When I ask in my pre-shoot questionnaire's for women to name a guilty pleasure, it is not uncommon to see Reality TV at the top of that list. Others include brownies, cotton candy, Taco Bell... I'm starting to see a food theme here. Either way, I've now photographed a few of these reality TV stars and honestly, they are all so much more genuine than the shows portray.
I met Jen a year ago while filming some behind the scenes for a photographer friend of mine. I asked her if she had ever thought of doing a boudoir shoot. A lot of people think that classically beautiful women, or whatever society says is in right now, don't have hesitations about this kind of thing. But Jen said "Well, I don't have anyone to give these photos to... I'm not a very sexy person... I can't make sexy faces because I always end up laughing when its time to be serious... People will judge me for this... My body isn't where I want it to be... Maybe one day..." Does this sound familiar to anyone else?
I then saw her post a blog all about finding ways to love yourself, even when you feel like you don't deserve it. So I reached out and told Jen, "Your post is literally what boudoir is all about. Not gifting pictures to someone else, or perfect sexy faces, or how fancy your lingerie is. It is about acceptance of your own beauty inside and out and knowing that you are worth your own love."
So we set a date and... I don't want to give it away, you'll just have to watch the video.
One of the biggest things that I cannot stress enough is that we all hold ourselves to a standard far beyond the one we hold for our friends. You would tell a girlfriend "Your smile lights up the room, and it brings joy and happiness to everyone around. THAT is what makes you beautiful." But we look in the mirror and say "I'm not good enough, I'll never be as fit/skinny, my smile doesn't look good in photos, I guess I'll never be beautiful."
I want you, just for today, to tell yourself "I love myself" 50 times. Because you are someone who is worthy of love.