Since the very moment that I decided I wanted to be a photographer, I knew that I loved Boudoir the most. I loved everything about it. From the one on one time with all different types of women, to the gut filling laughter we share, and most of all the transformation that happens in the session.
Most women walk into the studio completely nervous, sometimes even shaking. Although this is completely normal especially in this type of intimate setting, I don't want them to remain this way. I want them to be able to relax and zone into the goddess that I know they are.
It is required for the majority of my experiences that my clients get hair and makeup done by a professional. I find this part so vital to the whole experience and here's why:
The long walk way to my studio is actually not so long, but I can see it already, someone shouting in their ear as they walk down, "The Green Mile, walking the green mile." I can only imagine it feels this way and oh the thoughts that these women are most likely experiencing in these few moments. I'm sure their hearts are racing, knowing that they are going to be putting themself in a very vulnerable state. I mean it's not everyday we take off our clothes in front of a complete stranger.
It's so important to me that these women have some time to relax and be pampered, allowing them to settle in before I get started on their shoot. So the first reason my artists are vital to these sessions is because they are the calm welcoming presence into the studio. These ladies are the first faces that my clients see when they come to the Boudoir Suite.
That's right, I don't dare show up until a little later as I'm the one that holds the camera! The tool that sees down to the very soul of you.... Kidding, Kidding!
These women have a way of making my clients feel amazing even before their makeup is applied. They open up the space, they get to know their why, they get to know their story. This then allows me to come in after the nerves have gone away and most of the time I'm walking into full blown laughter.
One of the next reasons I require the hair and makeup in my sessions, is there is nothing quite like having it done by a professional. Most of us women need a little help in the makeup applying department. Unless that is, that you are a die hard YouTube fan and watch tutorials on this all day. Professional makeup artist have a way in applying the makeup so that it goes on smooth, and still a little more heavier than normal. They have spent hours on their craft and invested in their trade, just as I have being a photographer. That is why we are professionals.
In photographing, there is a certain light, that can hit a woman and make her look flawless, but it can also diminish the makeup, almost washing it out a bit. Things like coloring in the eyebrows a little heavier and darker is important. While most women do apply a little something to the brows, they typically will not know to go heavier and it can have a negative impact on the final image.
I am not the kind of photographer who loves to sit in front of the camera and edit all day. I love to take as clean as shots as possible straight out of the camera. Makeup also has a lot to do with the final finished product and how much editing is required. The camera will pick up on non straight lines and uneven tones. When you have a close up taken like the one above, chances are IF the makeup had been done incorrectly, it would be very visible.
Here you can see the beautiful clean cat eye and very well blended eyeshadow done by a professional,
The most rewarding part of doing boudoir photography is the seeing the women transform right before my eyes. From unconfident to vixen, from anxious to relaxed, and nervous to ready. It's like it happens in slow motion and we get to witness every part of it, starting with hair and makeup. There is nothing quite like having a professional artist transform your look to something that you may not be as accustomed to. But that's what this is all about right? Coming out of your shell and doing something you normally don't do! I want these women to see themself in a different way, I want them to experience what it's like to be pampered up. I want that celebrity experience that unfortunately we regular women don't get all the time. I want them to feel this from start to end!
If you have never experienced boudoir, or photographed with a boudoir photographer, I challenge you to do so. I challenge you to come out of your shell and allow my artist first to make you feel absolutely gorgeous and then allow me to show you exactly what we got to see through the lens.
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I have photographed thousands of people in my career. Honing into my skill as a premier boudoir photographer I have photographed more women. This has given me the edge to learning all the different shapes of a woman's body and posing women in a way, to assure they feel confident with their curves, baring them in their best light, However, not all of this is determined by posing, and in fact a lot of this can be handled by wardrobe choice. How, do you know what's best suited for you and your body type? How do you know what will hide those areas that you may not want to show as much and highlight the areas you do? Well, you don't typically, unless your a lingerie model, and so, that is where my expertise as your professional photographer will come in very handy.
First and foremost, you have to be able to identify your body shape. We are all not stick figured, and may even need help identifying this part. Many times to make the process easier for women, I will have them take a picture of them self standing straight and send it to me so that I can be able to start recommending the best lingerie or outfits to wear for their photoshoot. However for the sake of this blog, I recommend that you go ahead and do this for yourself. Examine your body closely and figure out which shape best identifies your body. Do you have those very curvy hips, or are you a little more rounded on the bottom and smaller up top? Are you pretty lean and long through out, or are you super bustier on the top and tiny in the middle? Once you can figure this part out, we move onto the next step, which would be the question of, what area of your body are you a little insecure about?
Shooting boudoir photography, I have learned that we, women, are supercritical creatures of ourselves. Trust me, I am no stranger to this thought process as well and have very much had to train my mind to thinking that I am sexy goddess. Our significant other can tell us how sexy we are every day of our life, but if we don't believe it, we will never feel it. From the size zero woman, to the size 26 women, I have heard it all. Though I may look at you and never guess that you have one insecurity in the world, you will tell me about 5 right off the bat. So with your help, I determine which part of you is just bat shit crazy because you are a sexy goddess and which area may not look the best if it is highlighted.
Now, it's very important to know that these rules do not always apply as we are all so very different in the way we can wear things. I am by no means a lingerie connoisseur, but I can visualize very easy what looks great on a real womens body. Here a few tips that I can lend to the beginner lingerie wearer. (Is that even how you say this?)
Women who are a little fuller in the mid section may not want to choose a bra and pantyset, (although there are posing tricks I can apply with this). I would most likely recommend a corset of some type, a baby doll, full body suit or a more loose fitting satin piece as you can see below.
Women who are taller, very skinny, and may not have as many curves, I would typically recommend something that would really highlight and push out the curves that you do have. In this instance, I would most likely not recommend a corset as it may make the thinned frame body look even more straight
Less, just may be best here. Let's push those curves out, I want to be able to see the curves of your body as much as possible. These lingerie pieces should highlight the hips, and waist, highlight the deep curves of the back and the fine lines of the butt.
I'll end with this, when choosing a boudoir photographer, do your research. Not everyone who photographs is specialized in every shoot. I always tell my women when doing a consult with me that this is not the type of session that you want to leave up to someone who is just starting out, is not as familiar with these sessions, or shoots primarily baby sessions. Trust me, the hands to the feet in happy baby pose, may make your husband happy, but it will not highlight you in your best light. Go with a trusted photographer who has a specialty in boudoir photography, someone whom you can go and ask other women about and they can give an honest opinion over, and someone who you feel comfortable with. Sharing a lot of this information about yourself is a very vulnerable area for most women. You want someone that you can have an open space with and a no judgement zone.
Here are some of my very favorite lingerie stores:
Hips and Curves
Amazon (believe it or not) return policy is amazing