Welcome to the Beyond Boudoir Photo blog!
Tales of an adventurous boudoir photographer in Portland, Oregon
Lots of moms-to-be decide they wish to have some professional photos to record this special stage of life. Just as in boudoir photography, most women and most commercial photographers prefer to de-emphasize the woman's sexuality and concentrate on the "nurturing mom" look. That's fine for most people, but what if you prefer a more sexual look? Something more provocative, that doesn't deny your sexuality.
Obviously, the answer is to get in touch with Beyond Boudoir Photo and schedule a photoshoot. But there's more to it than that. The biggest question is when to do the shoot. For some reason, almost all of the women I've worked with felt that they should wait until the final month of their pregnancy, but I disagree and here are four reasons.
In my opinion, the best idea is to schedule three or four photoshoots to document the various stages of the pregnancy. Each stage is different and beautiful in its own way. If the last shoot gets cancelled by an early arrival, it's not a disaster.
Here is an example of an early pregnancy photo. I think the subtle changes are quite lovely, don't you?
And of course, here is a later stage photo of a different woman:
Sadly, I don't have any examples I can show you that depict one women in the various stages of pregnancy. If you know someone who would like to volunteer to pose in exchange for free images, please send her my way!
Update: I do now have a number of nude maternity images that I can share with you, but out of respect for the lovely moms who posed for trade shoots, I am keeping the gallery protected with a password. If you are pregnant and interested in discussing a sensual photoshoot, please use the contact form to request the password to the maternity gallery.
I like to get out of my studio whenever I can. It's fun to shoot outdoors, in hotel rooms, in private homes and sometimes I rent a commercial studio space. In this case, the location is known as Beast Daylight Studio in Portland, Oregon. I've used it a few times before in order to enjoy the daylight that comes in through the big South facing windows. Here's a shot of the windows from a previous shoot with Adryana:
The model for this shoot is the lovely Christina Bee who can be found on Model Mayhem. I have a lot of admiration for the young women who work as traveling models through MM. Not many people at that age are brave enough to travel to strange cities and connect with photographers. They also have to be smart enough to do it safely. I always treat them with great respect and thank them for working with me.
I usually use only the natural daylight at The Beast, but for this shoot, I brought along a single Alien Bees B400 and a medium size umbrella. I'm glad I did, because it was a very cloudy day and the light was dim for much of the two hour shoot. This shot was done using only the daylight, which worked pretty well if the model was close to a window and facing it. Of course you have to compensate for the blue color cast, but that just takes a quick adjustment of the color balance sliders in Lightroom.
The light was fairly dim, so I put the camera on a tripod and shot at 1/60 sec, F/2, ISO 400 using the Tamron 85mm. Of course the tripod doesn't stop the subject from moving!
Mixing very cool, blue, daylight with strobe light is an interesting challenge that's fun for me. You usually can't get the color perfect on all body parts, since they are illuminated by sources of different colors, but using the local adjustment brush in Lightroom you can come pretty close.
Of course no shoot at this studio is complete without a black and white art nude photo. I added a little grain in honor of the years I spent shooting Tri-X Pan film.
If you would like to see more photos from this shoot, you can view a gallery at this link. Thanks for reading!
There are many reasons why a woman or couple might wish to have erotic photos taken. Among the top three are:
Of course there are many reasons why you might not want racy photos and there isn't much a photographer can do about most them. But if you are nervous about going to a photo studio and posing for naughty photos outside your normal, comfortable environment, well there's a way around that. What you need is a photographer who makes house calls!
When I do a private shoot in someone's home or hotel room, I usually try to do it during daylight hours so that I can make use of the soft daylight that comes in through the windows. Exploring the available light is great fun for my inner photography geek.
If daylight is not available, I bring two studio strobes with reflective umbrellas that allow me to control the lighting quite nicely. Some clients request dramatic, high contrast light, like the example below which used a single studio light with only the basic reflector, no umbrella to soften the light.
You may notice that there isn't much obvious photoshopping in my images. There may be some, but my philosophy is that you should not be able to tell. I may actually do quite a bit of editing in some cases, but I really dislike the "plastic skin" look that you see in so many fashion photos and men's magazines.
I'm not going to include any really graphic images in this blog post, since I prefer to keep those in a password protected gallery that is only available to prospective clients. Just let me say that graphic photos are no problem. With Beyond Boudoir Photo, your imagination is the only limit!
If you would like to see more of my house call images, please click this link to go to a gallery I put together just for this topic.
As always, thanks to my friends and various models who have agreed to pose for me and allow me to share their sexy images with you.
While perusing Model Mayhem one day, I noticed a new model in my area. I loved her look and we quickly booked a shoot in my studio. The best thing about my studio is that I can shoot there at any time, regardless of the weather. Well, almost. We had to delay the shoot twice due to a pair of serious snow events that are highly unusual in the Portland area. Finally, the snow melted and we were able to go to work.
Kat Alexis was a joy to work with, so if you need a great model in the Portland area, she has my highest recommendation. You can find her on Model Mayhem.
There was also another reason I was excited about this shoot. I had just received an inexpensive 16-inch Fotodiox beauty dish from Amazon and I was dying to try it out. I've used lots of umbrellas, soft boxes, strip lights and brolly boxes for light modification, but this was my first experience with a beauty dish. Photographers say it gives a unique light, but the photos I've seen on the net didn't seem to give me a good feel for what to expect. What else could I do but buy one and try it out myself?
The Fotodiox beauty dish came with a grid, which turns the dish into something of a spotlight. I wasn't sure how much beam spread I'd get with the grid, so that's what I checked with my first shot. The dish is about 4 feet from the model's face and there are two gridded hair lights behind her.
That's a very interesting effect for headshots and I'm sure I will use it again, but I mostly shoot full body portraits. I quickly removed the grid and moved the dish back a bit farther from my model.
Now that's useful light! From head to hem. You can see the dish on the left and a hair light in the upper right corner. I noticed that the color balance is more toward the blue than my softboxes and umbrellas. I presume this is due to the white paint on the working side of the dish.
I put the grid back on and fired up a big Paul C. Buff strip light to camera right to act as a fill light. Notice that in the first two photos above, I had the model turn her face toward the dish. In the photo below, I had her point her nose directly at the camera. See how there is now a fairly dramatic shadow alongside the nose? Even though I was using a strip light (a long softbox) as a fill light, the lighting was still pretty dramatic.
One nice advantage of the dish is that it doesn't take up a lot of space in the studio. I'm thinking it will also be more wind resistant outdoors compared to the umbrellas I normally use. Of course it doesn't fold up, so I saved the box it came in for transport. Hopefully, when the weather eventually allows outdoor shoots, I will be able to write a full report for my loyal readers.
Here is a shot that shows the blue shifted color balance of the beauty dish. Normally I use a preset in Lightroom to give me nearly perfect color balance from my studio lights. The other photos you see have had additional correction applied, but this one has not. I was wondering if this would create an issue when I combined the dish with the strip lights in a single image, but I didn't see a problem.
All photos were taken with my Canon 5D Mark III at ISO 100. The main lens was the workhorse 24-105 F/4 L. The strobe units were various kinds of Alien Bees and the triggers were the cheapest Yongnuo junk I could find on Amazon. :)
If you would like to see more photos from this shoot, you are welcome to click here to see more. FYI: the model received over 200 edited images for her own use.
Thanks for reading!
My favorite place to shoot outdoors is the Columbia River Gorge. It's beautiful, it's close to where I live, and I know several spots that have enough privacy for nude photoshoots, at least on weekdays. On the weekends, hikers and tourists overrun the Gorge, so you need to go elsewhere.
This photoshoot was done over a year ago and as you can see it was Summer. The outdoor nude shooting season here is roughly from May through September. The lovely model can be found on Model Mayhem if you'd like to work with her. Although many of my blog posts involve some pretty nice lenses, this shoot was conducted with three inexpensive Canon lenses. When I'm not getting paid to do a shoot for someone, half the fun for me is playing around with different photo gear.
These first two photos look a bit like amateur snapshots, because I was experimenting with on-camera flash. I really don't like on-camera flash, but I wanted to try it under these conditions. Notice the shadow, indicating that I held the camera vertically, with the speedlight hanging off to the left side.
Switching back to available light, I had the model move to an area of photogenic rocks for various poses.
Fortunately, this was late in the day, so there was no direct sunlight. Each spot that I use in the Gorge has it's own sunlight schedule. The trickiest part is getting the color balance right, since the model is illuminated by the blue sky above and sometimes by reflected light from green vegetation.
The photos up to this point were taken with my Canon 5D Mark III and a Canon EF 24-105 F/4 L IS used wide open to create some moderate background blur without obliterating the scenic background. This lens is a real workhorse and not very expensive. You can often find it for around $600. A Mark II is just out from Canon, but early reports say it doesn't offer much improvement over the already great Mark I.
Just for fun, I switched to a radically different lens, the Canon EF 40mm F/2.8 "pancake" lens. I was shooting at F/4, so the background blur was still moderate.
After some full body portraits, I wanted to do some upper body shots and switched to the Canon EF 85mm F/1.8 USM lens. This is a wonderful and inexpensive portrait lens, usable on both full frame and crop-sensor cameras. As you can see in the shot below, I was using a wide aperture for shallow depth of field in order to focus attention on the flowers. This was at F/2 - the sweet spot for this lens when doing outdoor portraits is between F/2 and F/2.8 in my opinion. It loses sharpness at F/1.8 and if you go beyond F/2.8 you don't get the nice background blur.
Now I can't wait for Summer to come back! If you'd like to see a gallery with more pix from this shoot, just click here.
Thanks for reading.
A sex-positive photographer serving your private photography needs.
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