What is your ‘why’?

There are many reasons to have a boudoir session done.

Starting the journey, first we talk.

The stories I have heard…ladies who have never  felt beautiful….ladies who have had breast cancer and need to get that sexy back after the long hard battle….ladies who have lost a good amount of weight and want to celebrate…brides to gift their soon to be spouse with an awesome gift…a gift for those married couples who know the long term commitment it takes to stay close for many years.  Perhaps the saddest ‘why’ story was having a ‘significant other’ who daily told this lady that she was ugly…She stood up to that person  – got out and did many things to heal.

One of which was have a boudoir session done.

Boudoir isn’t just a portrait session to get photos done.  It is a journey, an event,  a time period of a number of weeks where you pamper yourself, daydream of your fantasy or your reality and your ‘why’.  We do good work, and then you see the images of the best of you.  You feel the confidence soar, and know that you are strong, and that you can do anything.  Even things that  used to scare you.

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This Guy

 

Okay, so you rarely ‘see’ me here….This is my husband Bill, and I, last fall while we were doing family portraits.

It occurred to me today that I wanted to celebrate my husband.  Now I know all the little things that I do to keep all the balls up in the air for our family…it got me to thinking that I bet he does a million little things too!

We met at Bill’s front door some 25 years ago.  He shook my hand in greeting, and my knees literally went weak.  We slowly became friends, dated…and then realized that this was the partner we had been looking for.  We will celebrate our 23rd wedding anniversary in September.

I am the social media person in our family.  Part of that is because I do it for business too.  So…I post about our children…a lot.  When I post about their accomplishments, I usually get the compliments.  Well, let me tell you, their dad was there every step of the way; in his own way.  Showing them by example how to be a kind, respectful man.  Being gentle with them after his own not-so-gentle upbringing…

Bill Myers, I celebrate you today for the funny, honest, silly, good, kind, decent, respectful, hunky, sweet, loving, wonderful man that you are.  There is no one that I would rather spend forever with than you.

B & C

Courageous

Interesting blog post so far, wouldn’t you say?  I assume you know a few or many ladies who are courageous?  I am here today, well every day, to celebrate women.  In looking back at my recent images over the last few years, I got to thinking about courage, and it’s many forms.

The beauty to the upper right is my mother in her early adulthood.  She was a strong woman – twice cancer survivor, mother to 5, one of which she lost at 3 days old; she was a great one for sayings….you know ‘The early bird gets the worm”  that type.  Her saying that I try to live by most is “I’ll just take what comes ”  .  Her strength and courage helped  her thru 93 years on this earth.

Many of my ladies who come to me for boudoir sessions, are military wives.  Now this lady isn’t pictured here, but I have one recent lady in mind who works beyond full time, her hubby is deployed out of the country, and she has small children.  Her daily life must be so hectic, but she does it all with such courage.

My image at the bottom, is a sweet one and special to me.  You all know by now that I’m an animal lover…This lady brought her sweet old dog in for a session.  Unfortunately, we knew the dog was nearing the end of her life.  The courage to face the death of a loved one, and pets included…is some of the hardest courage to muster!  You can literally feel the hole in your heart…

Courage takes on my faces. I am here to lift up and praise all women with courage…small strides, nerves, illness, death….facing it all with courage is our daily task as a woman!  I will go out today and lift someone and hopefully make their task easier.  Peace.

Carol

Private NOT Hiding

Yes, that is a strange title for this post.  It occurred to me the other day that this is what I was thinking about when I split my Memory Makers Photography Facebook page into Memory Makers and Flirt Boudoir by Carol.  Much of my philosophy of boudoir is to empower and help women to see the light they bring to the world, and to not hide that light!  I do not want anyone to feel that I am hiding my boudoir images or that anyone should be embarrassed or ashamed to see them; worse yet ashamed of their feelings or their bodies.

For me, this was a business decision.  That is about where my ‘business’ mind ends.  My emotional self takes over, and I love doing all things boudoir!  Talking, planning, listening, feeling good helping others…I go with what every single individual lady feels at the moment…She wants to be the only person to see these images besides me – fine.  She wants only herself and partner to see them – that is your prerogative.  Then there are the ever increasing group of ladies who -after the shoot- say “I love these so much, you can show them all!”  Their feelings, emotions, and self-esteem are the most important things to me when I work with ladies!

If you desire to indulge yourself and have a boudoir session done, call or message me today, and we will meet to discuss all things boudoir.  You feelings and emotions will drive what we do and how we proceed!  Go for it!

Carol

The BFF Contest is back!

Be sure to contact me via email, phone, text, Facebook message any way you can!  This rescue is so great for our city, they help the dogs that are without a home…whether their owner can no longer take care of them, or a dog might be pulled from a shelter.  All dogs are in foster care, so they are settled and many times are being trained as they are in foster care.

This is a super opportunity to get your beloved pets photographed so that they can stay safe in your memory forever!  Thank you!

BFF contest flyer color 2019

Be brave enough to take this flight!

I don’t mind flying, really.  Sometime early into my adulthood, I discovered that I had all of a sudden developed a fear of heights.  Fast forward years later, our family was vacationing in Branson.  The kids wanted to go ziplining, and they wanted Mom to go too!  I said I would try but might chicken out!

I kept pushing and pushing myself, I climbed up an outdoor spiral staircase!  Eek!  I had my first flight…so far so good.  Each new flight was scary, but I kept at it.  Then came the rope bridge….oh my…..

All of a sudden, the trip was over, I was on the ground.  I was so proud of myself…it had been amazing to soar as only a bird can and feel the air rushing past!

I felt then that I could do anything, and at that moment made the decision to go ahead with my dream of opening a studio location again after 17 years…Also to specialize in boudoir photography at that location.

My son gave me this plaque to always remind me of our flight, and triumph.  I want to help others to soar, and take the risk of trying something scary, but oh so well worth it!  That is what I see the women who have a boudoir session come to realize.  Through the process, they can do something that is maybe a stretch out of their comfort zone, but afterwards the confidence emerges!  So awesome to see!IMAG1247

What is your definition of success?

Happy New Year!  Whew, I am maybe a tad late here on the 14th day of 2019….I had a fantastic fall and Christmas season, completing my first 6 months in the new studio.  On December 28th, my family and oh some 150 other people took off in Arrow buses for Florida!  We were part of the amazing Outback Bowl competition that Topeka West Charger Band participated in.  Tiring, but amazing!

My definition of success has changed over the years.  As a 20-something, I looked up to older photographers who seemed to always be busy.  That was success, having sessions booked every day of the week.  Busy was success!  It got muddy in my 30’s, I became a mom, worked less, and worried more.  How could I be a success, and not be working the business very much?

Coming full circle now – I have a studio location again after 18 years working from the house.  I had a fantastic first 6 months, and I do not work every day of the week.  Am I successful?  YOU BET!  To me, success is what you make it.  It isn’t a sales figure, or how full time you are, or how many sessions you do a year.  It is how I feel…I have created a good business in a new location, there is a buzz about my boudoir business, and I FEEL GOOD!!!  I am successful!

Here’s to all those out there struggling with identity in business…I wish you success.  Look deep and figure out what success is to you.  Then go for it!

In Tribute

I debated with this title, I didn’t want to sound too much like Katniss Whatshername from those movies….you know the ones….No I wasn’t a fan.

I am writing this in tribute to my good friend, Cheri Smith.  We had talked for years about photographing Katie, her daughter – and Cheri.   We accomplished their session this summer!

Cheri’s is a selfless unwavering love…she is beyond gentle, caring and nurturing with Katie.  Cheri is an awesome professional photographer who has done some amazing work, but Katie comes first always.  To say Cheri is selfless is an understatement…she made the decision to keep her business to a minimum in order to care for Katie, and in turn gave up making it what I am sure would have been a very busy thriving portrait studio.

I am inspired by Cheri when I see her with Katie, and also by the incredible ways she works to make Katie’s life as full as possible.  I cannot imagine giving so much of yourself every minute of every day…..I am too used to putting myself first these days.  I will always be a mom, but taking care of our 20  and almost 16 year olds just doesn’t take up much time anymore.  It is especially interesting to think of Cheri and her caring, while I am gaining more and more personally as I expand my business to make myself happy.  We each must make our own way in the world, and face our challenges in whatever way we see fit.

Here’s to 3 amazing women – Cheri, Katie and me!  While our paths in life vary greatly, we’re all amazing in our own ways and we give love freely to those around us and make the best of our lives.

How do you do it???

 

I love animals of all kinds…that should be evident if you look at my facebook pages, or know me personally.  That love hopefully is evident also when you look at my pet portraits.

I was asked today, “How do you do it – photograph all those pets at Helping Hands shelter and Saving death row dogs rescue here in Topeka?”  I would want to take every one of them home with me!

I had to think a bit, but I guess I have a natural distance that I keep, in order to not fall in love!  After all, I do need to keep back to use the camera, but it is oh-so-hard when you see those sweet faces!  Through no fault of their own, they are in an  unfamiliar place maybe thinking that life is over as they know it.

I too have the deepest respect for pet  foster parents anywhere.  You generally know that you won’t be keeping that pet forever, but love them immediately.  I couldn’t do it, no way!  Every volunteer is an essential part of a shelter or rescue, and it couldn’t run without them!

So….I do what I do to help get those furkids adopted.  I try to keep a bit of a distance from them, yet make the best portrait of them possible.  You…you can go in and see those sweet faces and take one or two home with you!

Clear the Shelters is this Saturday!  Go and visit Helping Hands Humane Society and see all the great pets there just ready for you to take them home!

Carol