When Photographers Book Photographers | Teri’s Shoot Experience

It’s an honor everytime anyone entrusts me with their photo shoot experience, but when that someone happens to be a photographer as well, it’s an extra honor. Not only are we, as photographers, inundated with examples of beautiful photography on a daily basis (so we often have much higher standards than the typical non-photographer consumer), but we also know a plethora of other camera-wielders and tend to settles for a couple of nice “play shots” from friends here and there.

What is more rare, though, is the photographer who takes care of themselves, understands the value of a powerful photography experience and the accompanying photos, and then actually financially commits to an actual session...not a play or trade session...with a photographer whose work they identify with.

THIS badass Canadian ‘tog is one of the rare ones (in more ways than one). When Teri booked a shoot with me, I won’t lie, I was: #1: Bursting at the seams to finally meet her as we’ve been “social media” friends for a minute but our paths hadn’t crossed in “real life” yet...and #2: Bursting at the seams with butterflies as she’s talented AF, and you know....pressure and shit ;)

She is better with words than I am, so I’m going to let her take it from here:::

 

“ As a boudoir photographer and educator, I definitely know the impact that doing a photo session can have on one's self esteem and confidence. So, when I thought about who I would contact for my annual session, I reached out to Kara to see if she'd be able to squeeze me in during my travels to Texas! AND SHE DID! So, then there was no backing out because fate was on my side!

Interestingly enough, as someone who enjoys luxuries to herself, I'm not gonna lie, the thought of spending over $3000 on photos made me hesitate and then I thought "HOLY SHIT. THIS IS WHAT MY CLIENTS GO THROUGH" which made me take the plunge even more. I became curious over that hesitation and I realized it wasn't the COST I was concerned with (because Kara's value is 20X that)....it was the VALUE that I saw in myself, and did I think *I*was WORTH spending that much money to have photos taken. WHAT AN EYE OPENING EXPERIENCE AS SOMEONE THAT DOES THIS FOR A LIVING!!”

“I knew I couldn't just go to anyone for a boudoir session for a few reasons. Personally, I have had the "traditional" boudoir experience and it just wasn't me...I mean, it was FUN and the photos were gorgeous, but not really reflective of the ME I know. As an avid follower of Kara's I was drawn to her editorial style and ability to take women in their "undone-done" look and capture their essence (that sounds so Hallmark, but you know what I mean).

As a woman who tends to defy most societal standards when it comes to body image (no makeup, never "DO" my hair, forget to get eyebrows and other bits waxed, and hate wearing a bra...and pants.), I knew this was the type of session I needed to show myself that the ME I know is just as worthy of having photos taken. I didn't want glam makeup, I didn't want to wear traditional lingerie, and mostly, I didn't want to appear overly sensual and sexual and really just exist in my power.

My favorite images are the ones where I have a derpy face, you can see my crooked teeth, I'm laughing, and of course, my mass of unruly curls. “

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 “These photos are 100% representative of me.”

 

Note from Kara: The below screenshot was Teri’s response to seeing her images and I will save it in her file forever.  

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”As for the EXPERIENCE itself, Kara is the tits. But if you are on her site, you already know this. She's super chill, laid-back, professional, and on top of all the details. Her overall goal is to make sure you feel fucking amazing and leave with that feeling. Every time I look at my images, I feel amazing and I SEE me.”

 

Ahhhh. Doesn’t she just sound like the kind of woman you want to know? Because she is.  And I’m lucky to know her and honored to have been the photographer to capture her as I saw her...and as SHE sees herself. That is so important to me—to make sure that women feel like themselves WITHOUT a complete glamour makeover and elaborate wardrobe that they are uncomfortable in. 

 

Thank you, Teri, for your trust and your incredible testimony! What a great reminder that even photographers struggle with investing in ourselves through photography! So glad you did with me. 

If you’re located in our friendly neighboring country, Canada—or even if you aren’t, you should most definitely check out Teri’s website HERE.  

 

Xx

Snowstorm Can't Stop Her | Austin Boudoir Studio

I'm stepping back into the blogging game finally (I know, it's been a minute), and lucky for me (and you), I've got QUITE the stockpile of incredible women with incredible stories and images. So let's get this show back on the road!

Miss Y. This girl was so much damn fun to work with.  

A photographer herself, Miss Y understood the value of a boudoir experience and she braved a snowstorm to fly to me from across the country, and we shot on a day that Austin was SHUT THE EFF DOWN because of a little bit of ice and cold. (We're wimps. I'll be the first to admit it as a girl who was born and raised in the #1 snowiest city in the country many years). 

We both brought our A games and came up with a collection of photos that was so representative of her and her badassery, while glamming it up a little with some leather and boots, letting her show off some story-telling scars of hers, and just overall killing.it.

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"Having a boudoir experience with Kara Marie was my dream. I had been following her for over 2 years before the stars aligned. I wanted to do this to celebrate myself. "

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"I traveled all of the way from North Carolina to Austin during a snow storm. It was worth it. She is absolutely on point in everything that she does. Seriously does this woman sleep? I am obsessed with my images. I am ready to do it again." 

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"I have always been a loud person. It is within that loud personality that I hid my insecurities. That is until now. I feel liberated. Words could never begin to explain how looking at an image of yourself and falling in love with that image of yourself changes the core of you. I thought I had confidence before, NOPE. Now am this new woman who exudes confidence in all facets of her life."

"This shoot changed me. I am happy with myself. I am content with my scars. I feel powerful."

And THAT is what it's all about! Hearing from my clients that this experience helped to improve their self-image is  job satisfaction to the nth degree. Thank you thank you Miss Y for your candidness, for your badassery, and for flying all the way to Austin from North Carolina in a snow storm ;) 

Tattoos and Scars | Austin Boudoir Studio

Way back, when I first started offering boudoir photography, I would hear from clients who were about to get married and wanted some sexy photos of themselves in their wedding night lingerie and veil to gift to their husband on their wedding day.  My boudoir photography has evolved right along with modern women, and now, women are coming to me for far more powerful reasons. 

I can't quite describe the feeling of assisting women in such impactful soul-searching and self-celebration...except that of extreme honor. Which is why I don't just simply share my photos without also sharing each woman's story. That wouldn't do the experience justice. As far as photographers go, there are a million out there who are better than me...but it's not about the photos. It's what I help them discover through the process. It's what I help them celebrate. It's what I help them remember. It's what I help them realize for the first time. 

This client in particular, Miss K, had a very transformative 2016 and knew that she wanted to celebrate what she's accomplished.  She had a preventative bilateral mastectomy, and on top of that, lost 40 lbs and counting after finally taking herself off the back burner and embracing self care.  She came out of 2016 on fire and booked a boudoir experience with me to celebrate...and I couldn't be more honored. 

"Kara, I don't have words to tell you how much I love these...except that you're a fucking boudoir genius."

"My body has undergone some huge changes over the last year. In April 2016 I had a bilateral mastectomy with diep flap reconstruction as a preventative measure since I have a nasty family history of breast cancer and the genetic predisposition as well. I have also lost about 40 pounds this year. I wanted to celebrate my body and my strength.

This past year I have spent a lot of time thinking about self-care and self-preservation. I know taking care of myself is what my mental and physical health require, but like most people I know, it gets pushed to the side in order to finish whatever has to be done. "

"I don't remember how I found Kara Marie on Instagram, but her aesthetic is so similar to mine. The love for black clothing (I'm not sure if I own anything besides black, gray, and white anymore), the stunning photographs, the studio, the natural light. I knew I wanted to do a boudoir session only with Kara. "

"I jumped at the chance to book when and spend a night away once I made up my mind. My time in the studio was amazing. It was self-care that keeps on giving. Having my make-up and hair done for me (with some bonus product tips from Kendall!) was a treat."

"The shoot was empowering. Months later,  I still feel the same empowerment when I think about that morning and look at the pictures and video. I suppose I justified booking the shoot as a gift for my husband, but it was just as much a gift for me. I love the way Kara captured me. Even in the midst of laundry and dishes and keeping life moving, the reminder that I am strong and sexy is in these images. "

"After my mastectomy I decided instead of doing 3D nipple tattooing, I wanted flames. The artist I worked with designed the tattoos and they were one of my final steps in healing from my surgery. It was emotional to know I had fully healed from my surgery and was able to take this last step. My tattoos and scars tell my body's story."

"On my right forearm I have the phrase, 'take my hand through the flames' in my husband's handwriting. It's a line from the song "Sucker for Pain" from the Suicide Squad album and became our mantra during his last deployment."

In Miss K's case, she already had the tools. She knew and embraced her strength as a badass woman...she just needed me to document it.  In so many other women's cases, they need to discover that strength first, which I am always so incredibly proud to do. 

Wherever your peg falls on the "I am woman, hear me roar" board, it would be my absolute pleasure to document that exact stage in your journey, and hopefully help you progress to the next. It is *not* about the photos. It's about the uninhibited, strong, powerful, raw, beautiful woman in them. 

Infinite thanks to Miss K for sharing her words and photos with myself + the Kara Marie Boudoir readers. It was an absolute pleasure. 

WHETHER YOU'RE READY TO CELEBRATE YOUR BADASS WOMANHOOD OR DISCOVER IT FOR THE FIRST TIME...LET'S CHAT!

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Insecurities be gone | Miss G | Austin Boudoir Studio

Insecurities are pesky little bitches, aren't they?! One of the best compliments I can get from my clients is that all of those little nagging bitchy insecurities that they have every single time they look in the mirror.......they don't see them when they look at their photos. They see themselves the way their partner does, the way I do! They see a strong, amazing, gorgeous woman!

Check out Miss G thang (I just made that up on the fly. I know, I know...it's a gift.) and read about her experience!

"I wanted a boudoir shoot before my wedding, but I just didn't get around to it. What I came to realized is that the fates had something better in store for me because not long after I got married, I found Kara Marie Boudoir and began stalking her blog and social media, dreaming of the day I would get to have my own shoot, not just a boudoir, but A KMB shoot."

" I would see outfits and imagine what they would look like in Kara's photos - not super creeper like, just seeing her talent and knowing she would make everything AH-mazing."

"As my husband and I started to talk about having kids, I knew I wanted to get the opportunity to have a "pre-mom" body experience and so I ask (begged, pleaded) and we went all in with the full package - hair/makeup/shoot/book."

"It was really the best way to go - I felt like a million bucks after Kendall got done with my hair and make up and Kara was so wonderful to work with as we laughed and posed and had a ball."

" I felt like a Victoria Secret model! I KNEW the shoot went well and couldn't wait for the reveal. When reveal day came I had over 100 photos to have to choose from - and I was worried about even getting the 10 to fill the book! Choosing which ones to get was the hardest part because they were all so good."

I’m pretty self conscious and critical of myself (what girl isn’t) but I didn’t even see the flaws - and that was the most amazing part of the whole experience, I saw myself for how my husband sees me, and damn if I’m not a serious hottie!

" Everyone is always critical of this or that on their body. Everyone always thinks, I need to be a certain weight/shape/size/personality/whatever to do something like a boudior shoot and let me just say - no, you don't, you just need to be YOU and make the call to Kara"

"The whole experience makes you feel like a million bucks, which makes the cost a pretty good ROI if you need to justify it. Getting your make up and hair done, getting to listen to music, and letting your inner goddess/diva out is an exhilarating experience. Almost addicting, which is why I understand people going back for multiple shoots with her."

  It isn't about being vain either, it is truly letting you be a little selfish and saying, 

Why yes, I am a bad ass, sexy woman. What are you going to do about it!?

Hell yes. This rave made my heart sing! We all want to feel this way. And I assure you, an amazing boudoir experience with me will do the trick. Come see for yourself!!

READY TO FEEL LIKE A BADASS SEXY WOMAN!? LET'S CHAT, DAHHLING!

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Everything was Inspiring | Austin Studio Boudoir

Miss R's shoot happened to fall on an "off-day" for me. I was frantic and frazzled. For the first time ever, my makeup artist and I had a massive miscommunication which resulted in her hopping on a plane at the moment that I had her scheduled to do Miss R's face.  Well....shit. 

Panic ensued as I frantically began to call my other makeup artists to see who may have last second availability... a Saturday afternoon at that!  By some miracle, my other brilliant artist happened to be finishing up with wedding makeup for an entire bridal party (SEVEN FACES.) and was cool enough to STILL swing by and help a sista out. Miss R was just sitting there, smiling. 

I apologized profusely for the mixup and suggested that we start with some anonymous shots that didn't require her face to be at any level of "done-upped-ness" while we waited for Lauren to arrive.  Miss R assured me that she wouldn't have even known there was a mix-up if I hadn't told her, and just kept smiling.

And I totally got lost in the shoot. Her positive attitude was absolutely infectious and we just had the best time. Lauren came to the rescue with some seriously badass makeup skills at the ideal moment, and the shoot came and went with smooth perfection. 

then, she began to breathe, and live, and every moment took her to a place where goodbyes were hard to come by. she was in love, but not in love with someone or something, she was in love with her life. and for the first time, in a long time, everything was inspiring.
— r.m. drake

I love being around life-breathers.  She was one of 'em. 

Thank you Miss R for being so kind, so positive, and so much damn fun! 

And thank you to Lauren of Lola Beauty for coming to my rescue and giving Miss R the most ooh-la-la eye makeup eva!

Artistic Nudes: The ultimate in badassery | Austin Boudoir Studio

There's this little genre of boudoir photography that I happen to adore...kind of a "sub-niche" if you will. It's not everyone's bag, and it doesn't need to be the entire duration of your photo shoot experience, but most women that I talk to are drawn to this type of imagery.

A R T I S T I C  N U D E S , y'all. artistic nudes. 

So many times my clients will have images like this saved on their required "homework" mood boards but then when I say out loud on the day of their session "Ok, so you want to do some artistic nudes, then?" they're eyes swell to a terrified state and they emphatically shake their head no. NUDE?!  

Yes. Nude. Those pictures that you saved that you said you loved? Those women are nude, silly. And to be honest, my style of artistic nudes are often more modest than the rest of my typical boudoir images. They cover just enough and reveal just enough to make the image ultra powerful.

There's tons of ways to shoot nude boudoir photos...so obviously you want to make sure that you and your photographer (hopefully that's ME since you're on this blog right now) are on the same page about what you want these images to look like. 

The  Kara Marie nude boudoir style is definitely on the artistic and classy side as you can see in these self portraits of yours truly. I play up highlights and shadows with the help of strategic lighting, REALLY strategic angles and posing, and with my secret weapon for incredible skin for these images. More simply put: We hide your naughty bits one way or another, even if they feel exposed during the session. 

Throughout the shoot we make sure that nothing is "hanging out" that you don't want to be hanging out. And we do NOT shoot nude crotch at our studio...no way, no how. So you can rest assured that your lady bits will stay covered and you will walk away from your photo reveal will some really incredible wall-worthy artistic nudes

This type of imagery is amazing for ANY woman of any shape or size. The light and shadows are incredibly flattering (believe me. This is the ONLY way I will EVER agree to be photographed completely nude. Everrrrr.), and the finished product is insanely striking.

So there, I did my duty as a boudoir photographer and showed you that shooting a few nudes at your boudoir shoot really doesn't have to be terrifying. At least not with me!!!! It's my job to make you comfortable. It's my job to make you forget your body insecurities. It's my job to make you look your ABSOLUTE BEST. And I'm ....like....REALLY good at my job. ;)

Don't be afraid to incorporate artistic nudes into your Kara Marie Boudoir experience! You'll be happy you did.  xoxo