If you’ve been sat over the last few months thinking about the endless possibilities of Virtual Boudoir Shoots as I have, then you’re in for a treat, because today I’ve got something incredibly special for you – a lakeside virtual boudoir shoot! That’s right, full-resolution camera RAW images (plus one iPhone image for good measure!) captured in the wilderness with not a wifi signal in connectible reach. I honestly think this is my biggest Virtual Boudoir Shoot achievement to date – and I’m so excited that client Anne Moore has kindly given me permission to share her beautiful body-reclamation journey with you on the blog.
When I first read this interview, Anne Moore’s eloquent words gave me tingles. Having now completed four Virtual Boudoir Shoots as a series to document her body-reclamation journey over the last six months or so, it has been a true honour to be invited to share such an intimate experience – and even more so that we have the opportunity to view her images today. Anne mentions that she personally was inspired by a couple of previous interviews on the blog, and I’m excited to be able to share her story with you today in the hope that her words might help those of you currently on your own journey of body-reclamation.
Content warning: This interview touches upon the subject of surgery and recovery. Show me something else, please!
Occupation: Perpetual student, homemaker, and blushing-bride-to-be.
How would your best friend describe you? She sees the best in me, always, and says that I am “the most dedicated, curious, and thoughtful person I’ve ever met. Her inquisitiveness in both academics and personal relationships is genuine, and it inspires those around her to look deeper at their own subjects of interest and connections between the things in this world. Her compassion, energy, and dedication are unmatched, and she seizes every opportunity with a joy and light that is amazing to watch.”
Name three things that you always carry with you? Starting in 2020 – mask, hand sanitizer, and wet wipes!
What was the last book you read? This isn’t the last book I read, but I can’t recommend Kintu by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi highly enough. It follows Bagandan history through several generations, weaving together seemingly disparate characters into a compelling portrait of a family. The true last book I read was The Oxford Handbook of Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law, edited by Jules Coleman and Scott Shapiro– a dry and hefty tome indeed. Law school is no joke!
Do you remember how you originally found me? How could I forget! Leanna, of Harlow & Fox, shared your photo of Erin Carmella on the H&F Instagram in early September. I’d been looking for a photographer to work with for some time, so I went to your profile to learn more. I saw your virtual shoot story highlight and was hooked immediately by the unique and accessible way you adapted your business to the current times.
What inspired you to book a virtual photoshoot? So many things were going wrong in my life – cancelled plans, forced repatriation, medical trauma, family trauma, and more – that I felt like I needed a reset to see myself in a new light. Through a different lens, so to speak! I did a lot of research before deciding to book, reading interviews of previous clients and seeking out Tigz’s work on various platforms. Two interviews in particular, with Christen Williams and Callie Connelly, reassured me that I’d come to the right place. Though our situations are very different, their interviews were the push I needed to take this step of body-reclamation. In 2016, I was involved in a freak accident that tore every tendon and ligament in my knees. Recovery was a slow and painful process, complicated by an initially undiagnosed tissue-formation disorder. After nearly two years of physical therapy, I was finally in the clear – or so I thought! In 2020, I learned that things hadn’t actually healed correctly from the first surgery. While walking my dog on an ordinary August afternoon, my legs gave out from under me. One day, I was training for a marathon, the next I couldn’t walk. I felt so upset, hopeless, scared, and utterly betrayed by my body, as though after all the time and energy invested in healing it, it wasn’t going to uphold its end of the bargain and work properly! That’s when I found Tigz. Her messages of empowerment, self-celebration, and reconnection were the balm I needed to forgive myself and move forward in recovery. I wanted to work with her to give myself a goal to work towards in physical therapy and a visual reminder that broken bodies are beautiful too.
Who would play you in a movie of your life? Joanna Levesque! I once fooled my friends by using a photo of her from the 2006 movie RV as a profile picture. And who doesn’t feel a tad nostalgic for Aquamarine? Many people have also suggested a similarity with Millie Bobby Brown of Stranger Things and Enola Holmes.
What’s the most interesting thing about you that the internet doesn’t know about you yet? I like to think that the internet knows so little about me that it’s all interesting… Perhaps that I’m a certified welder and can hold my own with the boys any day.
Tell us about one of the outfits you wore for your shoot – why do you love it? Here’s a secret: I did multiple shoots because I couldn’t choose just two of my favourite outfits! I definitely encourage anyone and everyone to book multiple sessions if it fits your budget and goals. You have permission to be a bit excessive in this regard! To narrow down a single outfit from the experience, though, it would have to be the magnificent magenta Harlow and Fox collaboration with designer Angela Friedman. While I love the textiles and aesthetic of Angela Friedman, I find myself a bit too curvy for her usual cut. H&F are my go-to for luxurious full-bust comfort! Luckily, the two designers have a wonderful friendship and were able to work together to make my dream set a reality. Bright magenta makes me feel powerful, confident, and feminine, making it the perfect shade for any outfit! (Side note, the shade seems to be popping up everywhere this year)
Describe your virtual boudoir shoot experience? The experience begins before you even pull out a camera! Tigz is a wonderful resource and a quick communicator that gets to the heart of your nerves and questions, offering expert advice on location, outfit, and more. On the day of, things could not have been smoother, all due to Tigz’ ability to direct despite the ocean between us. She troubleshot my technology incompetence with ease and gave crystal clear instructions for camera positioning. When posing, she’s effusive with praise, feedback, and tips to twist your body into the best version it can be. She also respects physical limitations with frequent, thoughtful check-ins that never once make you feel lesser. Simultaneously delicate and to the point, shooting with Tigz was easy and enjoyable. At the end of your time together, she doesn’t just leave you standing bare in a pond, but rather immediately follows up over text and chat to reassure you that things went well. She is effusive, professional, and a true problem solver with exquisite attention to detail who can turn anything into a work of art.
What song gets you on the dance floor? Nothing can get me on a modern dance floor, but “Take It All Back 2.0” and “Spirit” by Judah and the Lion will have me dancing barefoot in the moonlight all night long.
What are you most proud of in your life so far? Seeing my first art exhibition in a museum gave me an immeasurable sense of accomplishment.
What is your top body confidence tip? Dance, dance, dance. In the shower, in the street, in the kitchen, in the car. Pose. Admire yourself in the mirror. Embrace your vanity. I firmly believe that acquaintance breeds love, and I find that watching my own movement reminds me to inhabit and engage with the most outward pieces of myself.
What will your autobiography be called? Red Clay Hills, after the geographical characteristics of my girlhood home. Currently a work in progress, it explores relationships between regional biases, education, economics, and opportunities to thrive.
If you could be a model for any brand, which brand would it be and why? A lingerie brand of course, and preferably one that supports individuals of all shapes and sizes! Perhaps Queen of Suburbia, Harlow & Fox, Buttress & Snatch or Nearer the Moon. Each of these creators are lovely, dedicated, and artists at their craft.
What advice would you give to anyone thinking about booking a virtual boudoir shoot of their own?
Consider what you hope to achieve with a shoot- and there’s no wrong answer! Do your research, from the aesthetic of your potential photographer and their retouching policies to your potential wardrobe and story for the shoot. Make a mood board, and don’t work with someone because they’re your *only* option. Choose the best photographer for you and communicate with them at each step of the process. For many of us, and hopefully you as well, Tigz is the one to bring your dreams to reality!
What exciting project are you working on right now? Thanks to the pandemic, I’ve been able to devote considerable time to my art this year. I’m currently in the midst of a natural dye phase, and I hope to expand to walnut inks and physical photography alterations in the new year.
It can be a beautiful experience to document your body-reclamation journey through photographs, either as a before and after or perhaps even at key moments over a period of several months or years. If you’d like to discuss a bespoke boudoir offering to reflect your unique situation, please head over to the contact page and tell me your story. I’d love to be a part of your journey.