Creating EMOTION in your Boudoir Photography!

Christa Meola Boudoir Photography

Written by Christa Meola, NYC Photographer

Capturing emotion in my photographs has become my trademark, and I love sharing simple tips on how you can do this too! Creating emotion in your photographs is all about capturing authenticity, movement, sensuality and mood, not a pose that’s static where the subject is disconnected from the moment. Here are a few techniques to get you started…

COACH ACTIONS For real women who have never professionally modeled before, it’s easier for her to be real and look natural when you offer her an action to perform instead of asking for a “pose.” An action such as “toss your hair, shake your booty, kick up your leg,” etc. looks more emotive then when someone’s just standing there wondering what to do. Make sure to coach her to push the action to the extreme. Coach her to “Kick that leg higher! and shake that booty faster!!”

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How to Bring out the Best in Your Boudoir Client, Part 2: Planning = Success!

Christa Meola Fashion and Boudoir Photography Workshops

Written by Christa Meola NYC Photographer. Join Christa at PartnerCon this November for her talk “The Anatomy of a Successful Portrait Business.”

In Part 1 of How to Bring out the Best in Your Boudoir Client: Overcoming Fears and Doubts, we talked about letting your client know what to expect and making sure she feels you understand her fears and doubts even better then she does.

Now on to the juicy stuff!

Bringing out the best in a non-model, ie. an everyday woman (who is most likely nervous to do a boudoir shoot) entails setting up your shoot for success during the planning stage. Let’s take a peek at how to plan a successful shoot so it runs smooth like buttah.

Make it a Collaboration From The Beginning Invite your client’s full participation in this experience, which makes it much more meaningful than just a photo shoot and gets her fully invested in the event …

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How to Bring out the Best in Your Boudoir Client, Part 1: Overcoming Doubts & Fears

Christa Meola Nude Boudoir Photography Workshops

Bringing out the best in a real woman starts with letting her know what to expect and taking the performance pressure off of her. Most women who approach me for a shoot have similar concerns and hesitations. Make sure to address each of them by keeping it light with a sense of humor, validating her feelings, and letting her know what to expect. The most common doubts I hear are:

“I DON’T KNOW HOW TO POSE.” I usually respond to this hesitation with a laugh and say, “Good! Let’s not do that.” I explain how I’ll coach her by giving her simple directions, like “toss your hair.” I also reassure her that I will always demonstrate what I have in mind first. I make sure to let her know that we’ll take a bunch of shots and not to worry because we’ll delete any pictures we don’t absolutely love! This will take …

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Tips for Getting Started in Boudoir Photography

boudoir photography workshops by christa meola

I receive tons of emails from enthusiastic photographers who are catching boudoir fever and would love to know how to get started!  Here’s a perfect example:

“I am just starting out as a photographer and would love to do Boudoir.  There are so many things I need to do and learn, and I am working to raise the money needed for equipment, sets, and marketing. I’m not sure what to do first or how to really get started!”

Here is my best advice for a helpful approach in getting started, how to prioritize your investments, create a smoking hot portfolio, and get that first boudoir client!

KEEPING A PLAYFUL AND INTELLIGENT APPROACH As a boudoir photographer and as a woman, I live by the following three tenets: Simplify, Experiment, and Focus on Emotion. I believe these principles are conducive to creativity and success in all areas of my life, photography, and business. Keeping these …

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Top Ten Ways to Increase Boudoir Sales

1. Make it Meaningful Keep in mind that you aren’t just taking pictures — you are creating how your client wants to be remembered… and the more you nail that, the more she’ll love it, the more she’ll value it, and the more she’ll want to pay for it.  Customize each shoot so that it is unique and full of personal details and emotional elements that will be meaningful to her.

You can start during the first phone call by asking questions like “What do you love about yourself, your body?  What do you think is sexy? What are some of your favorite things that make you happy? What does your husband love about you?” etc. and use all of those personal details to create an emotionally meaningful story told through your pictures.

I could do a whole other Top Ten list on how to make a shoot personal and meaningful – this …

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Top 10 Essential Things to Do on a Boudoir Shoot

1.     Have champagne and chocolate on hand. The champagne marks the shoot as a celebration and an event.  It’s a toast to sexiness and relaxes everyone.  Chocolate is definitely a girl’s best friend and an excellent mood elevator, but more importantly, it’s the sugar rush needed after a few wardrobe changes and extreme posing… Hey, boudoir is hard work!

2.     Limit wardrobe changes. Outfits are fun, and variety is the name of the game! However, wardrobe changes can quickly get out of hand.  Make sure your client gets enough time to “vibe” in each one.  A nice selection of wardrobe changes can be simple:  just a thong and heels, a fantasy element, lingerie, or some dress up. Just remember: 5 different black bustiers is not variety.

3.     Chat like girlfriends – even if you’re a guy. This is perfect for while you’re both enjoying champagne and while she’s still in the hair …

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