Known also as a boudoir session, an intimate photo shoot can tastefully capture the spirit of sexiness, fun, love, or lust through photography. Although it's common for subjects to fully or partially naked, by no means is nudity a requirement. By creating sexually suggestive images that are tailored to suit you and your turn-ons, an erotic picture captures an expression of sexuality that you may not have known existed.
There are many positive aspects of this art form, including emotional and psychological benefits. Best of all, people of any body shape or background can be in the spotlight, and you don't need to have a big budget either. You can do a lot with a camera and a willing participant, so we're going to show you just how far you can go. And if you doubt you'll ever step in front of the camera in your skivvies (or less), read on anyway; you might one day be snapping the photos!
Although we are going to focus on the female photo shoot, most of the tips are applicable to doing an erotic male photo shoot also. Adapt the techniques to give a more ‘masculine’ perspective - and let the ladies get behind the lens too!
Benefits Of Doing A Shoot
On the surface, the ultimate goal of the session is to take beautiful photographs, but the experience itself can be very liberating. Often, these photo shoots increase one's sexual self awareness and can reveal surprisingly unexpected aspects of our personality. They also foster the model's confidence and self esteem. By using a few simple techniques to highlight your best attributes, you may be pleasantly surprised by the results.
An intimate photo shoot has many advantages for couples and sexual partners. On its own, it can be a very seductive form of foreplay, where one person plays the part of director and the other is the star of the shoot.
By having a friend or professional take your portrait, you can give a gift that can be enjoyed (over and over) by your lover. Think birthday, anniversary, Valentine's Day, pre-wedding gift to partner, or a surprise that hints at kinky behavior to follow. These sensual images are also a gift to the model themselves, a personal memento on their sexual altar.
Do I Have To Be Nude?
Being in an intimate photo does not mean you have to bare it all. Perhaps you only want to reveal parts of your body, leaving what's concealed up to the viewer's imagination. Not only are creative cover-ups entirely okay, they actually lure the beholder to look more closely at the picture; the tease is just as powerful as nudity itself. Ultimately, a successful photo session makes the model look and feel confident and sexy, regardless of how much skin shows.
To achieve the desired effect, drape your body with a scarf, wear lingerie or put on your partner's favorite article of clothing - imagine their surprise when they realize it's theirs! Props, shadows, or even your own body arrangement can be used to keep your intimate parts under wraps. Using the hand-bra technique, the model can cover all, or part, of her breast(s) with her own hand(s); the same thing can be done to cover the genitalia.
How Do I Get In The Mood?
It's a challenge for some people to relax when they know they're about to have their pictures taken. And as many of us know, a sexy state of mind requires some foreplay. So how does one summon confidence and sensuality for the camera?
One great way to 'get psyched up' is simply to prepare as you would for a highly anticipated sexual encounter, such as with (perhaps) some light masturbation. This gets you in the spirit of an erotic photo shoot and helps alleviates insecurity. Simply use elements from your sexual preparation ritual and adapt it for the shoot.
Who Takes The Pictures?
It's perfectly natural to feel a little nervous beforehand, so it helps to have someone you trust do the picture taking, whether it’s a close friend or a significant other. Hiring a professional photographer is another great option, especially if they come recommended; those who specialize in erotic photography are usually very good at establishing trust and diffusing nerves. This is especially useful if the photo shoot is to include your partner for some two-some shots. If a camera is equipped with a timer or a remote control, the model who prefers the utmost privacy can easily direct the session on his or her own. The trade-off, however, is the guidance of a second opinion.
How To Setup An Intimate Photo Shoot
Set Preparation - Pick a theme and work around it. What comes to mind when picture yourself being intimately photographed? Do you imagine being exotic and seductive, or natural and sweet? Do you want to recreate something you've seen in a painting, a scene from a movie, or boudoir photo you've seen before? Once you've chosen the tone, the elements that still need to be decided on will fall into place more easily.
Staging - Having a theme will help you select backdrops, costume, props and furniture. But don't get carried away with the setup; the magic of a good erotic photo is due not to an elaborate stage, but to a model who feels comfortable exuding their sensuality. The best set is a simple, uncluttered one. You don't want it to clash with what the model is wearing, nor do you want it to act as a distraction. When placed in front of a plain background, furniture common to most households make excellent props and can easily be transformed using furry throw blankets, towels, drapes or linens.
Suitable furniture could include: a chair, bench seat, stool, coffee-table, or fluffy/furry rug. To create a seamless background, hang a clean piece of material such as muslin or a bed sheet. Use clips to bunch pieces of it together for a more textured backdrop. Preferably, they ought to be a single color like white, grey, black or navy; if you want one with pattern, make sure it complements the model's coloring and wardrobe. Another option is to use four, eight or twelve foot wide rolls of paper, which can be purchased in shops specializing in photography.
Lighting - There are numerous advantages to having good lighting. You can illuminate the body from various angles to create a focal point, cast shadows or camouflage certain areas. It's also easier to touch up a well lit photo with image editing software. Indirect and diffused lighting usually works best for female subjects, while direct and stronger lighting can be quite striking on a male subject.
Daylight is one of the best forms of light to work with, and will help your photos look sharper and skin tone most true. If that isn't an option, have a few different light sources to work with such as a bright lamp or utility light from a hardware store. Just remember to adjust your camera settings accordingly. If you don't mind spending a bit of money on lighting, it'll really make a difference in your photo quality. You can purchase a simple light stand outfitted with a tungsten light bulb, often used to light an indoor photo shoot, for under $50.
Bathing and Grooming - It'll be much easier to summon your sexiness when you put attention on making your body look, feel and smell great. And let's face it, when you prepare your body for a sexual encounter, its hard for your mind not to follow suit. With that being said, bathe, do your shaving routine, applying lotions and perfumes, or whatever else you do when you feel like primping for a lover.
Hair, Nails, Jewelry, Makeup, etc. - Although it may not be as important as the first step, taking the time to beautify for erotic purposes rouses excitement and personal pride. Not just the persona you present to the rest of the world, this is the stuff you save specially for those people who know you intimately. This is a great time to exaggerate your facial features using basic makeup tricks like false eyelashes, extra eyeliner, and deep colored lipstick; these also show up beautifully when photos are black & white or sepia.
Getting dressed - The day of the shoot, try to wear loose fitting clothes to avoid elastic lines showing up on your skin. When you're planning your outfit, make sure that you don't have to slip on any pullover shirts or dresses so as not to disturb hair or makeup. Spend some time perusing lingerie, undergarment and sexy costume catalogs. Not only will this help you gather ideas about what you will (or won't wear), it'll expose you to different poses, camera angles, lighting techniques and special effects.
How To Pose For Erotic Photos
Don't be afraid to experiment with different poses and be prepared for a variety! The benefit of having some ideas already in mind is that it'll keep the momentum of the photo shoot moving; having someone else take your picture is especially helpful as they can direct you into different positions (based on what's working and what isn't) and suggest alternatives.
If you have a body part or feature that you want to emphasize, work your staging and your shots around it. For instance, drape silk scarves, lace or transparent material to either draw or detract emphasis; use props like feathers, fans, fancy umbrellas, crops or ropes as a way to direct the eye toward a particular area.
Here are some ideas to try…
If you've got beautiful hair, a gorgeous back, or a great butt, get plenty of shots standing or sitting with your back to the camera. Then:
1. Raise your arms over your head and gently drape them over your head.
2. Create extra drama by wearing long gloves or fishnet arm stockings.
3. Take it notch further by tying or handcuffing your hands behind you.
4. With your arms crossed, look back as far as you can and vary where your gaze ends.
When the chest, face or stomach is the focus, take pictures:
1. Standing up or leaning against a wall.
2. Lying on your back. Get some snap shots from directly above or slightly at an angle; the photographer should also try standing close to your head and pointing the camera toward the direction of your feet.
3. Lying on your side, facing toward and away from the camera. Profiles are exquisite!
4. Lying on your tummy, propped up on your elbows close to the edge of the bench/coffee table. These make for great cleavage shots.
When you want to emphasize legs:
1. Wear dark fishnet stockings and or a garter belt. It contrasts beautifully with the skin, especially when the backdrop is dark!
2. Wear high heels. Dark ones will look dramatic while those close to flesh color will lengthen the legs even further.
3. Lie on the floor with your legs up against the wall; outstretched arms up the ante.
4. Pose sitting with your legs crossed.
5. Play around with shots of you sitting on a chair with legs spread far apart.
Vary your facial expression and take pictures with eyes open, closed and/or looking in another direction. Here's an awesome tip for the subject; try keep your eyes closed before a shot then open them as the picture is about to be taken. Not only will your gaze look more natural, you avoid having to maintain expression for too long, which ends up looking forced and lifeless.
Now that you're well apprised of what it takes to do boudoir photography, go ahead and give it a try! You might also want to go on and experiment with Making Your Own Sex Video! With so many positive benefits and so little to lose - well, other than your inhibitions - you'll enjoy the excitement that intimate photography can bring.