Since its inception, boudoir photographs are considered to be for private viewing pleasure of women in intimate settings like a bedroom or dressing room. Unlike nude photography, boudoir differentiated in that the subjects posed and dressed in lingerie or other garments that were sexually suggestive or implied nudity. However, boudoir photography has evolved from being solely for private viewing to an act of female empowerment and artistic appreciation.
The powerful act of modeling for boudoir photography is that you own your body. Owning your body and exuding your sexuality the way you see it is empowering. It was especially meaningful for me to have my boudoir photography sessions with female photographers. There is a special connection and an exchange of energy, something feminine and powerful.
Argentina from the Art of Seduction Boudoir Photography welcomed me to her studio after a phone consultation. She had an amazing make-up artist from Sosa: Makeup + Styling ready to transform me into a glam goddess with a bold red lip and smokey eye shadow. I remember her instantly telling me to take a seat and relax while she poured me a cup of tea with honey and my MUA worked her magic. The three of us talked about body image, our heritage, dating and relationships. It felt like I was with friends. That’s something you cannot force when working with people. It’s just a connection that happens and then comes the magic.
I’ve since had a tremendous amount of support and positive responses to my recent boudoir photo shoot. The images displayed on my social media platforms have started a conversation about body image. As a plus-size woman, I have experienced online bullying and fat-shaming. For most of my life, I have lived in a fat body. So, I am familiar with the struggle to put yourself out there when you’re reminded daily that you shouldn’t exist because you don’t fit society’s beauty standards.
One user commented on my Instagram post:
You are an amazing woman…I can relate so much…the first part of your text sounds so familiar to me…it hurts…but one day I will reach the point where I can proudly say I relate to the second part of your text as well…
You can read commentary on the post thread here.
I wrote back sharing my story of overcoming my fear from my first boudoir photo shoot. It was, in fact, the first shoot in my modeling career. When I dived into this world of modeling as a plus-size woman, I was in great hands. I had a female photographer who taught me how to pose and gave me lots of encouragement along the way. Not once did I feel invaded upon. I felt in control of my body and what I wanted to show. And, my voice was heard and choice respected. It was something I never, in my wildest dreams, thought that I could do because I wasn’t skinny or sexy enough. I remember I would talk myself out of doing things like wearing a swimsuit or taking dancing lessons because I was fat. I feel like I wasted so much time worrying about others opinion of me versus appreciating the beauty that I am and living my life to the fullest. I allowed the external messages to negatively impact my life choices. I can say, with all the confidence this big beautiful body can serve, that I am gorgeous!
Modeling for a boudoir photo shoot isn’t for everyone. Some women find empowerment in the act, like me, and others find empowerment in other ways. The power comes from your choice. And, I encourage those who have ever had a curiosity or interest in boudoir to take the leap. It isn’t easy to place yourself in a vulnerable place, to expose the most intimate parts of yourself in lingerie for fear of judgement. But, you’ll find, like me, that soon enough, the fear washes away. When you slip into that killer bustier and thigh-high stockings, you’ll feel like the most powerful and beautiful goddess that has ever walked this earth.