I am a male boudoir photographer. I photograph women in their lingerie and less. Occasionally, I create photo sets for girls to submit to Suicide Girls, Patreon, ManyVids, OnlyFans, other pay-for-content websites, and online and print publications. I’ve read countless stories about bad male photographers.
The truth is, those photographers are often not professional photographers. They are creepy dudes with a camera, passing themselves off as professional photographers. They use photography as a lure, promising to help naive young women start a modeling career. They pressure them into shooting nude, filling their heads with big paydays because they shoot nudes. They touch their models inappropriately, which eventually progresses to sexual advances. Sometimes, it gets really ugly and dark.
Besides the incessant pressure to shoot nude, sexual advances, and worse, the first tell-tale sign there might be trouble is that he never has the model sign a model release/photograph use agreement. Every professional photographer will have the model sign one or both of these agreements before the shoot even starts. Professional photographers will also always insist upon seeing and photographing the model’s government-issued photo ID as proof of age when it is not obvious that the model is over the age of 18 and always when she’s agreed to pose nude. Finally, professional photographers will allow the model to bring a guest to the photo session. Ladies, if a photographer does not do even one of these things, decline the session or leave immediately.
I Am Not One of Them
Let me repeat that… I AM NOT ONE OF THOSE BAD MALE PHOTOGRAPHERS! I am extremely cautious. I have many safeguards in place to ensure that my models feel safe, secure, and comfortable in my studio and with me.
- All clients must electronically sign my client contract, which is a standard photographic services contract, at the time of booking
- At the time of booking, clients must fill out my client questionnaire. Among other things, it asks the client how much they are willing to reveal. This becomes their line in the sand.
- After booking a photo session, clients must read and electronically sign my Rules of Conduct Agreement. This agreement describes not only how I behave during a photo session but also the expected behavior of the client and her guest, should she choose to bring one.
- On the day of the session, if my client appears to be under the age of 21 or has indicated that she may want to shoot implied or nude photos, I ask to see her government-issued photo ID. I make a copy of it and put it in her physical and electronic files.
- I make it clear to my clients multiple times before and during the session that they can say no to any pose, position, or situation I suggest.
- Regarding implied or nude photos, clients can change their line in the sand at any time during the photo session, more skin, or less skin. But only they can change the line. While I may suggest getting outside of their comfort zone, my clients have the last say. In my studio, no means no.
- I encourage my clients to bring a guest. I don’t care if the guest is their husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, or significant other. Unlike many boudoir and artistic nude photographers, I let the client’s guest observe the shooting portion of the session.
- I record behind-the-scenes videos of the entire shooting portion of the photo session, especially if the client did not bring a guest and I don’t have an assistant for the photo session.
- I am a no-touch photographer. I do not touch my clients unless they ask for help or are in danger of hurting themselves. For example, I may notice a twisted bra strap and ask my client to fix it. I will not ask to fix it for her. I will not fix it for her UNLESS she asks me to help her fix it. I will not touch her to change the position of any of her body parts to get her into the pose I’m looking for, which leads to…
- I demonstrate all poses for my client, which guarantees at least one laugh-out-loud moment, probably more, during the photo session… because I deliberately ham it up and try to make them laugh occasionally.
- After the shooting portion of the session is complete, my client is required to fill out and sign my Photograph Use Agreement, which specifies a) what I can and cannot use her photos for; b) if her face can be shown on public-facing displays, including advertising and marketing materials, portfolios and social media posts, and studio samples; and c) what name (names, initials, a combination thereof, or an alias) she wants me to use in my portfolio and on social media. This agreement contains an itemized list of ways I can use their photos. Clients can allow or disallow use for each item in the list individually.
- If at any time during the photo session, my clients feel threatened, unsafe, or highly uncomfortable, they can end the photo session immediately.
- I don’t friend my clients on Facebook unless they send me a friend request. I don’t send a friend request to potential clients either. I feel that’s just downright creepy.
I spent thousands of dollars on a certification program, to be a Certified Professional Boudoir Photographer. Not only did I learn better photographic techniques, how to coach women into poses that flatter and accentuate their body types and curves, and more, I also learned the importance of having clients and prospective clients know, like, and trust me. I learned the importance of ensuring the safety, security, and comfort of my clients while they are under my care in my studio.
I conduct my photo sessions with the utmost and consummate professionalism. This is my job. This is how I make money to pay my bills. Anything less than absolute professionalism means that I lose my job and have to go work for someone else.
In addition, I am happily married and have been for more than 27 years. We’ve worked too hard and too long to have a successful, happy marriage to jeopardize it.
Safety, Security, and Comfort
I want my clients to have an experience they will never forget for all the right reasons. When they leave my studio, I want them bursting with renewed confidence and self-esteem. I want them feeling more beautiful than they’ve ever felt, or at least not felt in a long time. This is why I do what I do, and why I do everything possible to make my clients feel safe, secure, and comfortable in my studio and with me as their photographer.
Not Quite Ready to Book?
Maybe the following will help put you at ease:
Take a look at my portfolio to see some sample photos.
Read testimonials from my clients.
Watch and hear clients talk about their boudoir experiences.
Join my #BEAUTYCANNOTBEDEFINED movement and join my private Facebook group, Phantasy Girls. Talk to other women who have had their boudoir experience. Ask them questions. Ask them if they felt safe, secure, and comfortable during their session and with me.