Grand Rapids Boudoir Photography | The importance of professional make-up artistry

Every now and again I will get an inquiry from a potential client who requests to forgo professional hair & make-up that is provided within my portrait collections. I understand that maybe it is an expense issue or feeling it is an unnecessary luxury. Whatever the matter, I want to share a little insight regarding professional hair/make-up artistry, why it is crucial part of the service I offer clients and inclusive in all beauty/boudoir collections.

Four years ago when I made the choice to add boudoir sessions to my repertoire, hiring a professional for the beauty portion was optional. More times than not my clients would come in having done the make-up themselves or occasionally they would go to Ulta for a little make-over; I rarely felt satisfied with the final images that would result from the sessions because of this. I was spending hours in Photoshop adjusting skin tones (from improper foundation/skin match) or accenuating eye’s and lips (because the make-up application was lacking), I was both frustrated and exhausted!

After a workshop I took in 2011 with JenLynne Photography, I felt so inspired to take women’s portraiture beyond the expectations I had for myself or my clients. I also knew that I wanted to open myself into a level of Beauty & Boudoir Photography apart from anyone else in my area. Jen shared with me that professional make-up application is provided in each session/collection for her clientele, it was not optional. She cited several reasons it made sense for her business and her clientele, all of which resonated with me because I had first hand experience with it myself.

The workshop was intimate (just four of us!!) and very hands on, exactly the kind of experience I thrive in. After a little back story and chat with Jen, we sat around Julie as she went through her entire make-up routine with our beautiful “client” for the day. She explained in great detail what steps she was taking and why she was taking them. After a brief lunch we were able to begin the “session” portion of the workshop…Jen first worked with the client to show what she does to make them feel comfortable and pose them beautifully. After that she called us up one by one to have our chance to pose the client, she made critiques and suggestions that would help us achieve a better end result.

Here are a few of my images from the workshop…



This workshop opened so many possibilities and dreams I never knew I had. I know that I am not the cheapest boudoir photographer and I may lose a client or two because of that. I want to give my clients something more than just a “come on in, let me see your panties, click-click” kind of session. My desire is to give you an experience you will cherish and be wowed by your beauty transformation. I have three professionals I work with on a regular basis, they are very competent and talented make-up artists that can apply make-up in such a way that you never feel cakey or that you don’t look like yourself. I appreciate their skill because instead of airbrushing and retouching clients in such a heavy manner during post processing, I am able to be softer with photoshop tools and your images will be more radiant and beautiful because of it. When you step into my studio I want you to feel you can relax, be pampered and enjoy a glass of wine while a professional stylist/artist dolls you up beyond your expectations.


Hair and Make-up Provided by: the fabulous Julie Strating and Julie’s Facebook 

L~ F~:
  • Awwww, I love this post!!! Thank you so much for sharing your experience about the workshop and I am so happy you were able to walk away with so much knowledge and confidence. Beautiful post and beautiful images 🙂ReplyCancel