MILF-ing it to 40 Years Old | Boudoir : Jaqui

People always ask me how I came to boudoir photography and why I decided to become so dedicated to this niche. When looking back on my life and all the S&#* that went down, I have an incredible amount of faith that everything happens for a reason

Never in my life did I think that I would be photographing gorgeous, naked women all day, let alone photographing anything at all. To me, photographers were artists and technical masterminds with gadgets that I could never understand. The truth is, I'm still not into all the technicalities and rules and fancy cameras, but I am so deeply invested in the art of boudoir and the amazing women who cross my path.

Through my journey of photographing hundreds (and I mean hundreds) of women and constantly re-defining "what is beautiful" in my mind, the world became that much more beautiful. I became a healer of my own past and a storyteller for others. 

That day when I was 5 years old and the notorious bully yelled "You're a fat, Jewish pig" down several neatly manicured lawns of the suburban neighborhood I once lived in, was probably the day my heart was broken for the first time. And it was also the day that I would refer back to for years to come because it gave me so much. 

As an adult, I am able tell stories with more empathy, more love, and less judgement. I now know that a stunning woman in a photograph does not equal a perfect life.

Actually, when I see a beautiful woman, I automatically see strength and courage. Jaqui was one of those for me...

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Jaqui and I met several years ago through mutual friends and colleagues.

She's a talented makeup artist that I've had the pleasure of working with on multiple occasions. This was the first time I had the chance to photograph her, and boy, did we have fun. Though, it's not surprising we did as it seems this woman brings her fun energy wherever she goes...

I mean, she calls her journey, "MILF-ing to 40," and she's completely rocking it. 

There's a story under this gorgeous skin because as I was saying before, beauty ain't just skin deep

When I asked Jaqui about her relationship with her body, she had a lot to say,

"I’m pretty OK with nudity I always have been.

I think that comes from being raised by a mother who was always walking around naked at home and never really cared much about nudity. The comfort of being naked must have rubbed off on me.

Though, I have suffered with weight issues my entire life. I have been 120 kg and I have been 65 kg. One gastric band placement and then nine years later removed due to complications, two babies and more weight gain and loss, about 10 kg extra since baby number 2 that won’t budge and a lot of soul searching later, I have come to terms that I can never be the thin girl. It’s just not in my genetic make up. I CAN be my strongest, healthiest and happiest.."

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"I hope to inspire other women who are hesitant, afraid, don’t feel like they have a body deserving of love, don’t have flat stomachs, have wobbly bits, lop-sided boobs and stretch marks just like me. I want them to know that's OK, and that they are sexy!"

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After the session Jaqui said,

"Rebecca makes you feel so comfortable in front of the camera and gives such great direction which is so helpful when you literally have no clue what to do. Even though I was a little nervous, I totally trusted her to guide me into the best poses and just went with it, the more we got into it the more fun we had with the poses and outfits, I was dancing around to the music and was literally game for anything! By the time I left I was totally excited and couldn’t wait to to see the pictures."

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 "When I looked at the pictures for the first time, I was totally blown away with how gorgeous, beautiful and sexy they were. I loved them all so much that it was hard to choose a favorite."

"I'm going to love them and keep them and look at them whenever I think I'm not "MILF-ing it” I am one HOT Mamma!"

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SO, if you were ever curious why I do boudoir, I figured this blog post was a good place to start. I share many of the feelings Jaqui expressed with me and so many other women have experienced in their life.

I kind of of see my blog with a big sign plastered across it, saying: YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

My business is literally a tribe of women who empower and uplift each other through positive thinking and empathy. There's nothing like it.

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I'm grateful that Jaqui allowed me to share these sexy and fun, yet still vulnerable and artistic images with you all. This one is one of my favorites...

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Oh wait, this one is my favorite too. Jaqui, I can't choose either!

You are so radiant. Keep shining. Keep MILF-ing it.

Thank you, for everything. And for teaching me that MILF is a verb. 

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Goddess in Nature | Outdoor Boudoir Collaboration

One of the many wonderful things about boudoir collaborations is the opportunity to create art without thinking, and I couldn't imagine a better place to feel that kind of freedom than the gorgeous hillside of Beit Zayit. The rolling green hills, blue skies and the dainty floral arrangements that Sara Winter sprinkled across her front lawn and throughout the forest was just the beginning of the beauty of this session. It's really kind of amazing how nature has a way of setting the stage for the perfectly imperfect to take place. 

I'm so grateful for the team of talented superwomen who came together to create with me in an authentic and open way.

This is what unfolded for us...

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Special thanks to our stunning model, Yael Kimmelman and the incredible women who made this all possible:

Florals- Sara Winter

Hair - Beauty By Rhonda

Makeup - Dana Kaplan

 

A Celebration of Womanhood | Boudoir : Hadar

One thing being a boudoir photographer has taught me is that while women share a common bond through our experiences, we are all unique, and there is always more to us than what meets the eye. As a photographer who specializes in intimate and nude photography, I often see the vulnerable and very authentic part of people that are not generally known to the public.

I think that is what draws me to my work. From the moment we are born, we are placed in a family, a society, and a world with expectations and ideals, with demands of defining “who we are,” but only on a surface level. Here, I am blessed to see and experience real reality every single day. I get to hear, see and document the truth.

Hadar and I met for the first time at her boudoir session, and I immediately fell in love with her and the energy she brought to my studio. She was open about her story, struggles and the personal journey of self-love and body acceptance which she held dear to her heart. 

Hadar believes that "women's bodies are fascinating and beautiful and should be celebrated," and this boudoir session was exactly that. A celebration of an intricate and amazing woman...

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"This boudoir session was a part of my journey of embracing and loving my body. I think looking at the images is very therapeutic in that sense. 

I’ve learned that in order to be less judgmental toward others, you first have to be kind and not judgmental toward yourself.” -Hadar

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When Hadar left, I felt like I had made a new friend. She's a woman of beauty and strength, and someone who I deeply respect. I'm so grateful for these intimate moments in time. 

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Hair and Makeup by Sarah Appel

Unleashing her Free-Spirit | Boudoir with Lorelle

As Spring approaches, this idea of "freedom" and a sense of renewal is a common theme in many of our lives, especially within my world of boudoir photography. I've been thinking a lot about what it means to be free and how my journey is leading me to a state of mind where I've allowed myself to be more free than I have ever been. That feeling reminded me of my beautiful client, Lorelle.

I had done a boudoir session in the Tel Aviv area with her few years back as part of a healing process and an honor to her mother who had passed away from breast cancer. It was such an amazing and memorable session, and I've always felt very connected to it. We even stayed in touch over the last few years before she decided to do this boudoir session! When we spoke during her second consultation, she said "I truly loved our first session. It was so romantic and just like a fairy tale. Now that I have an opportunity to do another, I just want to be free. I don't want to have any inhibitions. I want to explore a new side of myself and see how I've changed over the past three years." 

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After the session, Lorelle opened up even more, "I had to grow up very quickly. While my friends were out partying and being carefree, I was looking after my sick mother. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't change a thing, but I lost out on that part of growing up. I'm always so careful and so "straight." Doing something completely opposite to my personality was rather liberating. Right now, my goals in life involve taking things one step at a time and allowing things to fall into place as they should, freely without worrying."

"On the day of, I felt super calm and Rebecca made me feel comfortable and confident in my own skin. It was so special and unique because I had already done a session, I knew what to expect in a way. However, with this session, I was open to being photographed fully nude and felt 100% comfortable doing so. I was blown away by the professionalism and attention to detail by both Sarah, the hair and makeup artist, and Rebecca."

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"I loved my hair and makeup. Sarah really understood exactly what I wanted. I think inherently, I'm more relaxed and have a bohemian style, but life always has a way of taking over. I think that with all the daily struggles and stresses, I felt like I had lost that sense of being carefree. This was a way I could connect to that free-spirited side of me."

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“Viewing these pictures was the best feeling ever. I had butterflies in my tummy. It felt as though I was paging through the images of a glossy magazine and staring at a model who wasn't me...

If I could I would being doing boudoir sessions as much as possible. I feel like I could do a session every year just to remind myself of my confidence and beauty. It's such an imp ortant experience and a huge step towards one's own journey to self-love and acceptance." 

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Lorelle said she hoped that I wasn't sick of photographing her, and my feelings are completely opposite. I only wish I could photograph her more! We always have such a fun time together, and she is an absolute beauty from the inside out. 

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I love many things about my career path, but one thing I love most is the relationships I have with my clients. As much as I offer them a space to explore themselves, they also inspire me every single day. 

Robert Frost says, "Freedom lies in being bold." This rings so true to me, to this session, and the way I want to continue seeing life moving forward. 

Lorelle made me start to think about the next boudoir session for myself. Specifically using the experience as a catalyst to bring out a different side of myself would be very healing and cathartic, just as Lorelle’s boudoir session was for her.

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Thank you, Lorelle for your vulnerability, bravery and beauty. It is always an honor to photograph you, and I share your hope that we can do boudoir sessions as much as possible in the future!

If you'd like to see Lorelle's first session, feel free to view it here.

Makeup and Hair by Sarah Appel