A woman wearing black lingerie with straps, seen from behind, kneeling on a green satin sheet.

BOUDOIR = POWER

STEPHANIE SAMSON

The decision to book a photography session is usually a fairly simple one. You find a photographer you like, look at your schedule and then you eventually hang your favorite picture in the entry way with pride. No problem!

Then there is boudoir photography. Something so many of us have on our list of things we want to do “at some point”. There are a million things we let ourselves get hung up with in the process. “I need to lose 20lbs first.” “Once my hair has grown out a bit.” “After I get back into the gym.” Then we go years with the thought in the back of our mind and the best of intentions. The thought of someone seeing us in our most vulnerable state is not one that is easily digested. Every single person (or at least a majority of us) have some insecurities that we fixate on over and over again. I remember thinking, “Gosh I hope she can edit out my cellulite and I hope I can cover my mommy pouch”. Our significant others and friends tell us that we look amazing, but we just think of all those little things we don’t like about ourselves. For me, I was worried about those parts of my body that I didn’t like but I was also worried about people seeing me as a sexual being. It is one thing to know someone has had sex (the two children that came out of me are a pretty good clue) but it is a whole different thing to put out the impression that you are sexual. So, eventually we get the courage to sign up for a session and we start thinking about all the things we need to do, beforehand. My list looked a little like this: color hair, wax, shave, get brows done, get nails done, extension for hair, lash lift and tint (my favorite), and shop for outfits. I only checked off a handful of those things before the day of my shoot.

I was so nervous as I was driving there but as soon as I walked in the door, I felt comfortable. The set up and the energy in the studio is so warm and comfortable. It feels like you are in your own home. The back room where you get ready has literally hundreds of outfits to choose from and they all look so tempting! I was fortunate enough to have Kellee pick my outfits or I think I would have been there for days! Then you get your hair and makeup done and the artist really helps you feel like your best self! The act of getting the pictures is an interesting one. I had no idea how to pose, but Kellee walked me through every one of them and boy does she know her stuff! After hours of posing and taking pictures I feel like an absolute goddess. After I left, I remember thinking that I needed to go see my husband, STAT!

It is hard to describe what it feels like when you look at your gallery for the first time. It almost doesn’t feel like you are looking at yourself, because your version of yourself is flawed and not sexy! But that person in the pictures is sexy and confident and she can rule the world and that is the person those around you see. They don’t notice your cellulite or those imaginary flaws that you notice on yourself. They see your beautiful eyes and the curve of your back. They see someone who is kind and empathetic and self-assured. And I think that is the beauty of a boudoir shoot. It is seeing your beauty the way others do. It is appreciating those parts of you that others admire, but you so often overlook on yourself and acknowledging that you are a mom or a daughter or a sister, but you are also a sexual goddess and a powerful woman and there is no limit to what you can do!