A good boudoir session can change your whole outlook on life.
Looking for something fun and sexy to surprise your significant other? Well, leave your inhibitions behind and book a session with Seaweed & Diamonds Boudoir Photography. Samantha will make you feel like the confident and sexy woman we already know you are! I got a chance to sit down with Samantha to talk about Seaweed & Diamonds Boudoir and why booking a boudoir session could be right for you!
How long has Seaweed & Diamonds Boudoir been around? What is the history of Seaweed & Diamonds?
Samantha: I started my business in upstate New York, where I’m originally from. And I started as Samantha B Studio. I’ve only been on Long Island for about three years. I rebranded in 2018, and that’s when Seaweed & Diamonds was born.
I really wanted my brand to be about a feeling, more so than about a person. I wanted to build my brand around an experience and a feeling. That’s how I got to the name Seaweed & Diamonds, specifically. And by moving to Long Island, I fell head over heals in love with the ocean and the beach.
What services do you offer?
Samantha: I am a boudoir photographer, predominantly. I work with women, so I do also do branding. I started in the wedding industry, so I still do weddings occasionally. Typically, it’s more intimate weddings or past clients.
I put a lot of emphasis on women empowerment. What I do predominantly is boudoir and help women feel beautiful and see themselves differently. That’s how I fell in love with boudoir.
I just want to make people feel beautiful. Everyone wants to look like a magazine cover. I want to show women that you can be a supermodel too.
What can a BOLI expect when making an appointment with you?
Samantha: I’m not just a plug and play. You don’t just book and then show up. I set up a consultation where I will go through a 22-page prep guide. And I answer a lot of questions that most people have or that they didn’t realize that they had. Then, we can book a date.
I’m a little different, in that, I help plan and prep as much or as little as the client needs. I will help women pick out outfits for their shoots. We’ll talk about areas of insecurities. I’ll give tips and tricks of different outfits to wear and different brands to look at for all sizes.
Walk us through what happens at a boudoir shoot?
Samantha: There are different package options. The big experience that most people want is the spa experience.
You will come in and get your hair and makeup done. We’ll effortlessly go from that to your shoot, and then you can get a one-hour massage after your shoot. It’s a beautiful day of pampering and empowerment and relaxation, too.
After the shoot, a few days later, you will come back and we’ll go through your images and I’ll help you pick your favorites, either for your album or whatever print product you’re considering. We talk about pushing the limits. We’ll do safe images, and then we’ll do images that are maybe out of your comfort zone, especially if you’re shopping for a groom. I help choose a mix of sexy and pretty. I feel like if we were left to our own devices, we would only pick the ones that made us feel pretty, which our husbands would appreciate, but they’d definitely like the ones that are a little naughtier too.
How do you make a BOLI feel comfortable?
Samantha: I think a lot of the planning process helps people feel more comfortable because we’re working pretty closely together, usually for a couple of weeks. By the time you come in [for the shoot], you already feel like you know me. So you’re already [feeling] like you’re hanging out with a girlfriend.
The hair and makeup helps a lot too. We listen to some music, we sip on some bubbly, we chit chat about girl things. And then we go into the shoot. I would honestly say maybe the first five minutes are the most nerve-wracking or uncomfortable, but most women say after a few minutes they feel like they’re hanging out with a friend at a sleepover. After a little while, I’ll show some images to the client during the shoot. That helps a lot too.
We’re joking and laughing throughout the process, so it’s not this stark, cold atmosphere, where you’re just the subject. It’s girls hanging out having fun. That’s when you get some of the magic, when people are comfortable and act like themselves.
Why would you recommend a boudoir shoot?
Samantha: This isn’t a gift just for your groom [or husband], it’s also a gift for you. It changes the way you see yourself. And when you see yourself differently, it changes the way you feel about yourself. And when your confidence shifts like that, your whole life shifts. A good boudoir session can change your whole outlook on life. It’s a really powerful experience.
I follow some of my clients on social media after a shoot, and you can see a change in the way they present themselves. You see a change in the way that they smile in family photos and the way that they carry their body and the way they show up in images more.
We, as women, put so much pressure on ourselves to be perfect all the time, and I think there’s a really strong beauty in accepting where your body is at right now and loving it in every way. Once you get to that point, positive change can happen.
Going back to the bridal aspect of things. Planning a wedding is really hectic and really stressful. There’s a lot going on. There’s a lot of excitement and wonder and awe. And capturing some vulnerability in yourself and your sexuality where you’re at then is powerful to look back on, because once you are married, you [could] change so much. So having that memory of that time when everything was new and everything was an adventure. It’s powerful to look back on that, as well.
What advice would you give a BOLI before a boudoir shoot?
Samantha: My biggest piece of advice would be to just go for it. Everybody makes a lot of excuses … take a leap of faith that it’s going to be a life-changing experience.
If you’re still not convinced Seaweed & Diamonds Boudoir is something for you, some of our very own Brides of Long Island have some great things to say. BOLI Ceciley Erkan says, “I did a boudoir session with Samantha, and it was an absolutely amazing experience. Of course, when I made the decision to do this as a gift to my husband, I was a bit nervous about it because, like every woman, I was lacking in the confidence department. I had searched for some other boudoir photographers, but Samantha was the first person I met and had me in for a studio tour. Once I met her, I was sold. She is just an amazing, bubbly and funny person, that I knew she would make this great. The day of my shoot was fantastic, we laughed the whole time that I didn’t even feel weird being half naked in front of a stranger. And the final product is just so beautifully done and it has instilled a confidence in me that I didn’t have before. I’m so glad I did it, and even more so that I chose Seaweed & Diamonds.”
Written by Christine McGrath,