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It’s About More | Exquisite Sessions | Fort Walton Beach Boudoir Photographer

DJ Hunter - Dangerously Delicate

There is a resounding theme among purveyors of the art of boudoir. You’ll find that there is a vast majority that attach the genre to a concept of taboo-ism. That it’s meant to be a “your eyes only” project for a significant other. However, there is so much more to what a boudoir session can accomplish. Sure, it’s a great gift for someone else. It’s an even better gift for yourself, though.

Our society, our culture, our media, our advertising – all of it is centered on one theme: you’re not good enough as you are.

This makeup get rid of your wrinkles!

This crème gets rid of your dark spots!

Don’t have freckles? Here’s how to get them!

Your lashes are too short. Try this extension!

You need to lose or gain weight. Drink this magic potion and your life will change!

Here’s the thing, though. All of that stuff? It’s a cover up. It’s a mask. We’re given an ideal and we’re expected to conform to it. And I’m not JUST talking about women. I’m not JUST talking to the curvy girls. I’m talking about humanity as a whole. You have to be sassy, but not bossy. You have to be demure, but not weak. You have to be cute, but not childish. You have to firm, but not demanding. You have to be confident, but not too much or you’ll be labeled conceited.

 

When does that stop? Where is the line? Who says how far you have to go to get where society says that you *fit* all the sudden?

 

There’s something that transpires during a boudoir or beauty session (because it doesn’t ONLY happen when you take your clothes off!). When you have a photographer who knows the insides and outs of posing, of lighting, of body language, they’re able to show you the light that radiates from within. We’re so critical of ourselves that we don’t see it. The majority of the time, we look in the mirror and tear ourselves apart. But when you sit down across from a stranger, do you tear them apart in your mind? Are you thinking about how one ear is a little higher than the other? How their cowlicks are obvious and annoying? What about that muffin top that comes out when they’re sitting down? Or whether their shoes match their purse? How about how straight their teeth are?

NO! So, why do we do it to ourselves???

It starts with you. It starts with making the conscious decision every morning to love yourself where you’re at.

Am I saying makeup is bad? NO. Am I saying you shouldn’t strive to be better than you were yesterday? NO. I AM saying that at some point, you have to wake up from the brainwashing and realize that our appearances don’t dictate what we deserve. We ALL deserve love. We ALL deserve respect. We ALL deserve to look in the mirror and love what we see.

 

There are no two bodies exactly alike. Maybe I love my hands, but you think your fingers are short and stubby. Maybe you love your legs, but I think mine are disproportionate. Our standards, though, begin with us. By attacking the subconscious rules that we have created for ourselves, we can live a happier life. When you’re not focused on everything being perfect, all the sudden, you have the capacity to see more than yourself.

 

So, start today. When you look in the mirror, pick something you love and compliment it. I don’t care what it is or where you start.

“Wow, my eyes really sparkle when I’m happy.”

“My ankles are just right.”

“My abs are on point today!”

“My hair looks amazing.”

 

Why do this? Positive reinforcement for yourself radiates out to those around you. And we need all the positivity we can get right now. SEE yourself with someone else’s eyes. SEE those around you and what makes them special and beautiful (or handsome).

Next? I want you to compliment someone every day (if you leave the house, in person. if you don’t, online). Think about how your words impact others. Try thinking positive. Even something as simple as telling someone you love their shirt! Not only does it make them feel good, it makes YOU feel good!

 

I can help you see yourself. I can show you that you are a stunning, formidable creature that deserves everything their heart desires. I see you and I see exactly how to highlight your best features. I know how to pull out your best smile – the one that comes out when you’re unabashedly happy. I know how to show you the fierce, badass babe that we all have locked up deep down. I can take you to the core of vulnerability and teach you that the place is a place of healing and wonder and power. I will take your insecurities and help you toss them out the window so that you can move forward as a strong, empowered, force to be reckoned with.

You deserve that. Believe that you are worthy of living your life the way you want to. Even if you have to fake it until you make it, someday you’ll realize that it’s finally true for you. And that day? It is a GOOD day.

 

Let me walk this path with you. I promise I will hold your hand the whole way. I will root for you and I will fight for you. Let’s do this together!

 

P.S. That badass babe up there? That’s ME. Thank you DJ for reminding me that I am gorgeous. You da best! If you want to see more of my very own session that I had done, you can see it here: http://princephotographyllc.com/mandas-bedroom-eyes/

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Beauty Isn’t A Size | The Exquisite Sessions | Fort Walton Beach, FL Boudoir Photography

For you ladies out there that have been holding off on doing a boudoir shoot because you aren’t sure that boudoir is something you could pull off, this one is for you.

Sexy is not a size or a shape or a color or a culture. Sexy is YOU. Now. Who you are when you wake up, who you are when you drink your coffee, who you are when you’re driving your car, who you are when you’re doing chores…THAT is sexy. Did you get out of bed this morning? You’re sexy. Did you forget to shower this morning because you had to rush the kids off to school? Yup, still sexy. Baby weight? Sexy. Cheeseburger weight? Sexy. Muscled and toned? Sexy. Tall? Sexy. Skinny with no curves? Still sexy.

Beautiful. Desirable. Wonderful. Purposeful.

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but ultimately, that’s bullshit. Whether you find someone attractive or not, that is personal preference. Whether someone is beautiful regardless of what they look like? That is not personal preference. There are infinite ways to be beautiful and it has nothing to do with your pant size or the color of your hair or whether you have curves or not.

It’s time that we stopped comparing ourselves to each other. Stop comparing ourselves to what we see in the media (magazines, tv, movies, online). It’s time that we stood in front of the mirror and pointed out our assets, rather than our downfalls.

I have curves and a great rack. I have beautiful legs (past the knee). I love my smile. My nose crinkles when I laugh hard enough. I adore how delicate my fingers are. What’s behind my appearance, though? I love people. I have a passion for changing lives and helping women have power of their own happiness and views of themselves. I can sing like a boss when I try. I love binge-watching tv while I’m working. I adore my sweet family. I’m happy with and proud of the work I do. I am resolute, but compassionate. My faith keeps me going, even when my feet don’t. And now, I’m refusing to let the media and society dictate my worth.

Now, it’s you turn. What are you favorite physical attributes? What are your favorite personality traits? Will you join me in giving this ideal body bs the middle finger? About time, don’t you think?

 

approve of self quote

 

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Origins | Exquisite Sessions

Once upon a time, there was a young girl who wholeheartedly believed everything she was ever told. Some would call this blind faith, some would call it naivety. Whatever you’d call it, it took her walking away from the community that shaped who she was for her to understand just how twisted and deep the entanglement went. It wouldn’t be until later that she discovered how knotted this mess of beliefs was.

Research shows that our subconscious mind lacks the ability to recognize truth from untruth. Its job is to make you function as you’ve been programmed to. That process begins the day you’re born. When it is told something repeatedly, it believes it without question. However, with age, our conscious mind recognizes fallacies and starts seeing patterns differently.

She was taught all through her childhood, that purity was the making of a woman. Without her purity, she would be dirty and unworthy. When she was about fourteen years old, she went to a ladies retreat. During this time, there was a speaker. Just one phrase stuck with her amongst everything else. It embedded itself so deep into her mind that it affected every single relationship she had from that moment on. Not only romantically, but in friendships and relationships with family members, as well. “If you aren’t ready and willing for your husband’s needs at any given time, he has every right to go elsewhere.” The girl sat in stunned silence at this information. Could it really be that relationships were this shallow? This can’t be right. Right? Of course, looking back, she knows just how twisted and wrong this ideology truly is. Though her conscious mind dismissed it almost immediately as bullshit, her subconscious mind took it as face value and tucked it away for future use.

Skepticism was planted in her heart that day.

 

Once upon a time, a young woman was sought after by a man far too old for her. When she was nineteen years old, she experienced what it was like to have someone appreciate her body. Her insecurity was silenced. Maybe she wasn’t too fat. Maybe she wasn’t too naive. Maybe she wasn’t an ugly duckling. She chose to spend time with this man, because why wouldn’t she? Someone was paying attention to her. Unfortunately, what she didn’t know was that the man paid attention to her because she seemed an easy target. The man stole much from her. Her first kiss was a forced one. It confused her on multiple levels. Her purity was on the line. If she allowed this to continue, she wouldn’t be clean any longer. But if she didn’t make herself available to him, he would go elsewhere. What if no one else took a chance on her? What if no one else could see her the way he did? The shame of it overwhelmed her, but she let it go. Until one night, when he tried to go too far. Her struggle with remaining pure, but also remaining available finally came to a head. He had her pinned and she was helpless. But she was lucky. Something spooked him, maybe a dog barking, maybe fear of getting caught, but all it took was a split second for her to be able to run away.

Out of fear that something worse would happen, she ran off to a different state to a VERY conservative, fundamental, independent Baptist college. There, she was taught many things. There, she was taught that a woman could only be certain things. Her options were limited. She could be a wife, a mother, a teacher…anything that didn’t rock the boat. Anything that allowed her to be a submissive, well-behaved, respectable, well-contributing member of the church. She was also taught there that her body was not her own. She was taught that she had a responsibility to wear modest clothing that didn’t invite a man to look at her. It was important that her clothes be loose, so as not to draw the eye to her figure. Lace was not ever to be worn, as it might give a man ideas about what she might be wearing underneath her clothes. Her hair must never be wet, for it might invite a man to think of her showering. Her neckline was to never be too low or her hemline too short (for pants would draw attention where it shouldn’t be).

Her skepticism grew.

 

Once upon a time, a scandal happened in the church where the young woman had grown up. The people involved were people she considered family. The church leadership decided to try and sweep it under the rug and pretend it didn’t happen. The young woman knew in her heart that the way it was being handled by the church was wrong and decided that she needed to walk away. Three strikes and you’re out, they say. She could no longer defend this life. Because she stood up for what she believed in and what she knew to be right, the church family abandoned her. These people that had played such a huge role in what had shaped this girl turned their backs on her. She placed everything that she had been taught into a box and put that box into another box, then hid that box in a storage unit full of boxes – all in hopes that she could move on from a life that had caged her.

Her hurt turned to bitterness. Her skepticism turned to cynicism.

 

During this difficult time, the young woman was pursued by a young man with a heart of gold. He dug those boxes out and smashed them open in an attempt to try and help her forget these awful things. He told her that she could be anything she wanted and that he would support her in whatever endeavors would bring her happiness. Try as he might, though, the roots were just too deep. After many years of repeating himself, they thought that together they had buried the remains of that programming. Every once in a while, the confusion would work its way back up to the surface, leaving the young woman devastated and crushed under the weight of it. The young man would hold her and tell her that everything would be alright.

Her bitterness and resentment turned to grief, but there was a tiny glimmer of hope under the rubble.

 

Once upon a time, a young woman took a workshop with a photographer named Denise who saw the world differently. Denise didn’t focus on the basics of using your camera or how to pose your clients, but instead focused on pulling emotion out of your subject. During this workshop, Denise stressed the importance of owning your sexuality, your happiness, your destiny – all while understanding your vulnerability and finding the power therein. At first, the young woman scoffed. It sounded crazy. Strength in weakness? Being powerful as a woman? Slowly, though, she kind of started to believe the words.

Soon thereafter, the young woman went to Las Vegas for a large conference. At this conference, she met the photographer she had been learning from. When they met each other, the photographer looked her in the eye and said, “You need to let go.” Somehow, Denise could instantly tell that the young woman was still imprisoned by her upbringing. The photographer didn’t know her. How could she possibly know what the young woman needed?

“Just trust me,” she said. “Breathe with me.” The young woman laughed nervously and agreed, just to make the awkward encounter move forward. The photographer locked eyes with the young woman, took a deep breath in and slowly released it. She took the her by the shoulders and said, “Let it go. Whatever it is that’s holding you back, let it go. Follow my lead.” Deep breath in. Slow breath out. After a few moments, all of the tension and fear and insecurity just quieted. She couldn’t explain it, but it was as if an anvil had been lifted off her back.

Throughout the conference, the young woman heard from various speakers. During those classes, she found her place. She was given permission to give herself permission. The things her husband had been telling her over and over were being validated. She was finally able to hear them. Finally able to comprehend them. Own them. SHE was in charge. In every way, over every thing.

Her bitterness and resentment evaporated. Her skepticism relinquished its hold over her spirit. She was free.

 

Once upon a time, a young woman let go of all the things that were holding her hostage.

She was set free by a photographer who dedicated her life to touching the lives of the people that crossed her path.

She found a renewed passion for photography though boudoir and changing lives the way her life had been changed. She found healing in helping other women unchain themselves from the same misconceptions and the different misconceptions that hold them back from living their life to the fullest.

She became a better photographer so that she could help you tell your story.

 

Once upon a time, it became your turn to have your story told. Are you ready? It’s time for you to shed the constraints of expectation and grab hold of freedom. Be who and what you want to be. You don’t need permission to be confident, sexy, happy – just as you are right now. Not 10lbs from now, not when your stomach is a little more toned, not when someone else tells you that you’re looking good. NOW. Contact me and let me help you find that same freedom.

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