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The evolution of boudoir photography has changed drastically over the years however the core of what it stands for remains the same. It is a look into a clients insecurities and help regain the strength through the newly found confidence. While looking over some images of a fellow boudoir photographer during his Body Confidence Campaign, the final images where something no one saw coming.
Photography is a powerful tool used to evoke not only the visual sense but the emotional senses as well. In Boston, Massachusetts, there lies a boudoir photographer changing the perception of beauty standards. Shawn Black of Couture Black, started his Body Confidence Campaign in hopes to make a movement towards acceptance of all aspects of a persons body regardless of what it is defined the majority of modern society.
This particular client was a part Black's ongoing Body Confidence Campaign, where he has been donating sessions to deserving women in an effort to change the conversation as to what beauty in our society has been defined as. Currently she is the 14th woman Black has shot as part of the campaign. The first go through of these images showed a beautiful woman with a vibrant smile. However, when scrolling to the end, it was apparent she was part of this campaign for stronger reasons. Black wrote that "like all the other women she's a strong, confident, beautiful individual, but unlike any of them she is a breast cancer survivor who's undergone a double mastectomy and reconstruction". Looking back to know this young woman with this infectious smile went through such a journey for her life made the session even more about her strength than before.
As they planned her shoot it evolved with wardrobe and posing that concealed her scars, then transitioning to partially revealing them. Finally they worked to make the scars a focal point in art nudes. Black wrote about how he felt during her session.
It was an incredibly moving session for all involved to see her confidence grow and embrace the beauty that had not disappeared as she had thought after her battle with Cancer.
The words expressed to Black form his client solidified what the movement is doing for women in his area.
These are the first real pictures I have ever seen of my scars. Obviously I see them in the mirror every day and have seen how I have healed and learned to adjust to my new body. I have seen images of other cancer survivors and their scars and how they hold their heads high, but I never saw myself like that. I had this great feeling of strength and accomplishment. I’m crying as I type this to you – and its incredibly difficult to put into words exactly everything I was feeling last night. I know that I made this journey and I did the treacherous climb to get to where I am today – but your generosity, your graciousness to give back, your goal to make women feel sexy and confident and bold, your incredible talent, YOU – gave me this moment that I will never forget. So thank you.
All images courtesy of Shawn Black.