5 Things You Should Know About Boudoir Photography Shoots

I have to admit, I'm not a fan of the term 'boudoir photography.'  For me, boudoir has come to mean racy pictures of body parts and frankly, this holds no interest for me at all.  What I like to create are beautiful portraits of women, individuals whose sexiness comes from who she is as a person, not close-up shots of her various body parts.  I like to think of a sexy photography session as a lingerie or romance shoot, where a woman's body is celebrated, not chopped up into parts.

For instance, you will never see me taking a photograph of a woman's bum.  I will take pictures so her body looks amazing, but a bum just a bum, and it could be anyone's bum. I am more interested in the woman who owns that bum.

Here are 5 Things You Should Know about Photography Shoots 


If you've been thinking about a lingerie shoot but the idea makes you nervous, contact the photographer and make a pre-consultation appointment.

I always have pre-consultations with my clients, particularly my lingerie session clients because it is important to get to know each other, develop trust, and to see if we are a good fit for each other. Get a feel for the studio, the photographer, the quality of the products and the overall vibe.  Does it feel seedy? Does the photographer give you the creeps? If so, it's not a good fit, and you should keep looking.

With all my clients, I like to follow their lead. If they bring in very conservative clothes, I pose them accordingly. If they bring in lingerie or a sexy dress, I know they're interested in bring out that side of themselves in photographs.  I work to make my clients feel comfortable, and develop a strong sense of trust between us.


Many clients come to me thinking they will give their husbands or partners these images as a gift, but almost always, when they see their portraits, they realize that these photographs were really for themselves.  The session and the images made them feel sexy, powerful, beautiful, and it turns out the session was a gift for themselves.  This has happened over and over again.


No, actually, if you are only being offered digitals, you are being done a disservice.  Holding a beautiful portrait of yourself in your hands gives you a powerful feeling.  You connect with the image both as something visual to look at, and as a real, solid object to treasure and appreciate.  For lingerie shoots, I recommend my 10 or 20-image folio boxes. These are artisan, custom made boxes lined with iridescent paper. They look beautiful and discreet on a bookshelf, or by the bed. You can frame the images and hang them in the bedroom, hallway, walk-in closet, or in the bath. Switch them out for new images every so often to remind yourself that you are beautiful.  For more on why digitals are not enough, click here.  (yah, I guess I have to write that blog, too)


By default, photographers retain the copyright to the photographs they make. The same is true for me. However, photographers are not supposed to post those images online to promote their businesses without a signed model release.  Ask your photographer about their boudoir contract. If you don't want those images to be displayed online or in their marketing materials, and if you do not want the photographer to sell those images, check into your rights in their contract.  My boudoir contract states that I will never sell the images to a third party and that I will never display or post your lingerie images without your express written permission.  For this reason, you may not see a lot of lingerie portfolio images on my site.  It is of the utmost importance to me that I respect the privacy of my clients.


Beware discount photographers. When photographers are discounting their work heavily, they are either failing in their business and need to drum up as many customers as they can, or they are a high-volume studio who will get you in and out quickly with no finesse. A boudoir portrait session is a very personal thing, and you will want someone to lead you gently through the experience.  My sessions include an hour of hair and makeup, multiple outfit changes, and we can shoot as many or as few lingerie looks as you like.  Yes, you will have to pay more for that experience, but you will come away with a far more luxurious experience and absolutely beautiful portraits.

If you are considering a lingerie photography session, please give us a call and we will get to know each other.  Simpson Portraits 626-221-6646, Los Angeles area Boudoir Photography Studio.