I recently completed a cosplay x boudoir project with Lady Aurora. Months of planning and research finally culminated into 6 hours of shooting and nine rolls of film with the Fuji GX680IIIS and 200 plus photos with my Leica M.
This is my first foray into boudoir photography, so I felt a bit overwhelmed.
One of the concepts I wanted to try was to mix boudoir photography with cosplay. I felt that if done right, I could combine the sexuality of boudoir with the character love that comes from cosplay.
Not just any character could pull this concept off though. I needed a sultry character that’d fit the boudoir style. Luckily, I had run into a bit of inspiration while researching reference poses for Lady Aurora‘s Mitsuru Kirijo cosplay earlier in the year.
This wallpaper by ArtmaceR was a perfect fit for my vision!
While collaborating with Lady Aurora about the concept and location, I originally wanted to have a 1940’s Hollywood glamour kind of look. Fur coat and huge fireplace and all! It was surprisingly hard to find a private location with a nice fireplace.
While the struggling to find a suitable location, we eventually settled on a Japanese -themed Kyoto room at Inn at Depot Hill, a quaint little bed and breakfast in Capitola, CA. It had a nice enough fireplace, so I thought that I could make it work. With reservation in hand, we took a break.
Coming back from the break, I looked at the room again and was really impressed with the quality of the location. Also after having shot Lady Aurora in her yukata version of Mitsuru Kirijo, I decided to change the look of the shoot to better suit the Japanese-themed location.
Gone were the ideas for fur and fur rugs by the fireplace. They were replaced with the sensuality inspired by Japanese geishas with loose hanging kimonos.
A sensual Mitsuru inviting you into her inner room…
I must admit that my ambition for this project was a bit too much. I wanted to shoot both digital and medium format film for all the shots, but when arriving at the location, I came to the realization that there just wasn’t enough time to do both well.
So I made the call to have film take the front seat and only use digital to achieve framing that I couldn’t get with the rather large and unwieldy Fuji GX680IIIS. I also decided to shoot with color for the yukata shots since I wanted to retain the details and colors of the yukata. For the interior boudoir shots, I opted for black and white since I wanted to de-emphasize the color and emphasize the character and lingerie.
Although the room itself was rather large, it seemed very small after setting up both Einstein E640 flashes with parabolic umbrellas, a 1′ x 1′ LED panel as an assist light and the GX680IIIS on a tripod.
Ultimately as all boudoir shoots do, we ended up shooting on the bed. I really wanted to emphasize Lady Aurora’s curves and capture the naughty side of Mitsuru.
Overall I think the project went well. My only complaint is that I wish I had more time! I’d like to thank Lady Aurora for making another one of my projects a success!