a Photographer for maternity, birth, newborn, baby, children, or family, my answer is pretty much the same across the board.

The Baby Whisperer - Alexandria Newborn Photographer

The Baby Whisperer - Alexandria Newborn Photographer

I think the best way to look at this is before you hire anyone, first jot down some basics:

  • What am I looking to have photographed?

  • When?

  • When I look at photos of a similar photographed people, are there similar things I love? Black and white, lots of style, candid, etc?

  • What is my budget?

  • How important is this to me?

You don’t have to spend much time on these questions, whatever comes quickly to mind. It’s no secret that there are a many options to choose from regarding photography, so knowing a little more about what your specific desires are will help you narrow down your options right off the bat.

After that, reach out to a few Photographers you like, share your list if you’re comfortable (they should be able to honestly agree if they can meet your expectations), and then ask to speak with them a bit more. If you have children, does that Photographer seem to be good with kids? Are you a private person that needs your Photographer to have a calming presence? If you have a million questions, will they be happy to patiently answer each one for you or are you simply part of an assembly line of other clients?

Infant Snuggles - Alexandria Birth Photographer

Infant Snuggles - Alexandria Birth Photographer

Going back to the original question, I would say it’s never too early to being looking for, talking to, or meeting with the person you think is best for you. Once you are comfortable and you are confident your needs will be met, that is the best time to hire your Photographer.

If you think you may be hiring a Photographer in the future and would like to chat more, please reach out to me! I’d love to talk about what you have coming up and how you can best be served.

Xo

Teresa

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

The Power in Thank You

When someone gives you a gift, after it’s been unwrapped and before you put it to use, you typically:

  • Recognize the gift

  • Pause

  • Recognize the thoughtfulness that went into the gift

  • Thank whomever for the gift before putting the gift into action

So as women, mothers, children, sisters...why aren’t we doing this with the gifts we’ve been given at birth, our own creation?

Like anyone, there’s only so much to see of me; we can only project a certain amount of our abilities and personality, while the rest lies deep inside. However, it was around this this time last year that I hired a fellow Birth Photographer, Ashley Diamond Siegert of Fig Mint Photography, as a mentor. I’m sure she said it more than once, but it is one specific instance that she said to me that stood out more than anything else: ‘Teresa, you need a break. Like, a serious break. You need to get out, disconnect, and reset. Now.’

Kids in Action - Oahu Children Photographer

Kids in Action - Oahu Children Photographer

Of course I had friends and family say similar things to me from time to time but I think the reason why this felt different to me was because rather than someone in my industry trying to encourage me to do better by doing more, Ashley was telling me something more important - and, to be honest, difficult. By pausing, resting, I could do more - because I was about to choose to do none of it.

Ashley was right, but resetting decades of the fight just to keep my head above water wasn’t going to be easy. Then, suddenly, Oahu came calling. A gift that consisted of forcing myself to be still, breathe, appreciate the magnitude of ‘small’ details that went into my day as a business owner, Photographer, and Artist.

I realize now just one of the many ways I have been disrespectful to myself, my energy, and my birth given gifts has been underappreciating it all, almost intentionally. Just like I was raised to be appreciative of others, a learned process, I need to extend the same gratitude not just to myself, but to what created me.

So, women, sisters, mothers, daughters, teens, and caretakers, I invite you to begin appreciating yourself with me. Write down your ‘gifts’ and when you recognize yourself using them, give the same gratitude you would give others:  

  • Recognize the gift

  • Pause

  • Recognize the thoughtfulness that went into the gift

  • Thank whomever for the gift before putting the gift into action

xo

Teresa

Slowly recognizing to instill confidence and knowledge into my children also involves allowing them to take breaks and ‘breathe’ from day to day stresses. Kids in Oahu

Slowly recognizing to instill confidence and knowledge into my children also involves allowing them to take breaks and ‘breathe’ from day to day stresses. Kids in Oahu

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Less is More

In Hawaii, one of my biggest impressions on the culture is the magnitude and importance of details or small acts. This was refreshing to me, not as a new concept, but rather one that I feel was organically ingrained in me, only to be ‘taught out’.

Having been on the mainland for several weeks now, getting back into my work has felt different in both good ways and bad; on the one hand, I am able to celebrate accomplishments of the creative work I do, understanding the significance in acts I before felt were not making me ‘busy/working hard’ enough.

Prepping Maternity photos into prints from an order before matting and framing them. Oahu Birth and Newborn Photographer

Prepping Maternity photos into prints from an order before matting and framing them. Oahu Birth and Newborn Photographer

On the other hand, recognizing the amount of effort, intention, intellect, and energy that goes into my work (a stark contrast to people who simply assume I pick up a camera, click the shutter, upload images, edit, and then call it a day) leaves me to understand the cost of what I do. Not just the physical cost of equipment, paper, and resources; but also the cost of education, research, passion, and ‘know-how’.

Going into the New Year, I’m grateful for this perspective. A time of year to evaluate not only what I give, but what I receive that makes me give my best. I think this comes at a time where I’ve been on the brink of considering how important, or not important, my work is, if my contribution to others is as valuable as I hope it to be, and if it’s all been in vain.

Artists don’t simply ‘have a knack’ for what they do. We don’t just think something will ‘look pretty’, slap something together in 5/50/497 minutes, and call it a day. Just like you, I read books on business, take classes to further educate myself, calculate each step to consider how it will benefit the bottom line, and strive to succeed.

I hope, in saying all of this, you find similarities of value within yourself - or, recognize some of the intention and accomplishment that had perhaps been overlooked in others. For those of us who work hard, I think it’s safe to say that the desire for or quality of what we produce may be up for debate, but that our drive to get there is unquestionable. If we seek to understand a little more of the journey others have taken, we can not only learn from them but help others succeed along the way.

Not often seen when completing a order from a pregnancy session. D.C. Birth and Newborn Photographer

Not often seen when completing a order from a pregnancy session. D.C. Birth and Newborn Photographer

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Birth Photography: Is It Right for You? (Part III)

A Three Part Series Part III

To conclude this short series on Birth Photography, I would love to address some of the (many) questions we receive in the industry. If you think I’ve missed one, I would love to know - let’s keep the conversation going!

Birth Photography in Maryland, DC, and Virginia

Birth Photography in Maryland, DC, and Virginia

Birth Photography, Newborn Photography, & Hospital Photography: What’s the Difference?

There are certainly a lot of choices when it comes to Photography, no matter the occasion; to be honest, it can be pretty overwhelming and unless you are ‘in the know’ you may not even be sure what you really want.

To put it simply:

Newborn Photography would be having someone photograph your newborn(s) shortly after birth, usually between 5-10 days old (we will cover why that young in a later post). These session can be in a studio or in your own home, posed or not.

Hospital or ‘Fresh’ Photography generally refers to a Photographer coming to where you have given birth at within 24-48 hours. If you are interested in capturing documentary or ‘lifestyle’ images during these first precious hours, this may be a good choice for you.

Birth Photography often captures the time when active labor starts, through the birth, and a short time after the birth. Contrary to initial thought, it may or may not involve photos of pushing, depending on what each client wants. Strength, love, and bonding tends to be the focus of these photographs.

Doulas, Midwives, and Family during a home birth in Maryland

Doulas, Midwives, and Family during a home birth in Maryland

Why Would Anyone Want Birth Photography?

There are MANY reasons why people choose to hire a Birth Photographer, there are just a few:

  • Some people would rather have a more intimate birth experience without family or friends in the room, while some may want their family and friends to be free to focus their energy on supporting you.

  • Similar to a wedding, this may be a be a special, emotional, or spiritual moment for you and your new family.

  • You would like to make sure, after all of your hard work, that you are able to look back and see what your birth journey really looked like and the beauty of it.

How is Birth Photography beneficial?

Birth Photography can be extremely beneficial, not only as a reminder to yourself how amazing you are but also to remember the positive experience of having given birth.

Birth Photography in Times of Distress

Unfortunately, not every pregnancy will progress the same. If you are experiencing a pregnancy that has complicated circumstances surrounding, please know that you and your baby are just as important. I encourage you to reach out to your birth team as to how Birth Photography may be beneficial to your healing process.

Laboring in Annapolis, Maryland at a Birthing Center

Laboring in Annapolis, Maryland at a Birthing Center

Will having a Birth Photographer make it feel as though my room is too ‘crowded’?

That is something only you can decide but also one of the reasons why I insist on spending a good amount of time getting to know my birth clients before the birth. If I feel that my presence is going to be anything other than subtle, calming, or positive, I may even suggest another Photographer in the industry that would bring a different energy to your environment. At the end of the day, you having a positive, healthy birth is my top priority.

How much does Birth Photography typically cost?

It really depends. Experience, talent, and time are just a few items that go into how Photographers price themselves. I once had a client say to me, ‘It’s like you’re a Wedding Photographer - but on call for weeks at a time.’ Which is so true! Different regions will also present their own range of cost but I would generally expect to pay between $1,200 - $3,000.

* * *

Have more questions? I would love to answer them! Never hesitate to reach out to a Photographer to simply discuss what your options are, how you may be able to work together, and see who may be the best fit for you. There are many of us who truly want to see you well taken care of and have your best interest at heart.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this series and follow along with future posts.

Birth Photography, like the actual maternity and labor, has less to do with one specific moment and more about a story of strength, surrender, and everything in between.

Birth Photography, like the actual maternity and labor, has less to do with one specific moment and more about a story of strength, surrender, and everything in between.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Birth Photography: Is It Right for You? (Part II)

A Three Part Series Part II

Birth Story, Annapolis, Maryland

Birth Story, Annapolis, Maryland

One of the top three questions I receive in regards to Birth Photography (especially from soon to be Dad’s) is, ‘Who in the world would want to see these photos?! I’m certainly not posting these on our Holiday Cards!’

If you promise to keep reading and allow me to explain, I’ll tell you a little secret: Maybe you will post a few photos for family and friends to see.

But let’s back up a bit.

Labor and Delivery can be beautiful. Birth Photography in Maryland

Labor and Delivery can be beautiful. Birth Photography in Maryland

First and foremost, whatever you choose to do with your images is up to you (and no, I will not be posting your intimate moments for the world to see. I can assure you, I would not still be in business if I made a habit out of breaking that kind of trust with my clients). Contrary to school pictures and formal wedding portraits, these moments are a gift to yourself. No one else. This is an opportunity for you to focus on what your body needs to do during labor, your partner to focus on your needs, and for you to look back at it all with a clear mind and a positive outlook of your own, personal miracle.

Whether you have a vaginal, c-section, hospital, vbac, or home birth, your mind is going to be on strength of your body and the health of your newborn baby - it is by no means a selfish or ‘weird’ desire to remember the details surrounding the love you have created.

Now, having said all of this, let me get back to posting your Birth Photography images on your Holiday Cards (yes, we are allowed to have a sense of humor in the Birth World).

When it comes to how you give birth, you have an abundance of choices: Give birth at home or hospital? Medication or no medication? Doula, Midwife, OBGYN? Water, woods, or bed?


That is why it is important to know when hiring a Birth Photographer, you also have many choices.

Family bonding after birth. Birthing Center in Maryland

Family bonding after birth. Birthing Center in Maryland

Do some of my clients want every single detail - and I mean, ALLLLLLLL the details - of their birth story documented? Yes; and they are beautiful. But do I also have clients who simply want the labor and immediate post delivery photographed? Absolutely; and they are beautiful. The bottom line is, everyone’s birth journey is just as important and special.

Because there are so many choices, feelings, and ‘backup plans’ involved in birth, is one of the reasons I spend so much time talking with my clients before hand. We discuss comfort levels, birth plans, expectations, and boundaries. I also make sure your birth team - especially your partner - is supportive of my being there.

Whether you are new to the idea of Birth Photography, considering if it is right for you, or simply curious to know more, I encourage you to reach out to multiple people in the birth world (such as Maryland State Doulas), on your birth team, or myself. In the meantime, please join me on FAQ Fridays where we will be discussing Birth Photography, in addition to newborn, self care, and other life topics surrounding women and motherhood.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Birth Photography: Is It Right for You? (Part I)

Birth Photography: Is It Right for You?

A Three Part Series

Doulas during birth outside of Baltimore, Maryland

Doulas during birth outside of Baltimore, Maryland

PART I

Birth Photography has been creating a lot of buzz lately but did you know it’s actually been around for a number of years?

It was almost a decade ago when I was preparing to give birth to my second child. Another Photographer friend of mine (B. Billick Photography of Kentucky) mentioned the possibility of photographing my daughter’s arrival. I had never heard of the concept before but I knew I was in, always willing to try something new in the name of art.

The concept was fresh to both of us and with her living 6 hours away we weren’t quite sure how to iron out the logistics (my husband was in the Army at the time, deployed through the pregnancy, and we were nowhere near family or friends). I adored my OBGYN at the time and had no qualms bringing it up to him: “Would there be any issue with my friend coming in to photograph the birth?”

It was almost an instant, “Sure.” Then, “Wait...is this a friend you want in the room who will happen to take photos? Or are you actually hiring a Photographer? This definitely isn’t the time for that - you aren’t going to want to document what is going on down there.”

Oh.

Looking back, it’s certainly not as though I think his reaction is odd or inappropriate; I know many people have the same initial thought. Having said that, do I regret not going through with it? 110%

How I birthed my three children is another story for another time (hint: I would do it differently) and what I wouldn’t do to have that moment documented when my daughter and I saw one another for the first time. The expression of joy on my husbands face. How we smiled at one another when it was confirmed that everyone was healthy.

Postpartum and happy. Baltimore, Maryland birth center

Postpartum and happy. Baltimore, Maryland birth center

Just like the birthing process is so much more than pushing, Birth Photography is much more than the initial thought of medical styled pictures being published for the world to see. In this series of posts, we’ll talk though the thought process, appeal, and myths of Birth Photography. Maybe you are simply curious, maybe your spouse isn’t on board just yet, or maybe your a health provider who would like to learn more. No matter who you are, I hope this topic is both informative and thought provoking.

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Encourage, Empower, Embrace, Enlighten

I’ve never been one to be big on New Year’s resolutions. But as I’ve spent the last several days focusing on organizing, purging, and refocusing on what’s important to me, I can’t help but be excited for what this new year is about to bring. Certainly influenced by my time in the Hawaiian culture, it’s been wonderful and refreshing to see positive changes organically happen rather then going against the grain.

While many focus on change with each New Year, I am resolving to do the opposite: Embrace myself.

Birth Photography isn’t always the medical documentation that people initially think of. D.C.

Birth Photography isn’t always the medical documentation that people initially think of. D.C.

One of the biggest lessons I learned through the community, island, and people of Oahu is that I’m not alone in my passions, my thoughts, or my dreams. I’ve actually been trying to mold all of what makes me ‘Me’ into everyone else’s ideals, rules, or standards. I’m starting to wonder if this has been the broken link the entire time.


Having said that, I have started each new project over the last several asking myself:

  • Does this involve a quality product?

  • Does it empower, embrace, or enhance women?

Bonding with Baby after Birth. Washington, DC

Bonding with Baby after Birth. Washington, DC

Commiting to these two goals is my own sort of project, and yet one that never was absent. It shows in my Birth Photography, Newborn Sessions, Breastfeeding Portraits, and Child Photos. In the next several weeks, I’m excited to collaborate even more with both Maryland State Doulas and Newborn Sleep co. Come March, you’ll see me at the Maryland Families for Safe Birth expo Baltimore Birth Festival (keep up do date on the event with this link), showcasing the gentle side of Birth Photography you may not have seen before. Fingers crossed I’ll be making an appearance in Oahu again this spring.

Like I said, I’m not usually one to mark January as a ‘time for renewal’...but coincidently, I think it fits well this year.

See you soon!

xo

Teresa

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Island Living | Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu

Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu is a personal blog series written by Maryland Artist and Photographer, Teresa Robertson. Gifted the opportunity to reside in O‘ahu with her family for 3 months, Teresa wanted to provide herself and others a way to not take this gift for granted and ensure that her experience was one to learn from, reflect on, and teach others. Through these words, she hopes to do just that.


Someone recently asked me why I haven’t been posting as much about our time in Oahu as originally promised.  The truth is, it’s often on my mind but because I’m not a ‘Writer’, part of the reason is my intimidation, knowing I won’t do the island, and its people, the justice deserved.

Jen Dombrowski speaks during the first annual  Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month Walk  on Magic Island, Oahu.

Jen Dombrowski speaks during the first annual Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month Walk on Magic Island, Oahu.

We’ve been fairly busy out here, much more than I’m sure I give us credit for. Pretty on par for what I would be doing on the mainland. The first few weeks were honestly a bit hard for me to get my footing, as I wrestled my unrealistic ideas of what daily life would be like here with 2 additional people depending on me, trying to tackle my personal goals at the same time, and live a bunch of life in as little time as possible, only to be stalled by limited transportation and my own frustration that I haven’t been ‘enough’.

The biggest reason for not keeping up has been forgetting my who my audience is and why I intended to keep up this blog in the first place. It occured to me shortly after we arrived that what I would be doing here is exactly what I would be doing at home - mom-ing, working, volunteering, investing in human interest stories, finding out more in regards to people’s culture, how policies and laws have protected and destroyed precious land, resources, and heritage.

Basically, everything that I am asked, told, or ignored for talking about. So why continue a series of writing that no one will read, anyway?

Locals strike for reasonable pay and healthcare.  https://www.unitehere5.org/

Locals strike for reasonable pay and healthcare. https://www.unitehere5.org/

Because someone will. And it matters. If there is one thing I am becoming aware of here is how much I belong and my voice is still needed, my children will be able to do more than me if I guide them and we deserve to feel nurtured in our calling to love and support others. Maybe one of you would like to join us, as well.

xo

Teresa

Lei making class with the talented Meleana Estes http://meleana.com/

Lei making class with the talented Meleana Estes http://meleana.com/


Aloha au ia ‘oe
— I love you

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

On the Island | Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu

Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu is a personal blog series written by Maryland Artist and Photographer, Teresa Robertson. Gifted the opportunity to reside in O‘ahu with her family for 3 months, Teresa wanted to provide herself and others a way to not take this gift for granted and ensure that her experience was one to learn from, reflect on, and teach others. Through these words, she hopes to do just that.


Portrait of the evening sky on the west side of the island.

Portrait of the evening sky on the west side of the island.

Someone once said to me, ‘Ah, the battered soul of an Artist.’ I totally get that.

If you’ve read along with my previous posts, I was genuinely (not forcefully) looking forward to multiple things we’d return to in Maryland. We have long searched for a place we loved, found friends, appreciated culture, and could be proud to raise a family.

But this feels like home.

Our family, with it’s travels, doesn’t really ‘do’ vacations. Last time we were in Oahu, we never even had a ‘beach day’. Read that again. No pedi’s, no rental gear, no shopping sprees, no massages.

Hikes, public bus transportation, local grocery stores, and hideaways? Yes.

In my first 24 hours, I’m not sure what to do with these feelings. I know what I’m ‘supposed’ to do: relax, have fun, carpe diem; But I know the heartache of leaving people and places I love all too well and the instinct to dive right in to places and learn day to day life routines is too strong.

In addition to learning the heartbeat of the island, it is such a welcomed relief and sense of peace to feel like I am in a place with like minded people with similar values vs. going against the grain. Desire to protect this land, assume good intentions in others, honor their roots are pretty common themes and understandings.

Yesterday one of my favorite quotes was from an older gentleman who was educating us after snorkeling, ‘Ah! You saw Parrotfish - male and female. Interesting fact: If the dominant male Parrotfish dies, the dominant female will turn herself into a male within days. In order to protect the nature of breeding and ensuring the community survives, she will turn herself back into a female if no longer needed. None of them gets all up in arms about it. They don’t have political debates. They just let each other be and work together.’

Like I said: Home.

xo

Teresa


Fast or speedy
— Wikiwiki

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Set. | Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu

Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu is a personal blog series written by Maryland Artist and Photographer, Teresa Robertson. Gifted the opportunity to reside in O‘ahu with her family for 3 months, Teresa wanted to provide herself and others a way to not take this gift for granted and ensure that her experience was one to learn from, reflect on, and teach others. Through these words, she hopes to do just that.


Sunset on the west side near Pōkaʻī Bay Beach Park.

Sunset on the west side near Pōkaʻī Bay Beach Park.

Only 2 more days of school! Only 2 more days of work! The countdown to the adventure begins!

Let’s GO! GO! GO!

xo

Teresa


Fast or speedy
— Wikiwiki

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Ready? | Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu

Aloha Calling - A Limited Life in O‘ahu is a personal blog series written by Maryland Artist and Photographer, Teresa Robertson. Gifted the opportunity to reside in O‘ahu with her family for 3 months, Teresa wanted to provide herself and others a way to not take this gift for granted and ensure that her experience was one to learn from, reflect on, and teach others. Through these words, she hopes to do just that.


Hiking through the island. O‘ahu, Hawaii

Hiking through the island. O‘ahu, Hawaii

Today is the first day it has really started to hit me that we are leaving and the ‘how am I supposed to sleep from excitement?!’ feelings have started creeping in. I find myself planning my work and social life beyond our leave date in Maryland, only to back up several steps to remember what is about to be our new normal.

I am hoping to be able to work a bit while we are on the island and plan some Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Q&A sessions to recruit a small team while I am there (side note: for those who have been following along, I am secretly thrilled that our New York City, DC, Atlanta, and Orlando speaking commitments for NILMDTS has been pushed to spring, which means I can still attend!).

What I haven’t done is stay true to my commitment to start learning more about the culture of Hawaii. I know I should give myself a bit of grace that I’ve been wrapping up clients, last minute birth and newborn sessions, prior commitments, packing, and...life. But even one word a day shouldn’t be so hard. Joining a local social media group, finding some hidden gems, local shops, etc.

It’s not the end of the world or even something to stress about. I do think it’s worth noting, however, how easy it is to be so wrapped up in our own sense of ‘normal’ to forget to be educated on what exists beyond our bubbles.

Note to self: Remember to find out where the ‘Native Lands Matter’ shirt originated.

xo

Teresa


Good fortune, blessing
— Pōmaika`i

Teresa Robertson is a Photography-degree, award-winning, published Photographer specializing in all things women & birth. Maternity, Birth, Newborn, Children, or Family, she proudly serves multiple locations, including D.C., Atlanta, Michigan, Orlando, and Oahu. Her Fine Art series ‘Mele Ma’i: Procreation Chants’ can be found here. For information on Bereavement Photography, please visit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep