It’s not about them

Whenever I have a new prop or something cool I’ve changed int he studio, I get really excited to share that with my clients. Often, I will use it as an opportunity to take some self-portraits to share. Almost immediately after posting those images, I get messages in my inbox from men trying to hit on me. And I know this happens to my clients when they post images as well. This happens because they misunderstand WHY those images were posted.

When myself, or one of my clients posts a boudoir image out into the world, we aren’t doing it for the viewer. (Okay, sometimes in my case it is for my clients, when I want them to see that new awesome prop or background.) Women don’t post those images so people will tell them their beautiful or sexy. They already know that. She has eyes too. She saw the image before she posted it. It’s not about getting validation. It’s a DECLARATION.

A declaration she that she is brave and bold and fierce. It’s a declaration that she knows she is amazing. It’s an affirmation for herself, a reminder for herself to remember who she is. She isn’t looking for compliments or to be hit on. This is about her, it’s not about anyone else.

And frankly, even if she planned to gift the images from that session to someone, having it done wasn’t about that person either. The true gift was to herself. The true gift happened in the hour she was in front of that camera with a photographer who understands her and what she was feeling while in that studio.

So the next time you see a woman take the extra step in vulnerability and post an image of herself, don’t tell her she looks beautiful. Tell her she is amazing. Tell her what you value about her. Remind her that you know who she is too.

Duct tape, miracles and tears

I am one of those women who cries when I’m mad.  It’s one of the things I want to change about myself.  For a long time that was because I thought it made me look weak, but now it’s because those tears give a false sense of what I’m feeling.

I am at a place in life where I know that tears aren’t weakness.  In fact, they are brave in many ways.  Allowing someone else to see your pain is hard.  Sharing your pain with another human being is incredibly vulnerable, but it’s also incredibly liberating.  It allows us to connect on a very visceral level, something we lack most days.  So many of our interactions just barely scratch the surface of emotion that our connection to one another has become very weak.

I’m a single mom, business owner, friend and attempted super woman.  I say attempted because it’s simply not possible to be all things to all people.  I used to try so hard to look as though I had it all together, but the truth is that some days I feel like my life is held together by duct tape and miracles.  The last few years since my divorce I have learned just how powerful honesty and vulnerability can be.  I’ve grown as a person from allowing myself to be vulnerable, but so have my relationships with other people.  I’ve found support and kindness in places I never expected, all because I allowed people to see inside the mask I used to hide behind.

I am far from weak.  In fact, I’m stronger than most of the people I know.  I truly believe vulnerability is the reason why.  More than anything, I strive to be authentic, which is exactly why those angry tears bother me so much.  Those tears lead people to believe I’m sad, when in fact I’m furious beyond reason.  It feels like a fraudulent act, like a child pretending to be upset so they’ll get their way.  I want to convey exactly how I’m feeling, not muddy the waters with unintended tears that I can’t control.

What about you, do you sometimes react to situations in an unintended way?  Does it make you feel inauthentic?

Why boudoir is a feminist act

I absolutely consider myself a feminist.  I believe we are all equal.  We all deserve to be treated the same, paid the same, and have the same benefits.  That being said, men and women are different creatures with different needs, wants and desires.  Women are often treated as though our needs and desires are bad or shameful.  That double standard (sex is good for men, but bad for women) is so pervasive in our world that it colors how we perceive everything.

 

Many have questioned me about boudoir.  I have been told I am objectifying women, and holding women back by making them sexual objects.  That simply isn’t true.

 

Objectification happens when a person is looked at or treated like an object by someone else.  Objectification is done by one person to another with out their consent.

 

Boudoir is an experience.

 

It’s about claiming your own sexuality, and choosing to showcase it in the manner you deem fit.  It’s about embracing an aspect of your true self, and allowing that one aspect to be free for a time.  It’s about femininity, and the things that make us women.  Most women have breasts.  Women have hips and thighs, and other body parts.  Embracing, loving and showcasing your own body parts is empowering, not objectifying. Women are soft, vulnerable, beautiful, elegant, shy, coy, daring, brave, sexual, loving, kind, provocative…

 

We are many things.

 

Boudoir isn’t just about what we look like, but also about feeling, emotion, texture, mystery, confidence…

 

It’s about everything that goes into making us who and what we are.

 

Boudoir is a feminist act because we are claiming our own bodies and our own souls.  We are CHOOSING how we are seen, and how we see ourselves.  We are making a choice to be vulnerable in a positive way. We are choosing to be ourselves and embrace everything about us that makes us women.

 

Boudoir is an act of bravery.

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