Boudoir Photographers Denver | How to Choose a Boudoir Photographer That’s Safe

Also known as, how to avoid scammers & sleazeballs.

I know I know… it’s been awhile. The simple fact is that most people spent their time on social media, so most of my focus is there, but I do miss writing articles.

With the holidays coming up, as well as the main holiday that brings out ALL of the icky people – Valentine’s Day – I wanted to get this article up for you, because I want you to be safe when searching for boudoir photographers Denver – or anywhere else.

I’ve said it a million times – even if you don’t hire me, I want to make sure that you are SAFE, above all.

Because of that, I have written SEVERAL articles on things to consider when choosing your boudoir photographer, if you want to look through all of them, you can see them all here.

The reality is that there are a few genres of photography that require a MUCH higher level of responsibility and security, and boudoir is absolutely one of them. So let’s talk about it, and recent events that happened in Colorado, although I know this is happening worldwide.

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When you’re searching for boudoir photographers Denver – or any other city or state – there are so many ways that you might search. You might ask Siri or Alexa. You might look in Google. You might ask friends, you might overhear a conversation and want more details, or you might know someone already.

With ANY of these methods except for friends, you’re subject to paid advertising.

Most people don’t realize that the first few results – as well as more further down the page – in any search results are ads, that can be literally created and purchased by ANYONE. Joe Schmo can decide he wants to do boudoir photography for the holidays or Valentine’s Day because he thinks he’ll make a ton of money, and he can create an ad in less than 15 minutes and show up FIRST in those search results.

For anyone NOT in the business sphere, this can be pretty shocking.

The results that you see first are driven by money, nothing more.

And while that can be shocking, it’s not always necessarily bad. There are a lot of great businesses that use ads successfully to grow, in all arenas. BUT – there are also the scammers, fly by night operations, and with boudoir even worse: the sleazeballs. I was trying to think of a better word for this, but really, that’s what it boils down to.

To be blunt – there are a lot of people, usually men but not always, that get into boudoir photography to get their own rocks off. Ew, right? Additionally, there is a huge market for STOCK photography, which is a whole different article, and I will explain a little more there. But to break down a piece of it – a photographer can SELL photos that they take to be used in various ways. This means that without the proper security in place, your images could end up on billboards, in advertisements (which can be for some pretty awful things) and other places WORLDWIDE. Remember – with the internet, we aren’t just talking about local issues, but global. To read more specifically about security, check out this article here.

There are photographers that want to sell the boudoir images they take to make money on the backend in stock photography. AGAIN – not entirely a bad thing, but definitely something to be aware of and consider when it comes to boudoir.

Additionally – there have been several photographers recently that are being indicted and charged for theft. One in particular had over $100,000 in money that she accepted from clients and then ghosted them and never refunded them. When they got upset and started pushing more for a refund, she offered a refund ONLY if they agreed not to discuss the matter anywhere, including online reviews, and they had to sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement, a contract) to get their money back.

I know right? While the gif is funny, the situation really wasn’t funny, and it’s ongoing. Typically situations like this fly under the radar and you only really hear about them in local groups, although this particular shitstorm made the local news, and is ongoing.

So how do you protect yourself and find someone that is reputable and safe?

The bottom line is when searching for boudoir photographers Denver or anywhere near you, you’re going to come across people that you don’t know. Because if you knew, you wouldn’t be searching, right? And when you find these people, what do you do to check them out, and make sure that they’re not some sleazeball that’s going to sell your images for stock photography, or just take your money and run?

Here are 5 things you can do to check out any boudoir photographers you’re considering hiring for your own boudoir photos.

1. Ask around locally – friends, family, moms groups, Facebook groups or online forums, and more.

If you’re new to the area and don’t have this option, you can go into Facebook groups that are local and ask, sometimes you can even ask anonymously. The anonymous feature in Facebook groups is particularly lovely if you want to keep the fact that you’re doing a boudoir session discreet and don’t want everyone to know. These personal recommendations are usually a really good way to get some intel. If you’re already in Facebook groups and they don’t have the anonymous feature, search for the word boudoir, chances are it’s already been asked. Look at the names that keep coming up over and over again with GOOD information, not bad. If you’re not on Facebook, check out TikTok, Instagram and other sources. Look at peoples’ comments, how someone responds. Start paying attention to what you’re seeing in ALL of the platforms.

2. Look at reviews and NOT just on their websites.

We all know that there are some crazies that will leave negative reviews just to be jerks, so definitely turn on the common sense hat here. Most businesses won’t have ALL five start reviews, that doesn’t mean that they’re terrible businesses. I’ve even had someone leave me a bad review because they didn’t deliver their eBay order and I asked for a refund, even though I had never worked with them. Give me a break, right? Look at various platforms for reviews too, not just their websites. Of COURSE businesses are going to highlight the best on their website – but do you also see those glowing reviews elsewhere? How does the photographer or business respond to those reviews? Do they get defensive and start attacking? That would be a HUGE red flag for me, because if anything goes wrong – because things happen beyond our control – that is likely how they will respond to that as well.

3. Look at a photographer’s history.

To be clear – a newer photographer isn’t necessarily bad, we all start somewhere. But take a look at their social media presence and scroll down. Have they been around for a long time, with several happy clients? Even newer boudoir photographers Denver – or anywhere – should have SOME evidence that they are providing excellent service. Are they bashing women, even if it’s done passively? We ALL know the people that talk about empowering women, then talk bad about someone’s weight, or a woman in the news. So many photographers think that boudoir is a money maker and want to add it to their repertoire, when in fact they’ve been doing only families up until that point. Again – not necessarily a bad thing, but look at the past comments too. In those family photos online, are they bashing clients? Are they rolling their eyes (metaphorically or literally) at clients, or women in any way? Scroll through their social history and look at what you see. Does their message align with what you’re looking for? Is their messaging consistent? Is their work consistent? Growing and getting better, of course, because we all are, but consistent?

4. Have a contract.

SO MANY PEOPLE roll their eyes at this one, and I’ve seen some people not thrilled about contracts in local groups. But the reality is that those contracts are drawn up to protect ALL parties involved. The contract should be very clear – what can you expect to get, and what are your responsibilities in return? Some people balk at this, thinking that they don’t have responsibilities when they’re paying for a service. BUT the reality is that most service providers can’t read minds. Every single thing in my contract is there because of something that has come up in the past. For instance, if a client doesn’t like her makeup, she needs to let us know so it can be corrected, and that is in my contract. There are also details on delivery timelines, and privacy details in my contract. The contract is there to protect everyone, and outline what someone can expect. If someone doesn’t have a contract, or at the VERY least a discussion about a model release, that’s another red flag. Because someone that isn’t concerned about a model release either A. doesn’t have the experience to know that is required or B. doesn’t care and could potentially do questionable things with your images. When in doubt, always ask!

5. Trust yourself.

I say this constantly – if you feel like something might be wrong, don’t ignore that. I feel like I talk with my daughter about this almost daily. Women have been conditioned for CENTURIES to ignore our emotions, to talk ourselves OUT of the red flags that we see, and it usually bites us in the ass. If your interactions with someone feel… slimy – listen to that. If someone talks with you and sounds like they’re not paying attention to you, listen to that. If someone emails you and it feels like they’re talking down to you or they’re condescending, listen to that. Now this doesn’t mean that someone has to be PERFECT to be reputable. There are times that I don’t respond to client emails immediately because I’m super busy and running around like a crazy person. But I come back to those emails, usually with an apology and all of the details requested. My clients know that I don’t answer my business phone because of the amount of scam calls I get, but if they want to talk they can reach out and I will call them quickly. Always trust yourself and your gut.

This is a LOT – right? Let’s all have a little breathing break with a photo of a gorgeous client.

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I know this is a ton of information – and this is why I don’t write a ton of articles anymore. I actually enjoy it, but most people – myself included – don’t have the attention span to really read a long form article anymore.

BUT – this information is SO important.

It hurts my heart to watch women go into mom’s groups and talk about how someone required a $3,000 payment up front, no contract, and then just disappears. The photographer that I talked about previously – currently being charged for numerous things and over $100,000 in theft – left several woman stunned and devastated. I worked with lots of them, and heard a LOT of firsthand stories about just what happened.

Most boudoir photographers Denver are decent humans – I know, have worked with, and have TAUGHT several of them.

But there are the bad apples, and the more that we are aware in making these hiring decisions, the more we can weed them out.

Even if you don’t hire me for your boudoir session – I want you to be safe. Your safety, your body, your mental health and your confidence is crazy important to me, even if we never work together. All of these things can be affected with boudoir photography – positively or negatively, and if you decide I’m a good fit, I would love to show you the best photograph of you ever taken.

Anyone can call themselves a boudoir photographer, please be careful.

If you have read this far and you’re like BROOKE I’M SO IN WHERE DO I SIGN UP, I would love to have you in for a boudoir session.

Because you’re fucking gorgeous, just as you are, right now.

Because you deserve it.

Because taking care of yourself and treating yourself should be a priority.

Because a boudoir session with me means walking away feeling AMAZING, which trickles down into every aspect of your life, with confidence and love for yourself and others. Let’s get you booked.

Ready to book your session!? I’m excited to work with you! Click here to contact me and get more information about booking your session with me!

If you’d like to have more information about what the heck is going on with sessions, parties and more, click here to grab the boudoir photographeres Denver guide from Denver’s boudoir queen, yours truly – How to Look Amazing in Photos. It has tips and tricks to help you look amazing in photos – whether your clothes are on or off – and avoid having to untag yourself in a social media photo again. Or, just laugh with me at various shenanigans and get early access to events, model calls, and awesome goings-on. Either way, come join the list. We have cocktails.

I am so privileged to be called the best boudoir photographer in Colorado! My clients’ privacy is a top priority for these intimate portraits. Any and all boudoir images that are posted have been shared by the subject with written permission. I am honored that my clients choose to share their images with the world, and talk about their experiences with those images.

Are you a photographer that needs help with your business? A super hot business resource for photographers and creative business owners is here! Click here to get more information!