BE INSPIRED birth session | feature by Liane Bourke

Tell us a bit about your approach to the work you do, your time in the business and a few personal facts about you.

My business is in its second year so I really am still starting out in a lot of ways. My work centers around celebrating motherhood and in particular, birthing women. Having a birth photographer means both parents can be present to witness the birth of their baby and also have a keepsake to help them reflect on their experience. To me the heirloom I’m hoping to pass down is more than photos, but actually a sense of empowerment in regards to birth. When I’m not taking photos, you can find me at the local coffee shop eating sweet treats or visiting the dog park with my husband and our French Bulldog Professor.

What makes you the most nervous during a session?

To be honest, I don’t get nervous at a birth. I always feel way too caught up in the moment. I think this is what Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi refers to as creative flow and maybe because birth is so much bigger than me. My nerves arrive when I get home and it’s time to pop that SD card into the computer and see whether I did the birthing woman justice and translated the essence of her experience.

What about this session was most memorable?

After the intensity of the moment had calmed, mum and dad had a second to catch their breath and it was time to make some phone calls to announce baby Silver Lou’s arrival. When asked how the birth went dad looked at mum and he said:  ‘she was a warrior’ and the look of pure gratitude and joy on her face will stay with me forever. She just absolutely gushed with pride and it was incredible to be a part of that intimacy.

Were there any hurdles?

There are always hurdles when it comes to Birth Photography because being on call is hard! Not having the occasional wine with dinner, going to bed each night wondering whether you will be woken with a phone call, carrying my two cameras with me wherever I go and to a certain extent being tethered to my house.
This third time mama had on-again-off-again early labor for the three weeks prior to baby Silver finally arriving. This birth was also approximately an hour and 15 mins away from my house so I felt like I was on high alert. I made it with just ten minutes to spare and I slept SO well that night!

Your best photographer/session advice?
Breathe, slow down +  and repeat a mantra I borrowed from Olympian Liesel Jones  ‘this is my office, I know what to do’

What is one goal for your business ?

Funny you ask, being featured on the Dear Photographer blog has been one of my business goals! Next up, the magazine, the idea of seeing my work in a print publication makes my heart so incredibly happy.

What gear was used to achieve these?

I use a Fujifilm XT-2 with both a 23mm 1.4 and a 16mm 1.4 – highly, highly recommended! I love my Fuji.

Any presets used or hand editing?

I use presets as a guide and then edit from there.  I start with Tribe Archipelago LXC03 for my colour images and Birth Becomes Her for my Black and White images.


I’m Liane, I live in Melbourne Australia with my Husband and our French Bulldog Professor.  I’m currently working on an interview series called ‘Exceptionally Ordinary: tales of everyday magic’ where I interview women on creativity, ritual, family + community.


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