It's not very often that I have the opportunity to shoot my own creative boudoir concepts. I still work full time and juggling that with a full-time boudoir business can make sneaking some "just for me" shooting time in rare.
An opportunity did come up in late last summer. Every year I try to attend the Double Toasted anniversary party in Austin, Texas (my hometown). When I'm in town I like to host sessions where I shoot people that come in for the gathering.
One day before the anniversary party, I was on Instagram drooling over my fave photographers latest postings when I came across this beautiful location that I assumed was in the South of France. I saved the photo as inspiration and moved on. Through the course of 2017 I would see this location randomly pop up on my feed. I would pray that I could find a location that beautiful.
One day I was talking to my friend Danielle, who is part of the Double Toasted crew, and she showed me photos of a recent shot she had done in Austin. Low and behold it was in the same location that I bookmarked a number of times. I freaked out and quickly asked her about the whereabouts of this beautiful location. She told me it was this secret location in Austin. She gave me the details of the place and we went half on booking my dream setting.
I knew I was going to shot Danielle, but I wanted to shoot another girl to maximize this dreamy location. Jazzy came across a beautifully melinated woman from San Antonio named Michele.
Michele was a TREASURE to work with (as you can see from the photos). Michele loves doing boudoir and signed on to this personal project because she loved the concept.
Outdoor Boudoir Concept
I always shoot three looks when I do personal sessions. I like to have versatility. I feel like every good story had three acts. I also take into consideration the type of emotion I want my muse to display. Being evocative sells the image.
In Michele's case we I wanted something that was hot, passionate, full of desire and confidence. Boy did she delivery!
Look one was a simple bodysuit that Danielle donated for this shoot. This beautiful piece was from Victoria's Secret. You can never go wrong with a bodysuit from Victoria's Secret. When doing a boudoir session outside it's very important to consider the time of year. Our outdoor boudoir session was in August so summer was in full swing. During summer we still have a lot of green but because we are in Texas there is a lot of warmth in nature. While the bodysuit had a lot of detail it was monochromatic. I wanted the cream bodysuit because it did show warmth without competing with Michelle.
If I'm to be honest, I really like shooting with monochromatic pieces. I don't like busy prints in photos. I feel as though it takes away from the muse and the story.
For the makeup, Jazzy decided to highlight Michelle for the Gods! We wanted an out of this world yet healthy glow to her skin. Her makeup perfectly matched her skin complexion, but again, it did not compete with her. We wanted her beautiful and natural color to illuminate to help push the story forward.
The second look was a jaw-dropping dusty lavender piece that I picked up from Forever 21 with help from a stylist. The thing I love about dark skin is that most colors look amazing against it. This dusty purple was no exception. I love burnt pastel colors (just take a look at my site). I am drawn to burnt pastels because they have color but it's never over saturated. I never like anything to complete with my muse.
The last look was hands down my fave. We have all seen milk baths, but I wanted to do something I had personally never seen... a citrus bath. What better way to do that than a french tub outdoors in the Texas heat with a rusted chandelier hanging over us?
I decided that I wanted to stay on the warmer side of the spectrum with the fruits. Therefore I cut up lemons, oranges, and grapefruit. I believe I had 5 bags of fruit. Let me tell you, I did not cut nearly enough citrus fruits. To make this really work we needed a solid 8 bags of fruit. We filled the tub up first then added the fruit. Next, we had Michelle submerge herself in the lukewarm water.
Honestly, I wanted Michelle totally nude. However, there were five people around in the outdoor area and I felt weird asking her to fully undress. Therefore if I felt weird I didn't want Michele to feel that way either. Not feeling comfortable while shooting shows on your face... and I can't Photoshop emotion.
With that being said, outside of styling and location, the most important thing that you need to get correct in the photoshoot is emotion. What do you want the viewer the feel? Do you want them to feel your sadness? How about happiness? Or perhaps you just want the viewer to want you. When shooting I do not expect my muse or client to know how to pose. I help direct them in the way that I want them so we can get those epic shots. When shooting with Wonderland Boudoir you should never worry about not knowing how to pose. We will show you what to do.
For emotion, we focused on confidence and desire. My goal was to have the viewer wither want her or want to be her.
Below is a short interview we did with Michele regarding her boudoir experience with Wonderland Boudoir.
Before your session what were you expecting? How was that different once you finished your session?
After Korin talked to me about her creative concept, and when I met her everything she what she talked about came to life, even better than I thought.
What was your favorite part of the whole process?
My favorite part was just being apart of the process and being able to model for Korin. She’s a creative individual and she is very enjoyable to work with.
What would you say to a woman who is on the fence about boudoir? How was the session impacted your ideas of boudoir?
I would like to say to other women who are thinking about doing their first boudoir session, is that Korin will be the perfect photographer for you. She’s creative, she knows what she’s doing and makes you feel at ease throughout the entire shoot.