Choosing a boudoir photographer is like choosing any other business you plan on working with. You aren’t just going to hire any ol’ person off the internet. You want to choose someone you trust and someone who has good reviews. Just like any industry you have good apples and bad apples. I highly encourage you to do research about who you hire as your boudoir photographer! Below are some things you should look for:
- Ask Your Friends/Local People
- LOOK AT THEIR WORK/STYLE
- The Photographer’s History
- Verify Their Portfolio
When looking at photographers, make sure you look at the reviews. Reviews should show that the photographer is trustworthy, safe to work with, high quality and respects the privacy of their clients. No one and no business is perfect so you will have some unhappy customers at times but overall the reviews should provide proof that the photographer is someone you can be comfortable working with.
Ask Friends/Local People
A lot of small business use and rely on word of mouth from people who have worked with them before. I know I personally grew a lot of my initial clienteles by word of mouth. You are obviously more likely to hire someone a friend/family member has worked with and can vouch for them. You also have the ability to see products that have been purchased and get an idea for what is offered and what you may purchase for yourself.
Look at Their Work/Style/Website
PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE look at a photographer’s portfolio before hiring them. I’ve had a handful of clients who have started the process with me, booked their shoot and then saw my work and decided they didn’t like my colors, vibe, style, etc.
You may not know the style you want by name, such as; dark/moody, bright/airy, deep fall (orange and brown), etc. but if you look at someone’s work you’ll be able to imagine what your photos will look like and be much happier with your end product. You won’t waste your time or money with something that you don’t like by doing this research.
The Photographer’s History
This kind of goes hand in hand with reviews and word of mouth but, unfortunately, some photographers are very good at hiding bad reviews and scaring clients into being quiet. In 2021, there was a major scandal about a photographer who had an unmentionable amount of issues, refused to pay associate photographers she hired, bad rapport, no showing, losing images, etc. It was a disaster to say the least. So when hiring a boudoir photographer (really any photographer) make sure that you look into their history, reviews, ask your friends and ultimately talk with multiple photographers before you book one and make sure you will be comfortable and happy with who you hire!
Verifying their Portfolio
Sadly it is common, more so for new photographers, to use images that other photographers have taken to advertise their business and book clients. Professional photography takes more than an expensive camera and photoshop. If a “professional” photographer steals photos for use on their website, and you, as a potential client, see that website when looking for a photographer – what’s your assumption? You assume that’s their work and that’s what your end result will be. The problem with photos being stolen to advertise a portfolio is seeing an image online is much more difficult to re-create than most people think.
I remember when I first shot a boudoir session; I went on good ol’ Pinterest and looked up poses and tried to emulate them at this session. I did an ok job, but I was like; what the heck, how did I not get this like that person did. Well, the lighting, camera settings, studio setup, experienced posing instruction, emotion, and SO many other things are products of the original artists perspective that I didn’t have or know about. I have now taken courses, learned from mentors and practiced my craft in order to be able to have my own, consistent portfolio that I know I can re-create for any client who hires me.