Friday, February 1, 2008

How to take your own boudoir photos


By Cari Cooney

Given that this is Valentine's Day, have you ever considered taking sexy, boudoir photographs? It's really easy to do. This gift idea is perfect for ladies who want to give their men something special this year. Here are some easy tips to take smoldering boudoir photographs on your own.

Basic gear

You're going to need a few things first. Obviously you'll need a camera. Your camera needs to have a self-timer function or a remote control. A tripod is also helpful, but not necessary. You will need something stable to set the camera on. A dresser would work fine. You will also need some digital image editing software. There is a great free program called Paint.NET that will allow you to edit your pictures, without having to spend additional money for image software.

Setting the stage by creating the set

Decide on where you want to take your photographs. The bedroom is obviously a perfect choice...but maybe you're bedroom is more Plain Jane than romantic. No worries! With a few simple items from your home, you can turn your bedroom into a picture perfect backdrop! Take a look at Figure A to see a boring bedroom awaiting a simple transformation.


White walls and bright light made this bedroom a dud. (click for larger image)

To transform this room, I simply took all the jar candles I had around the house, and placed them on either side of the bed. A soft watt desk lamp lit the room from the back. Don't worry if the pictures seem like they might turn out too dark, we'll deal with that later. I had some scrap sheer fabric from my curtains that I draped over the sconces above the bed. This really made the bed seem soft. I set jar candles on either nightstand, and covered the visible nightstand with an old tablecloth. See this transformation below in Figure B.


Soft fabrics and low lighting give this room a sensual feel. (click for larger image)

With the room transformed, you can begin a few test shots. It's up to you what you want to wear, how you want to pose...etc. Take a few test pictures to make sure you're in the right spot, and test out a few poses. Obviously once you're comfortable, you can begin taking photographs.

Also, remember: don't use the flash. The candles and soft lighting are there to make the picture as flattering as possible. Don't ruin it by using the flash. The pictures may look dark, but don't get flustered. Things look different on that tiny camera screen than they do once uploaded onto a decent-sized screen. Plus, you can just lighten them using your editing software.

Make sure to take a lot of pictures. Otherwise, if you only take one of each pose, you might upload them and be disappointed with how they turned out. Take at least five pictures of each pose. You'll surely get one you like. With digital photography, we're no longer paying for developing, so it's always a good idea to take way more pictures than you think you'll need.