the scene

the birth scene in Missoula- in Montana ebbs and flows. the popularity of the most transformative day in a women’s life disappoints me. but when equality between the sexes is still a struggle – women’s birth choices, resources and support and overall reverence is minimal- then how can I count on the niche of Birth photography?

Missoula Birth Photography

those that book, stay booked, INVEST and receive the visceral unparalleled gift of a BIRTH STORY– back into their hands, is a very small percentage compared to the population of expecting mamas. my clients would make a lovely case study.

I wonder if my clients have achieved within themselves and their relationship with their partner and the world- ownership of the concept of VALUE? Do my clients harness worth differently than others? Do my clients hold women and women’s health issues with a sense of utmost importance? Do my clients revere childbirth, life? Do my clients practice self love and self care dropping the binding restrictions of the culture at large? I can be most intuitive about these things but cannot rightfully assume them as facts.

What I do know about my clients. They never regret investing in me. My clients never regret having documentation of their child’s first or last breath. I know that my clients respect my on-call, my sacrifice, my skill, my eye, my heart, and my art.

missoula nicu twins bonding with mother

the why

I provide a visual connection to birth for a woman, her family, her baby and if she chooses her community.
I hand back to the birth warrior, raw visceral validation, a story to celebrate and heal by. Documentation to point ones finger at and see the shimmer in the growing babe’s eye.
I cannot simple define the why of a birth photographer; myself.
I hold space for the birth mama and family, I photograph in the most challenging of light on the most intense physiological female journey. Through my lens I look for the supple transformation of birthing skin, the endearing love of a partner and sharing of primal birth perseverance and surrender.
I am your storyteller. ~ Jenna Nord Birth Photographer- 

Who’s this?

I can dress down or dress up. Once I have my camera out, hospital staff takes notice. I am quick to make allies with the nurses. I will have more interaction with them than most of the obgyns. If the birth environment permits I always try to have a quick, kind, informative conversation with the lead nurse as to some of my client’s wishes. I always pose the wishes as reasonable requests under applicable circumstances. There is a quick team I need to form to be able to deliver for my clients. I can’t assume a position at the foot of the bed without communicating with a nurse or 3!

Once the obgyn enters the room I place my camera at my side and I usually sit if there is space. I wait to be introduced or the obgyn will ask the patient “who’s this?”, or I am directly addressed, typically with greetings like, “Oh I see you are a photographer. ” Whether I am introduced or I get to introduce myself, it is humble yet confident. Personally I love when my clients get the chance to introduce me – it validates that I am part of the team. The parents know it, the nurses know and customer satisfaction informs an obgyn. What really makes my day and my client’s as well, is when the doctor and I have report built on previous experiences. I am honored to say, a number of doctors know me and trust me in the birth space. One or two ( I won’t mention names) are familiar enough to chat photography and ask about my family. This is lovely and can also be awkward- I am working and we are there for the birthing person, but I try to navigate those times with a big smile.