"I still look at my photos with a smile and say, that's me!"
Some of us are definitely more confident in front of the camera than others. And then there's Annie....who, until recently, hated being papped with a passion. "I didn't even have a photographer at my wedding," she admits. "I'll avoid cameras as much as possible."
When she won a boudoir portrait session with Smart Photography, Annie realised what a great opportunity it could be. Not only would she finally have some beautiful photos for her husband, but she might just feel better about herself, too. All she had to do was face her fear...
"I'd thought about having a boudoir portrait session before, but I didn't have the confidence," Annie explains. She worried that she wouldn't look good in front of the camera. "I'm a large lady; I like my shoulders, but that's all!"
She went through a range of emotions before the session. "I was nervous, maybe with a hint of excitement," she says. "And I was frightened of the unknown."
To put her mind at rest, she set about planning a gorgeous boudoir wardrobe, including a floaty babydoll negligee with hold-up stockings. Annie was particularly keen to flatter her legs, so paired her red basque with a pretty net skirt. Then, for the pièce de résistance, she brought along her fireman husband's tunic and helmet. "That was for my fun shot," she adds.
It was finally time to face the cameras, and with some coaxing from Robin and Holly, photo-phobic Annie found herself enjoying the experience. Robin, Smart Boudoir's photographer, was instrumental in helping her to relax. "He's amazing, respectful and professional. He puts you into poses that suit your body. I had fun!"
Normally, Annie dreaded viewing photos of herself, but her Smart Photography portraits were something else. "They make me view myself in a different way," she says. "I was very lucky to win my session...it was such a liberating experience." And does she feel more body confident? "Definitely!"