Portraiture can be hard. Taking the photo of someone is the easy part. The lighting, a piece of cake. What really makes taking a solid portrait so difficult is the emotion. A good portrait, regardless of lighting, has to share something about the person you're photographing. 

So now, imagine taking that portrait, but with a barely-clothed model, and you're pretty much where I was Saturday afternoon. 

My shoot with Sara was a boudoir shoot. To me, boudoir means three things: 

  • The photos have to communicate or elicit some kind of emotion
  • The photos should be more about the model, and less about the outfit she's wearing. This isn't a lingerie photoshoot, it's boudoir.
  • Above all else, your photos need to feel personal. Viewers should feel like they are in the room next to your subject, not viewing their photo on a website.

So there we go, that's what I set out to capture for Week 5 of my ongoing 52 Weeks photo project. Did I do my first boudoir shoot justice? You tell me! 

In hindsight, this shoot was probably one of the most enjoyable I've ever had. Not just because of my awesome model, but simply from the creative freedom I found in boudoir. When you don't necessarily need to have clothes in a photograph, the boost in creativity is evident. You start exploring lighting you hadn't considered before, and communicating things in the images in more and more subtle ways. Take the second image for example. If you think the photo is about Sara's expression, or even her face, you'd be reading the image incorrectly. Check out the areas of primary highlights in the photo and you'll see what Sara and I were really trying to communicate.

I hope you enjoy the images below! There are a few which never made it into the blog post out of respect for Sara's privacy, but those posted below should give you a good enough idea of how things went. It was a blast!

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