In the years that I have built a successful boudoir photography business, I have learned many lessons about self-love and self-acceptance, and when I say that, I’m not just referring to what boudoir brings to my clients! My own experience with boudoir led me to where I am today, but I think many women can relate to the fact that the road wasn’t clear from the beginning.
In 2004 after studying something completely unrelated for my Bachelor’s degree, I was drawn to makeup artistry. I was the first person in Trinidad & Tobago to use airbrush makeup, and many people came to me for the beautiful and flawless look it gave. This was when I got hooked on transforming how women saw themselves!
In 2010 my family and I moved to Katy, Texas, and I was suddenly thrust into the role of a new wife and new mother in a foreign country. I loved being a mom, but no one ever told me that it was okay to want more, so I had all these conflicting feelings. I felt like I went from a successful entrepreneur to an unknown person.
I had no real support system in Texas to start with, which made me lost and alone. After two years, I decided that I needed to revamp my business in Texas, and I partnered with some photographers to do makeup for their clients. It was during this time that I fell in love with photography. I loved seeing how the makeup and the posing transformed women! I started doing photography courses and learning all about this art form.
In 2015 when we returned to my home country, life was a struggle. I was happy to be back and restart my business, offering clients a luxury service that included makeup, hair, and photography all in one beautiful space. Still, life took a turn…and I found myself having to run my business out of my parent’s living room. I felt imposter syndrome so many times, and I struggled with self-confidence at this time.
Looking back now, I know this time was pivotal to my career. I drew upon strength and perseverance I did not think I had, and even when my confidence failed, I pushed through. So, when I do a boudoir session with a woman who feels insecure or vulnerable, I truly understand what they are going through. When I tell them, “you’ve got this,” I genuinely mean it. I want them to know that feelings aren’t facts, and I’m here to show you how amazing you are.
By 2019 my studio had moved out of my parent’s home, and I was facing another significant milestone in the face, my 40th birthday. I really believe that as women, we are particularly attuned to changes in our lives, even if they don’t seem like a big deal on the outside. I mean, people turn 40 every single day!
But, I think these changes can be significant to many women, and like others, I felt some sort of disquiet in my soul. I wanted to do something to honor this milestone on earth. I seriously contemplated doing a boudoir session with a photographer in Dallas that I greatly admired, but COVID-19 had other plans, and that session never happened.
Disappointed but undaunted, I did my own boudoir session, which was the light bulb moment for me. I absolutely loved it. This ignited a passion in me I hadn’t felt in years. I often refer to it as my “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” moment! I felt like I had regained a part of me after so many years of being a mom and other responsibilities.
I couldn’t shake the feeling that if this boudoir made me feel so good, wouldn’t it do the same for others? I knew it would, deep in my bones. I knew that empowering other women to feel that self-love they had been missing and transforming how they felt about themselves was my calling.
Many times in your life, you will meet challenges about how you feel about your body and your role on this earth. Women often feel this at those big birthdays as I did, but it can also happen after relationship changes, as children grow and as marriages shift into later years.
During those times, I believe you need to listen to that inner voice, that bit of disquiet that tells you that you need something for yourself. When I heard that voice, it changed my perception of myself and my career trajectory.
Today my studio has photographed many women of all shapes, sizes, and ethnicities. We are Trinidads’ premier all-are-welcome, size-inclusive studio, and our goal is to show you what the people who love you see; strength, resilience, and beauty.
I often say that as women, the way we speak to ourselves is a way we would never allow someone to speak about a friend. Many of us were raised in an age or a home where loving yourself was not modeled; instead, it was all about how much you could sacrifice. With perceptions shifting, women are starting to understand that self-love and self-acceptance start with YOU…and I believe boudoir is a beautiful way to celebrate that.
Boudoir isn’t just about lingerie, sultry makeup, and sexy poses. Instead, the goal at a boudoir session is to tailor each session to create captivating images that make you unique but that you’ve probably never seen before.
You will never be put in poses that feel inauthentic and uncomfortable to be “sexy”; that is not the goal! Instead, I’ve spent many hours studying body language, posing and lighting to find the right connection to showcase your body, mind, and spirit. My clients feel this energy when we work together! I love that when they see their photos, they say, “Wow, is that really me?!”.
Boudoir sessions are fully guided, from the pre-session consultation, wardrobe and styling advice, and posing in front of the camera. Airbrush makeup and hairstyling are offered as well. All you need to do is trust, and I will take care of the rest. After the session, I’ll lead you through ordering photos from albums to wall art, depending on your needs.
This will be the complete experience for you, a stress-free time to rejuvenate yourself, and I promise that it will leave you feeling differently about yourself.
I believe boudoir will show you yourself in a myriad of ways, past, present, and future. I want you to see your photos and think, “Oh, I remember her.” I want to show you photos that will give you a new perception of the awesome woman you are right now and a glimpse of the beautiful soul you are becoming.
I invite you to join our private, ladies only Facebook group, Boudoir: Discovering the YOU in Be-YOU-tiful where we embrace self love, self acceptance and celebrating ourselves through boudoir photography.