Boudoir with Ms. S
Ms. S had a friend named Ms. J. I had offered Ms. J the chance to help me build my boudoir photography business by modelling for me. Instead of using the session for herself this gracious soul gifted it to her friend Ms. S. The timing couldn’t have better, and I was more than happy to photograph Ms. S for her first boudoir session.
R & S: What made you decide on doing a boudoir session?
Ms. S: I was struggling with some general life challenges that had an impact on my energy levels and self esteem. I’m typically quite confident and feel positive about my body. As long as it worked and did what I wanted it to do, I was happy. I didn’t worry too much about what others thought, and I still don’t. I was doubting myself a lot and seeing myself in a highly critical manner. A very good friend with a heart as big as the ocean thought it would be a good idea for me to have some buoudoir photos done to help regain some of my confidence. Not just in how I looked, but to be able to let loose, relax and realize that I could still have fun 🙂
R & S: How did you decide on what to wear? Did you have any meaningful accessories?
Ms. S: This was probably the hardest part because my typical dress is jeans and a t-shirt. I’ve always had fun with my hair and shoes, but beyond that I’m pretty plain. I also used to be much heavier than I am now and my weight loss resulted in a lot of saggy skin…not to mention that I’ve had four kids, I’m somewhat over the hill and the laws of gravity and entropy are not my friends 😉 I went to some mainstream lingerie shops and that was *not* a good idea. There’s nothing like looking at yourself in string undies where a size large looks like it could fit a 12 year old. I ended up going to a specialty shop that had all shapes and sizes and the women working there were incredible! I had so much fun and was glad I didn’t throw in the towel after my trip to the malls. I was told to bring any special items from home that made me feel good and that was a super helpful tip (thanks Pam!!) I brought my drumsticks, my Bon Jovi jersey, a book I love and some jewelry that has some sentimental value.
R & S: Let’s talk about the day of the shoot. Were you nervous? How did you feel being in front of the camera? Did it take you very long to get comfortable?
Ms. S: I was soooooooo nervous! hahaha I’m actually nervous typing this, just thinking about it! Being in front of the camera was a little weird because I was always thinking about what kind of face I was making, or whether everything was where it was supposed to be. I was concerned a lot about angles. You know how sometimes you feel like you look like a million bucks and then you see a picture of yourself and it’s not at all what you envisioned you looked like? It was like that, only in real time…on steroids. I don’t know that I ever got comfortable, to be completely honest. I can say that I had a lot of fun despite being nervous and was amazed to see that there were pics I loved! Even the poses that didn’t feel “natural” came out looking pretty good!
R & S: Tell me about the experience you had during the session. Were the poses what you expected? Did you have fun?
Ms. S: Ahhhh, the poses! hahahah oh boy, the poses! Some of them were what I expected based on what I’d seen from other people’s photos. Some were not at all like what I thought they’d be. I really liked that Pam was so experimental and willing to give anything a try. We grabbed props that were available and improvised with the space a lot, which was pretty cool. I had so much fun that afternoon. My friend that helped arrange the shoot came with me and between her and Pam, I felt like a goddess 🙂 It was good having someone who knew me there for sure. It was also surprising that I didn’t feel embarrassed about anything, even though I was nervous. Pam was super chill and was just the right amount of fun and professional.
R & S: Were you sore the next day from the poses?
Ms. S: My calves were sore for two days! I heard “point your toes” and “chest up” commands in my head for days…
R & S: What were your first thoughts when you saw your images? Have you noticed a mental shift in the way you view your body since then?
Ms. S: My very first thoughts were that I was too old and ridiculous to be doing something like this. The more I looked through the images and remembered the fun I had, the better I felt 🙂 I went through all of the images pretty fast the first time I saw them because I didn’t feel very confident. I wondered what on earth I was thinking getting out of my jeans and t-shirts and in to sexy lingerie. After the initial peek through, I went back again…then again…then again and found that I looked at them differently and felt differently about them. There are some really good ones in there that I now love so much and it brings me joy to see them. I feel really good about them now and am proud that I did it and had that experience. I don’t see them as sexual at all, even though I suppose some are meant to be sexy. I see them as an expression of lots of different facets of who I am. It’s not all encompassing, but they show sides to me that I don’t often get to express that are just as much a part of me as the stuff everyone in my day to day life sees. I do feel more confident in myself and have been able to regain some of my old self. When I look at the images now, they help me remember that even though things change, I haven’t lost who I am. I want to do these again when I’m 50, 60, 70 and 80 and see how I’m still the same even if my body doesn’t look like it did when I was 20.
R & S: Do you have any advice or tips for ladies who are thinking about doing a session?
Ms. S: My advice would be to not overthink it. Just go and have fun! Be yourself and let your light shine 🙂 Who gives a rip if anyone thinks it’s ridiculous? Do it for yourself and not for anyone else. On a more practical note, get some good body lotion, have time to make sure your hair is done the way you want and if you’re going to wear makeup, have someone that knows how to do makeup help you out. I do *not* know how and I didn’t make proper arrangements because I was scared of looking like someone I wasn’t. Next time I’m going to plan ahead for that. Oh- also- go to a specialty shop for lingerie if you’re not built like a model. If you are – high five for you! Get allllll the string lingerie and rock it out!
R & S: What was your absolute favorite part of the experience?
Ms. S: That’s a tough one 🙂 I loved the whole thing! I loved the time with friends and feeling supported with no judgement. I loved laughing because I don’t know how to “look sexy” and I loved trying new things :).
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