Just the FAQs: Part Two | Northern Virginia Boudoir Photographer
If you haven't checked out Part I of my Just the FAQs blog series you can view that here. With this second fabulous installment we'll cover a little bit about how to prepare your skin/hair/nails, where your shoot would take place (and who can be there), and how you stay in the driver's seat regarding image privacy. As always, feel free to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org with any addition burning Q's. I'd be happy to answer them. Let's get started with part two of Just the FAQs!
[Q.] How do I prepare for the session as far as my skin, hair, nails, and skin (brazilian wax?...EEP!)?
[A.] I always tell clients that good skin starts with good hydration. So in the weeks prior to your session, you want to be hitting the (water) bottle hard. The morning of your session you'll want to arrive with your hair clean and dry and free of makeup. A little moisturizer is fine, but coming in with last night's mascara that's become today's smokey eye isn't ideal. :) Plus, you'll want to get your beauty sleep, since you'll be needing ALL your energy for posing in the shoot. It's a little harder (and more fun!) than it looks, so you'll need your z's. If you needed a touch up with your roots or highlights you'll want to plan accordingly, and a trip to the nail salon for a mani/pedi with a neutral color is ideal. As for the big question about waxing. That's completely up to you. I have clients who shave or go full Brazilian with their naughty bits. It's your choice. Just make sure that with waxing, you give some time for skin to recover, especially facial waxing, so that you don't have any redness on shoot day. That all being said, typically some of those areas are in soft focus and I'm an EXPERT at Photoshop and I can take care of all the typical bumps.
[Q.] Do you have a studio or will you come to my home?
[A.] I shoot 99% of my sessions out of my private studio in Northern Virginia. I know and LOVE the light, and the images you see in my portfolio (typically) are a reflection of that space. It's a cozy, comfortable, and safe. It's spot for clients (who are feeling pretty vulnerable) to relax and let go. We want you to rock out your session, and our amazing studio allows you to do just that. I will, on occasion shoot at a client's home or in a hotel setting. In that case, you and I would consult in advance about your space (how to get it ready and free of clutter). There are also additional fees that apply to shooting on location or in a hotel. Just keep in mind that using our studio keeps your stress at a minimum and we have boundless champagne and snacks!
[Q.] Who else is in the room for my session? Do you have an all female staff?
[A.] I get this question a lot actually. I know that when you take off your clothes (ANYWHERE!) you'd want to know who might be in attendance. ;) Depending on how many hair and makeup looks you have, it will be me, you and my makeup artist. Typically the uber-fab Carolyn Thombs. That being said, as far as the shooting space... that's just me and you. Since I want to deliver on the best images for you, I know that having someone (even a friend) hovering over my shoulder, is almost always a distraction for you. It makes it hard for you to relax, be your sexy self, and ultimately let go and have the most fun. I only hire female assistants and makeup artists. Even though I have male boudoir photographer friends (who are amazing at what they do btw), but I keep my studio all feminine... all the time.
[Q.] I'm feeling nervous... can I bring a friend with me or my husband/boyfriend?
[A.] I try to put myself in your shoes... the last thing I would want to do is show up at an unknown location, take my clothes off, and have photos taken ALL BY MYSELF! Because of that, I get the above question quite a bit. Here's how I typically respond. You and I will get to know each other well in advance of the shoot. EVERY client has a video consultation me in the weeks prior to your shoot. This helps you get to know and SEE me, and we go back and forth about your answers in your client questionnaire. This conversation almost always results in... "Danielle... I'm so glad to have met you and I'm super excited about the shoot. You feel like one of my girlfriends." Most gals, at that point, feel comfortable coming solo to the studio. If clients still want to bring a friend, she'll hang out outside the shooting area, but she's also more than welcome to join in on the fun and have her own shoot the same day. Plus, you'll both receive a $100 credit toward your order. As far as partners/husbands/boyfriends, etc... they must stay in the waiting area and aren't permitted in the shooting space. That's a firm policy.
[Q.] Do you have the right to post my photos?
[A.] As a boudoir photographer, I take my client's privacy very very seriously. When you come to me our entire professional relationship is based on trust. When you sign a contract with the studio to book a session, you're not signing a document that says I can share your images. After the shoot, I will present you with a separate document called a "Permission Slip." This puts you in the driver's seat as far as your images go. You can choose to share your images, share them anonymously, or not share them at all. No pressure is ever placed on you to do that. That being said, all the clients you see on my site are gals just like you (non-models) who came in scared and unsure of their ability to experience a boudoir shoot. When you honor us with sharing your images, we show ALL women that they too can do this. I've also been asked on occasion to sign a non-disclosure agreement, and once I review the terms of the agreement, I'd be happy to sign one.
Stay tuned for Part Three of Just the FAQs coming up next week!