Boudoir is for celebrating all seasons of life. It's to find comfort in your body and in your photographer, allowing him or her to capture you as-is, not just as a wedding gift for your future spouse. Add film to the mix for a soft, nostalgic feel and you are bound for overwhelming success and confidence! Audra of Audra Wrisley Photography was able to tell this beautiful woman's story with her analog camera and her fantastic studio, with just enough charm to feel like home. Read on to see what she said about this luminous session.
Can you give us some details about your session?
Earlier this year I had the honor of photographing Erin and Don’s beautiful wedding in Washington, DC. They both live and work just outside Cleveland Ohio, but decided to tie the knot at Fort Meyer Chapel, where several generations of Erin’s family were married. After their beautiful wedding day, I was thrilled when Erin mentioned that she had always been interested in a boudoir session, but never found the time to schedule a session. After putting our calendars together, we found a date that she would be back in the area, and come in for a shoot in our studio space in Old Town, Alexandria.
We opted for a light-filled and elegant shoot, making use of the early morning natural light coming in through the large windows in my studio space. To capture Erin’s beauty inside and out, we opted to use a linen headboard and bed and black and white lingerie, so that we were able to keep the focus simple and romantic.
Tell us why the shoot took place in this location.
I love doing these sessions in the client’s home as well as in my bright studio space. Since Erin traveled all the way from Ohio, we opted to do the shoot in our Old Town Alexandria studio. It is a lovely bright space and its historical character (the building dates back to 1793!) and the original hardwood floors still provide a cozy very atmosphere.
What is your approach to boudoir photography?
Although boudoir photography has always inspired me, it wasn’t until one of my wedding clients asked to do a shoot a year or two ago, that I started photographing boudoir sessions consistently. I love photographing these sessions on analog film with a fine art approach, which gives the images a romantic softness. I love to create images that illustrate a woman’s beauty in subtle manner, which also reflect their individuality and strength. I prefer to keep props and accessories to a minimum, as this will assure that the images are timeless, with a complete focus on my client.
What challenges have you faced as an artist?
After graduating college with a BFA in photography, I went through a period of soul searching to find out who I was as an artist. We moved to Barcelona, Spain where I obtained a master’s in Art Direction & Design, but quickly realized how much I missed fine art photography, and capturing the world around me. When I returned to the States, I picked up my camera again and started capturing portraits and weddings. In the winter of 2014 I attended Jose Villa’s workshop in Mexico, and returned completely inspired. I decided to go back to my roots and shoot analog film again, which I hadn’t done since my days in the darkroom in my undergrad program. This is without a doubt the best decision I have ever made professionally, as it provided me the challenge and joy I had been looking for. It helped me tremendously to slow down and create each image with intention, and its authentic qualities are a perfect fit with my style of photography. Every week, it’s like Christmas morning when I receive my film scans from Richard Photo Lab, and although I continuously push myself to improve my skills, I am very proud of the work I currently create.
What do you consider the difference between boudoir and fine art boudoir?
I believe that fine art boudoir seeks to capture a woman’s beauty in a soft, romantic manner by telling her story through all her subtle details. The dreamlike images of a fine art boudoir photographer take you on a journey that portrays a woman’s sensuality, without focusing on the obvious. Each image is carefully crafted as a part of a larger piece to illustrate their own personal journey, and created with intention and authenticity.