Cape Town Birth Photographer »

There are few moments in life this fast paced, that take you this much by surprise. Where after the adrenaline high, you can’t believe it just happened to you. This is their story. Be sure to watch the video as well as browse through the photos as mom tells what happened from her perspective.

Ben’s parents were already at the hospital for an induction. Last checked, she was 2 cm dilated and not in active labour at all. The induction medication hadn’t even begun. I normally come when a client is in active labour as this early period could be slowed down by my presence. I texted with dad who told me we would touch base in an hour. I texted to see how things were going. Heard nothing for about 10 minutes and just had this gut feeling. I threw on my scrubs. My gear was already at the house and my childcare had been called in. I knew it would be today just not sure when.

Dad texted back something like, “Doctor says complete.”

Utter disbelief. What was he talking about? She wasn’t even in labour. This was a first baby. Complete as in completely dilated and at a 10? Maybe dad wasn’t familiar with the terms.

I put my keys in my pocket.

He wrote back something like, “He says ready to push.”

I screamed at my childcare “I gotta go, bye, I’m walking out, you are on duty, bye” and walked right to the car. I was driving away a minute later.

The drive had my heart pumping like never before. I knew this could go either way, some first time moms push for one to two hours so I might have time. Some deliver with in a couple pushes. I parked in exactly 20 minutes from when I walked out my door (went back and checked all my text time stamps).

I ran up to maternity and heard a baby crying from a delivery room. My heart sank. I knew.

He was laying on her chest and it was the first natural birth that ever beat me to it!

This was a precipitous labor, which is defined as a labor that lasts no more than three hours from onset of regular contractions to delivery. Maybe you could call hers ultra-precipitous?

The room no less, was full of peace, and with in the first minute of being there I began shooting. The looks of disbelief and utter joy were plastered all over their faces.

I knew just because the moment of delivery was missed doesn’t mean there isn’t an incredible story unfolding right before my eyes that I was hired to capture. I really pride myself in being a storyteller not just a photographer who gets a few good shots. The story was there to be woven, to help the parents process, and for Ben to be celebrated… and I’m so glad they are delighted with the result. Mom wrote a bit about how she felt when I missed her birth here. An excerpt from that:

Watching the video and looking through the photos absolutely “restored” (for lack of a better word) that for me – even though you didn’t actually catch the before part on camera, it is woven into the story so well. I have also been thinking about what the whole process was like for my husband (poor guys – the focus is really mostly on us), and your photos have such a special way of showing things from his perspective as well. Continue reading here…

Ben’s parents have graciously allowed me to share their birth in part to glorify God publicly for his miraculous life. The images chosen, many that are not in the video, I selected almost all black and white because in this case, its just so visually stunning when laid together. In case you are wondering, my clients receive all of their images in colour and black & white for every session.


To Ben’s parents, the joy and graciousness you carry exudes from a deep place of knowing truth. What a gift your son has in having you both to raise him. Thank you for hiring me. I’m slightly terrified if you hire me again that I might just camp outside your house for a week.

To the hospital staff and Dr. Brandt at Netcare Blaauwberg Hospital, my sincerest thank you’s for letting me run in all out of breath and document their day. 

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  • Labikah Brenner

    Love your work!!! And thanks for teaching me the word to my births both are within 3hoirs from me leaving home to having them on my chestReplyCancel

Recently, I ran “cord theme series” only for you IG fans (you can follow me there) where I showed my best or most interesting cord images and explain a bit about the uniqueness of that cord or the challenges of getting the shot.

The umbilical cord is incredible. It supplies the fetus with oxygenated, nutrient-rich blood from the placenta. Conversely, the fetal heart pumps deoxygenated, nutrient-depleted blood through the umbilical arteries back to the placenta. (Disclaimer: I’m a professional birth photographer but not a medical professional, sources include Wikipedia and

In this image we see a umbilical cord with a rare “true knot”. I have actually only seen two of these in my career. True knots arise from fetal movements and are more likely to develop during early pregnancy, when relatively more amniotic fluid is present and greater fetal movement occurs.

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Oh the nerves I see parents go through as they bring their older child(ren) to meet the new baby. Understandably so!

Will it be a meltdown? It could be.

Will it be tears and jealousy? That might happen.

Will it be disinterest? Maybe!

But sometimes your heart just stops when THIS is their reaction.

She didn’t want the gift her new brother brought her… notice it laying off to the side, she wanted to see HIM. Meet the Family sessions like these are available as an add on to any birth package.


The emergence of the “mean girl” has given women a bad wrap in this modern day. Catty, unkind, and self focused is how many describe women. As a birth worker, I see the exact opposite. I see women who support each other, use believing words, who are tender, affirming in their touch, who celebrate not just the baby but the mother as well. May images like these live on for the baby girls of today to see when they grow up.


They married just down the coast and so its only appropriate that the next big chapter of their lives, we should shoot on the same stretch incredible coastline. Ironically, Carrie lost her veil due to wind at their wedding. Don’t miss the moment midway through the shoot when Errol lost his hat. After many the pondering and watching it bob in the waves, it was determined to be lost forever!

Carrie wanted a relaxed, non-cheesy shoot, which is exactly my style. Lets do classic images that you will love when your child is much older. Images that capture the love and affection of your relationship. These two brought the magic and the friendship. Together we created timeless images. Enjoy their sunset session, with the lit up Twelve Apostles behind them. I mean, that’s what’s amazing about shooting here…. incredible sunset one way. Turn around, and you have those mountains to work with!

Full maternity sessions like these are about an hour, multiple wardrobe changes if you’d like, and only available with a newborn combo package. I take on a very limited amount of these since I primarily specialize in births, but if you are interested, contact me for a quote. Carrie caught me just in time when I had a gap in my schedule and as you can see, she was thrilled did. Otherwise, a mini version is available complimentary with all my birth packages and can always be upgraded upon request.

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