I had one of my favorite clients come in last week to see her images from her session. Her session was so awesome.... I mean the images were gorgeous! She had been talking about her session to her close friends since she left our studio, and was so proud of herself for doing it!
I feel like I should say here, that the point of a boudoir session is not necessarily for sex appeal, even though that might be one of the original intentions of a session, when a girl books. It is so so much more than that. It is an uplifting experience. It is to ensure that you are beautiful, regardless of any physical attribute that you posses. It is to tear down any stereotype that only a certain type of woman is considered desirable. It is a confidence booster, and is the ultimate play in the feminist movement.... free the nipple anyone? So why does it need to be in lingerie? Well, it doesn't. Simple as that. I have dresses, shirts, skirts in my closet, for those who want to be more covered. I have more bodysuits than I can count, that are considered shirts, and not lingerie. But here is the thing, when much of the clothing is removed, it allows a woman to be her true self. All of her scars, curves, stretch marks, and what not, are proudly on display. Typically, everything that is considered a flaw, by a woman, is actually a story. Whether it is the birth of your child, or that time you fell off your bike, or hell.... you freaking love cake, the fact that these are considered flaws is complete bull. These are your stories.... this is what boudoir is.
So what IS my point? Back to my client who came in. Some of her happiness about her session was gone, and she proceeds to tell me about a Facebook post that one of her acquaintances made. It was along the lines of that she was sick of seeing all of these women spending money on boudoir sessions for themselves, and that these woman should donate that money to women based charities instead.
What?! I was in shock at first, I was sad for my client, and then I was a little mad. How dare this person judge and tear other women down. In a round about way, it was so hypocritical for her to pass judgement like that on other women.
Women, by nature, and nurturers and are constantly caring for others. Regardless of the life that we live, in some capacity, we are caring for something/someone else, it is just what we do. I am a firm believer, that you can give and give and give, but if you never do anything for yourself, your life is not completely fulfilled. The fact is that everyone needs to give something to themselves from time to time. Believe it or not, every woman that has come into my studio, suddenly has a boost of confidence that they didn't even know existed. And gosh, confidence can improve everything in your life. That little pep in your step can make you see the positive in so many things. Maybe your presentation at work was a smashing success, because you presented it with confidence instead of the typical nerves. Your husband is noticing you more, because of your beautiful smile, your children are also in a better mood because they are mimicking what you are putting out into the world. Confidence is key, right?
Now I am not saying that boudoir is going to change the world, but it could be just the thing that some women need in their lives, regardless of their reason. As much as I want to find the poster of that Facebook post and yell at them... I won't, but I do want to say this to them:
"I'm sorry. I'm sorry that you don't get it. I'm sorry that you are so involved in your personal feminist movement, and trying to be the ultimate humanitarian, that you fail to see the bigger picture. Women need to be built up, not torn down... and your rash statement did exactly what you did not intend to do. Women can care for others all they want, but if they do not care for themselves first, it doesn't matter. The stronger a woman is, the more she can accomplish. For you to say that a woman should basically not indulge in herself from time to time is completely unreasonable. One might consider owning a car to be indulgent, as it is not one of the basic needs. So should we all not own a car? Or never eat out, and instead donate all of that money to a food shelter? There needs to be a balance in giving to ourselves, and giving to others. Because if we donated everything, the only businesses still in operation would be charities, and unemployment would be nearly 100%. So really who are you to judge what people spend their money on? Also, I don't make fun of you for what you love to do for a living. I love what I do so much that it hurts sometimes... and I am good at what I do. I'm sorry you feel the need to take that feeling away from me."
From what I heard, there were also some comments made as to the cost of boudoir photography. All of my clients know my stance on this, and I have said this so many times now....
A cheap boudoir photographer either just wants to see you naked, or they have no idea how to properly run a business.
I won't bore you with the cost of doing business... but I can assure you that I do not live an extravagant lifestyle. I make enough to pay my bills, and I am happy with that.
With all of that said, I sincerely want to thank all of my amazing clients who have trusted me with such an important session. I love that I am able to make woman feel the best that they ever have, and like they can conquer the world. Thank you for supporting a small, locally owned, female run business. When I get to build you up, you build me up in return. To my client that had to witness this post, I hope you know how amazing you are :).