As you all know, I’m terribly behind with this blog – Tanja and I shot this bump boudoir session around Easter! Better late than never though…right? Say yes, because everything from here on out is likely to be late lol!
Anyway, it’s always lovely to photograph women who are growing little ones, but as a lot of my clients prefer to keep these images private it’s an extra special treat to have a few images to share with you:) Please enjoy.
It’s no picnic being heavily pregnant, and although you’d never know it from these Tanja was feeling pretty worn out. This is nearly always the case with pregnant clients, which is why I’m in favour of bump sessions that are both quick and barefoot. Simple lingerie is all you need for a look like this.
We borrowed Tanja’s friend’s flat for the shoot – a magical little haven in the city that looks half French and half rainforest.
Tanja found this gown for cheap (somewhere like Amazon or Ebay), and it’s such a lovely way to show off a new figure.
The sheer lace is still sexy, but it’s less revealing than lingerie. Not to mention it will give you a bit more coverage if, you know, you’re not really feeling the water retention and cellulite that usually joins the party about now.
I mean – pregnant and super hot are not mutually exclusive. These aren’t the images you show your in laws, but you ought to have them for yourself. You’ve earned them.
Bump by firelight. The front split on this piece works really well for showing off a belly, and it is especially good for taking attention away from any baby-induced love handles.
Hot pink, because we can.
Gaahh this woman. She makes it look effortless.
I mean, it’s not though. Boudoir photo shoots are hard work, which is why we’ll keep it short if you’ve got a baby on board.
New momma love <3
Another simple lingerie set, this one in a baby blue:)
The garden was so tropical – a perfect set for swimwear.
Can you believe this was in London?
Beautiful new editorial style headshots with our two minutes of sunshine.
Plunging one piece. Grainy black and white. Messy hair. Everything working together here.
A few more commercially toned images from this set as well.
Ahhh Thailand – you’re on my list!
We did a bit of street style / bloggery type fashion too.
Such a cute outfit right?
And finally a floral dress that makes it look 10x warmer than it was;)
Tanja you were fab, thank you! Best wishes for the three of you <3
I’m so pleased to finally be sharing Anna’s NYC boudoir photography session with you. It’s been months since we met up in Brooklyn and created these images, but that means nothing – this shoot is definetly in my top 5 favourites of the year.
I’m struggling with what to tell you about Anna because I’m just so fangirl impressed by her. She’s gracious and cool and funny. She wears all the hats at once (wife, mother, entrepreneur, etc.). Plus, she’s got great style, and an effortless kind of beauty that can’t be denied.
Anna doesn’t wear much makeup in her everyday life, so she was understandably nervous about makeup for her shoot. Unfortunately, a lot of newer makeup artists just don’t know what to do with skin or facial features different from their own. It’s very common for black women to come away from a new makeup artist looking ashy and slightly dead. Anna introduced me to the official term for this, which I now use at all the time; “funeral face.”
I insist on professional, experienced makeup artists that come by way of recommendation whenever possible. If you’re in London, I’d be happy to recommend a few genius girls. If you’re further afield, it’s best to get a recommendation from someone you trust, or you can ask a great wedding or boudoir photographer in your area for a few suggestions. You also want to make sure there are women who look like you in the makeup artist’s portfolio. Don’t allow yourself to be the first and only Chinese face she or he has touched.
Thankfully, I had brilliant makeup artist Victoria with me, and we convinced our lovely client we knew what we were doing;) Of course the result turned out stunning, but with such natural beauty and incredible cheekbones I never had any doubt.
We started off with this cute cotton ribbed bodysuit with snap front. Anna is wearing her husband’s favourite earrings.
I like starting with a barefoot set. There’s a lot to think about when posing, and it helps if you’re not trying to balance in sky high heels right from the start.
If you’re like me and constantly have a hair band on your wrist, please help me remember to have you take it off lol! We usually catch it eventually, but missed in in this image on the right.
Historic woodwork and natural window light for these.
A quick wardrobe change and we have a completely different look – just add heels, a high waisted lace lingerie set, and throw your hair up.
For me, working on location is about making the best use of a space and it’s available light. Often (who am I kidding, always) this means I work up a sweat rearranging furniture, but it’s worth it. I do NYC boudoir photography sessions in a variety of locations, we can chat about the sort of look and feel you’re after for your own shoot.
Louboutins and booty for the win.
A high waisted knicker might not seem like your thing, but I’d encourage to give them a try. They are almost universally flattering, so you might like it better on your body than you do on the hanger.
A few gorgeous details.
Love love love these.
I mean, doesn’t Anna just look divine?
Hands down, my favourite image of the shoot. #slay
I love it so much I’m posting it twice.
A few floor poses. How much you’re able to arch depends on your flexibility and bone structure, but don’t worry – any amount makes for a great shot.
I’m a little bit obsessed with this image too.
A stretchy, form-fitting piece like this is great for showing shape and curves. They also tend to be more comfortable than regular lingerie and work well for bending and arching.
I hold shoots in lots of fancy and unique places, but it’s certainly not required. All you really need is simple bedding and good light.
I do quite like a window though.
A sneaky peek through the doorway…
…and these killer shoes;)
Anna, you blew the roof off. Until next spring!
P.S. If you’re interested in your own NYC boudoir photography session, please feel free to get in touch or add yourself to the list. My next planned trip is spring of 2017, and I’ll be setting dates and locations very soon:)
She’s celebrating a big birthday this year, and her boudoir session was a treat to herself.
We started the day with this strappy black bodysuit, which I loved. I’ve never seen one with that great plunging drape at the front.
I wish I could remember where she said she found it. If you want something similar for your own shoot let me know and I’ll ask.
You certainly don’t have to have a fancy bed for a boudoir session, but I do love this one:)
The leg show is in town.
C looks so calm and serene here – see, nothing scary at all!
If you’re a Mum like C, you might want to take note of her wardrobe. She’s not a huge fan of her stomach, and she did a brilliant job selecting wardrobe that covers the areas that she’s not so keen on.
I think boudoir wardrobe (and boudoir posing in general) is all about playing to your strengths. My motto is this: let’s highlight your best bits and downplay anything you’re not fond of. Unless you think your legs are crap but the are, in fact, freakingamazing. In that case, I’ll be documenting just how wrong you’ve been;)
You can’t go wrong with an all black look like this. Get the stockings too, it really pulls the outfit together.
A messy updo, Louboutins, and a big smile. Win win win.
Hazy afternoon sun. If only it had been as warm outside as this image suggests.
Another bodysuit, this one with sequins!
A tried and true classic…
…and this stunner to finish off the day.
C, it was SO lovely to finally do this! Here’s to a happy, healthy, beautiful next decade:)
I did some 1-1 training with an aspiring boudoir photographer a few weeks ago, and Jess was kind enough to come down for a shoot and help me teach some posing and direction tips.
I am in constant admiration of the women I meet doing this job, and Jess was certainly no exception. The more I learned about her the more impressed I was – she’s a mother, a cancer survivor, a tattoo artist, a horse lover, and just like all the rest of us, someone who sometimes struggles to call what looks back at her in the mirror beautiful. I know was hard for her to work up the nerve to do this, especially after a particularly challenging few years and lots of tough body changes, so it was a real honour to photograph her.
Like, honestly – it is not easy to be pregnant, to push a baby out of you-know-where, to deal with a diagnosis of cancer and the various operations, treatment, and the ridiculous amount of stress that accompanies that situation, to be a new mother, to loose the baby weight, etc etc etc. and then shortly after all of that, to say yes to yourself and your quiet hope of more self-confidence and reclaiming a teensy bit of your carefree self…by getting half naked in front of a stranger’s camera.
We can laugh and joke about it being a silly photo shoot in your knickers all day long, but the truth is that saying yes to a boudoir shoot is an act of pure courage. I cannot TELL you how much I admire and respect the women who show up in my inbox and at my door.
This work matters. Maybe not to everyone, but it mattered to Jess and it matters to me.
Window light is my absolute fav.
She absolutely killed this pose. You know what else killed? My back. Teaching boudoir posing for two days straight is no joke.
On the right, the classic S curve.
Jess did her own makeup for the shoot, and I think it looks lovely.
In fact, between the tattoos, the hair, and the eyeliner, it felt like we had Amy Winehouse in our midst.
A few simple bed poses up next.
On short notice, Jess bought some of those stick on false nails. They seemed great at first, but we’d lost a few by this point and more kept popping off every few minutes. I tried them once too, and they wouldn’t stick on my fingers very long either. Take it from us: avoid them for your photo shoot/important event/life in general. You had one job nails. One job.
As part of the training, we shot late into the day to practice low light techniques. Silhouettes like this one are a godsend if it starts raining cats and dogs mid-shoot.
Legs for daaays. And big shoes. Double win.
Finally, just a few more dark and mysterious bed shots to finish the day.
Jess, thanks so much for your bravery and your patience. Lovely to meet you and work with you:)
She’s dynamic, beautiful, funny, and confident. Maybe she’s always been this way, or maybe it’s just what happens when you wind up your fast leg and kick breast cancer squarely in the mouth.
It was an honour to photograph her either way.
We started the shoot off in her husband’s shirt. This is such a lovely way to show your partner you’re thinking of them, and it looks great too.
If your partner is quite a bit bigger than you, we can always pin the shirt around you so it doesn’t drown you. Or, you could bring other items that are personal to your relationship – maybe a tie, a piece of jewellery, an old concert t-shirt, etc.
Statement jewellery can be a lot of fun.
These pearls were a dream to shoot with, and you don’t have to break the bank – just get some good fakes and no one will ever be the wiser.
For our next look, we added a bold red lip and paired it with classic black lingerie.
Oh Hi…I’m Mrs. M and I have the most incredible eyes ever…
Sometimes a sneaky little anonymous shot is great for an album cover or wall art. We ended up choosing a different image for Mrs. M’s album, but I still like the mysterious nature of this frame.
This location has a great view of the Shard. The weather was good and Mrs. M was feeling brave, so we hopped onto the balcony quickly.
This is Mrs. M’s wedding sari. HOW CUTE IS THAT? We both loved how these turned out, and I’m sure her husband did too:)
Initially, Mrs. M told me that she didn’t like her breast cancer scars and might want me to remove them in post production, but she wasn’t 100% sure yet. After we talked it through, I told her that I’d leave them so she could see how she felt about them in the final images.
In the end, they didn’t bother her half as much as she though they would and we left them in.
I like that.
You know why? Because a scar does not make you look less beautiful. It just makes you look stronger.
OH MY HELL. Shut up with your pretty face Mrs. M.
And the legs. Enough already with your long legs.
Just kidding, you’re amazing. Loved these implied topless shots as well.
Mrs. M, it was beyond lovely to work with you. My very best wishes for your two new projects coming up;)
AIBP PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR
I'm so honoured to have been selected as the Association of International Boudoir Photographers "Photographer of the Year" for 2016.
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