A Brief History
There is a popular trend in photography that is both beautiful and exhilarating…boudoir photography. It is an amazing way to commemorate many moments in your life. From celebrating all of the hard work of losing weight and getting a new body, to anniversaries and birthdays, boudoir is a fun, sexy, and exciting experience for all women.
What exactly is boudoir photography?
The word boudoir comes from the French for “lady's dressing room”. It also is derived from the French word boudeur, meaning “sulky”. These two definitions combined with the art of photography, gives us the genre of boudoir photography. Boudoir depicts the female form in various states of dress, however nudity is not the key to this type of photography. In fact, often times the nudity is implied, and the woman sets the limits for nudity in the boudoir session. The key to an outstanding boudoir session is emotion. It is the feelings and expressions that the women experiences and how those are captured by the photographer in the images. It is meant to show the woman as sexy, silly, fun, and sensual. Boudoir photography is a specialty all unto itself. It is a common misconception that all photographers take all kinds of pictures. And some do, but most of the time there is little distinction between their genres, and none of them standout as exceptional. Each kind of photography is a specialty and should be treated as such. Itis highly recommended that you find a photographer who specializes in boudoir photography. There are aspects to this genre and coaching that takes place during the shoot that can only be gained through experience. Think of it like going to the doctor. You don’t go to a cardiologist for a broken leg; you go to an orthopedist.
The History of Boudoir Photography
The interest in the female body as an artistic form goes back, probably, to the beginning of time. From the marble statues of the Greeks and Romans, to the Birth of Venus by Botticelli and the paintings of Peter Paul Rubens, women have been the focus of art for centuries. The genre of photography is no different. The female form was the subject of photographs almost immediately after the invention of the medium format camera. Sculptors generally used these photos so they did not have to pay a model to pose for them for hours or days. It was not until many years later that these types of photos were considered an art form in the United States. Following the 1920’s and the “flapper” movement that took place, along with great political and social reforms, the display of the female form started to become more accepted. This lead to the pin up craze of the 1940’s and 1950’s, to which boudoir photography is very closely tied. It took root in the military and graced nearly every nose of every aircraft in the United States’ arsenal. And the love of pin up did not end with World War Two. In fact, it took a more mainstream turn with stars such as Jean Harlow, Mae West, and Marilyn Monroe were photographed in this style. As the 20th century progressed, so did the attitudes towards women and their bodies. This lead to the introduction of Playboy magazine, the women’s movement in the 1970’s, and the glamour photography of the 1980’s. Substantially different from these is boudoir photography. Whereas the glamour photos tended to have little emotion and a glassy look to them, boudoir is entirely centered around showing the feelings and emotion displayed by the woman, and her sex appeal.
Boudoir photography today
These days it is a very popular genre of photography that has several different varieties. Women often do bridal shoots. These are shoots that are themed around their wedding, with the woman photographed in her veil and shoes, her wedding night lingerie, and many other items that she finds special. Other shoots are themed around what the client may desire. These can be fantasy shoots, as well as fetish shoots. And then there are the more classic styles of boudoir that are focused solely on the woman and her emotions, and revealing her sexy side. These are more oriented towards storytelling and keeping the woman center stage and the backdrop for the shoot simple, rather than bringing an event or theme into the shoot. Whatever the occasion, such as an anniversary or birthday, a wedding, or just because, a photo shoot is a great experience. They are fun and liberating, silly and sexy. Women who do boudoir shoots rave about the experience and the men who see the photos see an awesome side of that woman that they love.