The First Hello Project is a collaboration by a team of photographers in Sydney, Australia.

 
 
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It was late one night on a couch in Sydney, Australia, Bel and River started talking about bucket list moments in their photography journey.

Bel mentioned capturing her sister’s birth was one of the greatest highlights. It wasn’t long after that River was invited to photograph and document a birth. Riding the high of that emotional experience River and Bel began conversations about starting a birth photography business in order to give couples the stunning capture of their first hellos with their child. This is when The First Hello Project was born.

And so, together Bel and River, and their growing team, have had the privilege of documenting some of the most incredible First Hello moments in birthing suites and homes around the world. They truly love what they get to do, and more than anything, they love to celebrate life. 

“There is nothing quite like seeing a baby being born. It never leaves you. We often walk away feeling so privileged to have witnessed it. We are working in an environment where there is nothing staged or posed - just powerful, raw human emotion. We are constantly watching for the tear on the father’s face as he meets his child for the first time, or the overwhelming relief of the mother when she stops labouring. Joy is so evident to everyone in that room. We like to think of ourselves like a ‘fly on the wall’, capturing humanity’s story as it unfolds. 

"We believe photography can unlock the human heart. We as creatives challenge ourselves to be brave enough to step into those intimate spaces that some may shy away from and capture it. The world needs images that will set hearts on fire more than ever.”

— RIVER & BEL

 

 

Meet the Team

If you're interested in collaborating with us, send a sample of your work to hello@thefirsthelloproject.com.

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RIVER BENNETT

River has a passion for motherhood, humanity and the arts in all it's avenues. Her love affair for photography started after being handed a camera while her children were only babies. Capturing and documenting their lives made way for her to do the same for her clients. She is passionate about telling real life stories through powerful images.

River is the co-founder of The First Hello and the founder of thewolfpackmrs.com. She has extensive experience in photography, blogging, writing and speaking.

River lives in Sydney, Australia with her husband, Joel, and three boys, Zion, Rome & Knox.

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BEL PANGBURN

To Bel, life is just one grand adventure that needs to be captured. She's been found with a camera in her hand for over 10 years, working in many creative roles including photographer, graphic designer, illustrator, marketing/brand management and artist.

Becoming a mother herself, lit her heart on fire and has since fuelled her passion to photograph life in all its vivid colour and unscripted intensity.

Her photography work is showcased at triggerhappyimages.com, which she owns and operates, shooting a wide range of subjects. She is also the co-founder of The First Hello.

Bel lives in Sydney, Australia with her daughter, Sunday.

PHILIPPA BARTLEY

Philippa is a wedding photographer at philippaenid.com. She is also a full-time wife & a part-time nanny. She is a lover of adventure, rock climbing & pineapples! 

She loves being invited to tell people’s love stories, their intimate moments in life.

"I couldn’t have asked for a better job in this life. I love what I do & hope to capture your story."

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JORDANN WOOD

Jordann aims to be a translator of the beauty of our reality. Bringing something to the table that is not always seen. But is always there. She loves moments and people, colour and shadows, the simplest of days or the grandest to be had. To her being a photographer is not a hobby or a side project, it's who she is and it's her privilege, her biggest honour.

Jordann hails from North Carolina, USA but is now residing in Sydney, Australia and specialises in wedding and portrait photography at jordannwood.com. She is currently finishing off her Bachelors in Theology and is blessed with the most incredible family and friends.