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, an alternative, nude modeling website, and online and print publications. I’ve read countless stories about bad male photographers.
The truth is, they are not 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.
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.
- When clients book a photo session, they must read and electronically sign my Rules of Conduct Agreement, which 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.
- When clients book a photo session, they must fill out my client questionnaire. Among other things, it asks the client how much skin she is willing to reveal. This becomes their line in the sand.
- Within 24 hours of booking a photo session, clients are sent my client contract, which is a standard photographic services contract, which they must electronically sign. The photo session cannot be executed without a signed contract.
- My clients can say no to any pose, position, or situation I suggest. She can change her line at any time during the photo session, more skin or less skin. But only she can change the line. I may suggest crossing the line to get her out of her comfort zone — women who get outside of their comfort zones quite often get more out of a boudoir photo session than women who play it safe — but my client has the last say. In my studio, no means no.
- I encourage my clients to bring a guest. I don’t even care if the guest is her husband, boyfriend, or significant other. Unlike many boudoir and artistic nude photographers, I let the client’s guest observe the shooting portion of the session. There’s no way there can be a he said/she said situation if there is another person present.
- I shoot behind the scenes video 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. Again, with video evidence, there cannot be a he said/she said situation.
- I am a no touch photographer. I do not touch my clients unless they ask for help, or she is in danger of hurting herself. 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 will demonstrate the 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 make them laugh occasionally.
- After the shooting portion of the session is complete, I ask the client to sign my Poses, Positions, and Situations Agreement. I states that I did not force, coerce, or otherwise pressure her to get into any pose, position, or situation that she did not want to do. This is for my protection so that she cannot come back later and accuse me of doing so.
- 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, combination thereof, or an alias) she wants me to use in portfolio and social media. This agreement contains an itemized list of ways I can use their photos. The client can specify allow or disallow use for each item in the list individually.
- If at any time during the photo session, my client feels threatened, uncomfortable with poses, outfits, suggestions, etc., she 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 am a Certified Professional Boudoir Photographer. And I have to re-certify every year to keep that badge of honor.
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 that 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 25 years. We’ve worked too hard and long to have a successful, happy marriage to jeopardize it for a cheap thrill.
Safety, Security, 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.
Ready to Book Your Boudoir Experience?
Now that you know that I’m not one of those bad male photographers you might have read about, and that I take extensive measures to make sure you feel safe, secure, and comfortable in my studio and with me as your photographer, click the button below and book your boudoir experience. It’ll be something that you’ll never forget for all the right reasons.
Not Quite Ready to Book?
Maybe the following will help convince you:
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.
Be a part of our #BeautyCannotBeDefined movement and join our private Facebook group, Phantasy Girls. Talk to other women who have had their boudoir experience. Ask them questions.