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What to Ask a Boudoir Photographer: Part Two

Things to ask before you hire a boudoir photographer.

· tips,boudoir

In our last blog post, we listed five essential questions to ask a potential boudoir photographer during your consultation. Read it here first. We thought we’d dig a little deeper and list five more questions to ask your photographer before hiring them. These aren’t make or break questions but good additional information to know.

Do you belong to any boudoir photography or other professional organizations?
This isn’t a make or break question but it’s a good sign if they do belong to a few. It means they are committed to continuing education and solid business practices. A few to look for are Association of International Boudoir Photographers (AIBP), Do More Photographers, The Art and Business of Boudoir or even Professional Photographers Association. (FYI, we are a member of Do More, Art & Business of Boudoir, we’ve been featured on Boudoir International and are a member of the Lafayette Women’s Chamber of Commerce.)

Are you the only boudoir photographer working for this company?
This will give you a good indication of the size of the company you’re working with. Some companies are large, multi-photographer, high volume studios and others are small, boutique studios. Here in Louisiana most boudoir studios, including A. Dannette Boudoir, are small, independently-owned boutique studios. Both are good, it just depends on what kind of experience you want. However, if they have associate photographers, find out what those photographer’s credentials are. When I was just starting out, I managed a retail chain photography studio. While I had experience and a degree to back up my shooting, the staff members under me had zero training. They pushed a shutter with pre-determined lighting, poses, and even facial expressions. Every single customer that came through had the exact same images. BOR-ING.

How much editing will be done to my photos, what images are retouched?
Your potential boudoir photographer should have retouching standards in place. Most likely, they have limitations on what is considered standard retouching and what is not. For example, we smooth skin and wrinkles, remove cellulite. We do not remove tan lines or turn a size 10 into a size 2. We explain this to every client prior to her session. A photographer should be able to tell you what their editing preferences are, and it is up to you to decide whether he or she edits too much, too little, or just enough for your taste. Some photographers retouch every image from your session and some only edit the images that come with your order.

How many hair/makeup artists do you have on staff? How long have you been working with them?
Some boudoir photographers work with multiple HMUAs. This helps with scheduling and availability. It’s important to find out how long they have been working with each. The best situation is if they’ve been working together for at least a year, the MUA has experience with multiple skin tones and hair types. Look for any before/afters on the photographers social pages or website. This is a good highlight of the skill of the makeup artist they work with.

What should I expect on the day of my boudoir session?
This question is less about the actual answer and more about HOW they answer.
We send a guide on how to prep for the session day, we send a guide on what to shop for, and we send a timeline of the shoot day. We want our clients to have all the info they need to make it an amazing experience! We even send a follow up email a few days before checking in, knowing they’re starting to get nervous but a few reassuring lines usually helps ease nerves.

If you get a short response that’s something like, “Show up and we’ll shoot you in the two outfits and that’s it!” Red flag. It means they haven’t thought through all the details or they just aren’t concerned about how nervous you’ll be!

It’s important to do research on something so impactful. Don’t choose your boudoir photographer based solely on price. Read more on hiring cheap boudoir photographers here. You wouldn’t buy a car without doing research first! We don’t want a bad boudoir experience to leave you stranded on the side of the road in tears. Find one who’s professional and a good fit for your needs.