Posts tagged washington dc boudoir
Get to know your Artist | Renata Kelly-Rippy

It’s time for another introduction of one of our Northern Virginia boudoir makeup artists who will most likely be scheduled to get you camera ready for your boudoir session.

Renata has also experienced a boudoir session with Julie Socher Boudoir so while you’re in her chair feeling all the nerves, she knows exactly how you feel and she will tell you all about it!

Here’s a little more about Renata and why she’s the pro when it comes to makeup and hair!

Are you in full glam mode everyday?
Heck no!  I'm just like any other girl on the go (Ha!) Over the last few years, I've mastered my go to everyday look that makes me feel "together".  I am a huge fan of having a Lippie Wardrobe (5 awesome lipsticks you feel great in) to switch things up.

What is your "go to" look for your own hair and makeup routine? 
My go to look is foundation, brows, blush and a great lip.  For my hair, I recently did a big chop and added color.  

What is your favorite boudoir makeup look?
Right now, I'm into fleshy/peachy looks.  I think its so sexy and fresh 

Working with a wide variety of clients, how do you manage different skin tones and hair textures?
Being a woman of color, when I first started doing makeup, it was really important for my clients to feel included.  I never want anyone to feel as if they can be beautiful or get the same experience different there skin tone or hair type.  This topic is coming up more and more in the industry and I love it.

What are your top 3 favorite products? 
Products are so overwhelming, even for makeup artists.  Everyday there is some amazing new product to try.  But right now, my favorites are LanoLips lip balm, Makeup Forever HD liquid foundation and NARS soft matte concealer

If you could tell your clients anything before their boudoir session, what would it be? 
You deserve this.  Enjoy this moment of freedom.  For me, it was finally learning to accept myself as I was.  Its the first step in learning about unconditional love.  Often we put stipulations on when we can love ourselves and that has to stop.  With each client, I learn something new about myself, the world and how important it is to connect with who we are on the inside.

Where can someone find you for services other than boudoir?


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Renata’s makeup by Melyssa Chisley IG:@makeup_lyssa

When one of your bucket-list items is to honor yourself

I got a couple of emails from some members of GRRRL clothing brand [I’ll wait while you go check it out, do it, you’ll love it too] and met up with Kortney Olson, the founder, athlete and amazing human being and we had some photo time in the studio. J was watching the insta stories as a follower of GRRRL ARMY and knew that the excuses she was telling herself about not doing a shoot was well…excuses.

When I chatted with J, I immediately connected with her and we started planning right over the phone. What to wear, what to expect are just a few of the things we went over. I connected with her reasons for wanting to do a boudoir session because I myself am going through a self acceptance phase in life where I celebrated my “rising phoenix” moment with my own boudoir shoot.

I could go on an on about how amazing this session was, but she does an even better job at describing how her experience was better than I can.


When I turned 38 (almost a year ago) I made a "40 before 40" bucket list of sorts. I put "personal photography session" on it because I was too scared to put "boudoir session" in actual writing. Shortly after that I stumbled upon Kortney Olson's personal Instagram (after having been a fan of GRRRL and part of the online community for over a year). Her personality and her wisdom started chipping away at the negative self-talk and body image I'd been struggling with for forever. I'd been "working on it" since having my daughters, but without having a role model of sorts that I respected and identified with, it was like trying to swim without instruction without drowning. Over the past year I'd been working on being more true to myself, getting back into weight lifting, doing crazy thinks like shaving the side of my head and dying my hair, etc. I'd been slowly accepting the skin I was in, and honoring it's imperfections. I was still scared about that one line on my "40 before 40" list that I wanted to accomplish. Then Kortney posted on her IG about this awesome boudoir photographer and the photos were breathtaking. "If only she was in my area...." I thought (or, worked up as an excuse...kinda both)...and then I saw that you WERE. It was now or never...either I could walk the walk of being brave and loving my body like I talk to everyone about, and preach to my own daughters, or I could keep making excuses. I decided to get over myself. One of my favorite quotes is by Amelia Earhart "The fears are paper tigers." My fear of boudoir was a paper tiger I decided to set fire to.


As a photographer myself for the past 8 years, I knew plenty of folks who had done boudoir sessions with other people, but they never quite came out like I would have wanted my session to go; kinda sleezy looking, or just somewhat uncomfortable. And it was always a male photographer which I wasn't okay with. After stalking your website, and your IG, I *knew* without a doubt that you were the only one I'd trust with a session and with photos like this. Your vision coupled with your talent, and then our conversation on the phone where I could sense your awesome personality, sealed the deal for me. I also really appreciated that you had your own studio (not a rented hotel room), and that you posted photos of yourself that you had taken. I love seeing the work that photographers can produce of themselves in addition to others, and I know that takes a certain kind of bravery to do so, I sincerely admire that.


My biggest fears for doing a boudoir session:
1) I wouldn't know what the heck to do with my body, or my face (I have some wicked RBF, and I also am not a naturally smiley person so I feel awkward when forced to smile for photos.) REALITY: Not only did you make me comfortable the entire time so that I didn't have to think about what to do with my body, I just had to move it, there was no insistence on smiling for the camera. I was free to be myself, just guided naturally for the photos.
2) I'd see the photos during the reveal and have that awful "I look horrible/I shouldn't be in these photos/I wasted my time" feeling as I tore myself apart which has happened with a lot of photos (not boudoir) over the years. REALITY: Didn't happen once. I thought about it afterwards and I really think that post-photo session shifted my perspective on my entire body. I have an average mom-bod that's been through a lot in almost 40 years. Who cares? I'm still effing awesome. Those thighs? They've always touched, but they're strong as hell. That waist? Not as thin, or as well defined as in my 20's, but they've carried and sustained two lives. The reality was, that for the first time, I was able to sit back and admire the heck out of myself in photos. That feeling of empowerment, just like I had after my photo session, came back again.


Getting to meet you, Julie, and finding out that there's this local, badass, funny, kind, photographer out there that can help change another womans outlook on herself just with a couple hours of their time and a camera. The session itself was great, looking at the photos was wonderful, but I love connecting with other strong women who are being true to themselves and doing what they love while also making the world around them better. So, it might seem weird to say, but my favorite part was getting to meet another GRRRL out there being a total badass babe. :)

I'm planning on doing this to a bunch of my close girlfriends. :) I haven't refined my message yet, but I think it'll be along the lines of, "This is the best gift you can give YOURSELF. It makes a great gift for your significant other, but do it as a way to honor yourself. To see yourself as the fierce badass you are. From start to finish you'll feel empowered, and perhaps even more awakened to your own strength in your sexuality."


Boudoir on your mind? Tell me about it!

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When you panic a week before your session but come out feeling like a GODDESS

Remember that time I talked about how important picking a photographers style was really important? J had been in instagram and was saving a lot of black and white photos she really liked and then after taking another look at where these photos came from, she saw that they were from the Northern Virginia area and were all my work. If that doesn’t say she found her style, then I don’t know what does! It’s easy to fall in some kind of rabbit hole in instagram but when you find what you’re looking for, that justifies the bucket loads of hours spent scrolling and saving. Girl, I know.

It is absolutely normal really get nervous right before your shoot and J let me know she was having hesitations about not being able to pose or look the way she wanted in her own mirror so how was she supposed to do that in front of a camera. I reassured her that 98% of my clients have never had a shoot like before and don’t know how to pose. And that I was going to guide her into all the poses and expressions and to just trust the process. I got you!

What was even more incredible is that J drove all the way up from the Charlottesville, VA area to have her shoot with us and I’m so glad she did! She had some amazing Honey Birdette lingerie and I was so excited to have her feel amazing and to create a very personal surprise gift for her soon to be husband.


My search for a boudoir photographer began on most great searches ;-). I typed in a tagline and I began to see the most beautiful black and white photographs...the bookmarking had begun. As a returned back to my original search, I began tagging more and more photos all from the same original tagline. Once I had established quite the collection, I investigated the photos further and found that they all belonged to the same photographer...Julie. Her style was breathtaking and her ladies looked sexy and natural. Once I found her website, I was blown away by how calm and informative she seemed without ever having have met her. Her website had women of all shapes, sizes, and nationalities in the most flattering light and poses. My boudoir shoot was nothing more than amazing! I made the absolute best decision in picking Julie.


With my wedding approaching, I wanted to surprise my future hubby-to-be.I had never done anything like a boudoir shoot before so I knew he would never expect it! The album that I purchased from my session was the gift that I gave my husband during out first look on my wedding day. He was more than surprised!


My biggest fear in doing a boudoir session was the feeling of being exposed. I had never done anything like this before....and frankly am not the best at posing sexy. Prior to my shoot, I remember sending Julie an email freaking out, realizing I had NO IDEA how to pose myself to look attractive and flattering after many failed attempts in my bathroom mirror. Julie sent the most sensitive and kind email response, telling me not to worry and that she would guide me along the way. Julie was 100% honest. Throughout my shoot, she guided me every step of the way: "purse your lips...arch your back...more...I know you can give me a bit more...amazing." She was kind, thoughtful, and encouraging! I never felt confused or embarrassed....she made me feel like I had been doing this for years.


What was your favorite part of your boudoir session?: There were too many to count! However my two favorites would be hair and makeup and post-shoot. I LITERALLY FELT LIKE A GODDESS! My hair and makeup was completed to absolute perfection...I felt so beautiful and it was just how I envisioned it would be. Following the shoot, Julie showed me a sneak peak photo and it looked amazing! WAYYYYY better than I could ever have imagined. I felt so beautiful and was a feeling that every woman should experience.

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