In December 2020, Caitlin, one of my in-house professional makeup artists, came to me with an idea for a photoshoot. She wanted to put together a snow boudoir photography session. I hate the cold and tried to talk her into a Key West boudoir session instead. It didn’t work.
In early January of 2021, a professional model named Anna came to my studio for a boudoir photoshoot. During the shoot, she mentioned she needed a makeup artist for another shoot later that month. I recommended Caitlin.
Fast forward a week later and Caitlin called to tell me that Anna agreed to be the model for our snow boudoir collaboration. Then on February 4th, 2021, all the conditions were perfect. There was snow, we were all available and we got together for the shoot.
Caitlin was the creative director of the shoot. She put together the looks, colors, found the location and did all the makeup. I was just hoping I could live up to her vision!
The location was a few minutes drive from Caitlin’s home, so I met them there. Anna was already in the makeup chair and we discussed the shoot as Caitlin made her look amazing. Then Anna changed into her lingerie, put on some heavy clothes and a coat, and off we went.
I had brought along a heavy faux fur white throw so we could lay it on the snow. Anna would stand on that to keep from getting her feet wet in the snow. It was freezing out and we realized Anna wouldn’t be able to stand around in lingerie for long!
My biggest fear was Anna would get too cold. I was cold and I had several layers on! Anna was a trooper, we shot for about 15 minutes before she needed a break. We got her dressed and back to a warm car so she could use the heater to thaw out.
When she was comfortable again, we headed for our second spot by an old stone wall. Again, Anna was able to stay out for about 15 minutes and we managed to get some great shots.
Back to Caitlin’s for coffee and wardrobe change, and we shot a quick set for our last outing.
What I Learned About Snow Boudoir
If you are a client thinking about a snow boudoir photoshoot, or a photographer planning to shoot one, here are some snow boudoir photography tips:
First, plan out your locations. You don’t want to be looking for the shot because your model will start to get cold.
Make sure you can park nearby so there is a warm car to hop into.
Bring a couple of heavy throws to keep feet and clothes dry.
Have a huge thermos of coffee!
When the model gets cold, give them their clothes as quickly as possible so they can get dressed. It helps to have a heavy jacket they can throw around their shoulders as they do this.
Photographers – find your camera settings before the subject gets out of the car. You won’t have a lot of time and don’t want to be fiddling with exposure, aperture or ISO.
If you can do the shoot near a home or warm building, do so! It will give you a place to warm up, and the model a place to change.
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