Liana in Milan | Destination Editorial Boudoir

SHOOTING IN MILAN WITH A LATVIAN BOMBSHELL.

Ohhhh it sounds so glamorous, doesn’t it!? I’m not going to pretend like it wasn’t.

While in Milan, I was booked for a shoot with a fantastic photographer, Liana from Latvia, who had followed my work for years and had to take advantage of me being way closer to her than a Latvia > United States trip would be. She booked a little getaway to Milan for herself and her husband, and we had an absolutely incredible shoot.

Listening to Liana tell me why she selected me to photograph her, gave me a reaffirming grasp for what my work says about the women featured in it. She told me that she didn’t want some distorted view of herself, or an overly glamorous one. She loved my black and white work, and that the women weren’t overly retouched. She loved the editorial/fashion style of my work and was so enthusiastic about the entire process. So we rocked out ALL those different facets and created magic together.

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We laughed a TON, flowed like crazy, took what felt like 3 million images, ran way over on time, and shot until the sun would no longer let us. Then we hit the hotel bar for a little libation and a chat between now-friends as I was in NO hurry whatsoever to navigate my navigationally-challenged self back to my house .

"I knew it would be an amazing experience, but it actually far exceeded that. The easiness of feeling completely free in your bare skin- it is life changing! And then, when the images do come in and you get to see all your badassness - well, not many things in life can make you feel like that."

"The good old term “self love” has gotten materialized. Subtle and not so subtle changes in all levels of self awareness, which was not the goal, however turned out to be a major bonus. The best money ever spent (way above shoes and bags and other feminine treats 😁)!"

"It all came together in a best possible way." -Liana

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I ADORE my studio, I do. I love it love it love it. I know every nook and cranny, I can photograph a woman there in 3 zillion ways, and because I know all of those ways so well, I can do it in record time. But there’s something to be said about a shoot in a new place. New inspiration, new light, new shapes, new lines, new shadows. It’s all the reason why I will ALWAYS opt to schedule “work” any place I travel to, because I ALWAYS adore the outcome so much.

Thank you so very much, Liana, for choosing me, for traveling for me, for trusting me, for laughing with me and not at me when I made a fool of myself (how many times did I fall???), and for allowing me to share your images and your experience with the world.

Until next time!

Kara Marie Studios | Photography for the Modern Woman

EVOLUTION OF A BRAND

After my 10 years in business, 6 years with the boudoir studio, and upon acquiring my second studio space last year (Kara Marie Portraits), my shoot style continued along it’s path of evolution toward impactful and minimalist. My boudoir work blurred the lines into fashion portrait photography, and my portraits blurred the lines into boudoir….

I was beginning to notice that my sources of inspiration were becoming visually apparent in my work. 70’s fashion film photography. Music. The aesthetic of the rock and roll lifestyle…the “cool girl” look. OH MY GOD. Do I have…a….style?! This is huge! A pivotal point in any artist’s art is when they actually FIND their style.

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When I realized this, the ideas were swirling, my creativity was reignited, I checked myself. I spent time in the desert alone really analyzing what it was I wanted with my brand, my career, myself. I dedicated an ENTIRE BestSelf journal to studying my own work for crying out loud. It’s amazing how easy it is to not really know anything about yourself when you don't actively invest time in getting to make your own acquaintance.

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It was apparent in that reflection that continuing to operate two separate website, brands, blogs, and Instagram handles made less and less sense. It occurred to me (and was validated to me by others in the industry I respect), that shedding the WORD Boudoir was the right move for this particular brand. It was the right move for me personally.

Destroy the idea that you have to be constantly working or grinding in order to be successful. embrace the concept that rest, recovery, and reflection are essential parts of the progress towards a successful and ultimately happy life.

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I’m a no-fuss kind-of woman. I wear an all black capsule wardrobe. My makeup “kit” fits in the palm of my hand. I like things clean, minimalist, distraction free, black-and white. Through the years I’ve learned that my photography and my business style should follow the same mantra of minimalism.

If my personal style and my photography style are authentic and minimalist….why wouldn’t my brand be?

HENCE, the umbrella company that I’ve been operating under, Kara Marie Studios, is now the forward-facing name. My name is Kara Marie, I own multiple studios, and I am the modern woman’s photographer. With or without clothes. (But probably mostly without ;) )

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When the next step makes you uncomfortable, you know it’s necessary for your growth. I’m in the midst of it now. And that makes me REAL excited…because every time I feel that discomfort, it thwarts me to the next level of fulfillment and that is a beautiful thing. It’s been a while.

BLURRING THE LINES

It’s so hard to define a style of photography with a cookie cutter…especially the longer a photographer has been in the art. I chose boudoir because of the concept of RAW NATURAL BEAUTY. What is more natural than nudity? BOUDOIR is one of those words that has as many interpretations as there are photographers who shoot it. Because of that, the word itself is confusing and often (mis)defining what it is that *I* do.

Beyond that, when examining my shoot style (and as recently pointed out to me by a photography mentor who oozes with authentic, often hard-to-hear but oh-so-needed-advice), I shoot like a fashion photographer, ironically…given the lack of clothing featured in my images. The word BOUDOIR just didn’t seem to fit for my style. The word itself became a pigeon-hole for me.

I’m not changing what I’m shooting, or how I’m shooting it. Just learning. Improving. Evolving. And un-pigeon-hole-ing. Ya dig?

I’m a photographer to the modern woman.

THE MODERN WOMAN

The modern woman wants to see her authentic self. She wants exist in exquisite photographs and have imagery to properly represent her legacy for the rest of time. She wants see her confidence and doesn’t feel that has to mean a full makeover transformation and elaborate wardrobe.

She wants to look cool…like, album cover cool.

She doesn’t compete with other women. She knows she is destined for great things and likely already doing them. She’s a lover AND a fighter.

The modern woman wants to be photographed by me for HERSELF. She may have a partner….but the experience isn’t for them. Though ultimately, it will certainly have a ripple effect.

Whether she’s seeking this experience because she wants to find herself herself or because she already knows exactly who she is and that she is someone worth celebrating….the modern woman is the exact type of woman who seeks me out and invests in herself through my work.

THANK YOU to each and every one of you for your continued support, for growing with me, for allowing me to photograph you, for trusting me with such a personal experience. This work is for me, yes…..it HAS to be for it to be any good. But this work is also for you. All of you. Because it isn’t just about cool photos, it’s about the person who is represented in them. It’s about their story. YOUR story.

I cannot wait to have you in front of my lens.

HIGH ON LIFE | CLIENT FEATURE: MISS D | AUSTIN BOUDOIR PHOTOGRAPHER

H I G H  .   O N  .   L I F E . 

That's about the best way I could  describe the feeling after your boudoir experience at Kara Marie Boudoir. These women are high. on. life and THAT is what it's all about.  Can you remember the last time that you were?  I make it a point, now, to create as many experiences as possible in my own personal world that allow me feel those feels. But I certainly remember a time, not very long ago, and not very long before that...and before that....and before THAT (it's quite cyclical, isn't it?!)...in which I was struggling to find joy, struggling to love myself, and just struggling in general. 

Being a mom, or being a career woman, or being BOTH, or being NEITHER......just being a HUMAN is difficult. Treating YOURSELF properly is not something that comes naturally to most women. The women that come in to my studio are trying to remember who they are independently of their jobs, their marital status, their motherhood status. They are taking a really big and important step in reconnecting with themselves and learning to love all the things.  

This young woman was an absolutely incredible addition to the KMB family. She had survived a crazy car accident that broke her back. She glowed through her session, she glowed through her photo reveal, and every now and then I get a sweet e-mail from her just to let me know that she's STILL glowing about her experience. 

         THAT IS WHAT THE KARA MARIE BOUDOIR  EXPERIENCE                I S  .    A L L  .    A B O U T  . 

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"After following Kara on Instagram for a while, I really started to think that a boudoir experience could be positive for any female. After experiencing my boudoir session with Kara I was able to see what really set her apart from other photographers offering this service.

From the initial contact to the shoot itself, to the reveal, to walking me through ordering, she was not only professional and clearly talented but legitimately excited for me to experience the empowerment that comes from a boudoir session. Kara herself comes off as the kind of girl everybody wants as a best friend. I’m already dreaming about the next time I can work with her!

Not only has this changed the way that I see myself, but also how I look at other women. I wish everyone could feel as fabulous in their own skin in their everyday life as Kara made me feel."

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Even four months later I am still in awe of the whole experience! And every time I see a picture of ME on YOUR Instagram it’s the coolest thing ever! It really is the gift that keeps on giving :) I can’t put into words what you have done for my confidence and self love.
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I am so proud of her for recognizing, how important it is to invest in yourself...especially considering she is at such a "young" age for self-realization. Every moment of creating this experience for her was inspiring and refreshing and I truly hope to have her back in again. 

And with that I leave you with the KMB mantra:

D O .  I T .  F O R .  Y O U R .  D A M N .  S E L F .

Happenings | Kara Marie Boudoir

Good grief, I was so excited for summer to start so I could start to relax and play catch-up from the crazy fall/winter/and spring we've had, but summer is turning out to be just as crazy! I'm terrible at sending out newsletters (who wants to read those, anyway?) and I figure that my blog is under-utilized just enough to make more sense to post my newsletter here. 

SO-- here is all that's been going on lately!!

1. We hit our donation goal for Janie's Fund...but we're still going!

Janie's Fund is an impactful charity organization headed up by Steven Tyler that benefits girls and young women who have been abused or neglected. I committed to donating a portion of every single boudoir booking between now and my birthday (8/16) to Janie's Fund with a fundraising goal of $1000. We hit that goal in less than a week, and have over a month left. Currently we're sitting at $1,427 and wold love your contribution if the cause speaks to you. Read more about my ties to the cause HERE

 

2.  We have 3 time slots remaining for our DALLAS boudoir Marathon in October!

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That's right...on occasion I hit the road/sky for a boudoir marathon to cities that I get a ton of requests from. DALLAS is one of them ;) Currently, the remaining time slots are Friday, October 20th at 5:00pm, Saturday, October 21st at 2:00pm, and Saturday, October 21st at 4:00pm. The flat-rate package includes professional makeup application with lashes, an hour long boudoir shoot at our picturesque Dallas location, 5 digital files of your choice, and a 2-image leather wrapped nightstand folio. To request a time slot to chat more, shoot us an email at hello@karamarieboudoir.com 

 

3. I'm...like...really really really behind on blogs. Like, really behind. 

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Many photographers, boudoir photographers especially, struggle with having enough content to publish on their blogs. But Kara Marie Boudoir clients LOOVVVEEE having their photos and stories featured on our blog. You badasses, you. Generally every time I publish a blog post, I get at least 10 inquiries and 8ish bookings right away. My holding out on blog posts reasoning has been two-fold...#1- We've been so busy with shoots and reveals, it's been so hard to have enough time to write out blogs that are worthy of the women in them. I certainly can't half ass that! And #2- If I published the blog and the usual number of immediate requests for a boudoir shoot booking came in, I would have to give date options that are super far in the future as we're booked AF. And I hate to disappoint. ;)

But not to worry,  I got myself in a writing zone yesterday and pre-scheduled 8 features, and I've got 32 more blogs ready for my typing fingers to tackle. Yep...thats FORTY BLOGS rolling out. If you are one of the clients who has been blog-stalking and think that I hated your images because I haven't posted them yet....NOPE! I post everyone who lets me. I'm just slow to it ;)  Be sure to check out recent blog features-- there's some good stuff in there ;) 

 

RECENT BLOG FEATURES:::






4. Destination Boudoir is a thing, y'all. And I do that thing.

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I've got quite a bit of travel coming up in the next few months. LA, Palm Springs, Miami, Cabo, and somewhere undecided in August....and you know what I love most about traveling? It inspires me to the nth degree. Being in a new place with different surroundings, different light, different climate, it just makes me want to take all the photos (really. Ask my husband. He LOOOVVVEEESSS it. ;) ).

What's even better than that, though, is that my clients are starting to catch on to the fact that, not only can I travel for boudoir...but the resulting photos are SO unique and badass and incredible.  When you eliminate the bedroom scene, things tend to take on a little more of a fashion vibe.  So if you've got a vacation coming up and you're thinking "Man, I sure would love to have some boudoir photos of me in my little vacation hut in the jungles of Mexico..."....yeah, I can do that. 

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The trickiest part is availability, so it's definitely a plan-ahead type of situation, but I most definitely accept travel bookings as often as possible. Full disclosure: yes, it costs extra. But all the coolest things do. ;) 


 

5. My clients are amazing. 

Yep. They are. Just when I think they can't be any more amazing...there they go, being amazinger. Forgive the humble brag, but my clients have been so good to me, bringing their enthusiasm to their sessions, having fun new ideas, booking me for super cool destination boudoir shoots, and trusting me with such a personal and intimate experience.  I love y'all.  And if you're not a KMB client yet but maybe are kind of thinking about possibly becoming one maybe sometime in the futureish? I love you, too.  This is a small business...it's a booming one...but it's just me, my assistant/retoucher, and my glam squad. Each year I pour more and more of myself into this little business, and each year my clients and my someday clients but current followers give me so much more in return. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. 

Cheers, 

Kara Marie

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

Sorry, I'm washing my hair that day... | Boudoir Editorial

Just a fun little boudoir editorial that I rolled into my South Congress Hotel "staycation". Loving the visual of this. Straight out of the "Sorry, I'm washing my hair that day" magazine. ;)

Model: Savannah Kinney  IG: @scubasavvy

Location: South Congress Hotel, Monroe Suite (worth.every.penny.)

 

The ease of a KMB Boudoir Experience | Austin Boudoir Studio

Ahhhh the boudoir experience::: a source of mad anxiety from the time of considering the session to showing up to the studio. It doesn't matter how much I preach about how EASY it's about to be for a woman, the idea of stripping down in front of a stranger's camera is stressful...and...well...terrifying. 

Let me try one more time to emphasize the ease for any of you who may be nervous about this. If the oodles of rave reviews aren't enough for you, I'll add one more and explain the process along the way. Miss M was insanely nervous. Like....REALLY REALLY nervous. One of the more nervous women to walk into my studio. 

Her close friend and roommate actually had a boudoir experience with me last year, and Miss M came with her to her photo reveal and was blown away. Even with her friend's promise of a super easy and FUN experience, she was uneasy about how she would photograph. 

Months and months later, she finally worked up the courage to book, though her shoulders were tensed up to her ears and her voice was shaking a bit as we talked through the session on her shoot day. 

About 10 minutes into the shoot, she began to calm down, and by the end of it, I had to many incredible images of her that even I was STOKED for her finished product. 

So, what's it like?? What *exactly* goes on during a session? 

First and foremost, by the time you walk through the doors, you've already received so much information from me that there really isn't anything left to wonder about. You know how long we'll be together, how many outfits we'll be photographing you in, how long hair and makeup takes, and that I'll be giving you guidance along the way. 

We go through your outfits together and I'll offer you a beverage while you're slipping into your robe. My makeup artist chats with you about how much fun you're about to have (She should know, she's done it 6 times!!), and calms your nerves. 

When it's shoot time, I give you another run down of the process, how it's actually fun and silly and not at all a "sensual" experience. We'll be chatting along the way. I'll encourage you the whole time. I'll be mindful of your "insecurities" and play up your favorite features. I'll direct EVERY SINGLE POSE. Every limb. Your hair. Your face. All of it. All you need to do is copy me. 

Time will FLY. It ALWAYS done. If I don't make a very conscious effort to check on the time, I would shoot all day. It's fun for me, it's fun for you, and it's over before you know it. You'll already want to do it again (and probably will...they always do ;) )

Miss M agrees:

"I'm so happy that I treated myself to this experience! I spent months worrying about choosing the right outfit, planning, and wondering if I made the right decision to be semi-naked in front of a camera; all of my stress was for nothing!"

"I felt informed every step of the way and the entire process leading up to the shoot (booking, communication, what to expect) was so easy. The shoot itself was even easier!"

" I felt welcomed and comfortable from the moment I got to the studio. Between talking, posing, and outfit changes, I didn't even have a chance to worry if I looked "pretty enough" or "thin enough." I was able to submerge myself in a judgment-free zone and really take in how I felt in my body in those moments"

"I left feeling proud that I did something that I had wanted, but been afraid to do, for so long!"

She sat through her photo reveal slideshow in stunned silence...along side her friend and roommate who had been in a year before. When it was over, she breathed a deep breath of relief, and did a little clap.  The photos, of course, turned out incredible. Turns out I really *do* know what I'm doing. Tee hee. 

ALL of my clients are nervous, some more than others...but they all have that self-doubt that all of my clients are models and naturally good in front of the camera and that they will be the very first person that I cannot photograph.  Yes, the women on my website look modelesque...they do. But very few of them are actually comfortable in front of a camera. Not many of them would describe themselves as photogenic and sexy. Yet every single one of them looks that way. 

I got you, girrrrrrlll! Promise. You will laugh at how nervous you were and will most definitely want to do it again...knowing that if your photos turned out THIS good when you were terrified....they will be even better the second round when you know what to expect. 

Trust me. 

Ready to bite the bullet? Let's chat dahhling!

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EFFFFING AHHHHMMAZZIINNGGG, she says. | Austin Boudoir Studio

I'm admittedly lightyears behind on blogging, which is a shame of epic proportions because I am sitting on so.many.insanely.stunning.images that I simply haven't had the time to feature. But the good news is....I got at least one set on the blog for you today! So...that's something! ;)

THIS bombshell. Y'all. 

A pixie cut, a bold lip, a figure to envy, AND tattoos!?! HOLD ME BACK. But really. Miss K absolutely rocked her session, however nervous she says she was (believe me, EVERYONE is. But I got you, girrrllll!). 

"EFFFFING AHHHHMMAAZZZIIINGGGG. Kara made the whole experience so easy and comfortable. I never imagined my pictures would come out, they way they did. I'm still speechless!"

"I've never liked pictures of myself and I find myself staring at these. I would do it again 100 times. Thank you so much for such a great experience! I can't wait for an excuse to come back. Love you, girl! You truly are something special."

AS IF these incredible images and her kind words weren't enough...

Miss K booked this session for herself AND to gift an album to her new husband whom she was marrying out of country last month.  Unless my client's partner is at the studio with them for their photo reveal, I don't always get to hear what their reactions were to seeing the photos for the first time. THIS TIME, I did and I'm over-the-moon grateful that Miss K's husband was so thoughtful to send me a message after receiving his wedding present. They gave me permission to share it...swoon.

"UMMMMM so I got my wedding gift!!! (Insert a bunch of heart-eyed emoji's here...like...a bunch.) You are so freaking talented! I can't thank you enough for your photo shoot with my wife! She is so beautiful and your ability to catch that in every shot was just amazing. I'm so in love with this gift. Continue to be a badass! Just felt like I needed to reach out because I CAN'T keep my eyes off my book!"

See? Told ya. SWOON.

 

A big THANK YOU to Miss K and her new MR for the sweet words and the permission to share them. 

Hair and makeup: Lorena of LoLa Beauty, Austin.

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. 

 

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