If you have investigated boudoir photography and have decided it’s something you want to do, the next thing is to practice then plan what you will need. You can certainly take boudoir style images in a studio, but working mobile cuts down the costs for you and provides the model with an easier environment to relax in because they are at home.
It means they can also change clothing as and when necessary!
Some equipment you will want to have:
1. Camera, lenses – choose a good portrait lens, something with zoom is ideal and you may want to do full body shots and close ups. People usually prefer some face shots too because these can be shown to anyone!
2. Lights – get practicing with soft lights such as softboxes because boudoir images are usually very softly lit showing off the curves of a woman’s body. You do not want anything too harsh.
3. Backgrounds – look around to see what kind of backgrounds are used, usually large pieces of fabric, reds for example, are classic and create a sensual look. Take things like cushions too, if you have nice ones – take things that the models can use to cover themselves up with. You want the model to be able to cover up parts of their body they don’t feel comfortable with.
4. Props – you can ask the model to provide them or you can take them yourself but things like candles, flowers, petals and nice jewellery can all add an extra dimension to your shots. If the model is going to be partially nude, things like jewellery can really stand out.
5. Music – you will want to create a great atmosphere for the photo shoot. People can feel self conscious so take a good CD with you or even get the model to pick something they like and play it during the session. Choosing something in a similar mood can really help the model to pose.
6. Fabrics – Play with fabrics, on your model, on the lighting and in the background. For example, something like a mesh fabric can be placed over a light to create a pattern that is projected onto the skin of your model. The fabric can be placed over the model instead of clothing, or it can be used in place of the usual cloth. Take a trip to the haberdashery shop to see what’s there in stock.
Most of all remember that boudoir photography is supposed to be quite soft looking and safe for most people to look at! This means that you need to study what ways a model can pose without looking crass. How should a model hold her legs? How should a model have her arms to cover her modesty – how does a model pose her body so that she can smooth out any problem areas or look slimmer (which most women want).