I’m not the type of person who’s really into my body. But then again, ask almost any girl you run into on the street, and she’ll probably tell you the same thing. But a boudoir shoot? Definitely not the first thing on my mind.
I’m almost always behind the camera and for those of you who don’t know me, well, hi! I’m Katelyn. I started working with Abi and Andy about a year ago when I was hired as an assistant for a little Monday wedding and I fell in love with working with these two awesome people. Now, I film weddings and have my own little desk in the AGP headquarters and couldn’t imagine doing my job without being a part of this team.
When people started to find out I was working with Abigail Gingerale Photography, I began getting questions and comments about boudoir, specifically, all the time. I mostly shoot wedding videos and I’ve never actually shot boudoir with Abi but the questions about her sessions came rolling in:
“Aren’t those girls scared to be in front of the camera like that? Aren’t they NAKED??”
“I don’t think I could ever do one of those shoots, I’m too uncomfortable with my body”
“Maybe if I just lost ten pounds, I’d do it”
“Is it true you feel empowered after your shoot? I feel like I’d just hate the way I look”
I’d always try my best to answer these questions but my answers were always based off of what I’ve heard previous clients say.
Every conversation, though, would always end with the same question:
“Would you ever do a boudoir shoot?”
“Yeah, I think I’d do one!” was always my answer.
But every time, my mind would immediately fill up with self-doubt and insecurity.
“Why would you even do a boudoir shoot anyway? You don’t like your body. You’re way too awkward. You’re not even confident. Who would the photos even be for? What’s the point?“
The list of thoughts goes on.
Flash forward to the day of my shoot. I was a nervous wreck. I’m still not sure how I managed to book a shoot with my crazy nerves. I even had my best friend come with me to talk me up and calm my nerves until Abi started shooting.
“What if I look bad? What if I don’t like any of the photos? OMG WHAT IF I DERP IN ALL OF THE PHOTOS??? I DERP LIKE ALL OF THE TIME!”
If you are an anxious person like I am, I HIGHLY suggest bringing a friend along to your shoot. Of course, my friend just laughed at me and told me I was overreacting and it would be fine.
And you know what? She was right.
Yeah, I was scared, and yeah I was uncomfortable but after talking to Abi and telling her my fears – she took all of that away. She made me laugh and forget that I was even in my underwear – we might as well have been doing a normal portrait shoot. Half the time we were yelling “DERP” back and forth to each other as she was posing me.
I still can’t believe I did this session. The people who know me, reading this post are probably like “Katelyn did whaaaaat-?”.
And to them I say, “I KNOW RIGHT?!”
Going back to those questions people always ask me – here’s my real answer:
Yeah, it is scary to be in front of the camera bearing it all. But you know what? You don’t have to be naked. Boudoir is meant to make you feel sexy & beautiful. If you feel beautiful in your oversized t-shirt and hipsters – then go for it! Abi was there for me every second of the way. Not only was she my photographer but she was a cheerleader to tell me how great I looked and to only do what I felt comfortable with. There is absolutely no pressure and you can do you, Honeyboo-boo.
As girls, we beat ourselves up SO hard over how we look and I know, because I’m guilty of it. We constantly compare ourselves to other girls thinking “If only I looked like her. I’d be so confident”. Those ten pounds you’re always looking to lose to feel confident don’t really matter. I was so insecure about my stomach and how my chin looks when I look down.
But none of that mattered.
When I got my photos back I realized- this is how people actually see me. When you look at another girl and envy her for how she looks and just wish to look just like her- step back and realize, she probably has insecurities, too. But you’ll never know what they are because to you, she looks perfect.
When you see your photos, you see yourself how everyone else sees you. You are perfect exactly how you are. You see YOU.
If you’re scared to book a session with Abi because you’re scared of what you think of yourself just like I was – I’m telling you, Nike is telling you and even Shia Lebouf is telling you – just do it! Face your fears. Embrace yourself. Love your body.
And yes, it is empowering.