ZERO FUSS boudoir wardrobe. Literally. | Austin Boudoir Photographer

This post must be prefaced by saying: I LOVE GOOD LINGERIE.  I have a special all-black-everything place in my heart for a fine piece of "underthings". 

Yet, my favorite boudoir images of myself and clients are rarely the fruit of any sort of preparation at all. Not to mention there's a whole group of woman out there who can't even wrap their heads around the idea of themselves in a full garter set and heels...it just isn't them. Add to that the number of women who end up snagging a last-minute time slot that I announce due to a reschedule.....and they.have.zero.time.to.prepare.

After enough emails and comments about not knowing where to begin with boudoir wardrobe, I decided to take on the challenge of coming up with 15 boudoir looks out of my closet....not counting my lingerie drawers (because obviously not everyone is in the unique position of being a boudoir photographer who gets tempted by lingerie constantly while also having zero shopping willpower), without buying anything new.  In addition, I'll share self portraits and some client photos that have been the result of similar no-fuss preparation. 

1. The black blazer. 

Like just about everything else on this list, a black blazer is something that most women already have in their closet. I prefer more of a relaxed fit for boudoir photos...but can work with really any fit with proper clipping/pinning. For this set of self portraits, I opted for a black "boyfriend fit" blazer that I bought from Nordstrom Rack 3 years ago for $19.  You can put your blazer on over a bra + panty set, a pair of cute bottoms, or nothing at all. 

 

2. The White tank top

More inappropriately called a "beater" (UGHHH a cringe-worthy name. So let's just call it a white tank top.), wearing one of these with nothing under it, paired with a pair of white underwear is a completely classic, completely CHEAP look for some really steamy boudoir photos. This one was one of those fancy $3 Target tops that had a lace detail on the top of it to class it up ;) 

 

3. The oversized sweater.

Everyone has an open front sweater, yes? Grab it. Preferably in a neutral color. We can pair it with a cami like I did here, a bra + panty, or nothing at all. 

A couple more awesome examples from other clients:::

 

4.  The t-shirt

If you own nothing else on this list, #1- I don't believe you, but... #2- I KNOW you've got yourself a tshirt. It can be oversized, baby-sized, crop, off-shoulder...you name it, we can rock it. 

From a recent session with Miss J rocking out her boyfriend's Iron Lung band tee. LOVE.THIS.LOOK.

 

5. Nothing at all.

I've successfully captured some of my favorite boudoir images of all time using literally no wardrobe. Whether it's artistic nudes, implied nudes, or fine art...you don't need any more than your birthday suit for this one. 

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6. The sheets

Again with the "no wardrobe necessary", nothing says classic boudoir like a simple "in the sheets" session. 

 

7. The kimono

I have yet to wear a kimono for a shoot, but I've had so many clients rock it out. Kimonos look amazing over basic undergarments or simply as an accessory to a nude figure. 

 

8. The bodysuit.

There are few things I love more than a bodysuit. They are available everywhere (and all over the internet), they can be found relatively inexpensive, they are sexy, and they look amazing on all body types! I encourage my clients to bring one bodysuit to their session and I'm so glad when they listen!

 

9. The sleep shirt.

I AHHH-DOOORRRRRRE the morning-after look and feel of a sleep shirt in boudoir photos. There's something so raw and VOGUE about it, isn't there?  It can be draped so easily, buttoned/unbuttoned to any degree, and layered over whatever you'd like or nothing at all. 

 

10. The swimsuit.

Everyone's got a swimsuit...and I'm willing to bet everyone has a solid colored swim suit. You can use just the bottoms of a bikini, just a bikini top paired with underwear, or if you're a one-piece queen like me, rock your one piece as a bodysuit. I haven't had the chance to shoot in it yet, but a one piece black thong swimsuit paired with a loose cozy sweater draped off the shoulder is the perfect look for a cozy Sunday morning boudoir set. 

And check out Miss J rocking a bikini top with high waisted underwear!

...and the badass Miss C in a super awesome swimsuit that doubles as lingerie for sure!

 

11. The scarf.

Scarves are so versatile, inexpensive, and beautiful. Oftentimes they are a plethora of sheer luxurious looking fabric and are PERFECT for a boudoir shoot. 

My all-time favorite boudoir photo involves an ivory scarf from Target....

Followed by a black scarf from Target....

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....which I then just wrapped around me like a towel out of the shower.

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You can have fun with colors and textures and I've got at least 100 poses than can be accomplished using a scarf. We could do an entire boudoir set using nothing but! 

 

12. The robe.

There's been times when clients have forgotten their wardrobe (photo shoot day nerves! ha!), and I've just had them start off in a robe because they were too nervous to go straight for nude. We can make just about any robe work as demonstrated here in the largest, bulkiest robe ever from the South Congress Hotel. 

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13. The granny panties.

Just hike 'em up and you're in business! White cotton panties are hard to beat when it comes to comfort AND photo worthiness (and Sunday lounging).

 

14. The holy jeans

Ok...you DEFINITELY have jeans, right?! I was on a mission to make this one work even though I'm a no-pants girl by trade. Unbutton, pull down, and voila. 

Even mom jeans work....as TOTALLY DEMONSTRATED BY THESE PHOTOS. These are Ralph Lauren POLO high-rise jeans that were literally given to me by my mother in-law who didn't like the fit on her. (which I left out when I texted the photos to my husband. Woops.)

15. The jacket

Wearing a coat or jacket of some sort is a popular option for boudoir....leather jackets and fur coats in particular! Here are some favorite examples from recent sessions:

There you have it, ladies....a tremendously long-winded blog post to demonstrate that you don't NEED a shopping trip or even lingerie for a boudoir experience with me. Stress less about what you'll wear and enjoy the experience knowing that I'm pro at working with what you've got!!!!

If you do decide that you want to use your boudoir experience as an excuse for a fun shopping trip, I've got you covered there, too! All clients receive a boudoir prep guide chock full of lingerie recommendations and prep advice. Bottom line, whatever "kind of woman" you are, my goal is to make sure THAT woman shines through, not who you think you should be for these photos. 

xx

HEY YOU! You've got my attention. | Austin Boudoir Studio

As years pass, more and more women are coming to me for a boudoir experience....and I mean....coming to me from other places....as in flying to me. I can't even tell you how giddy it makes me when someone reaches out from New York, California, hell...CANADA...and says they want to come to Austin just do have a boudoir experience with me. It tells me that I'm doing something right.

I believe that right thing is making boudoir about more than just boobs and booties. It's about each woman's STORY. It's about the experience I provide. It's about the way these women FEEL when they are with me.  The women that make their way to my little Austin, TX studio are doing so for a purpose, and I take that purpose very seriously. 

There's a reason that all of the rave reviews on my page say similar things. "I felt so comfortable!" "I have never felt so sexy and I hadn't even seen one photo yet!" and "I am so so glad I did this for myself".....notice those raves have nothing to do with the photos. It's about something even more important than the photos themselves. 

When a woman is in my "care", she has my attention. I ask questions about her life, not because I'm making small talk...but because I genuinely want to know who she is, what she does, what lead her to me. I want to find out the real reason behind her boudoir experience with me....not just the one she mentioned in the e-mail when booking me.

You can ask my husband...no matter where I'm at or what I'm doing, if I see a "REVIEW" e-mail come in from a client, I stop everything to read their words about their experience....and I tear up every.damn.time. Even if it's something I've read over and over from different women. 

When I received Miss C's email, I did the same. I was at my son's soccer game and reading "I would have traveled pretty much anywhere for you"...as I shed a tear thinking about how special I felt making this amazing woman from California feel special herself.. I'm not "mushy gushy" about much, guys....but my work...my clients....I MUSH AND GUSH ALL OVER THE PLACE.

Read and view, y'all. Read. and. view. 

"The whole experience was great from the initial email up to this review. I appreciated the quick response to emails and the notes on what to expect and how to prepare (I musta read over them at least 10x)."

"Since I'm a long-time Instagram follower (aka stalker) of Kara Marie Boudoir, I know that Kara is a very busy woman, but during my time at the studio I never felt like her attention was else where. I felt very much like the center of attention and my time there was focused on my experience and making sure I was comfortable and having a good time. I left wishing the time was longer and looking forward to doing it again."

"My morale after an experience like this, and especially after viewing the pictures, is at an all time high. I'm learning more and more as I get older that the more often we are able to do things for ourselves, the better we feel from the inside out." 

"It's difficult to put into words the feelings of self-confidence, self-worth, and inner strength that result from doing this. It's a remarkable feeling and I wish I could convince all of the women in my life to do this for themselves."

"Thanks again so much for the whole experience.  You are a true artist and you work stays with a woman forever.  I would have traveled pretty much anywhere for you. I didn't want to pose by any window, it had to be THAT window; I didn't want to lay down and arch my back on any floor, it had to be YOUR floor.  Anything else would have been settling, and quite frankly I've done enough settling in my day."

Goodness. I'm so so grateful for Miss C and clients like her who value the experience that I work so hard to create. More than that, I'm so grateful for what I takeaway from each and every boudoir experience. Every woman that I have the opportunity to work with affects my life in big ways. 

It doesn't have to be me...but if you find a boudoir photographer whose body of work and boudoir philosophy speaks to you....GO TO THEM. It.is.WORTH.IT.  Don't settle for someone based just on proximity to you. You will value it so much more if you invest in your own boudoir experience with THE photographer you want to work with...wherever they are. 

 

THANK YOU, MISS C!!!! I adore you.   xoxox

Googling "How to Be Sexy".... | Miss K | Austin Boudoir Studio

Ohh, the dreaded "BUT I DON'T KNOW HOW TO LOOK/ACT SEXY" excuse! I get it all the time. Like...almost every single shoot. My clients tell me how terrible they are in front of the camera, how they have NO clue how to be even remotely sexy, how they dislike this and that about their bodies. 

I'll tell you what I tell every single client...

It's not your job to make yourself look amazing in your photos. It's mine. And you're in really, really good hands. Promise.

Not only do I have tons of boudoir photography experience under my belt, but I'm also highly intuitive (which allows me to really read people's demeanor to know if they need a little more assistance feeling comfortable, or if they're not particularly digging one of their outfits, etc), AND I've got this knack for posing people oh-so-perfectly to play up their favorite bits, ANNNND make them love their not-so-favorite-bits so much more. 

But enough about me. On your end of things, you're already awesome...we know that. You're gorgeous--whether or not I've met you. You've got things going on for you that no other woman has. 

Every so often, I'll have a client who thinks they are going to be the first person to make my job impossible (Nope. Not gonna happen.), orrrrr who thinks that I only show the modelesque women on my website and their images aren't going to be anywhere near as good (I show everyone who gives me permission to! Your photos WILL turn out that good.). I always joke with clients that my favorite part of boudoir photography is proving people wrong.

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Miss K is an example of a woman who was quite a bit nervous for her session, and not expecting walk out of her shoot feeling so amazing...and certainly not expecting to love her photos so much. Hear from her here:

"This year I turn 30 AND get a new last name! I wanted to do this shoot just as much for myself as I did for my fiancé, who I must say makes me feel beautiful even in my 'give-ups,' as he calls them.

I booked my session 5 months in advance, because #weddingdiet, so I had lots of time to anticipate being super awkward. On the day of, Kara's fabulously personable demeanor and coaching {and my glass of champagne} quickly put me at ease...and, VOILÁ! "

"The walls I had built of insecurities and negative thoughts about myself vanished. I left my photo shoot feeling so incredibly empowered and beautiful, which was a huge shift from the same girl who was googling "how to be sexy" the night before (I wish that was a joke). "

"This was such an unbelievable experience for me and I could not be more thrilled to have stepped out of my comfort zone. I encourage every woman to do this, if not for someone else, for YOURSELF."

"And, finally, a huge shoutout to Kara for her amazing talent...I even got a "Damn!" out of my sweet, southern mama."

I assure you, SHE.WAS.SEXY....though I'm not sure it had anything to do with what her Google search results turned up ;)

Miss K was an absolute stunner. Her curves were that of a goddess, her freckles were sprinkled perfectly on her face and shoulders, and her eyes were the most insane shade of blue. Between that and all the pose guidance and continuous encouragement, we certainly could write a new article for Google search on "HOW TO BE SEXY". We got this. 

SO many thanks to Miss K for trusting me, for letting me show her all her sexy, and for sharing her experience with all of the KMB readers!

You ready?!? The hardest part for you will be reaching out to start the conversation. I'll take care of the rest. Promise. Let's chat!

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INTRODUCING A NEW SEXY THANG | KARA MARIE BOUDOIR STUDIO

Get ready to OOOOH and AHHHH! The Kara Marie Boudoir studio has teamed up with another album company to offer a sexy album upgrade option that will seriously take your breath away.

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ALL of our products are outstanding, including our sexy nightstand album that we've been offering for years and will continue to do so. But if I've noticed one significant shift in my client base, it's that most of them are doing this for THEM.DAMN.SELVES.

They are having me create outstanding giant wall art for them of their favorite image. They are adding lots of extra images to their album. They are wanting to see their photos BIGGER and on more luxurious surfaces. They are wanting something to display rather than tuck their photos away in a drawer. 

ENTER THE SUPER DUPER LUXURY BADASS BOUDOIR ALBUM COLLECTION. Ok, so I have to shorten the name. But.DAMNNNN. It's hard to pick a short name worthy of such sexy luxury. 

While yes, the album itself is awe-inspiring with it's silk pages, large 8x12 size, and stunning cover...it's the presentation that had me sold. With every album comes the same size image folio with your favorite 2 images that you can display on your desk/bookshelf/nightstand in all it's glory. ANNNDDD my favorite part: the display case wrapped in matching fabric. 

And then...AND THEN you get to pick from one of over 30 cover fabrics INCLUDING EIGHT different black ones. EIGHT BLACK COVERS. Be still my all-black-lovin'-heart!

This is love. 

This is love. 

These bad boys are available from this point forward as an upgrade to theWORKS package, or added on a la carte for any package. YEAHHH! I absolutely cannot wait to see some more of my client's images in these sexies!!! 

Ciao and Cheers ;)

Unruffled | Austin Boudoir Studio

In 2017, I've been setting a weekly mantra for myself. Undoubtedly inspired by quotes (I'm a quote girl, you know it...I know it...and it's never gonna change!), each week I repeat the quote or mantra each day and look for ways the mantra presents itself in my world. 

This week's mantra is to "remain unruffled", inspired by a pretty spectacular quote by Thomas Jefferson that's been giving me life this week amidst lots of things that would normally "ruffle" me. 

Nothing gives one person so much advantage over another as to remain always cool and unruffled under all circumstances.
— Thomas Jefferson

I won't go into a long-winded story here (I know, that's a first!!! More on Instagram)...but this set of images of Miss D seemed so calm, cool, collected, and UNRUFFLED AF. Something about her demeanor in these photos says "Whatevs. I'm just gonna keep doing my thing." and these photos are giving me life this week! ENJOY!

Client wearing La Perla from Teddies for Bettys

Client wearing La Perla from Teddies for Bettys

AHHHH! Yes. Unruffled AF. I adore these images and am so delighted that more and more clients are opting to do an artistic nude set. The resulting images are so classic, timeless, and FREAKING STUNNING. 

 

Miss M shows us her pump AND her sexy | Austin Boudoir Studio

Occasionally, and I mean *VERY* occasionally, I'll receive an email from a prospective client asking for something a little different than I've ever done before.  Maybe even something a little (gasp) challenging.  And no, I'm not referring to the email that starts out with "I'm wondering if you're comfortable with photographing my girlfriend and I making love?"...because I get those just about every day. Annoying. 

In one session, this client wanted to accomplish my usual artistic boudoir in lingerie, some fully clothed portraits that she could potentially gift to her parents, and some art nudes...including a feature of her nude and embracing her sexy...while wearing her insulin pump. All three were such a different direction than each other, but I felt confident that the challenge would inspire me. After all, I *am* a creative brain (read: scatterbrained), right?!

We sorta kinda nailed it. Miss M was open to my creative interpretations and did an amazing job trusting me and letting me do my thing while also adding her own energy to the session. I LOVE the confidence that is exuded in each of these images. Enjoy.  

 

I received the most beautiful e-mail from Miss M shortly after I sent her "sneak peek" photo and I felt that it was likely highly relevant to so many women, so I thought I'd share it in it's entirety...

*The Boticelli comment she is referencing: I kept telling her what a beautifully classic figure she had. She reminded me of a subject in one of Boticelli's paintings.  She kind of laughed the compliment off at first, but I elaborated and explained again why her figure, just as it was, was beautiful. My compliments to my clients are NEVER meaningless fluff. I specifically look for the absolute best features of my clients (not just physical ones) and I TELL THEM. This a boudoir shoot with me is NOT just about the finished images. It's about how my clients feel about themselves along the way. And I pride myself on that. 

*The Boticelli comment she is referencing: I kept telling her what a beautifully classic figure she had. She reminded me of a subject in one of Boticelli's paintings.  She kind of laughed the compliment off at first, but I elaborated and explained again why her figure, just as it was, was beautiful. My compliments to my clients are NEVER meaningless fluff. I specifically look for the absolute best features of my clients (not just physical ones) and I TELL THEM. This a boudoir shoot with me is NOT just about the finished images. It's about how my clients feel about themselves along the way. And I pride myself on that. 

Shifting out of parent-friendly portraits and into boudoir...

"This experience definitely made me more aware and appreciative of the features I have and allowed me to embrace them. I'm focusing more on those positive things and letting go of the self-criticism. I'm now able to focus and enjoy the beauty of others in a positive way without it causing me to feel bad about myself."

"I had not felt attractive or feminine, let alone beautiful, in a long time. This has been an awesome experience that has helped to open my eyes to see myself in a new perspective."

"The "Show Me Your Pump" campaign that began in 2014 was a great starting point to help users feel more comfortable with exposing their pumps and to decrease the stigma and any feelings of embarrassment some people may have. I feel it is important to not only be unashamed of having one but to show that one does not define you.

Your character is more than a medical device and it shouldn't be the only thing someone focuses on. People should see YOU regardless of whether you have a pump or use a wheelchair or have a prosthetic." - Miss M

Admittedly, the only knowledge that I had prior to photographing Miss M, here, about the "Show me your pump" campaign was a news story that crossed my feed a few years ago when the campaign was started. It was featuring Miss Idaho who wore her insulin pump out on stage with her bikini during the pageant. When interviewed about it, this is what she had to say:

"My message to everyone, diabetic or not, is that we all have something that doesn't "measure up" to the beauty standards set by the media--and that is okay! It does not make you any less beautiful. We also all have obstacles, challenges, and trials. Diabetes turned my life upside down when I was first diagnosed. Don't let your challenge hold you back or slow you down." -Sierra Sandison, Miss Idaho 2014

"The type of photos I requested were envisioned and produced by Kara in exactly this way. Those images are so powerful that the last thing anyone would think was that the pump was a flaw. Rather, the images throttle it into the forefront as an accessory to sensuality. I would encourage any insulin pump wearer that feels any reservation about revealing their pump to view these images in order to gain a more positive perspective" -Miss M

"My photo session and the photos that I received have made me look and feel confident, sexy, beautiful, powerful, feminine, voluptuous and soulful. I am a force to be reckoned with!"- Miss M

Thank you SO much, Miss M for sharing your thoughtful words with all of the KMB readers, and for being an inspiration to so many who may be feeling insecure about their figures (95% of women!) or their medical devices.

xoxox 

NEEDING SOME HELP BELIEVING THAT YOU ARE SEXY? I'M JUST THE GIRL FOR THE JOB.  LET'S CHAT, DAHHLING!

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It's not business...it's personal | Austin Boudoir Studio

I tried to ride out the flood of New Year blog posts and really contemplate on mine (that, and give all my readers a chance to not be annoyed by so many New Year posts.) I'm not a New Year resolution girl.  It's now 2017, and I'm still the same girl that's making a giant pan of 5 cheese macaroni and cheese for lunch on January 2nd. 

I set my goals year round, I truly do. I set monthly goals for my business (which I'm really good at achieving), I set quarterly personal goals (THOSE sometimes...err...often fall behind...but I'm working on that), and I keep the most extensive and organized to-do list I've ever seen for every day tasks (though often forgetting to add things like "take a shower" and "work out").

One ongoing to-do list item I always keep at the top of my list is a reminder for me and it says "It's not business...it's personal."  If you've been following me for a long time, you may remember that my old photography website had that phrase written at the bottom of every single page. 

Obviously, this *IS* in fact a business, and I do operate it as such on most levels. But the one facet of my business that isn't business is ME. It's my relationships with my clients. It's my passion for my work. It's my love affair with the stories that each client tells me.  It's how seriously I take each and every customer's review of my services. It's my dedication to making sure that every person has the warm and fuzzies about their experience. It's my desire to continue to do something for a living that I'm SO passionate about without majorly sacrificing my time with my family. 

KEEPING.IT.PERSONAL is the reason I don't have a (probably much needed) large staff of additional photographers, virtual assistants to answer my emails for me, a sales person doing my photo reveals, and someone else running my social media accounts.  It's the reason that sometimes I rock a messy top knot that contains far more dry shampoo than hair.  I have had to actively try to keep it small. And to be honest, it's outgrowing me. It's become bigger than I can handle on my own with just myself and an assistant.  But like any business, I need to continuously adapt, and I will strive to do so while keeping.it.personal. 

While I most definitely have help, *I* am the only person that is fully invested in this business of mine. It's a part of me.  And in such an intimate line of work, I find it to be utterly important that you all get to know me. I want you to feel like you know me before you meet me. I want you to feel completely at ease, like you are working with an old friend.  I want to be the one to sit with you as you see your images for the first time and get all watery eyed. I want to be the one that gets more excited than you are to see your images blown up huge and hung on your wall.

Ok, ok, so maybe that makes me a wee bit selfish. But I genuinely feel the personal touch adds so much to the experience for my clients.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think there's anything wrong with not having a hands-on approach in many businesses. In fact, my apparel line Blonde Black and White is one that I dedicate about an hour a week to, I outsource just about every aspect. And my husband coincidentally just publicly announced yesterday that his fitness studio Heat Bootcamp is now officially a franchise.  There's most definitely a time and a place for expansion, but for Kara Marie Boudoir, that is not in the foreseeable future. 

Sometimes people will stop me in restaurants/grocery stores/coffee shops and say "HEY! I follow you on Instagram! I love your work!". I think "Who? ME!? You recognized ME!?!?!" *commence crawling into a hole in embarrassment and trying to remember what the last embarrassing thing I posted was...*  But then I realize that's a pretty awesome thing. I definitely put myself out there a little bit (lot bit) more than most other photographers. And I'm ok with that...in fact that's very intentional for all the reasons I've already listed. 

So, in 2017, I want to officially pledge my commitment to KEEPING.IT.PERSONAL. 

Thank you all SO, SO much for the most incredible year KMB has seen. Thank you for keeping me booked. Thank you for referring your friends. Thank you for every single "like" and Instagram comment. Thank you for understanding my mission to helping women feel a way they haven't felt in a long time (or ever). Thank you for your grace when I go a month without blogging because I'm swamped with edits. Thank you to each and every woman who has trusted me with their boudoir experience. I don't take the privilege lightly. 

I ADORE YOU. 

XOX

KARA MARIE

 

New Orleans Charm | Destination Boudoir Photographer

My studio is a dream...I absolutely adore it. The light is just perfection, the concrete floors are reflective and swoon worthy, and it's polluted with positive juju...you can feel it when you walk in. 

HOWEVA--- shooting in other places is so creatively refreshing for me. I keep a VERY full studio schedule, so I don't get out much (there has never been a truer statement in any sense of the phrase.), but when I get to travel for a destination boudoir shoot, a little extra magic happens. 

When I first heard from Miss M, it was 4 days before what ended up being our photo shoot date. She lived in a knockout historic apartment in New Orleans but was moving in less than 6 weeks and wanted to know if there was any way I would be able to travel to her for a boudoir shoot before she moved. Typically based on my nutty schedule, this wouldn't have been a possibility with such short notice. HOWEVER-- the boudoir gods(eh hem...goddesses) were looking down on us. I just happened to be scheduled to speak at a boudoir photographer's conference IN New Orleans THAT weekend. Talk about dumb luck!

I rearranged my schedule and changed my flight to arrive a day sooner, and VOILA-- boudoir miracle made.

With zero time to plan, Miss M was ready for her session in a few short days. 

Honestly, I'm inspired shooting ANYWHERE with good light. It could be a giant cardboard box. Butttt when I walked in to her apartment, I wasn't prepared for the gorgeousness that awaited me.

#1- This woman...sitting there...barely a lick of makeup on yet, was just GLOWING from the inside out. She had SUCH an amazing spirit about her, and I KNEW this was going to go spectacularly. Attitude is translated so loudly in every photograph I make, and she had the best one!

#2-HOLY CRAP her apartment. The light was pouring in from the most beautiful floor to ceiling windows that had the best window treatments. The whole place was obviously very expertly designed and furnished...and I knew that working with such an incredibly awesome client PLUS having such an incredibly amazing setting.... look.out.

I could have shot all day (and was quite sad that I couldn't, actually!)

Miss M on her boudoir experience:

"Having the opportunity to embrace my body in a sexy, tasteful and creative way was such an amazing and eye opening experience.

Not only did I push myself to do something I have always thought about and wanted to do but I absolutely love the images.

I wondered what I was going to look like after a shoot like this and I could not be happier with the end result :)"

"I think anytime you do something new or test your yourself in some way, it affects you.

The boudoir experience helped me see myself in a different light and having photos of myself and my body that I am proud of is invigorating.

It shows and reminds me of how my fiancee sees me daily. I wouldn't change a thing about the experience." -Miss M

Miss M dabbles in art (read: She's pretty insanely amazing! There were a couple of her paintings in her home and they were breathtaking!) and mentioned that she is so intrigued by the female form, and, in particular, the curve of the back. I wanted to make sure I created a lot of images that featured her figure, and that long beautiful curve of the spine. 

I was truly inspired by every nook of the apartment. The light coming into the study was magnificent and I knew I wanted to create something unique there.

The living room was masculine and fascinating. There wasn't any natural light in there, which always presents a challenge....for a natural light photographer ;) But it was the kind of living room that just NEEDED to be photographed, especially with Miss M gracing it. So I pushed my camera to it's limits and I'm so freaking glad I did. 

^^^ That one there. THAT ONE is my favorite shot from the entire set. It represents what I aspire to create for each client. The black and white tones, the composition, and her figure framed perfectly within it. THIS. ONTHEFREAKINGWALL. BIG. 

These final images just make my heart explode. They turned out exactly how I envisioned them, maybe even slightly better. I love the artistry, the fine art feel of her figure in the window. It's all just so...AHHH. 

I truly cannot say enough about this experience.  What my blog audience/social media following doesn't always realize is that EACH interaction with EACH and every client is an experience for me, too. Hearing everyone's stories and the reasons they are doing their session....hearing how their session has affected them. It's ALL so personal. It's personal for each client and it's personal for me. 

Ironically, I attribute much of my business' success to my whole "It's not business, it's personal" mantra. Because these aren't just photos. These are experiences. These are people. And I'll bet you can relate to them more than you think. 

Thank you to Miss M for the warm NOLA welcome, for letting your positive energy boom throughout your entire session and photo reveal, and for letting me share your words and images! 

READY TO STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE IN 2017? LET'S CHAT, DAHHLING!

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P.S. you're amazing | Austin Boudoir Studio

Yesterday I had the ultimate in lazy Sundays. My son's soccer tournament was cancelled...which is a good thing because I just so happened to have a raging hangover from an embarrassingly little amount of alcohol the night before (HELLLL-OOOO adulthood.), and it was cold and rainy. I worked from my laptop in bed all.day.long. and watched movie after movie. 

I probably wasn't mentally prepared to watch P.S. I love you in my current state, but I did. For some reason it resonated with me so much more yesterday than it did the first time I saw it nearly 10 years ago...before kids. There was a message hidden in there that I didn't pick up on the first time. 

For those of you aren't familiar, it's about a recently widowed woman Holly (played by Hillary Swank) whose late husband (Gerard Butler) left letters with her friends and family to be delivered to her intermittently after his passing to help her cope and move forward.  He challenged her even after he was gone. As you can imagine, it's emotional AF. 

In a really pivotal scene for me, Holly's mother (Kathy Bates)  says "Ohh how your father used to make me laugh..." and Holly responded by saying "I don't remember you laughing...". Mother, looking absolutely crushed says "Well that makes me sad. Because I did."   How many of us have lost so much of our young spirit because...well...life?! I know I have. I know that I don't laugh as much as I did before kids. I know that I'm far, FAR more serious now. And I know that I'm not alone.  We need reminded. 

Without giving away too much of the movie (if you haven't seen it, wait for a lazy Sunday, grab 6 boxes of tissues and a tub of ice cream and be prepared to cry it all out), it was one sentence in the final letter Holly received that drove the point home and had me ugly crying. You see, Holly, like so many of us women, lost a bit of her young free spirit. She got very serious over the years. The young woman who met the love of her life in a really adorable and quirky way on a winding road in Ireland while lost was actually the LEAST lost when she had no idea where she was. 

In his final letter to her, her late husband said "You see, I don't worry about you remembering me. It's that girl on the road you keep forgetting."  *ugly sobbing accelerates*

We.need.reminded.

If you hung in with me for that, you should get the correlation. That is my goal during your boudoir experience...to remind you. This experience isn't about the mom version of you, the wife version of you, the boss or employee version of you, the flat out EXHAUSTED version of you. It's about you...the WOMAN. 

Today we are hearing from Miss Z. A hardworking mom who, like most of us, needed a boost, and got it when she needed it the most. She was an absolute honor to work with, and when I received an email from her immediately after her session before even seeing the photos speaking of how great she felt, I knew my mission was accomplished. 

"Kara, you have a gift and it is so inspiring to see you use it to lift women up in a positive way. You make people forget about their body image and embrace beauty."

I hadn’t even seen my pictures and I didn’t care, it was so easy and fun and just what I needed.

"This has helped me regain some self-confidence and self-respect. I know it sounds silly but as women we don't see ourselves in the most positive light. Especially coming out of a situation where I was doubting the person I was."

"Thank you for being my silver lining in a time when I needed a boost the most! As I am writing this I have tears in my eyes because I don't think you and your team realize what you did for me. My pictures are stunning, I'm so incredibly happy with the results."

Rave reviews never get old. It reiterates to me (because, yes, I need self esteem boosts just like the rest of you!), that I am doing what I've always intended to do: Make women not only FEEL amazing, but make them realize that they ARE amazing. All the time. Boudoir photography can be categorized so many different ways...but for me it's about boosting confidence long-term. It's about self-appreciation. It's about self-acceptance. It's about being reminded of who you are as a WOMAN, not just a mom/wife/paycheck generator/exhausted human being.

Thank you, Miss Z, for sharing your experience and allowing me to remind you of your badassness. ;) 

DO YOU NEED REMINDED? I CAN HELP. LET'S CHAT, DAHHLING!

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