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Pantsuit Nation: We’re Still Here

Remember that time I told you I tried to avoid bringing politics into my business?  Yeah about that…turns out that isn’t my new truth.  There is no way that I can consider myself a champion for women if I am too scared to put it all on the line and stand up for what I believe in.  So here I am putting it all out there, in the name of women and women’s rights. 

A little disclaimer before we begin: 

When I first heard the results of the election, I was shocked, saddened and brought to a place of anger.  I knew that I needed to do something to share my voice and utilize my network, and so I decided to do this project.  I put out the call for 3 days and had 15 women volunteer to be a part of it.  I want to say that we represent every woman, but we don’t.  There is so much diversity missing that I hope to do this project again soon, and bring a more diverse group of women to the table. 

Now, lets begin. 

I want to start off by explaining why I chose to ask the women to come in pantsuits and to be sexy while doing it.  First of all, we all know about the awesome “secret” FB group pantsuit nation right?  It is a group designed to not just champion for Hillary, but to stand up against the misogyny, xenophobia and racism that was spewing all about during the election process.  It has since turned into a support group for those who now fear for their rights and saftey. I love the idea of a woman in a pantsuit because not so long ago, women were not able to express themselves in the way they do now, not able to hold positions of power, to be regarded as equals.  Now we are, and you bet your ass we are not about to let all of the hard work that has been done in the name of women’s rights just vanish.  Now let’s talk a bit about why I made the decision to have these women dress sexy.  This is a position that is controversial and it is more important now than ever that we let the message be heard loud and clear. 

This is our body.  This is our body. This is OUR BODY!

If you think for one second that these women showed up for this session dressed to impress a man, you are fucking wrong.  No, what they showed up was to say, this is my body, this is my choice. The way that I dress has absolutely nothing to do with you. Be it I dress in a turtle neck and a long skirt or in a sheer dress, you do not have the right to touch my body.  You do not have the right to tell me how I govern my body.  No Mr. President-Elect Trump, you cannot just walk up to a woman and grab her by her pussy.  You like what you see? Fabulous, you still cannot fucking touch us without our consent! 

You like what you see? Fabulous, you still cannot fucking touch us without our consent! 

Now I live in New York, a state we don’t even look at in the media because it is already assumed that we bleed blue in this state. Yes a majority do, however, that doesn’t mean that everyone does.  I happen to have my home studio directly overlooking a Planned Parenthood, and with Healthcare for Women, come the men who think that they have a single say in that.  I sometimes cannot even walk down the street during the week without them turning up their church music and chanting at me, turning their fake babies in my direction, and all I happen to be doing is going home.

Now I know that this is a hot button debate, so I am not about to sit here and tell you that my beliefs in science overrule your religion. No the  date someone regards life beginning is very personal and intrinsic to how they were raised and their faith and I would never ever tell one side they are right and one side they are wrong.

What I will say is that IT IS NONE OF YOUR FUCKING BUSINESS! Stay out of other women’s bodies. If you are a woman, stay out of other women’s bodies, if you are a man stay out of other women’s bodies.   Sounds simple enough right?

Now that that is settled let’s move onto the love we need to share and show to all of the other groups affected by this decision, minorities, people of color, LGBT, Muslims, Mexicans, the list goes on and on and on.

I am not about bridging the gap right now. I am about saying, hey I am really friggen scared. I am a Jewish woman who lives across from a Planned Parenthood and you just appointed one of the most anti-semetic, white-supremacists to be your a chief strategist in the highest halls of our federal government. You want to enact change?  look beyond the face of the party, President Pussy-Grabber, and lets look at who he is appointing.  What can we do to change this?

I believe we have to start small, start local and to put our money where our mouth is.

After you look through these powerful images of some bad-ass and strong women, I want you to turn your attention to the list at the bottom of the blog.  That is a short list of places that I believe are going to need our support more now than ever.

If you don’t have money to donate, have a bake sale and donate the profits, every little bit counts and senator Bernie Sanders showed us exactly how powerful small and individual donations can be.

We have the power to make a difference.

Now sit tall, put on your glasses, get a tall drink of water, and prepare to join me and these other incredible brave women in the resistance.

The resistance to misogyny, the resistance to hate, the resistance to racism, the resistance to xenophobia.

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Let me tell you something ladies, we have alot of thankless work ahead of us, but it is together that we will succeed.

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I am a firm believer that when it comes to government, the vote always happens, you have the opportunity every single day to vote with your actions and vote with your wallet.  I encourage you to set up monthly draws for some of the organizations below.  Pick the ones that sit right with your personally held beliefs and raise them up. Rally and donate to local politicians who you want to win in 2 years.  We do have power, don’t ever let anyone tell you that it is over because we may have lost the battle, but the war has just begun:

To support women’s health: Planned Parenthood (http://plannedparenthood.org ) or the Center for Reproductive Rights (http://reproductiverights.org ).

If you don’t believe man-made global warming is a a silly issue, give to the Natural Resources Defense Council (http://nrdc.org ).

Give to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund (http://naacpldf.org )

The Trevor Project for LGBT youth (http://thetrevorproject.org )

Another worthy cause is the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (http://maldef.org )

Join me in the resistance.

We can make a difference, and in the words of my homeboy Bill Maher:

We’re Still Here!

A Year Of Self-Acceptance

I wrote a little bit about this on my facebook this morning, but the end of the year is always a very reflective time for me. Yes I fully blame it on the commercialization of New Years Eve and the concept of New Years Resolutions…but in this case I am glad for the yearly reminder to be introspective. I find it super important to take this time every year and look back on both my growth and the areas where I still want to grow as a person.  I have realized that 2015 was a huge tipping point for me. It was the year that I finally decided to listen to myself, to take my own advice and to give myself permission to surround myself with love and cast negativity and negative people aside.

It is a hard choice sometimes, realizing that people or things or thoughts that you had once found comfort in, might be the exact things that are stunting your personal growth. It is the minute that you give yourself permission to put yourself on the list of things that matter. It is when you really start to notice the things, thoughts, people, in your life that are toxic, that Self Love can really start to happen.  This was hard for me this year, very, very hard. I have always been a people pleaser, the girl who will make fun of herself in a room full of people just because she is too uncomfortable in her own skin to just “be”, so she resorts to self-deprecating humor to break the silence in a room. I never thought of cracking jokes about myself as a bad thing, until I started to wake up in the morning and really believe those things about myself.

In 2015 I learned it is not ok to put myself down. It is not ok to let others put me down. Joking or not, I have to accept the responsibility, that every time I make a fat joke, the beautiful woman I am believes a little bit less that she is beautiful. I have to accept that sometimes when I look in the mirror it is going to be a battle of forcing myself to face that woman, to stare her in the eyes, and tell her that it is all ok, and that she is beautiful and to believe it.  It is hard work. It is such ridiculously hard work to love yourself. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.  You don’t just wake up one day and believe in yourself. No, loving yourself takes hard work, it takes constant communication with your heart and spirit, it takes learning to quiet the negative voices in your head, and learning to tune out the negative voices around you. It is hard work to decide when a relationship in your life does not serve you or make you happy. It is hard work to look in the mirror and tell yourself that you deserve happiness.

Today’s #LRPBoudieBeauty is a beautiful woman, with an amazing family, who deserves to know she is beautiful, and I am proud that today, I was able to show her that she is.

It is hard fucking work ladies. Let me repeat myself. It is hard fucking work to accept yourself…and it is even harder work to love yourself.

But there is no work in the world that is more important.

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Yes. That is me. Yes, I am allowed to talk positively about myself.

 I think the pillow say’s it all. “Talk is Cheap”. So here I am facing the camera, and doing just a little bit more than talking today. They may not be the most technically perfect Self-Portraits ever, but they are me, they are beautiful and I am proud to share this side of myself with you.

My goals for 2016 are to share more of myself, to look in the mirror more often and remind myself that I am worth it, to keep the toxic people and thoughts at bay, to cut back on the self deprecating humor, and to share my voice and philosophies with as many women as I can next year.

What are your Self-Love New Years Resolutions for 2016?

Fall Outdoor Boudoir

Carolyn and I were introduced about a year ago through our mutual friend Sarah. Sarah must have known from the start that connecting the two of us would result in nothing but pure magic. Carolyn is one of those down to earth girls that exists in the moment, she doesn’t care about the latest trends or what the Kardashians are wearing (yes I am a admitted Kardashian addict, judge me, its fine, I judge myself for it.) Because of this, her style absolutely and positively rocks! It is who she is, what she is feeling in the moment, and it is bad-ass! She legit has a pintrest lookbook of her wardrobe and when it came time to style her session, she gave me free reign to put together whatever outfits I wanted from her collection. I was literally drooling at some of her awesome pieces…um kitty panties and pegasus heels?! yes please!

Despite the insane rush of the fall  / holiday busy season, I was so obsessed with this session that I forwent sleep in exchange for editing to make sure that I got it out just in time for my favorite holiday of the year! An entire holiday where everyone is almost as weird as I am, it is much easier to find awesome skull-y things, and where Nina Simone plays on repeat (see above, you are welcome 😉 <3)

So Ghouls and Gals, Happy Fall – Happy Halloween – Happy best time of the damn year!

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A special thank you to Cassandra McKenna for her beautiful makeup artistry!

Ellie in the City

I have been waiting for the new website to be complete to blog these images of Ellie in NYC.  This session was a perfect mixture of all things I love…a gorgeous woman, the NYC Skyline and beautiful diffused cloudy light.

As what happens often when you are a believer in always growing and learning, this session was a major tipping point for me.  It was the moment that I became even less afraid of female sensuality and even more driven to pull genuine emotion in my images. When the is emotion is there, you become more drawn into the image… more connected to the moment.

 
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Curated Print Products

 “You never know the value of a picture until it is all you have left.”

I’m sure you’ve heard that statement before. I know I have, but had never given it much thought until photos were all I had left. Before going into photography, I always used to take pictures with my phone and post them on Facebook. It wasn’t until October 16, 2013, when I lost one of my dearest and oldest friends in a tragic accident, that I really learned the value of self-preservation through pictures. When photos are all you have left to remember someone by, their value increases astronomically! I think back and remember when my grandmother passed away, going through her old pictures and stumbling upon a box of old prints from when she was younger. It was incredible to see time preserved in these photos, holding them in my hands transported me to a time before I even existed. That is the power of pictures, to transport us, to freeze time. All that is left behind when we are gone are our pictures and memories. Seeing her so young, with her hair perfectly coiffed and posed, I am reminded of old black and white modeling photos of Judy Garland. Luckily, I have an old vintage nighty of hers that my mother kept for me. I shot my dear friend Kristen in it. (Check it out in a previous blog post!)

I love social media and the age of the internet, but with technology ever evolving I sometimes fear for the future of our digital memories. We went from huge disks, to floppy disks, to cd’s to usbs…as each of these mediums become outdated, we loose more and more of our pictures and memories. Thankfully, the one thing that can’t be outdated or replaced by the newest technology is prints.

After months and months of sourcing every professional print lab in the United States, England, Australia, etc. I finally ended up with a Canadian, professionals only, print lab. The albums are handcrafted in the finest Italian tradition. These prints are heirloom quality, and truly designed to last forever. My new website, with a brand new products page is launching later this year. In the meantime, here is a sneak peak of our newest collections:

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Just a few of the many swatches from our options for your album cover!

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And of course our boutique packaging <3

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Are you ready to preserve your legacy and take part in an empowering long term investment to capitalize on your individual beauty?

Lets chat!

Email me at Lindsay@photographybylindsayrae.com

Troy, NY Portraits

Miss Kitty P, also now known as the leading lady for the band Donner Social, (You have to hear the pipes on this girl – she can saaaannngggg!) has graced my camera again!   Can you believe she actually let me color her hair? Yes, she bleached it out and then let me have my way with it doing a bold lavender to blue ombre…I am sort of obsessed, and not just because I did it myself!  Once of my favorite things about Kitty is her ever evolving style, she doesn’t try to fit in, she just wears what she wants when she wants it and the same thing goes for her hair.  That confidence in being 100% herself is something that totally inspires me, and that all of us women can take a tip from!

This time we set out to capture the last of the setting summer sun in Downtown Troy for our Ruby Rose inspired session.With Orange is The New Black being one of the hits of the summer, we were super inspired by Ruby Rose’s feminine yet still androgynous style, and more specifically, her super girl ability to rock a blazer with any outfit and make it sexy as hell!

For indoor boudoir sessions, try mixing a sexy blazer with high waisted bottoms (for my curvy ladies, like myself) or lacy bikini bottoms (for the slender or more athletic builds) with a lacy bra or even no bra for a super sophisticated and provocative look.

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Self Portrait

There has been a challenge of sorts circulating around the Boudoir community to get in front of your own camera. I decided to take this challenge.  You may have seen the amazing session that Cate Scaglione of Life As Fine Art captured for me, if not you definitely should check it out HERE, this session captured the me that I try to put out into the world. Sophisticated, elegant and a bit edgy…

However….the time has come to really just allow myself to be raw, to live in the emotions that I am feeling and to embrace the beauty of not only light, but darkness.

Let’s be honest here, as amazing as life is, we all go through trials and tribulations and things that make us sort of want to curl up into a ball. I went through one of these things recently when I faced a total violation and breach of trust. I will be honest, I really let this event in my life affect me, bring me to tears and make me question my love and trust in people in general.  I gave myself about 5 days to “wallow” in my sorrow before my beautiful clients snapped me right out of it by embracing their own experience. I got a call at 930pm last night from one of my new clients from NYC, this client might have been my most nervous and vulnerable client to date, but she went through this amazing transformation in front of my camera.  She has finally gotten a chance to view her gallery and called me to tell me how “hot” she looked.  That moment, of hearing my client love herself, that is what snapped me out of it…now the residual feelings from what I went through are still there, but I decided to give myself the experience I give my clients in front of my own camera.

I embraced the moment I was in, no makeup, no clothes,  not even a brush through the hair.  Completely vulnerable and emotionally exposed, I just went for it.  I have been photographed before…but I have never photographed myself with anything aside from my cell phone, so this was especially challenging for me. More challenging than getting the settings right for the dark, emotional vibe I wanted to capture was the self-talk.  I had to talk myself into trusting myself, the same way I ease my clients into trusting me, and by the end of my session with myself, I felt free of all of the darkness that has been surrounding me lately…almost like the camera sucked it all up.

What you see may not be the best technical photography or best poses I have ever done, but they are raw, they are me, and they are my way of saying “I am in this with you girls”

In the words of my dear friend Rebecca Williams “I honor the skin I am in.”

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Times Square Boudoir

I always like to share a little bit about how I met the client and our story, and it is no different with Beth Claire.  Beth is a fellow “Boudie” and an incredible one at that! We c connected through the Boudoir community and hit it right off! There was one day in a group discussion that the question was asked “If you had to photograph one other photographer in this group who would it be?”  My answer was immediately Beth! Aside from her amazing hair (we all know I have an obsession with red hair) she had this personality that radiated through both pictures she has modeled in, but more importantly her photography.  It is always really really scary to photograph another photographer, especially when it is one who’s work you really admire. Needless to say I was uber nervous when Beth showed up! Lucky for me though, she was so laid back and in good spirits that I was able to just relax and make a new friend.

We went through the process just like normal, Beth set off to hair and makeup with Natalia from Blush Blush NYC while I went through her wardrobe and paired off and set up outfits for her. She must have been able to sense my nerd-dom through email, because I about gasped when I pulled out the amazing Marvel dress! Fate would have it, our hotel was right in Times Square and the characters from all of the comic books were out on the street, so I most obviously had to take advantage of that!

Chickity-Check out the sick video for this session and then scroll down to view the full size images!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qJNMPC38co

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HAVE YOU BEEN SEEKING A LONG TERM INVESTMENT TO CAPITALIZE ON YOUR INDIVIDUAL BEAUTY?
BOUDOIR IS THE ANSWER.
LET’S CHAT!

Email us at Lindsay@photographybylindsayrae.com to book your session!

Saturday Fashspiration

I have decided that Saturday’s are made for fashion inspiration! The perfect way to spend a Saturday is with a little shopping anyway right?

This week I am super inspired by mixing super edgy with classic elegance!

Let these looks inspire you as we plan your shoot!

Lacquer and Lace

Ms. Lindsay NY Boudoir

I met Lindsay one fateful evening in NYC through a mutual friend.  I had gone into the city with two of my best friends to work and have fun, and we ended up deciding to go out down by west 4th street. I remember this night clearly because that was the night I got into a fight with the bouncer at Down the Hatch and got kicked out of the bar lol! You know me, always standing up for the under-dog and getting myself into trouble 😉  But this is a story for another day! lol!

Anyway, Lindsay and I totally vibed so we kept in touch and when she told me she wanted to shoot with me I was thrilled!  We planned her shoot and really set a tone to what she was going for and made the plans for me to come into the city for a hotel session for her!  We scored a hotel in Times Square and set to work creating one of my favorite most inspiring sessions to date.  I normally shoot very bright and vibrant, but something about Lindsay’s chill energy and comfort in her own skin allowed me to push my own limits and shoot for a darker and more raw type of look.  This session really pushed me out of my comfort zone to really embrace the sensuality and and the energy of female sexuality.

I think you will start to see more of this type of energy in my future sessions, there was something very empowering for me about pushing myself and my client a bit past our normal comfort zone to create something very true to both of us.

I am heading back to NYC next week for 3 more client sessions and I am really looking forward to seeing what we create.

Check out the video and then scroll below to see the full size images:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_z2ZOTCX_-E

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HAVE YOU BEEN SEEKING A LONG TERM INVESTMENT TO CAPITALIZE ON YOUR INDIVIDUAL BEAUTY?
BOUDOIR IS THE ANSWER.
LET’S CHAT!

Email us at Lindsay@photographybylindsayrae.com to book your session!