Nowadays boudoir photography is not seen as sleazy or creepy, and more of an art form, and as such boudoir photography is not as taboo as it once was. In this day and age of the “selfies” lingerie shots are everywhere, and more women seem happy to be photographed in classy and provocative poses for their own personal use. These two things combined have resulted in a significant increase in boudoir photography opportunities, and make a bit of money with it.
One of the most important things when carrying out boudoir photography shots is to protect yourself. Whilst the lady wanting to be photographed in her lingerie may want you to take the photos, there is a strong possibility her friends, partner/boyfriend/husband or family members may not like the idea of a boudoir shoot, and it is important you do everything you can to prove that your boudoir model requested the shoot and that you did not coerce or force her.
Before accepting any boudoir photography assignment the first thing I do is check the age of the model. Photographing minors is not acceptable, and can end you up in a lot of hot water and on an offenders list for life (which will destroy you) therefore it is crucial to ensure the model is old enough. When I take on a photo shoot I request some photo identification from the model and will only accept Government issued documents, such as a passport or photo driving licence. NUS cards, student cards, library cards or any other membership cards are no good to me, and if the model cannot provide a passport or photo driving licence I refuse to do the shoot. I request to see photographic identification from all models, regardless of how old they are.
Once I am satisfied the model is old enough I issue a boudoir photography contract that I insist is signed. The boudoir photography contract consists important details about the shoot including the type of services requested (i.e. boudoir shots), the time/date and location of the shoot, what the photos can be used for and what I will do with the images. Whenever I take on a boudoir photography shoot I insist the model brings a third party along (friend, family member etc.) to confirm the model is old enough, to confirm the model is requesting the services and that I am not forcing them, to confirm I have discussed all paragraphs in the photography contract and also to sign and witness the boudoir photography contract.
When shooting boudoir photography I insist the third party witness is present at all times. If the model arrives without the third party I don’t take any boudoir photos. If the third party has to leave the location of the shoot for any reason I immediately stop the shoot. If the third party needs a toilet break I put a halt to the boudoir photography shoot and don’t start taking photos again until the third party gets back.
My rules surrounding my boudoir photography services may be over the top, and whilst I have never had any problems at all with false allegations or anything like that, I think it is better to be safe than sorry, hence the strict rules.
Being accused of any wrong doing would damage my reputation and it wouldn’t just be boudoir photography shoots I would lose but also any other photo shoots where people are involved. Yep, a bad reputation would wipe out any wedding shoots, portrait shoots, school photography shoots….. i.e. all the high paying work. It is also likely (although I can’t confirm this) that it would wipe out other types of images requested by customers (product shoots, food shoots etc.) leaving me with my landscape and nature photography with which to earn money – and there is very little money in these types of photography.
Below is a list of boudoir photography articles and tutorials you may find interesting/useful: -
Keen photographer addicted to cameras, lenses and everything photography related. Feel free to follow me in my photography ramblings, and if you have any thoughts, comments, queries or anything else to add I would love to hear from you.