Intimate Portraiture (Boudoir):
It seems the world has deemed a certain style of personal photographs as Boudoir. Like most popularly conceived photographic styles, I have never liked Boudoir Photography. I can’t say it is the name, necessarily. It is much like “Wedding Photography” or any other Pop Genre Anti-Art.
In the world of Subject Pay Photography, photos commissioned by and paid for by the subject of the images, most of the Boudoir Photography I have seen lacks a certain depth which should be at the heart of such work. Very little time is taken to get to know the subject, identify the level of comfort between the subject and the photographer and less time, it seems, is taken to plan an approach to such a session.
If you are going to take the time to photograph something intimate, personal and sensual, the photos should reflect your unique personality, your unique sensuality. In most cases these types of images are requested by a woman, it is as a gift to someone special in her life or for her own reflection later in life. Other times, it is for the experience of feeling glamorous, sensual, or the focus of personal attention. The experience should be comfortable and uplifting.
This has always been my approach. In this form, my primary goal is to get to know my subject. Normally in an informal meeting with my wife in attendance, for the purpose of comfort for the subject. If, for any reason, it seems there will not be a deep level of comfort for the project, everybody parts friends. The truth is, if you are going to place yourself in a vulnerable situation, with a camera in the hands of another and direction given by another, comfort is impossible to fake. Nothing destroys the beautiful intentions of such work like discomfort.
Further, it is difficult to demonstrate such work in a public portfolio. This is because, like all commissioned artwork, the Rights and License to the Images belong to the Paying Client. Further, these images are quite personal and it is a violation of confidence to display them publicly.
What I have done, to give prospective clients an idea of the type of imagery I have produced in this genre is put some of my Artistic Photography on Tumblr, I will provide a link toward the bottom of the page. I have also built a small, personal portfolio that I can share with prospective clients in person, with the permission of the subject in the images.
It should be noted, if you are considering this type of imagery, you should choose your photographer with care. It should be noted that no decision should be made to hold a photo shoot until there is time to assure yourself that you are comfortable and have full confidence in the photographer.