Best of Boudoir in 2017

Looking back on the best boudoir memories of 2017, I can't believe that there were so many incredible moments packed into just one year. Then, when I think about when I first started my boudoir photography business 4 1/2 years ago, the memories only multiply, and I'm left feeling nothing but grateful.

Boudoir has been a journey of self-discovery. It's been a rollercoaster ride from desperation and tears to moments of sheer joy and revelation.

I remember when I first started, without a car, carrying my photography equipment across the country on public transportation. My dear friend and makeup artist, Cassy Avraham, and I would travel hours on Egged buses for just one boudoir client. In hindsight, it did give us time to think and breathe, to dream and plan together.

I would never have thought that only a short time later, I'd live in a beautiful home that I would be able to transform into a boudoir studio. I would have never thought that I'd facilitate a Facebook group and community of over 3,600 women or be flown to Europe to speak about self-love. I would have never thought I'd be written about in The Guardian or BBC News or what a controversy it would cause, even among some famous public figures.

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The most transformative moments were the quieter ones. They happened in the bedrooms of my clients, in my boudoir studio, in randomly beautiful outdoor spaces. It is a real gift to be able to see so many women connect to their bodies, rekindle their sexuality and take enormous steps towards loving and accepting who they are. 

"Watch carefully what happens when you give someone just enough comfort to be themselves."

-Atticus

While the majority of my boudoir clients choose to keep their sessions private, here are some of my favorites from the images I was allowed to share...

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After a recent boudoir session, my client wrote this gorgeous poem that resonated with me.

"My body is a temple.
It is my home.
My body bore children and endured loss...

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My body has been loved and touched, cuddled, and embraced.
I depend on my body to create and to explore this world, I nurture and invest in my body, because I want to live my life strong happy and healthy for as long as God allows me to...

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I love my body because it is me! And I love me.

Love yourself. Love others. And be loved."

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I'm so grateful to my clients who have bared their bellies and their souls. Who have gone on this journey of self-discovery with me. While it's endlessly therapeautic, I think we had A LOT of fun in the process.

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Thank you to my team; the makeup artists, hair stylists, film labs, florists, designers and printing houses who have all been tremendous contributors and partners in creating beautiful art with me. To have professionals that I love working with and whom I can trust is priceless. 

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"Photography makes one conscious of beauty everywhere, even in the simplest things, even in what is often considered commonplace. Yet nothing is really 'ordinary,' for every fragment of the world is crowned with wonder and mystery, and a great and surprising beauty." -Alvin Langdon Coburn

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This self-portrait is everything...

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Last summer, I traveled to New York City just for my boudoir clients, and it was absolutely amazing. It's a city that made me feel alive in a different kind of way...

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I don't often photograph couples, but when I do, you know that they are special...

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Something I love about boudoir is that it can translate to all stages in our life and celebrates our femininity not only through our bodies, but through the stories that we carry with us.

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What's my favorite photograph? Maybe the one I'll take tomorrow.

For now, I'll be cherishing the experiences and photographs that came from 2017.

Lastly, but certainly not least, thank you to my biggest fan, my greatest support, and love of my life. Yehoshua, I could not have accomplished what I have so far without your unconditional love and encouragement. You are not only an inspiration to me as a person, but as a photographer and artist as well. To be able to share a passion for photography with you is one of the sweetest blessings. 

Hello, 2018. Let's rock and roll. 

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Shoutout to all of you who have made this year possible!

Film Lab - Panda Labs

Makeup and Hair Stylists

Cassy Avraham

Jaquelyn Mowszowski Lawrence

Lia Ciner

Sheldon T. Bruck

Rhonda Lev

Sarah Appel

Leah Neppe

Dana Kaplan

Katy Taurel

Louise Lerman

Designers & Florists

Sara Winter - Florist

Haim Shushan - Graphic Design & Branding

Marina Valery - Wedding Gown & Lingerie Designer

Petit Pois - Lingerie 

Lifestyle Influencers

Noa Elharar

Leann Lev

Yael Kimmelman - Life by B

Beauty from a Different Era | Boudoir with Rachel

On a calm, beautiful morning in my studio, I drank my morning coffee and awaited Rachel's arrival from Netanya for her very first boudoir experience. When she walked in the door and sat down for her and makeup, I felt like I was hanging out with an old friend. It probably helped that we had a lot of friends and colleagues in common!

During her consultation and now, after her full experience, Rachel so beautifully expressed her reasons for wanting to do a boudoir session at this time in her young adult life. 

I came to my boudoir session hoping to see myself through a new lens. Intellectually, I know I’m beautiful. But I’ve never understood what it meant to feel sexy. That’s part of what brought me to my session-to be able to see myself in that light, even if just through photos.
— Rachel

Rhonda and I were so excited that she wanted a dramatic look. With boudoir sessions, people generally tend to stay on the natural side with their makeup and hair looks, so it was fun to do something different this time. As her makeup was being applied, there was an inner light that began to glow and her classically beautiful features were shining through even more. 

I gave Rachel a look that had a smokey, sexy feel intertwined with inspiration from the 1930’s classic beauty trends. It just suited her features, personality and wardrobe perfectly.
— Rhonda Lev
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During the moments leading up to the session, Rachel felt beautiful in her own skin.

I experienced not just seeing myself as sexy, but I actually felt pretty. I felt beautiful. Not because I was made up. Not because I was the subject of a photo shoot. But just because I was coming to a place as myself and for the first time really saw all of my features: my eyes, my cheek bones, my skin, my lips. And that was all before the photography even started! Just looking in the mirror in Rebecca’s living room was transformative in and of itself.
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In the days leading up to the shoot, I was pretty nervous. I had made my appointment in a moment of bold decisiveness. One which didn’t last all that long!

I didn’t want to backtrack on it, but I didn’t feel as confident as I had when I decided to do the shoot.

After I arrived at Rebecca’s studio and got my makeup done, I felt more comfortable and was ready to have a great time.

Off came the clothes and in came the self conscious voice. What if the angles aren’t flattering, I thought. Or what if actually my body is just...ugh? And the voice wouldn’t stop!
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At a certain point, I can’t remember if it’s when I noticed the beauty of the light radiating through the curtains, or maybe getting lost in a melody of the background music, I tapped into my inner self and realized the negative voice from earlier wasn’t me.
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I had such an amazing time photographing Rachel and getting "lost" with her as we navigated through her boudoir experience. I always say this, but I can't tell you enough what an honor and privilege it is to be allowed into the intimate worlds of my clients. This session was just another testament to why I do what I do every day. 

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Hair and Makeup by Rhonda Lev

Cozy Haven in Tel Aviv | Maternity Boudoir : Adva

This maternity boudoir session brought me to a sweet and beautifully designed home in a quiet, Tel Aviv neighborhood. Adva was in her 38th week of pregnancy when she contacted me, so we really only had less than a week to get everything together! Generally I like to have more time to prepare with my clients, but in this case, I think that our trust and connection was so perfect from the beginning.

Adva's session couldn't have turned out better or more beautiful.

This was her third pregnancy, and very possibly her last, so it was especially meaningful to document this magical time right before her beautiful baby was born. 

When we walked in, I immediately gushed over Adva's bohemian, modern and eclectic style. I loved that we were able to use her home as a unique setting for her session. She happens to be an incredibly talented interior designer, and the talented part goes without saying!

Over coffee, a delicious cheese platter and fresh fruit, we chatted about life and motherhood, and about the way her world was about to change in just a few days. I always find the preparation time to be so relaxing and an opportunity to connect with my clients on a deeper level. It was really fun to have Rhonda Lev, one of my makeup artists and hair stylists, along with me on the day of. She created a natural and luminous look for Adva that left her feeling a little glamorous, but completely like herself. 

In my eyes, Adva is a total queen, with this modest confidence and a generous heart. Here are some of my favorites from her maternity session this Autumn...

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There's honestly nothing sexier than a cozy sweater over lingerie!

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I love how the film captures the light coming through her bedroom window. This has to be one of my favorite images from this series...

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Often times my clients will use clothing for part of their boudoir sessions. I think this white, boho dress was a perfect fit for Adva's style and a lovely addition to our shoot. Someone told me that collarbones are the new cleavage. I definitely resonate with that here! :)

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One of the best parts of my job is celebrating the lives of so many amazing women. It was truly an honor to have photographed Adva during the last moments of her pregnancy, and it was incredible to receive a text message with a gorgeous baby when he was born!

Mazal Tov, beautiful Adva.