I’m so pleased that local Portland bridal boutique Ania Couture chose to feature an interview about our boudoir sessions on their blog. Here are some of the questions and answers you might find interesting.
What do you love most about what you do?
This is a complicated answer. I take great joy that it is necessary to take time to explain boudoir as a concept when new friends ask what kind of photography I do. When I initially bring up the topic of “sexy photos” most people are scandalized and intrigued. I find it helpful to explain that even though the first association many people have with women/nudity/photos is Hustler, what we do is the OPPOSITE of objectifying/oversexifying the woman’s body. It’s also important to understand that the photos are being made with the intention of an audience of one; they’re not meant to be seen by a crowd.
Aside from humorous explanatory conversations, I love the fact that boudoir photography is part of a bigger process. Every single woman walks in with hesitations about some aspect of her body or anxiety about being in front of the camera. Because our style embraces the natural quirks in each woman’s body, we end up with a consistently celebrated collection of portraits our clients love. Can you imagine a woman liking a book of photos of herself… without clothing? There are many layers to that statement.
What’s the strangest/silliest/happiest/most unexpected boudoir shoot experience you’ve had so far?
I was moved to tears when one of our clients came in to do a portrait session for herself as part of the grieving process after losing her husband. The portraits we made were powerful, inspiring, and revitalizing to both the client and to us. Another client had taken a pole dancing class and was commemorating this with some portraits for her husband of 30 years. Really, the women who are pushing through major challenges (whether that means raising teenagers, losing weight, or conquering disease) are the most inspiring to me. Also, it always makes me giggle when a client makes one of our mini books to send on business trips with her partner.
What is the one thing you’re so glad you had/did at your own wedding?
My husband and I had a raucous, celebratory wedding in true Persian style. If you have seen the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding – I was living that loud invasive family-style reality for a couple of months before the wedding. The best thing we did on our wedding day was build a gigantic break between the Persian ceremony and the reception. My husband made reservations at a tiny French restaurant in San Francisco and we dined quietly together before going back into the chaos of the wedding. That was stealthy of us – and really refreshing.
What is the best advice you can give to a bride-to-be?
I just received a message from one of my Massachusetts wedding clients whose grandfather passed away. In it, she thanked me for paying attention. “I want to thank you again for the pictures that you took and the moments that you captured. Thank you for the attention you paid to documenting my family and commemorating that time in our collective life.”
A photographer who can capture subtlety of emotion – her images will never go out of style.
Which vendors do YOU love to work with?
A vendor worth checking out for anyone planning a wedding is a good yoga instructor! Yoga practice helps you gain strength, but more importantly helps a girl find calm moments of insight and joy in the midst of the chaotic world wedding planning. Portland yoga studios I like: YogaNW and Yoga Shala. I’m also intrigued by the Aerial Yoga classes offered at the Diva Den Studio.
You can check out the full feature over on the Ania Collection blog.
Also, outside resource: Would YOU pose nude to boost your self-esteem?