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Tips for Male Boudoir Photographers

Lesson 19 from: Boudoir Photography

Rachel Stephens

Tips for Male Boudoir Photographers

Lesson 19 from: Boudoir Photography

Rachel Stephens

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Lesson Info

19. Tips for Male Boudoir Photographers

Lesson Info

Tips for Male Boudoir Photographers

I get a lot of questions and I have been saying hearing feedback, you know? Well, what dough ideo If I'm a male, you know, we have the disadvantage in the boudoir industry being male, and I'm not gonna lie. Being female does have an advantage. However, I feel like your work is going to speak for itself whether you're male or female. Photographer. So how? Not to be creepy. So do you hear that all the time? Like I'm a male photographer? How do I not be like that creepy guy? And the answer is simple. Don't be creepy. So, throughout all of the posing demos that I've been doing through this workshop and I'm talking about connection, I'm talking about interaction. A lot of it has to do with putting yourself into that confidence space. And we know what the power posing we do all that. I recommend the same thing. The energy that you are sharing with your your client. When you're interacting, they're gonna feel that they're gonna feed off that. So you're leading the session with your energy. Yo...

u're coming into a going I hope I'm not the creepy guy. Then you're gonna come off as a creepy guy, so you need to just get rid of that. There is no creepy guy in art, your artist. You're creating art for your client, their commissioning you to do that. I think that, um, as far as giving them options to be comfortable. If you're a male, it's It's, in my opinion, better if you can just have you and your client in the room so you don't have any distractions when you're interacting. However, if you're a male, you want to be able to give your client that option of having someone else in the room. For example, you can have a female makeup artist, and you can give them the option tohave that female makeup artists in the room while you're shooting kind of like when you go to a doctor. And if it's a male doctor, they have a female nurse. Come in same thing and you know it. Once you get going and they start to get comfortable, you can ask care or you Are we cool? Do you? Do you want Teoh? Let her leave the room. She can stay whatever you like. If you don't have a female makeup artist, or they still don't feel comfortable that because it would be a stranger, you can all also offer them the opportunity to bring a friend. It's something I don't do again. I don't like distraction, but if they want to bring a friend in, you can have the friends sit in there. And then once they start getting comfortable, you can ask if it's OK if the friend goes into the next room. So they're still there. They're still accessible. You can leave the doors open. Don't shut the door. Um, there are things that you can dio and what I would do is I would offer these things in your materials before clients book. You can put it in your F A Q. You can put it in your policy, and you can put it in your session information packet. So that way you're disclosing everything. They have options. And also, you know, if you're someone who when you're posing, you know I may need to start to touch your style. I may need to fix your wardrobe, these things you can let them know ahead of time. These are things I may need to do. I mean, it mean, maybe to fix your bra strap or whatever, and then just know that, you know, as you're interacting with the client that you're letting them know everything that you're going to do before you do it. Okay, I'm gonna come in and your bra strap is twisted, so I'm just gonna go ahead and I'm gonna fix that. Is that okay? I'm gonna go ahead and touch people assure, Okay, Whatever, you know. So once you're in there and you're doing it once the clients there, they're gonna just all that stuff's gonna melt away. But you can take care of a lot of it on the front end. And so again, male or female, it doesn't matter. Your work is gonna speak for itself. So learn all the tools, the techniques, the resource is everything have the bright energy share, though the right energy. And the client wants beautiful images. If your work is better than anybody else's, she's gonna choose you. You just have to present that right? If you're coming from a place where my works awesome. But I'm afraid I'm gonna be that creepy guy. I wouldn't choose you. So you need to be confident yourself confident your work and your client will be confident. Teoh. Yeah, if you don't mind, like winning things that I've been thinking about right along those lines is the importance of just communication just being open and honest about what you're doing. Like there's some people who just reading body language. I won't adjust a bra strap. But I'll tell you go in and fix their hair. You know, there's like there's different levels for different people and it's just important that you know that and you communicate and you figure out you read body language very aware of body language exactly on. And then the other big thing for me was just that, Um, I had to be aware of why I was shooting that, you know, because that's something that other people will read and other people will see. And if you're doing it for the wrong reason, people will feel that. So don't do it for the wrong reason, know why you're doing it and then communicate. And I love everything that you said, thank you very much. I know there's a lot of people out there who it's a constant concern because I think a lot of people who are doing it for the for the right reasons know that there are people who aren't and so feel that pressure to make sure that people don't perceive them the wrong way because it's easy. So I appreciate your touching on it. Headspace is so so important with anything in life. So it's just about really grounding yourself and finding your center and being confident who you are and knowing that what you're doing is beautiful and it's it's it's a uncredible interaction that you're it's two sided. So the clients giving you this wonderful, empowering experience and you're giving it, said them Teoh. And that's what it's about, male or female? Exactly. And it's that confidence where if you again, if you are doing it for the right reasons and you know that, then you won't be doing things that are inappropriate because that's not part of who you are on. So you don't like I Honestly, I don't worry about this stuff when I go into it anymore. I did when I first started. I will be perfectly honest. I didn't want to be perceived wrong way. Now I know why I'm doing it I'm confident in it. I know that the people I'm working with chose me for a reason. Like you said, if they want my my style, if they like what I do, then there's no reason for me to be uncomfortable because everything's on the table exactly and who you are, you know, and what you share you make. And you put that all that in the front, on the front. And so clients can make a decision when they're shopping for a photographer, and the clients are like, Well, I don't know about that. They're not your client, not everybody's your clan. It's OK. It's OK that you're not gonna appeal to everybody. You don't want everybody. You want your client? Yeah, that. And I think that's what it comes down to, their some women who are only going to become full with a woman, and that's a great I don't want to try and shoot them because it's gonna be awkward. We're not gonna get great shots. Then there are women who would prefer to be shot by a man like that was something that, uh, from generals, Mom pointed out, like, you know, there are women who are going to want to be shot by you because it brings something out in them. It's, you know, it's Ah, it's a challenge thing. It's it's showing off and that shows through in the work There are other people who don't care and just want good pictures. And they like what you dio So I love thank you. I've had clients come in that have shot with other photographers before at, you know, male boudoir photographer. They had a great time. They're not choosing me because I'm a female. They're choosing me because they want something different and they like my work. So exactly true. Exactly. So I hope that that addresses things. Let's do you have any comments? But I just wanted to see from our other male photographer in the room. Mr John Cornyn Cello. If you had any further thoughts on how how you interact with the females, No, I think rust covered most of it. In my case, I have a background coming from fine art nude world, where a shot nudes for a long time, and I've always been comfortable with it, and I know why I am in there. And when. Friends before I see people online to say How did not be creek be? So if you have to ask that you're probably that creepy person, you know? I mean, Mr Way mentioned yesterday, that's a confidence and approaching people when I do need to move someone's hair or something like that, you know, don't be timid and, oh, you know, just your there. For that reason, be confident, be yourself and then the fact that you're a professional. Yeah, I don't think their doctor's or dentist's They're like, Well, I'm working on a female so that in any way change is their profession and their ability Teoh to provide a service. And I think one of the other questions that we frequently get is how do I speak about makeup? How do I talk to them about hair? How do I talk them about clothing and outfits? And the answer for me is you have to learn right, like if you're going to come into that world, you need to become familiar with that world, and that's gonna take extra work for you because it's not something you've been trained to every day. Well, which is the same for more so for a man but similar for a woman. If you're not into those things, you gotta learn it exactly. Exactly. So, yeah, There are some areas where you're gonna have to do extra work. That's that's just a fact. I have a little tip for that because I'm not like a girly girl. You know, I don't normally wear make up or anything like that. So when I go to, you know, the airport, I'll go to, like, the magazine wall. And I have, you know, an hour to kill all stand there and just kind of walk back and forth, and I'll just look at all absorb magazine covers and I just sit and look and I'm noting makeup. I'm noting poses on noting wardrobe. So this is kind of where I keep fresh when it comes to those kinds of things. So, you know, male or female can stand in for a magazine, right?

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Client Policy
Example: 2 Day Schedule
Lightroom Presets
Lightroom Presets Installation Instructions
Client Session Information
Full Edit & Longhand Retouch Partt 1
Full Edit & Longhand Retouch Part 2
Full Edit & Longhand Retouch Part 3
Longhand Retouch Part 1
Longhand Retouch Part 2
Facebook Ad Creation
Full Edit in Lightroom

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

Let me first start off by saying that Rachel puts her subject first. She has a passion for empowering the everyday woman, showing them that Boudoir photography by no means only belongs to the "supermodels". She shows them that they're amazing and beautiful, and it was so comforting and heartwarming to see this in action in her Creative Live course! When Rachel's shooting with a client it's almost like no-one's in the room but the two of them. Rachel gives her undivided attention to the client's safety and well-being and general comfort. I was so glad I tuned in for the course as I learnt countless tips and techniques about lighting, angles, posing, different settings for the different types of shots you'd want to grab. Another reason that watching the class was such a pleasure for me is that Rachel comes across as that awesome, down to earth, lovely friend you might have in your life, who just happens to be one of the BEST Boudoir photogs on the planet! This was an excellent workshop, top to bottom, and I'd recommend purchasing it to anyone who wants to learn everything about this type of photography, including the business side of things which her husband, Sean, explained thoroughly. I have absolutely no idea what a couple reviewers were "disappointed with" but take it from me - this is a STELLAR course and if you're looking to get into the business, or just even honing your skills on photographing the ladies, this is most definitely the course for you! Tons of info - great guidelines on how to handle your models, great info on lighting, lenses and settings! Rachel will make you fall in love with Boudoir photography like your life depended on it! She's just THAT good! So go on, purchase the course and have her invaluable instruction at your fingertips whenever you need it!


I mainly photograph landscapes but I'm interested in learning other types of photography. Being introverted it's a challenge for me to photograph people but I it's a barrier I want to get over. I purchased this course and some others on portraiture and boudoir photography. While Rachel and her husband aren't polished speakers I thought they were honest and straightforward. The "clients" being photographed seemed a bit nervous but I imagine that had a lot to do with the fact they were doing the boudoir session live in front of thousands if not millions of viewers. Rachel also had to keep in mind she was tethered and the recording of the session while photographing her client so I don't think this was optimal and Rachel's back began to bother her so I'm sure she was in some physical pain. Regardless, the resulting pictures were beautiful so Rachel was able to make her clients feel "safe" enough to get through the session. Also it seems part of the audience were women who had been photographed by Rachael so it says something that they came to learn from and support Rachel. I appreciated Rachel was photographing real women, not models. What I liked most about this course is it made me feel like little 'ol ordinary me could be a boudoir photographer too If I am ever inclined to do so. Her style of photography isn't quite mine, but the session was still useful and instructive especially with regard to her lighting set up. I wish Rachel had talked a bit more about setting up the support team that goes around with her like her make up and hair artists, how she finds and decides on houses to rent and what cities she goes to, etc. but I guess you can't go over every single thing in a single course or maybe that can be a future course. Rachel and her husband seemed like a nice down to earth couple who put their family first and they were quite honest about some of the difficulties and their concerns over safety for themselves and their clients. I was touched that Rachel photographs women who have gone through cancer treatment for free as I do volunteer work in a hospital. I thought the bonus and included materials which had Rachel's Lightroom presets and her client info packet was very generous. Some of the other photographers charge for getting a copy of their client documents and presets. I purchased Rachel's eBook off Amazon and wanted to purchase Rachel's Photoshop actions but in searching for the purchase links I read Rachel is going through some health issues, I think it was spinal fusion, and it seems has suspended her business until she recovers. It looks like she plans to still make her "return" sessions starting with Hawaii during April 2017. I wish her and her family the best and will say a prayer for her quick and complete recovery. Thank you Rachel and Sean for coming to Creative Live and I hope you will teach another class or at least participate in a critique of boudoir photographs.


Warning: You are about to encounter a large number of exclamation points. ;-) This was such a great course! It was great to learn boudoir with such a caring, generous, and knowledgeable pair! Rachel really brought it with her posing, shooting, and building rapport with her clients. She even kept going while in intense pain! Also, the sections on retouching were EXCELLENT! I had trouble following the first retouching segment where she used her actions, but then she came back to retouching later and showed us how to do each step "longhand". Knowing what each action is designed for makes such a difference! I feel like Rachel read the audience and saw that we were floundering, and tailored her presentation to just what we needed! Sean was also very thorough in his presentation of the "business" side. It is hard, as an artist, for me to run my business like a business. Sean showed how it can be done. He also showed the need for a strong "why" to focus on when telling others about policies. "It's a business. I need to feed my kids." I need to reach down and find my "why" that will keep me strong enough to stand behind my policies and pricing. I haven't gotten a chance to sit down and go through all of the bonus materials yet, but I am so excited to see what's in there! I saw that Rachel had posted a longhand version of the "little hug," and I watched it, and I have been trying it out on some of my older images. Just that one little tweak makes such a difference! Thank you, Rachel and Sean, for giving us SO MUCH usable content! I'm so glad I decided to watch and then purchase this course! And I can't wait to see the two of you again for your next creativeLIVE!

Student Work