A Boudoir Photography Experience
Boudoir Photo Sessions are truly healing, empowering and confidence boosting.
But hearing it from the female boudoir photographer is not the same as reading the heartfelt, honest words of a young woman so positively transformed by boudoir photos:
“Almost a year ago, I experienced something that was altogether mind-altering and life-changing. I got in contact with Kate after searching for female boudoir photographers near me (although Steeple Claydon is very much NOT near me!). I had wanted to do a pre-wedding shoot but my wedding dress had not been ready in time and I thought, why not still look into wedding boudoir as an anniversary present? The more I read through Kate’s website the more I felt this ‘pull’, so I emailed her. We ended up chatting on the phone and she described, as best as is possible to put into words, how a boudoir shoot is so much more than just posing in lingerie for a loved one. You might ask, how could a photo shoot change your life? But honestly, I had no idea of the emotion and mental realisation that would evolve through this process.
At last it was the day of the shoot and I arrived at Kate’s house, having packed more clothes and props than I would take on a two week holiday, having lied to my husband about where I was going that day, and feeling so sick that I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to get out of the car! Kate and Caroline (THE most talented hair and make-up artist) greeted me as though we’d known each other forever and once everything was inside, we sat down with a cup of tea and just talked. All the worry and angst melted away and the fun began! Kate was amazing at taking the ideas and items I had brought and putting them together against beautiful backdrops inside her lovely home, making me feel as if this was the hundredth time I’d been there. Caroline worked absolute magic with my hair and make-up – my god I’d never felt so beautiful!
Like I’m sure many can relate to, I had grown up as a bit of a nerd at school. I loved academia! But I was never in the ‘popular crowd’. I wore glasses, had an under bite, was taller than a lot of the kids in my class, was a ‘late developer’…I could go on! But so naturally I was an easy target for being teased. I did also grow up with some fantastic female role models, though, who taught me that true beauty shines from within, but there was always that doubt, that tiny bit of lacked-confidence that undermined my bubbly exterior that I’d never been able to shake off.
Well, we’re about 10 minutes into shooting, I’m standing half in my wedding dress, as though I’m just pulling it on over my bottom and I’m distinctly aware that at the angle Kate has just moved into, she’s going to have got a complete eyeful of my right breast. I know. Shock horror. What if she thinks my boobs are so tiny? What if she’s laughing inside? But then I thought, it’s ok, it’s fine, she has probably seen so many women’s boobs. I mean, this is not her first boudoir shoot. I mean, she has boobs too! Deep breath. Fast forward another 10-15 minutes and Kate and I are standing, chatting about the next outfit and positioning to be in, Caroline is touching up my lipgloss and all of a sudden Kate says, oh I’m so sorry I forgot you were still naked! Shall we get you a robe whilst we’re talking? I’d thrown caution to wind and posed completely starkers behind a bunch of brightly coloured flowers and hot pink lipstick and then felt so comfortable with everything that I’d forgotten I had nothing on when then flowers were put down!
The day went by so, so quickly and in the blink of an eye it was over and I wanted to do it all over again. I honestly loved every second. Both Kate and Caroline’s words of reassurance and the many, many more compliments than I was ever used to made the entire day a true pleasure to have been a part of. I was guided into poses that were flattering for me, enabling me to feel less ‘helpless and self-conscious’, more empowered, strong and beautiful. And I was surprised to notice just how much it felt like ‘my’ day. A day, not for anyone else, but for me.
After the big day, when the gallery was ready, Kate was brilliant at batting backwards and forwards ideas with me of how to choose my favourite pictures and then showing me how they could look in a digital album online before it went to print. Kate even guided me through the minefield of deciding the type of album cover and paper texture to compliment the ‘feel’ of my photographs. I remember telling Kate that the further into the process we went, the more the photos really felt like they were mine. I had gone into the idea of boudoir photography thinking that end goal was to create a memorable gift for the special person in your life. By the end of it, however, the photos had very much become pieces of art that capture the beautiful person I am and that I can reflect on, even on the days when I don’t feel so beautiful.
I kept the album a secret until my husband and I had arrived in Thailand for our honeymoon, one year after our wedding. We were unpacked, we’d had a chance to settle in and relax, and I told him I had a surprise to show him. Before I let him open the album though, I told him that it was my album but that he could share it…! And I think this really illustrates the change that has taken place, in the way that I view my body and myself, holistically, as a person. His reaction though was one I will never forget, and one that Kate had predicted all those months ago when we had first spoken on the phone. He asked me how I felt when I looked at them and I said that I felt truly beautiful. He replied, this is how I see you every day.
So yes, boudoir is so much more than just pretty poses in pretty knickers. It is so much more than photography for someone else to enjoy. It’s a very personal, very individual journey that you undertake that ultimately reminds you of who you really are. And who better to be your guide, than Kate”. Gemma. x
There are many reasons why women consider a boudoir shoot and many women would like someone they know to recommend a boudoir photographer. The best thing I can suggest is to read some more boudoir reviews from clients and their partners. Most importantly the label ‘boudoir’ is not what you should be focussing on. It is a portrait shoot that not only celebrates who you are but how you feel about yourself and usually involves lingerie and you looking your absolute best. It is a hugely transformative experience that will do amazing things for confidence and self esteem. And that is why I love to shoot boudoir so much. Here is a link to my boudoir photography galleries. Maybe I’ll get to you meet you at some point in the future. Kate