Seething pain dominates her body with each contraction. A few seconds seem stretching to forever and she chooses to shut her eyes. Some more time, just a little bit more and it will be all over. She leans forward with beads of sweat trickling down her forehead and a smile of relief spread across her tired face. All her wealth, her newborn baby, is wrapped in a white cloth.
This monumental day and its precious moments deserve to be documented and captured, professionally so. And Urshita Saini is ready to capture all the action just like a skilled predator.
Sorry, what photographer?!
Delhi-born Urshita is, to many people’s shock, a birth and maternity photographer. The 28-year-old is marking her name in the high grounds of professional photography, capturing the most beautiful phase of womanhood. Peppy, talkative and a confident artist, her dream was always to bring about a change in people’s caged and traditional mindset.
Urshita completed her high school education from Delhi Public School, Dwarka. She graduated from Delhi University with a bachelor’s degree in commerce and then pursued law for four years from Meerut University.
Her ambition to become a photographer took her to Delhi School of Photography where she polished her skills and studied technicalities of photography and camera. But little did she know her passion for extra-curricular would lead her to stumble upon her dream.
While working on a piece for Chiiz magazine she was assigned birth photography, a genre she instantly fell in love with.
Recollecting that moment, she tells KenFolios in an exclusive interview, “I was researching for the article I had to write and came across all the beautiful photographs and the artists behind them. They were doing something amazing and this was missing in India.”
It was that moment when she thought of taking this idea upon herself and decided to give it a shot. Before becoming a birth photographer, she was photographing weddings. “I did wedding photography for a brief period and it was a learning experience for me. But, something just didn’t click. I wanted to explore something different.”
Her first encounter with birth photography was one of the finest moments of her life, Urshita admits. Capturing the fine details, watching the newborn absorbing the life around and the charisma and happiness on the face of parents were awe-inspiring. Those tender moments that the family witnesses as a whole need to be captured.
“When the baby is born, everyone surrounds the little person and they drown in bliss. They are not in a state of mind where they would think of taking pictures or documenting the time. This calls for people like us who would devote to this task and use their professional skills to take the best pictures of birth,” Urshita tells KenFolios author.
But the road to success isn’t always a perfect one. When she started out with this idea, sharp criticism came her way. In India, birth is something people don’t often talk about and they suppose it is ideal for the women to stay hidden and out of people’s eye during pregnancy. It was a major challenge for Urshita to get people talking.
Her own family was in the dilemma of uncertainty as to whether this profession will work out for her or not. These clouds of doubt disappeared when she captured the birth of her nephew. Her photographs were convincing enough for her family to understand the importance her work.
Photography is a highly creative industry that has been male-dominated for decades. People here don’t appreciate girls working late in shady places and it’s something that gets sticky for the society. But Urshita’s confidence and utter belief in her abilities pushed her through these situations and today, her achievements are beyond amazement.
She is now the co-founder of Inflens, with her fiance Sahil Gupta and a team of talented photographers who works with her on the projects. This is all to say that that birth photography has the potential to be very powerful as photographers like Urshita are reshaping what birth looks like, and share that images in a way that hasn’t been done in the past.
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