Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Boudoir photo shoot

It all started when the Seattle Ladies Choir hosted a fundraiser one night - and the prize for the choir member who lured the most people to the event was a boudoir shoot with choir member and professional photographer, Dana Kae.

I wanted it. Ohhhh, how I wanted it. For weeks I plugged the event mercilessly, by turns cajoling and threatening friends and family into attending. Ultimately my efforts were unsuccessful, though a good friend of mine did win that most glorious of prizes, so I couldn't be too disappointed.

I couldn't move on, though - once I had the idea in my mind, I knew I had to have it. I looked up a handful of local boudoir photographers with less expensive rates, but none of them were of the same magical quality as Dana; their portfolios seemed cheesy and forced. When she posted a pre-Valentine's special, I pounced.

While Dana and I planned our shoot, Tyler sneakily went behind my back and paid for it, the cad. That meant that I was only on the hook for the location, the makeup and hair, and the wardrobe. I used Pinterest to inspire the style of my shoot, found a beautiful loft on Vashon Island with lots of natural light, and spent a small fortune on new lingerie. I was ready!

I used so many starter blocks trying to get that fire going, and I still failed. I am not a very good scout.

Tyler and I took the ferry to the island the night before, so I would be ready early the next morning. We spent a restless night in the loft while a storm raged overhead. I woke up at six only to find that the power was out on the whole island! In addition, Dana texted me to say that she had missed her ferry and would arrive forty-five minutes later than the makeup artist, whom I had not met before. It was pitch dark and still raining, and I worried that the makeup artist would show up and we would have nothing to do until power was restored.

My fears totally came to fruition, but the makeup artist who came was a funny and friendly lady named Nikoma, and she was so easy to talk to that everything was okay. The power came back on half an hour earlier than expected, and then Dana showed up. She fed me oatmeal with fresh raspberries and plied me with mimosas while Nikoma teased and curled my hair.

So much makeup! And look at all the delicious snacks Dana brought - I was totally spoiled. So fancy, even the champagne got dolled up.
Dana brought the lovely bouquet on the left; the owner of the loft provided the beautiful and fragrant orchids.
Though it was still windy and cold, we decided to go outdoors for the first few minutes.

I felt silly and happy, even though my feet were freezing in the mud!

I was definitely ready to go inside and warm up when Dana gave the word! We touched up my hair and makeup, and moved upstairs for some classic bedroom shots.

Then back downstairs for some flannel shirt time.

One thing I really love about these pictures is that they feel really true to me. I'm not forced into anyone else's idea of what "sexy" looks like. I'm allowed to be goofy or serious, sultry or playful, all according to my whim. I think my personality shines through.

I told Dana that I liked my shape in this picture - that I looked like "a sexy piece of fruit, maybe a pear."

Another thing I love is that although the photos are slightly retouched to make me glow that much more, Dana and I chose to celebrate, rather than disguise, my curves. Two of my favorite pictures from the set are full body shots. In one of them, I'm sitting down - and not holding my stomach in or straightening my spine.

I feel really beautiful when I look at these (and the others that I didn't share - we took a couple hundred and narrowed them down to forty-four great shots).

What a happy and satisfying experience!

1001 in 101 challenge #32 complete!

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