I grew up at the tail end of a time when the way of life was aimed at basking in the refined and the exquisite. Everything was about style and class, romance and glamour. From men’s suits and cars to women’s jewelry to elegant boudoir and fancy satin undergarments. I first experienced what I considered boudoir in the early Victoria Secret catalogs and in TV shows like “Dynasty“.
To give some context, I was in Haiti at the time, and all of it looked like another world to me. Imagine me as a 12-year-old boy stumbling upon a lingerie catalog in our living room. My mind couldn’t understand why women paraded so comfortably in their “dentelles”. I wondered with deep confusion what planet they came from because my God they were absolutely gorgeous like nothing I’d ever seen before! Then, I got to the credits page, where it would list the editors and photographers. I did not make much of it, but I did think those guys were so cool.
Those images always stuck with me for their style , mood, and overall elegant aesthetic. And the idea that people made a living photographing those kind of images just blew my mind, like “this is an actual job?!”. Fast forward to 2018, while searching for photography books in Hong Kong, I found the work of Vincent Peters. As I sat on the floor of this small basement bookstore flipping through the page of his book, I quickly understood why his work captivated me so much. His photographs carried this timeless elegance from my memory of those days. The way the captured his models always paid homage to their beauty and core feminine nature without being cheesy.
I always try to emulate this style in my boudoir work – see my boudoir session with Grisel in Mexico. This is one of the reasons why I mainly use black and white film. It gives the photographs a traditional look and feel. The idea is to use simple garments and focus on the energy of the model. I used that approach with Jessica, a young Venezuelan model out of Miami. I thought her rich Hispanic look was perfect for this elegant boudoir style. You can find Jessica on Instagram at jessika_xo13/ .