Our Beautiful Life | Lucie’s Birth | Mediclinic Louis Leipoldt, Cape Town

I met Christelle, Tron and their two lively boys at Elandsbaai for their maternity shoot. We (my three kids, hubby and I) were at a family wedding at Muisbosskerm the day before and made a small detour to the sleepy seaside village on our way back where we met the Van Wyks.

Although the the weather was not playing along, I had so much fun with this vibrant and energetic family of four (soon to be five) on the quiet beach. No one took themselves too seriously and the boys were so excited about their new baby sister’s eminent arrival.  They were delighted that they could share her name (a secret at that stage) with me by writing it with chalk on the road! And so capturing their journey to meeting Lucie, the first princess to the family, began!

Please note:  All content shared with family’s permission, but copyright protected.  So feel free to share the love but note that you are not allowed to reproduce or publish without the photographer and parents’ permission.

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Healthcare & the Arts: Humanising Birth

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Finally the postman had an A4 envelope with DO NOT BEND on the front in his hand. My Medicine & the Arts Certificate from UCT! I recently completed a course on the subject matter and as birth photographer am so excited about the possibilities this new field holds for future healthcare students, but also students of the humanities (including artists, writers etc.)

For me Medicine and the Humanities is about integration. It encourages an integrated observation, interpretation and response to the health and wellbeing of people.

An integrated observation meaning that the body, mind and soul are observed through various disciplines, using various tools (including but not limited to technology and science).

An integrated interpretation meaning that we gain knowledge or insight into a patient or person by interpreting and in some instances ‘humanising’ raw information /data presented by that patient within an integrated context (this is where other factors like socio-economics, culture, religion, age, demographics etc. all play a role).

An integrated response meaning that we express our insight in an integrated manner using once again various disciplines – focusing on perhaps on the most relevant.

Here is my practical example as birth photographer: When a mother requests me to photograph her birth there are various things I have to observe: how she feels about birth & her body, what her health care provider says about her physical abilities to give birth, what her partner feels, cultural beliefs in terms of the process. As birth photographer I should understand how to interpret this information in a manner that will allow me to capture the parents’ unique journey whilst holding the birth space with empathy, understanding and respect for both the healthcare but also human aspects of birth and what it means for those particular parents.

I think Dr. Bernard Lown summarises it well in “The lost art of Healing” when he says: “…caring without science is a well-intentioned kindness, but not medicine. …Science without caring empties medicine of healing…”

Opposition between Science and Humanities in Medicine is dangerous. As a mother I know how traumatic medical intervention during birth can be and the scarring that can occur when there is a complete disregard for the emotional journey birth holds.  At the same time I have often been incredibly grateful for the option in risky and life-threatening situations.  Collaboration is needed without minimising the importance of both knowledges.  It should never become an ‘either or’ situation.

As birth photographer I often find myself within the birth space, observing the delicate balancing act between the safety and physical wellbeing of a mother and her baby on the one side and their spiritual or emotional wellbeing on the other. Unfortunately it often boils down to an either or situation, but imagine if the two could be integrated effectively? Progress has been made in this regard: “gentle C-sections”; alternative pain management; allowing SABPA accredited birth photographers to capture birth memories; encouraging skin to skin; allowing doulas into the labour wards AND theatre and delayed cord-clamping; empowering parents with information and allowing them to make choices and encouraging and respecting (as far as possible) parents’ birth plans are but a couple examples where medicine and the humanities are being integrated effectively, but more can be done to move away from the view that birth is always just a ‘medical condition or procedure’ and embrace the emotional and very natural aspects of the birth journey.

It’s only the beginning! I can’t wait to see what this field will look like in 5 years’ time!

 

Life is Beautiful | Zak’s Birth | Mediclinic Louis Leipoldt, Cape Town

Louise is a trauma nurse and friend second to none. Her husband, Vic, is a paramedic. They see and work with people when they are at their most vulnerable. Help them. Hold their hands. They are very special people indeed and witnessing the moment they fell in love with their first-born, Zak, surrounded by medical friends and even family (Louise’s mom is a nurse too), was breathtaking.

Capturing Zak’s birth re-affirmed to me that life is indeed very beautiful and it is moments of connection and love like these that we want to remember and share forever.  Thank you to Louise and Vic for allowing me to share their beautiful birth story.

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Canal Walk Gift Cards for You & A Friend | Love Alda Cape Town Birth Photographer

Canal-Walk-Voucher-PromotionReceive 2 x R200 Canal Walk Shopping Centre Gift Cards, one for you and one for a friend.  All you have to do to stand a chance is:

1. Like my facebookpage on www.facebook.com/lovealdabirthphotographer

2. Tell a friend about Love Alda Birth Photography

If your friend books a Love Alda Birth Photography Package between 21 Nov 2014 and 1 March 2015 and cites the code: “birthbuddies001#yourname” upon confirmation, she will receive 2 R200 gift cards – one for her and one for you.

This is a Love Alda promotion and not affiliated to Facebook or Canal Walk.

Terms & Conditions:  No cash alternatives are offered. No part of the gift is exchangeable for cash or any other gift.  Gift cards may only be claimed by the client confirming the booking and not by the person responsible for referring the client.  The responsibility lies with the client to provide the person who referred her with one of the gift cards.  To qualify for the gift cards, clients who book must cite the code “birthbuddies001” with the person’s name who referred them, plus that person has to be a Love Alda Facebook fan who shared this promotion via Facebook with a #birthbuddies. All free gifts are subject to availability, non-transferable and there are no cash alternatives. Entrants agree to be bound by these rules.

 

Our Moment of Perfection | Su-Alét’s Birth Story | Mediclinic Louis Leipoldt, Cape Town

Photographing the moments before and of Su-Alét’s birth was one of the highligths of my career as birth photographer for so many reasons. The air sang in anticipation of this little girl’s birth and for a moment it felt like the whole world rejoiced at the sound of her first cry. Make sure you watch their beautiful slide show below – it includes photos and video.

There are just too many incredible, emotional moments to share, but some of my favourites are of emotional, nervous mom-to-be, Carli and of first time dad as he holds his little one.  There’s also a moment where Dr. Du Toit looks over to the happy parents just after she’s handed a screaming Su-Alét to them.  And of course – the grandparents’ reactions – had me in tears.

Almost-there-by-Love-Alda-capetown-birthphotographer [Read more…]

Although we could not be there | Cape Town Grandfather shares appreciation for Birth Photography

This letter from Cape Town Grandfather, Joep Joubert, to his first grandchild was so heartwarming to receive.  His gratitude for being able to share in those first moments, even though he could not be there himself meant so much.  This is why I do this.  What an incredible gift to fathers, mothers, grandparents, but ultimately the child who will one day see how much he or she was loved from those very first moments.

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Social Media Jungle: Staying Connected & Posted

It’s a social media jungle out there! Each new latest and greatest platform brings with it new possibilities, but also confusion – not to mention the waste of precious time which could have been spent chatting to your growing bump, planning your nursery, bonding with your newborn or playing with your kids!

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As a working mom of three, I know how valuable your time as a parent is.  I have therefore explored the vast social media landscapes out there to address your need a) for useful maternal, birth and newborn photography information and b) to create and share beautiful maternal memories by developing various streamlined vehicles to stay posted and connected without have to trawl for information.  Each medium is unique and offers quality content, but I would like to encourage you to pick only one or two that suits your needs best and like / subscribe to those.

Here they are (simply click):

1.  Love Alda Cape Town Maternal, Birth & Newborn Photographer Blog (to subscribe simply type in your email address in the Subscribe
window in the right hand bar of this page)

2. Love Alda Cape Town Birth Photographer Facebook Page (note that seeing all post updates is not a given with Facebook anymore)

3. Love Alda Cape Town Maternal, Newborn & Family Photographer Facebook Page

4. Love Alda Cape Town Birth Photographer Vimeo Channel for birth story slide show productions to licensed music

5. Love Alda Cape Town Birth Photographer Youtube Channel – for birth story slide show productions to licensed music (will include
advertisements which I can’t control)

6. Love Alda Maternal, Birth & Newborn Photographer Pinterest

7. Love Alda Maternal, Birth & Newborn Photographer Instagram

8. Love Alda Cape Town Maternal, Birth & Newborn Photographer Google+

9. BIRTH Magazine by Love Alda (online seasonal magazine)

#capetownbirthphotographer #socialmedia #capetownmoms

 

 

Love Alda | Master Birth Photographer | Cape Town

Birth photography is slowly capturing the imagination of South African parents.  As a mother of three & a master birth photographer in Cape Town, my goal is to provide you with breathtaking maternity, birth & newborn imagery to kindle & share memories of a life-changing time that goes by too quickly.

I am a Co-Founder & the Chair Person of the South African Birth Photographers Association, which means I specialise in on-call birth photogpraphy & that I work towards the highest standards & level of integrity.

Although based in Cape Town, I am available for destination births throughout South Africa.

With a heart for the birth environment & a deep respect for the privacy of my clients, I capture those precious first moments at home or at the hospital in a discreet & caring manner. I am also available for maternity, newborn & family sessions.

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My Natural & C-Section Birth Packages include:

  • a birth plan
  • a mini nursery shoot
  • on call service
  • recording of labour / moment leading up to birth, the actual birth, as well as first bonding moments via photography & some videography
  • a birth announcement package (custom-designed same-day MMS birth announcement, as well as 20 printed birth announcement postcards)
  • birth story slide production with licensed music

Due to the on-call nature of birth photography I only take on a limited amount of clients a month, so early booking is recommended.

To capture the day you meet your baby for the first time contact me at [email protected]