How did you hear about Holly Douglas Boudoir? A friend from my dance/fitness studio, Amber, shared a couple of images and I was in awe. She was already beautiful, but it was deeper than what met the eye…I felt what I was seeing was what I was missing when I looked at myself.
Why did you choose Holly Douglas Boudoir for your session? After talking with Amber about the empowerment and confidence she felt during and after the experience I knew that after researching boudoir shoots for almost a year that Holly was the one for me. Amber’s take-aways from her experience spoke firsthand to me, and I needed that.
What made you decided to take the leap of faith and do a boudoir session? After years of losing myself value in my body because of abuse (domestic and self), after multiple pregnancies, and honestly after deciding it’s my responsibility to own the flaws, the traumas, the negatives and grow….I knew it was time to find me again. I discarded self-judgment and declared my body is a beautiful thing that has given me way more than I give it credit, and has endured way more than it should have and that I should appreciate and see it’s resilience, strength, and power. What better way than to explode into a world of nothing but my body.
Were you nervous about the shoot beforehand? If so, what were you most nervous about? I was nervous but mostly excited. The nervousness was still a little lingering self-judgment: what if I’m too fat, what if I can’t pose right to hide my rolls, what if my legs are too big, what if my thighs are too thick to just be seen pretty (my legs are my most self-judged part of my body), etc. The nerves were my own doing mentally of how I judged and felt about my body. Ultimately, though, being part of the VIP group beforehand helped the nerves not feel so intense because I got to see others post their experience and Holly do live video to talk through different things.
Did you become more comfortable after the session started? If so, what helped to relax your nerves? 100% became more comfortable after the shoot started. The game changer was when I tried on the first lingerie piece. I was amazed at seeing my body fit the piece, amazed Holly had sizes for me, amazed that I could wear it and feel like “wow”!
What was your favorite part of the experience and why? Holly’s excitement and encouragement. The massage was to die for (pretty sure I drooled, lol), but seeing and hearing Holly behind the lens seeing what her artistic and professional eyes made me feel so comfortable and so much more excited about what I was looking like and the photos to come. It also helped when I reviewed photos and was going to eliminate photos that were beautiful but I was focusing on my “problem” area…she supportively and compassionately helped me not focus on one simple and small part that I saw as a flaw so I could see my whole self and the beauty that my whole self was. I got the photos and see my whole self and not just my flaws now (because are they really flaws?? No…they are me and what makes me….beautifully me)
How did you feel during your session? Empowered, beautiful, excited, thrilled, untouchable, like I got a piece of me that had been waiting to be brought out and loved….I felt complete.
Describe how you felt when you saw your images for the first time. Oh my goodness….tears. Immediately, I was in awe of my body, of Holly’s way with the posing, lighting and camera. Mostly, I felt like I had just released a weight from my own heart, mind, body and spirit that had built up over time from my past and it felt damn good to cry it out and know…I am still me & all that other was a moment in time.
How has your relationship with your body changed since your session? I 100% believe I am more comfortable with what I see when I look in the mirror. Be fierce and love it without apology.
What would you say to people who say they can’t do a boudoir session because they are too shy, nervous, etc? Book it, schedule it, commit to showing up, be open to all that you are feeling so that you can tell yourself, just breathe and embrace the time that you haven’t given yourself before because of what you think about yourself. Get out of your own head, and know that you don’t have to “know” what to do, or have certain things to wear, or any of that. Just show up and let Holly guide you!
Anything else you’d like to add? Thank you, Holly, for what you do. To some it may be beautiful art, gorgeous photography, but for me it’s all that plus an emotional and mental release that was what I needed to feel and see to be ok with where I have been, what I have been through and love and appreciate my body for seeing me through it all and being strong enough to wait on me to love it the way I should…and see it for what it is….my own version perfection and no one elses.